Welcome back to Matt Armitage’s and my bi-weekly column showcasing the art and artists inspired by Twin Peaks, and in some cases other Lynch works. This week I talk to the supremely talented comic illustrator, Cristiano Siqueira (also credited as Cris Vector on some artwork) about his Twin Peaks creations and what other TV and film inspires him.
25YL: Thank you for talking to us here at 25YL, I have been so excited about talking to you. Your Twin Peaks posters absolutely blew the fan community away during last Summer. Every new poster was a revelation! You created 19 pieces reflecting each Part of Series 3 and two for Part 16, had you always planned it that way?
CS: Hey, it’s a pleasure! One of the best thing with the return of Twin Peaks, at least for me, was being able to know and talk with the fan community, such the 25YL website and some Facebook groups that I joined after starting publishing the posters. The reaction to them was so absolutely incredible! I never could have expected better reactions!
I never planned anything about these posters. The decision of doing a poster just came after the first Part. I was talking with some friends, all Twin Peaks fans and a very dear friend suggested me to make one poster to celebrate The Return. At that time, I was involved in some other poster projects for clients, but all waiting approval, so I had some free time and I created a poster for Part 1, featuring the Giant (Fireman), the Black Lodge and Dale Cooper. I didn’t have intentions to make another posters and this one was seemed to be just one poster for the whole new season. I published this poster at my social network accounts (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) and the reaction was so positive and strong that I started to think about doing more posters. After watching Part 2 and with people already asking about new posters, I decided to take the challenge and make one poster for each Part. I was a bit late because I watched the second episode when the third had been already released, but I could rush and kept updated.
I can say that it was an unforgettable experience. I never lived through a TV show with so much energy and depth. This experience, also expanded the limits to my creativity and productivity.
The thing with Part 16 having two different posters is that we had two really big moments in that Part. The iconic moment when our dear Dale Cooper finally wakes up, the “I AM FBI” moment was too iconic to not be poster of the Part 16. We had also a big expected moment by fans, the Audrey Dance, it needed to be portrayed too.
25YL: With 19 pieces it will be a hard choice no doubt but do you have a favorite?
CS: Yes, it’s a hard choice, I think I have three favorites: Part 8, Part 17 and Part 18. Well, considering Twin Peaks: The Return, everything around ‘Part 8’ is worth of attention. People will be talking and sharing things about this big moment of TV for decades. The Part 8 poster is the only one that I have framed on my wall. Part 17 and 18 are my favorites too because I think it represents the grand finale of the poster series. Plus the maturity of my work in the series and a better effort from my part, since I had a bit more of time to make these ones.
25YL: Everyone has a tale about how they first got into Twin Peaks, what’s yours? Were you a fan back when it originally aired?
CS: No, Twin Peaks aired in Brazilian TV in 1991, I was just 11 years old at that time and my mother didn’t let me to stay awake so late, the episodes could be watched just late night on Sundays and many parts of the episodes were cut due “grade fitting” of the TV. But I confess that I had a big curiosity to watch that strange series. Later, when I was 16/17 years old, I got some VHS tapes from a friend with some episodes and I could watch parts of the first and second season. At that time the Twin Peaks was just a cult and strange series for people that appreciate cinema and art (in my case). After watching the episodes I loved it instantly! The bad thing is that I had to return the VHS and I never got another opportunity to watch Twin Peaks again. I think I placed Twin Peaks in that area of my memory reserved for fascinating and unforgettable things. Finally, in 2012, I could watch the whole first and second season on Netflix and have a better picture of what Twin Peaks is. In that time I was living a very tough moment in my life and Twin Peaks was sweet company.
25YL: Do you have plans to do anymore Twin Peaks pieces? Any from the earlier series?
CS: Many people have been asking me about more Twin Peaks pieces. I plan to create new posters of Lynch movies or even some for earlier seasons of Twin Peaks, but not in the same model as I did for Twin Peaks: The Return, when I did one poster for each part, almost in real time. I think this was cool when you had the series happening, each poster release was like some fuel to discussions between parts. Also, doing one poster by episode is something very time demanding and right now I can’t devote the proper time into that work.
25YL: Yes I can totally see that, and your posters really did generate discussion as you captured those moments so perfectly.
