Pablo Rochat is a master social media manipulator. Using visuals common to our daily digital lives, Pablo bends, stretches, remixes, and collages his own surreal world of humorous and compelling visuals.
We got to ask Pablo about his work as part of our Artist Feature series. 🤔😂🥴
Tell us a little about yourself! Where are you from and how did you start making art?
I grew up in Atlanta where I spent a lot of time creating art, mostly painting, throughout high school. I also made a lot of silly home videos with my friends-- to this day I still enjoy creating art and funny content, so it’s been a lifelong interest of mine.
It's no secret that your emoji art is loved by your followers on Instagram. What caused you to start making humorous parodies of emojis?
I'm not really a traditional illustrator that can create characters and situations from scratch, so I try to use everyday subjects, materials, and images in interesting and new ways. I like playing with things like emojis because everyone is familiar with them. It’s a universal visual language that doesn’t need to be translated in order to be entertaining.
Tell us about your favorite collage.
Some of my favorite collages I’ve made are the ones in motion, in which I use different gifs from Internet and collage together into one fluid motion like the one below.
How has your emoji art affected your art practice?
Limiting myself to finite set of images places constraints on my creative process that forces me to come up with new ideas.
What do you think about the strong resurgence of nostalgia in the arts these days?
I think nostalgia will always play a role in art, fashion, music etc. It's a way for artists to refer to something that we all relate to, but may have forgotten about.
What is your favorite emoji and why?
The thumbs up emoji. I find it the most useful when texting people.
What are your interests outside of internet related art?
I've been getting into golfing recently. It’s a nice excuse to be outside and have fun without my phone.
You use the nooks and crannies of the Instagram platform quite well. The other day you did an Instagram story that allowed the viewer to "virtually" pet a cat with the slider sticker. How do you consistently come up with fun ideas like these?
I'm always looking for new ideas, so I keep a sketchbook with me to capture new ideas and insights. I try to write down as many ideas as I can-- it’s an important daily practice for me.
What features do you wish Instagram would add?
I wish there was an easier way to reply and organize my DMs. I enjoy responding to as many messages as I can, but maybe having a desktop version would make it easier to manage that.
What advice do you have for aspiring artists having a hard time getting started?
I’ve found that it takes a lot more time to get where you want to be in your career or work than you originally thought. I believe the biggest key to creative successes is working hard putting in the time, even when you don't want to, in order to develop your ideas and find an audience.
What advice do you have for artists that are trying to grow their following and gain exposure to their work?
My advice is to publish as much as much work as you can and collaborate with other artists and creators on the internet, so you can share each others’ audiences and develop a community around your work.
What's your favorite meme?
I don't have a favorite meme. But this is one I made that I Iike.