Martin Rodriguez

Martin Rodriguez Rio began his life in Argentina, he spent his childhood in the countryside immersed in a world of his own where he imagined being Tarzan, a Roman gladiator, Robin Hood or a cowboy. Soon his older brother introduced him to comic publications, which inspired him to put that entire universe on paper, and from the time he discovered two Frank Frazetta books at the age of 12, all he did was draw away. At some point during his secondary studies, he started to believe that his enthusiasm for spending so much time drawing detailed scenes of battles, etc., was childish, this, coupled with the conservative ideas and negative image his family had of artists, ended up cancelling his creative-without-limits side. Despite this, he had sold his first painting in secret, the reproduction of a work of art by Frank Frazetta, whom he idolized, at the age of 19. Then completed his graphic design studies at university where he perfected his realistic drawing technique. In 1989 he created an atelier where for years he worked in advertising illustration and design. In the beginning, it made economic sense for him to make hyper-realistic drawings than to use photographs, which motivated him to specialize in it even more. By 2008, he exclusively chose projects where to apply his art, until, suddenly, one day at the age of 48, decided to pluck up the courage and be dedicated 100% to it, he wanted to paint! He started with what surrounded and inspired him, landscapes, etc., then met an important art dealer who brought his work to Buenos Aires, with his support he began portraying polo scenes and over time became the consummate horse painter, an internationally acclaimed expert. It was not until he felt self-assured that he aspired to travel and to expand his art by illustrating fantasy characters such as superheroes. And so, he arrived in Spain where he had to start over making a name for himself. He gets to exhibit his work in Barcelona, Tarragona, Andorra, etc. At a decisive moment he met and quickly became a close friend of Juan Gimenez, the great master of sci-fi art. The two maintained a very special relationship until Gimenez’s death in 2020, during which they soon agreed that Rodriguez would take care of digitally retouching the backgrounds in Juan Gimenez's artworks, later, both resolved to collaborate in the creation of large-format illustrations together, each capturing and combining their extraordinary talent, works of wildlife realism with science fiction characters. Knowing that he had experience restoring oil paintings by other Argentinian artists and after coaching him in illustration using his own mixed techniques, Juan Gimenez proposed that he be his official restorer. In exchange, Martin was to teach Juan how to master drawing horses. He also insisted on putting him in contact with Sergi Rincon to address the prospect of Martin Rodriguez Rio becoming a sci-fi and fantasy illustrator, trained, guided and advised by the genius himself. The project was a reinvention, plus a return to the origins. Recovering the essence of a young Martin passionate about pure fantasy and now equipped with technical expertise. Since then, he embarked on the new venture, producing fantastic creations, timidly at first, then deeply loving what he does and enjoying the work like never before. Today, his collection of oil and mixed media illustrations is an example of the fruit of the conceptualization and collaborative labour among the three.

Selected Work:

More Artists