Interview: Edea

Today we’re joined by Edea. Edea is a wonderful visual artist who is most passionate about photography. When she’s not out capturing the world in pictures, Edea also does a little visual art. She prefers working in digital media, but does dabble in traditional media as well. She’s an incredibly dedicated artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

2015-10-10-10-06-16

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

My primary art form is photography actually but I also enjoy drawing very much too. Where photography is more seriously performed (school, courses etc.) drawing is more of a hobby really. Both I do more in the digital field but I also once in a while use traditional ways of creating photos and illustrations.

I also write a little but not very well, it’s just never been as natural as for example drawing.

What inspires you?

Other people for the most part. Although, this depends on which one I’m doing. When I draw its mostly other people’s art that motivates me to draw myself. When it comes to photography it’s more likely that the moment I’m in inspires me to take the shot. I see something pleasing so I take a photo of it.

Also my family is a big motivator; all my siblings are very talented musically, one of them even artistically so they always make me strive for better art.

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

To be honest I’ve always drawn but photography became a part of my life when I got depressed in high school. It was a way of releasing stress; beauty has always had a positive effect on me.

dsc_3686muokattu

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?

Not really, but I often use black and a vivid shade of red (blue) in my paintings. They are very recognizable – or at least that’s how I like to think about it-.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Don’t let other people tell you that you can’t improve. Do you! Try things that seem difficult. Challenge yourself.

And please do not worry about likes/follows/reblogs. They are not that important, the main thing is that YOU are happy with what you’re doing.

mahoushoujoikseu

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m a biromantic asexual.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Well, I don’t talk about it that much but when I do people mostly tell me how sad things must be for my boyfriend and that they couldn’t be with someone like me. Many have also told me to get “professional” help.

I’m bad at ignoring it but also too fed up to educate everyone on the issue. Mostly it gets to the point where I have to but sometimes people who have no will to even try to understand just make me so angry that I leave the matter be.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

That one is somehow sick or that too immature and that’s why they identify as asexual . Often people also think that one is incapable of love.

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

If you have somebody that you can trust, then try to talk with them if you’re insecure or afraid. It might take some time that you yourself are comfortable with who you are so in the meantime try to make things as easy as possible. Just remember, you aren’t broken, there’s no need to ‘fix’ your sexuality.

It’s going to be okay.

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

The most active I’m on Twitter, Patreon, and Instagram.

But you can also follow me on DeviantArt, YouTube, and pixiv.

Oh and Tumblr too! I’m always happy to talk with you about art and everything else so don’t hesitate to contact me!

sailromoon

Thank you, Edea, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Emily Pendergraft

Today we’re joined by Emily Pendergraft, who also goes by EmilyParagraph online. Emily is a fantastic writer who has also recently gotten into visual art. For writing, she writes both fiction and poetry. Emily has been dabbling in both traditional and digital mediums. She draws a number of things and has even begun experimenting with comics. Her work shows an incredible imagination and that’s always wonderful to see. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

07

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I am a longtime writer, fairly recent visual artist, who works in both traditional and digital art. I write a lot of fiction and some poetry, and I draw mostly illustrations and portraits. Lately I’ve been experimenting with comics.

What inspires you?

I’m inspired by all sorts of thing, but I think I really get into creatures. Jim Henson’s Dark Crystal, Labyrinth, and the Muppets were really huge things when I was younger. But I also felt very attracted towards creepy things, and wondered why they were supposed to be scary. I’m also really, really into steampunk.

SandWatch
Sand Watch

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

I got into writing when I was nine. I had an awesome teacher that year who showed me how fun creating my own word concoctions could be. I doodled a lot over the years, but never seriously got into drawing until high school when I re-met my best friend, who has drawn her entire life. Since then, I’ve just been practicing and trying all sorts of new things.

children
Children

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?

I made my own signature/stamp some time ago. It’s a combination of my username’s (and real name’s) initials. As for any sort of recurring theme, I’m not really sure. I just like drawing and writing about creatures and steampunk.

SpOfSt
Speaking of Stars

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

1) If you attempt a long-term project, there will be times when you have to force yourself to push through. It’s tempting to set it aside until inspiration or your Muse strikes again with that awesome rush of productivity, but chances are it’s not going to happen in a timely fashion. So, force your way through. It’s probably not going to be your best work, but to get from point A to point G, you have to go through points B, C, D, E, and F, even if they’re not as interesting.

2) Don’t be afraid to do fan works! If you want to practice a new technique, solidify a style, or just pass the time, fanart and fanfic offer an amazing, low-key, low obligation means of doing so.

elfPerson
Elf Person

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I mostly just say I’m Asexual and be done with it, but I’m more specifically Panromantic Asexual. Although, I’m questioning if I could be demisexual/demiromantic.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

I’ve been lucky that I haven’t really encountered much. Mostly just ignorance and an unwillingness to learn more because they think the word “asexual” is self-explanatory. I try to correct where I can, but I’ve mostly kept my sexuality to myself until I know I can trust someone.

