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Interview With the Award-Winning Zombie Studio

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Zombie Studio is an advertising and illustration studio based in Sao Paulo, Brazil that specializes in character design. In this interview, owner and creative director Paulo Garcia discusses what it took for a young design studio to make a big name for itself in the advertising industry.

Q“Bem-vindo!” And thank you for joining Psdtuts+ for this interview! Please introduce yourself. Could you tell us more about the origins of Zombie Studio?

Hi there! I'm Paulo, owner and creative director at Zombie. We started Zombie 2 years ago in a "black box" in São Paulo, Brazil. In the beginning we focused on production for publicity campaigns. Today, the studio has 20 artists total. We have a full assembly complete with 2D artists, 3D artists, and Designers and Art Directors who are passionate about their work and always pushing for the finest results.


QWithin Zombie Studio’s arsenal of work are jaw dropping illustrations for many of our favorite brands. What advice do you have for designers who want to get their work noticed?

Work with passion on every little detail because there is always something to do in an illustration to make it better. And do not be afraid of risk. Many of our illustrations were completed within strict deadlines, but this did not stop us from achieving amazing results.


Q“Luftal – Food Makes Noise,” is a series of hilarious illustrations featuring well known musicians. Could you tell us more about this project and how it came about?

This is one of our most loved works! We created these images for our friends at Fisher. When they originally showed us the idea we loved the possibility of transforming well known musicians into animals. The first thing we did was choose iconic pictures of them so that we could represent the artist in their element. Once the photo is chosen we begin the concept process, finding the best way to translate their expressions to the character. It could be their hairstyle or the clothes they wear that become crucial details in making the animals as close as possible to the artist they represent. After we finish the character we construct the background scene. In the case of the Pigs, we created a scene with a brick wall and all of the wear and tear associated with it, from the sprays to the dirt all over. It was a huge undertaking, but the results where fantastic! We simply love them! We receive many emails asking to use these images as posters!

Luftal - Food Makes Noise

QMuch of your work features incredible 3D character designs. What is the normal process that is involved in creating these characters?

First we study the character, making lots of concepts until we find the one that show us everything we want to see about them. Then we move forward into the modeling process, moving the character from the paper to the 3D world. After the initial modeling we work on a study for lighting where we apply the final textures and lighting effects. Once we’re done with this process, we render the material and work the final composition in Photoshop.

Chez Restaurant

Daikin - Lonely Days for Them

Kiss FM - O Rock Salva

QWhat inspires the Zombie team? And how do you keep your creativity going?

We are always looking at the works of other artists, many of them inspire us and I'm not talking only of illustrators! We follow sculpture artists, paper cut artists, etc, and we are always looking for inspiration not only in the digital world but also outside of it so that we can bring different inspirations to our projects.

SBT - Camadas

QYour work has been recognized in the industry with many outstanding awards. What has been one of your proudest moments for Zombie Studio?

We are a young studio that has only been around for 2 years. We have more than 20 international awards and I think the proudest thing here is that we’ve reached this caliber of quality and recognition in such a short time. But if I have to choose just one moment, then it would have to be the first Cannes Lions competition we participated in. We won a total of 4 lions, though the most special one out of them all was a silver lion for Kiss FM, for “Best Craft in Press”. This type of lion is given only for the best illustrations and finest executions! Later on after our recognition we even partied all night with the crew!

Kiss FM - Ozzy, where are you?

QWhat do you hope to accomplish in the future of Zombie Studio?

We are currently making our way into the animation world. We’ve been creating characters for still images for two years. Now I think it’s time to make the next move and entertain ourselves! We have a lot of plans for this, so perhaps we could fill you in on the details again soon!


QThanks again for the opportunity to interview you for Psdtuts+! Are there any final thoughts or words of advice you have for our readers?

Thanks Psdtuts+ for this interview! It’s really good to know that our work has been seen by so many people, and it inspire us to do more! And for our words or advice: always keep in mind that every single work you do can become a beautiful and inspiring work. Your work depends on you so work hard and with passion. Cheers!

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