'The Little hero of Haarlem', part of the comic book "Tomorrow is Too Late", made for the Culture of Peace Collection of the RNTC.

Alex Corrales is a Costa Rican comic book illustrator, character designer and editorial/commercial illustrator. After debuting at the children's magazine Tambor, for which he drew the title comic, he has worked on significant local and international non-profit projects, primarily focused on environment, education, and culture.

Early life and influences
Alexander Corrales Mora was born in 1971 in the Costa Rican capital San José. He took drawing and painting classes at the Casa del Artista School, watercolor classes at the Galería de Arte Cruz, as well as workshops and courses with artists such as the muralist Rodolfo Sagot and Absalón León, a Hanna-Barbera cartoonist and animator. Félix Arburola and Vicky Ramos were the main inspirations for his dedication to illustration, while he has also been influenced by Hugo Díaz, Quino, Albert Uderzo, and various comic book artists published by Editorial Novaro, such as Rubén Lara and Sixto Valencia. Later influences on his work are the artists Carlos Pincel, Keum Suk Gendry-Kim, Jordi Lafebre, and Miguel Navia.

Various paintings and illustrations by Alex Corrales. 1) Handmade illustration: 'Sibu, God of the Bribri indigenous' from the collective book 'Bestiario' by the forum of illustrators of Costa Rica, FORO GAMA. 2) Acrylic on canvas:'Follow the carrot', cover of Business magazine. 3) Digital illustration for a poster: 'Climate Phenomena - El Niño y La Niña' for the National Institute of Meteorology (IMN) of MINAE. 4) Cover illustration for the book 'Con las manos abiertas', part of RNTC's Culture of Peace Collection.

Tambor y sus amigos
In the year 1987, at the age of 16, Corrales had the opportunity to intern at Tambor, an educational children's magazine published by Grupo Nación. During the 1980s and 1990s, Tambor was a cultural milestone in Costa Rica among children and parents, covering everything from history to fictional interviews with TV series characters, movie stars, and celebrities. The internship turned into a job opportunity, making Corrales the youngest published illustrator in the magazine and marking the beginning of his career as a published illustrator.

At the start of 1992, the management of Tambor magazine proposed to Corrales to become the new illustrator of the magazine's main comic, 'Tambor y sus Amigos’, which was originally created by editor Toyi Fernández and artist Omar Valenzuela. After a process of studying the characters, transitioning them from children to teenagers, the first comic by Alex Corrales was published in June of that year. Working with scriptwriter Ana Coralia "Anacora" Fernández, Corrales created stories for 104 editions of Tambor over a little more than five years, with the last episode released in May 1997. Tambor magazine came to an end during the year 1998.

'Tambor y sus Amigos' (Tambor magazine #258).

Radio Netherlands Training Centre Latin America
In 1998, Alex Corrales was hired by the Costa Rica-based Latin American division of the international foundation Radio Netherlands Training Centre (RNTC). For little over six years, he worked for the corporation as multimedia designer and comic book illustrator. The international projects developed by RNTC addressed topics such as gender equality, self-esteem, hope, work and responsibility, courage, and perseverance. The foundation had the support of organizations such as UNICEF, UNESCO, Upeace, Plan International, and UNDP.

'Queen Esther', part of the comic book 'Courage and Perseverance', made for the Culture of Peace Collection of the RNTC.

Field Schools Collection
In the middle of 2008, Corrales signed a contract with the Tropical Agricultural Research and Higher Education Center (CATIE), an international organization based in Costa Rica. For five years, Corrales managed all the graphic aspects of the comic-format manuals, both in Spanish and English, for the Central American Cacao Project (PCC). The "Field Schools Collection" was aimed at cocoa producers and families engaged in cocoa cultivation throughout Latin America, Spain, and the state of Acre in Brazil.

Thanks to the positive reception of the English version and the platform provided by the World Cocoa Foundation (WCF), the comic manuals reached Africa and the other continents. In 2011, the National Museum of History in Taiwan requested the translation of one of the manuals into Mandarin Chinese to be included in one of their exhibitions.

