Today we’re joined by Cas Calder. Cas is an incredibly talented visual artist who specializes in line-based and digital art. They’re incredibly passionate about drawing characters, mostly original. Art is a hobby for them and they’re a very talented hobbyist. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
For starters, my art right now is line-based and digital. I’m practicing various individual poses and body types. As for backgrounds, I only do simple backgrounds at the moment, such as colors and patterns.
What inspires you?
Usually characters and moods. I love to create characters, When I do, If I am in the mood, I draw them. So my drawings are generally characters I created. Either that, or if I REALLY love a character that’s already created, I draw them, using photos as a reference.
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
My art actually has nothing to do with my field, to be honest. Art is a hobby to me, something I do for fun and am still learning. My field is actually in the social sciences, psychology to be exact. I got into it because I’ve always been fascinated by why people do what they do. I also like to help people. So that’s why I’m currently studying Psychology.
I can’t say I’ve always wanted to be an artist. It took me 22 years before I realized how much I actually enjoy it when I was doodling on the whiteboard as a volunteer receptionist at a community center.
Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in your work that you’d be willing to reveal?
Texture. My drawing seems to always have a textured feel. I kinda like it, it adds a bit of me to it 🙂
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
Draw for YOU! Whether you’re beginning, professional, or somewhere in between, draw whatever makes you happy and feel good! Art should be therapeutic and enjoyable, not draining. Even if you’re a professional and have specific guidelines and requirements, take some time to remind yourself why you wanted to be an artist in the first place and draw for yourself. And for the beginners specifically, You have to start SOMEWHERE. Captains Kirk, Picard, and Janeway were once cadets. Try not to compare yourself to another artist you find amazing. Chances are, they have been drawing for longer. As my sensei said, always just aspire to be greater than you once were. That way you won’t get so discouraged. And you’ll keep improving.
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
I identify as fully asexual, demi-homoromantic.
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
In the field of psychology? Occasionally. It tends to be heteronormative. Asexuality was never discussed in any of my psych classes. Only once was it discussed in a Women and Gender Studies class. I handled it in a form of of my art and writing. In another class that couldn’t have been more microaggressive against asexuality, I had two projects. One was a six page ‘journal’ about my sexuality, and I wrote 7 pages about how the sexual nature of society presents barriers for me. The second was a creative project, so I chose to do a digital drawing to represent how I see my own asexuality. It is by no means representative of community, but how I see myself as an ace.
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
The most common misconception I encounter is the “you just haven’t met the right person yet.”
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
Surround yourself with people who make you feel valid, because you are! There are plenty of resources out there to help you; utilize them.
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
The best way, is to contact me at my personal Tumblr blog: TheirNameIsCas.tumblr.com. I only have a few pieces up as this is a blog where I post whatever catches my eye. I am in my final semester of my senior year of college so I don’t have time to draw as much. But when I have more time, I will even consider starting an art blog. Right now, the pieces I have up are on my blog: http://theirnameiscas.tumblr.com/tagged/my_art. Like I said, there isn’t much, but you can see the progression from crappy whiteboard doodles which got me started, to the final project for a class.
Thank you, Cas, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.