TrWi
TrWi

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

I think the most common one is that asexuals are just nervous virgins. Or that sex can “fix” them and they just don’t know what they’re missing. Another big one is that there’s no spectrum, just aro/ace or not.

mushroom1
Mushroom 1

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

1) You never, ever, EVER have to fake a crush. Just because everyone else is feeling feelings doesn’t mean you’re missing out on something or not caught up to them.

2) Feeling aesthetic attraction does not necessarily mean you’re having a crush.

3) Just because someone admits attraction to you does not mean you have to go out with them. It’s not a “Step 1: someone finds you attractive, Step 2: date!” thing. The steps we’re presented in media are overblown and sped up. Maybe you will go out with this person, maybe not, but you can take it slowly if you’re unsure.

snouse(SnailMouse)
Snouse (Snail Mouse)

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

My main blog is right here.

I have a few sites that I house my visual work on:

Deviantart

Art Tumblr

Undertale Comic

Not as much of my writing is online, but I do have some excerpts up on my Weebly site. I also have a Patreon, and I am open for commissions.

echoflower
Echo Flower

Thank you, Emily, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Tikaka

Today we’re joined by Tikaka.  Tikaka is an amazing comic artist who writes and publishes they’re own comics.  Tikaka recently made a short comic about their own personal take on asexuality and they have this wonderful love of drawing.  Their enthusiasm for their work shines through and their work is gorgeous.  My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.

tikaka_art01

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I am a comic artist and an illustrator. Creating comics has been a passion of mine for 14 years now and I’ve made 11 self-published comics so far, and plan on making many more!

What inspires you?

Human interaction and feelings. What makes you feel certain things? How to make another person you’ve never seen before feel sympathy for a character they can never meet in real life? How do people get through with rough times, how do they act when they’re happy and how do they express anger and deal with it? I am endlessly fascinated by the variety human emotions can have, and the individual strength each and every one has. I want to create stories that’ll awaken all kinds of feelings, from all across the spectrum.

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

I’ve always loved drawing! When I was a kid the best way to keep me amused was to give me paper and pens and I’d draw for hours straight. At younger age I wanted to be a writer, but later realized I could combine my love for drawing and telling stories by making comics!

tikaka_art02

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?

Just my signature, though in my comics I often hide people I know on the background if that counts.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Do what you love, even if it’s hard. Especially if it’s hard. Draw that cool pose you think is too difficult for you. Write that story you’ve been rolling in your head for ages. You might fail spectacularly and you most likely will! But it’s better to try and fail, than not to try at all in fright of failing, and never getting closer to your goals. Embrace your mistakes, learn to laugh at the wonky hands you drew on that one character and the misplaced hip. Now you’ve done that and the next attempt will be better.

tikaka_art03

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

Asexual and romantically I’m somewhere between panromantic and aromantic. What is love? No one knows! At least I don’t. Either I love everyone and am very good at containing myself or I don’t love anyone.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Other artists I know have been very supportive! Also I don’t talk much about my sexuality to those who I think might object with it so I haven’t had any problems.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

That it’d have anything to do with your current/potential partner. Most take it as a personal insult, “you don’t think I’m pretty/sexy/attractive? Are you calling me ugly then?” and so on. It’s been hard to try and explain someone that no, they’re not unattractive but also no, I feel no great pull towards their loins no matter how aesthetically pleasing they’d be.

tikaka_art04

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

It’s a wide spectrum, we got space for you. Also, sexuality can be fluid. There’s no reason to feel guilty if your sexuality has changed in the past or if it’ll change in the future. As long as it feels good right now, it’s OK.

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

From my webpage  http://notrollhere.com or my Tumblr http://notrollhere.tumblr.com (NSFW)!

tikaka_art05

Thank you, Tikaka, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Nico sanchez

Today we’re joined by Nico sanchez.  Nico is an incredibly talented visual artist who favors digital mediums.  They have a style that’s influenced by manga and western comics.  That combination of influences makes for very interesting visuals as you’ll soon see.  Nico does a lot of fanart and their love for art is quite apparent both in their work and in this interview.  My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.

Darkstalkers
Darkstalkers

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I do a lot of fan work.  I love inking more than actually drawing or coloring and it shows!  I describe my art as a blend of western comics and manga influences.  It borders more on cartoony, but I try to keep some realistic aspects. I love drawing faces and pecs (haha). But I also dabble a lot in body horror. My art itself is still rough and I’m working to get to a level I’m content with.

What inspires you?

