How I Got Here: Daniel Liévano

The artist and author delves into his philosophically minded approach to creativity, including the importance of solitude and his attempt to translate the metaphorical “magic” of Haruki Murakami

Born in Bogotá, Colombia, where he still has his studio, Daniel Liévano is an illustrator and author who takes a conceptual, philosophical approach to image-making. His work has been featured in a huge range of newspapers and magazines, including the New Yorker, the Sunday Times and the Economist, as well as commissioned by the likes of Pentagram, WeTransfer and Vice. Often, the artist blends mediums, working digitally, as well as in watercolour and pastel.

In addition to his editorial illustrations, Liévano has written several books. His first graphic novel, Gravity, featured a set of five short stories, connected to the changing historical perceptions of gravity, while Contagion delved into the origins of Mapalé – a Colombian folkloric dance. A love of philosophy, as well as a personal curiosity around language and semiotics, lies beneath much of Liévano’s work, which often depicts dream-like imagery or encounters.

When not working, or hosting workshops, Liévano finds respite in the parks of Bogotá, finding many of his ideas in silence and solitude, or from people-watching. His advice to the world? “Always take a walk.”

Top image: Personal illustration; above: Illustration created for an episode of narrative podcast Radio Ambulante