Anouck Boisrobert & Louis Rigaud's THE ACROBAT FAMILY

Every now and then a beautifully engineered book will cross my desk. Such is the case with The Acrobat Family by Anouck Boisrobert and Louis Rigaud, published by Little Gestalten Press, 2019. They stopped by to talk about it.
e: What was your creative process for The Acrobat Family, can you walk us through it?
Anouck and Louis:
When we start a book project like The Acrobat Family we think about the concept together, and then both start creating sketches, paper models, storylines and everything else at the same time. Our goal is to combine all the elements of a book (illustration, story and book design) so that every aspect of the project fits our intention and holds meaning for the story that we want to tell.

When we are both satisfied with a mock-up, we move on to the finalization phase. Here Louis takes care of the paper engineering and Anouck brings the illustrations to life.

e: How did you get such an unusual and challenging book published?
Anouck and Louis:
We were able to get this book out thanks to our French publisher, with whom we have been working for 10 years. She trusts us and because of that, we feel very free to show her unusual projects. Even if it is sometimes necessary to become more realistic with our vision, this relationship ensures that we don’t have to restrain our creativity.

e: Is there a unique or funny story behind the creation of The Acrobat Family?
Anouck and Louis:
Anouck was first interested in creating a construction game with wooden characters, and from her many sketches for this project, we decided to go for a pop-up book. The idea is based on the aim to make the human pyramid of acrobats possible.

e: What do you think makes an illustration magical, what I call "Heart Art” - the sort that makes a reader want to come back to look again and again?
Anouck and Louis:
For us a good illustration or a good book is one that will surprise the reader and give them an unexpected emotion.
e: How do you advertise yourselves (or do you)?
Anouck and Louis:
No, we are very bad about advertising. We leave this job to our publisher, but we both have a website and are on social networks.
e: What is your favorite or most challenging part of being creators?
Anouck and Louis:
Having an idea and designing a project is probably the most challenging and motivating part of being creators. And then of course, it is being able to concretize that idea into a real object that one can share with readers.
e: Is there something in particular about The Acrobat Family you hope readers will take away with them, perhaps something that isn’t immediately obvious?
Anouck and Louis:
We wanted to talk about the richness of different personalities in a family and the differences that allow for the creation of something together.
e: What are you working on next or what would be your dream project?
Anouck and Louis:
We are working on a new project with our publisher. We are at the very beginning stages, but once again, we are trying to give a particular form to the book and this time there will certainly be a documentary aspect.
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images from THE ACROBAT FAMILY, Little / Kleine Gestalten, 2019

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