Comic Field School Manual #6: 'The Life Cycle and the Management of the Cacao Orchard' - 
Catie Field Schools Collection.

Comic coloring books
From the 1990s well into the 2010s, Corrales was contracted by multiple NGOs and government agencies. For these clients, Corrales developed various materials, including series of coloring and activity books for children, such as the children's stories of ‘Toño Pizote’, the official mascot for the prevention and control of forest fires in Costa Rica, as part of for the Forest Fire Prevention and Control Program of the National Parks System (SPN) under the Ministry of Environment and Energy (MINAE). Years later, he was hired by the Office Of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (USAID/OFDA) to create Toño Pizote’s cousin, ‘Policarpo’, the official mascot for the prevention and control of forest fires in Paraguay.

He also worked on the ‘Colección Programa de Educación Ambiental’, which consists of fifteen activity books developed for the Environmental Education Program (PRODEA) and the National Biodiversity Institute (INBio) of the MINAE. The collection was aimed at workshops in rural schools, and its success led to similar projects abroad. Additionally, Corrales created ‘Pepe el Cangrejo de Bosque en El Caso del Mono Tití’ ("Pepe the Forest Crab in The Case of the Titi Monkey"), a coloring book from the educational series ‘El mono Tití - Saimiri Oerstedii’ of the Pro-Zoological Foundation (Fundazoo) of the Simón Bolívar Park National Zoo and Botanical Garden. These and similar other projects were made possible thanks to the support of organizations such as the Mesoamerican Biological Corridor (EMSA), ANOA, Philadelphia Zoo, ACOPAC, APROCA, World Bank, NORAD, and GEF.

Alex Corrales has also been hired by private companies such as EQO S.A.'s the Asphalt Pro, an international company with a global presence based in Miami, Florida, for whom Corrales developed the the children’s activity book ‘Asphalt Lane’.

Selection of work from comic activity books. 1) Comic Coloring Book #6: 'Toño Pizote y la Telaraña de la Vida' for Minae's Program of Prevention and Control of Forest Fires. 2) Comic Activity Book #1: 'Asphalt Lane' for EQO S.A.'s The Asphalt Pro. 3) Comic coloring book:'"Pepe el Cangrejo de Bosque en El Caso del Mono Tití' for Fundazoo's educational series 'El mono Tití - Saimiri oerstedii'. 4) Comic Activity Book #13: 'Agricultura orgánica' for Minae's Collection Environmental Education Program.

Editorial and advertising graphic design
As a graphic designer. Corrales is a technician specialized in digital pre-press with experiences in branding, creative processes, color psychology, neuromarketing, social media, creativity, and storytelling. He has worked for several advertising agencies in Costa Rica, including Garnier BBDO, DraftFCB CREA, and DDB Needham from the Garnier Group. For the latter agency, Corrales was a member of the team that achieved significant recognition for Costa Rica. Their work earned them a prestigious "Silver Lion" at the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity, and a "Sol de Plata" at the Ibero-American Advertising Festival, El Sol, held in Spain.

As an illustrator, he joined the FORO GAMA, a forum of Costa Rican illustrators with whom he published the collective book ‘Bestiario’ and became part of the catalog of illustrators of children's and youth literature in Ibero-America, 'Diccionario de Ilustradores Iberoamericanos' by the Spanish Foundation SM. Corrales likes to combine graphic design and illustration in the professional services he offers to government agencies, foundations, NGOs, and international entities such as UNED, IIDH, ICE, INAMU, COLYPRO, IMN, CNE, SINAC, in partnership with UNESCO, UNICEF, PNUD, the Royal Norwegian Embassy, Bioversity International, the University of Idaho, and the Hershey Company, in addition to those mentioned above.

Various graphic design projects. 1) 'Good management of the Hydrographic Basin' puzzle for Catie's Environmental Education Program (printed size: 76x130 cm). 2) 'Adventure Rally' map for the Scouts of Costa Rica's Iztarú National Camp School. 3) Poster for IMN's project "Adaptation of the Water System to Climate Change".


Series and books by Alex Corrales you can order today:


If you want to help us continue and improve our ever- expanding database, we would appreciate your donation through Paypal.