What medium do you use and how long does it take you create a piece?
CS: I work 100% digitally, using Illustrator, Photoshop and a tablet. The time of execution of each piece can be slightly different from each other, let’s say I take two or three days in watching the episode, elaborate concepts, finding and taking references, sketching and finishing.
25YL: I think that is what I love the most about your work, you can really see what you have taken from the episode, when I look back at them now it gives me a warm feeling of nostalgia as you really depicted those special, and sometimes shocking moments absolutely perfectly.
Series 3 has divided fans in many ways, how did you feel about it and what’s your take on the finale?
CS: I simply loved it! I think the season 3 is already a TV classic, with many remarkable scenes and just pure art. Part 8 will be subject of audio visual studies for years to come! The awakening of Dougie Jones is another element that impressed me a lot. I think some fans missed the “Soap Opera” style that was so present in the first seasons but I share the vision of Lynch when he refers The Return as a whole movie divided in 18 parts. When you see this way, you better understand why the Soap Opera style was left a bit aside. The finale surprised me a lot, I felt very nervous before it and a bit sad because the season was ending, like when you are reading a great book and you reach the final pages. Some fans were expecting many answers but I was not expecting that, anyway we got some important answers in the Laura Palmer saga that complement on what we learned in the Fire Walk With Me movie. The very ending, the black screen after the Laura scream, with no definitive answers left me in a kind of depression for some weeks. I just avoided everything about Twin Peaks in this time. It was like waking up from a very disturbing dream, that you face your fears but you enjoy at the same time.
25YL: I totally understand that, I felt exactly the same way, being so entrenched in Twin Peaks over the Summer and then for it to be over in a somewhat unsatisfying way – I don’t feel that way now, but I did at the time. Kind of like I’d been kicked in the gut. It’s quite incredible that a TV Show can have that effect, and on so many people – a lot of us seemed to enter a post Twin Peaks melancholy in the weeks afterward.
25YL: The Twin Peaks fan community has been hugely supportive of your work and rightly so! How’s the experience been this past 10 months?
CS: I confess that I didn’t know the Twin Peaks fan community. I have close friends that are fans of Twin Peaks but I never declared myself a huge fan and I kept far from communities. But after starting to share the posters, I’ve been included in some groups and I had a better picture of what the Twin Peaks fan base is. So supportive and active. The experience of living the Season 3 (and the 10 months after) was so great mostly because the fans. They still support my work, even not related to Twin Peaks, that makes me very happy.
25YL: I am one of those people! I adore your Blue Velvet poster, are you a big fan of David Lynch’s work?
CS: Yeah I am! He is one of my favorite directors and I love how he play with the audio visual rules to create his unique language. I always enjoy and learn a lot watching his works. That poster was done for a special movie screening night featuring Blue Velvet, organized by Projeto Replicante, a project here at Sao Paulo that bring back classic movies to cinema rooms.
25YL: Now that your series 3 project is wrapped, what’s next for you?
CS: Well, now I’m trying to focus on my client work, eventually doing posters or other illustrations. The Twin Peaks posters were a big ‘authoral’ work and big time demanding. I still want to keep creating authoral works for my favorite directors and movies, maybe more posters, I still don’t know. I was trying to make some screen printing posters, limited series, but it’s hard for me to print and distribute only by myself. It’s still in planning, but not for now.
25YL: Have you been inspired to create by any other shows or films recently?
CS: Yes, I created one poster for the classic horror film Suspiria by Dario Argento, and an alternative poster for Thor Ragnarok. I was working also in an alternative poster for From Dusk Till Dawn by Tarantino, for a private commission, but I didn’t get to finish this work.
25YL: Can we purchase your work anywhere?
CS: Right now the only store I still sell prints is a Brazilian one called Urban Arts. Since I got my account at Society6 banned I stopped selling prints through online shops. I won’t share links here because the Urban Arts store just sell to Brazil.
25YL: That is a shame as I’m sure many fans would want to have your posters in their homes – let’s hope that changes in the future.
Thanks so much for talking to us Cristiano, we wish you luck for the future and hope to see your work on billboards very soon, it is really quite spectacular!
CS: No, thank you!