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Meet Wolfie Castillo

Today we’d like to introduce you to Wolfie Castillo.

Hi Wolfie, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start maybe you can share some of your backstory with our readers?
I am an LA-based digital illustrator, born and raised in El Salvador. Growing up in a strict household, I found escapism in studying and enjoying music, film, and cartoons whenever I was allowed to. After immigrating to the U.S at the age of 14, those interests became even more instrumental to me. They became tools that would help me adapt to a whole new life, even learning to speak a new language fluently by consuming the media that brought me comfort for so long.

I worked hard to find my path in art when I couldn’t continue pursuing music due to many moves our family had to go through. Once I located myself in LA, I dedicated myself to art. I attended art programs such as Ryman Arts and CSSSA for their fine arts courses. I took muralism and painting classes in my spare time to strengthen my skills as a painter, worked at local schools as an apprentice scenic artist for theater productions and studied animation for a short time in college. Eventually, I took a long break after working for a few years as a freelance painter for private pop culture collectors and rekindled my love for art through music prior to the pandemic. During that time, I discovered new tools and developed a strong digital style that merged my past backgrounds in music and art to create portraiture and scene studies from music videos and film.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
Transitioning from an all-traditional background into a digital was quite the challenge. I had to cycle through many drawing tablets to find the proper one to use and the right programs that allowed myself to fully experiment and exercise my creative muscles. Once I was familiar with the tools I needed, I had to find a style that worked for me. Finding the right balance between realism and cartoons didn’t come easy. There were a lot of times where I wanted to give up and find something else to focus my time on, but painting has always been my happy place, so I come back to it each time more determined to grow as an artist.

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar what can you tell them about what you do?
My art is definitely defined by my love for music, as I pick artists whose work and vision I find inspirational and do my best to embody their likeness in all my pieces. I am extremely fascinated by neons and bright colors and tend to focus on capturing a whole scene with strong composition and attention to detail, which is something I learned in my short time studying film and animation.

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