Mainly other artists/friends I see on Twitter and Tumblr.  Seeing such a huge collective of artists sharing and having fun gets me pumped to pick up my pen and draw.  More often than not mostly comics I read get me pumped to draw.  But what will always inspire me is a piece of artwork, where the lineart is the focus of the image and it’s lavish and detailed.

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

Actually, I got into drawing in high school, before that I wanted to be a horror writer. I was already into comics, manga, and cartoons (like obsessively). But I never really took interest in drawing till I met a friend, whom I still have the honor of calling my bestie for years now. He started drawing, and when he showed me his art work I was in awe and wanted to give it a shot as well. And as time evolved, I ended up loving drawing more then writing.  In fact, now I’m a terrible writer.

dgfdgdfgdsfsdfsdf_original

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?

I think the only unique feature I have with my art is the way I ink and draw faces. My art is very simple (not in a bad way though).

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

It’s never too late to start. I started drawing in high school and have kept going since!  Also please, never let your perfectionism dominate you when it comes to art! Make mistakes! Step out your comfort zone. I allowed my own perfectionism to hinder me and I’m now working twice as hard to fix years of mistakes because of it.  It’s a constant learning process and failure is just a part of that.

tumblr_nqu5swUZ4o1qh2b14o1_1280

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m autochrissexual. I see things that I find sexually appealing, but I feel no desire to have sex at all.  Like I have things I find sexy or hot as hell, but the idea of having sex is uncomfortable to me.  Like I’m okay with drawing or consuming media that has sexual content but I disassociate when it’s the idea of me being physical with another person. If that makes any sense.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Not actually. Almost everyone whom I’ve drawn with or interact with have been open and understanding. If they held any prejudice towards me it’s never shown.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

People treat us as if we’re immature children. Like our lack of a sex drive or interest makes us childish or pure. Which is not the case at all. There are sex repulsed asexuals and there’s nothing wrong with that either. But there’s no need to act like you have to cover my eyes when something in media gets raunchy. Sex does not make someone mature or an adult.

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

You are completely valid even if others in the LGBTQIA community don’t welcome you. Your are not sick or broken. You’re fine the way you are.  It can be tough in a world where media pushes sex and sex sells. But you are strong person.

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

Everyone can find more of my art on my artblog.
I don’t update as much, since my job is keeping me busy with the holiday hours. But eventually everything I upload on twitter goes here. Plus my artblog has links to all my stores and other blogs.
http://ermescostello.tumblr.com/

tumblr_nvg85onD4a1tiywk7o3_1280

Thank you, Nico, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Helen

Today we’re joined by Helen, who also goes by mystmoon.  Helen is a phenomenally talented visual artist who does a lot of animation as well as illustrations.  Her work is absolutely gorgeous and I recommend looking at her links to see her beautiful art.  She’s a very enthusiastic and passionate artist.  My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

Cave Concept
Cave Concept

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I’m an artist and animator. I love drawing concepts and characters and generally just futzing around with Photoshop to see what comes out. I’ve recently started designing prints for shirts too!

What inspires you?

Anything and everything! My main inspiration is probably conversations with my friends and family though, I’m lucky to be surrounded by people who are funnier than I am! For my animations I draw a lot of inspiration from shadow puppet shows and anime, I really like playing around with different animation techniques and seeing what’s possible!

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

My grandfather was an artist and headmaster of an arts college (after working in advertising for a while) He died when I was young but I guess his influence is what encouraged me to first keep on with my drawing as something to do more than just a hobby. I first got interested in animation after watching the behind the scenes features on DVDs and just going “That looks cool! I wanna do that!” I started trying to animate after that as around 13

Umbrella
Umbrella

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?

Octopuses have begun making a reoccurrence in my work recently after I started studying them for my final film for my MArt. I find them really fun to draw! I’m not sure what else kind of a style I have, people can generally tell when something is mine, but I’m not sure what tips them off!

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Just keep creating! Try and do something every day, even if it’s just a doodle diary, cos the more you do something, the easier it is. Also, don’t feel pressured to share these online or anything, it’s totally ok to just make art for you!

OctoDJ
OctoDJ

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify as demisexual. It took me a long time to realise it, as I thought I was asexual for a while and then I began getting feelings for a close friend. After that, I began looking into it more in depth and decided that demisexual closest fits how I personally feel about relationships.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

I’ve never really discussed it with others in my field. I’ve had issues with friends not believing it’s a “thing” or that I’m just fussy, and I’ve also sometimes discussed how elements in a work can be misconstrued or problematic, but I’ve never had something that particularly sticks out, no.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

That it’s just being fussy/being a girl/trying to be a special snowflake. I’ve also had people assume that because I’m autistic that it stems from that, and is therefore just part of my disability that I should deal with, rather than something that comes from who I am.

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

Remember that your orientation can change and that so long as you’re comfortable with how you identify, that’s all that matters. It takes some people years to figure out what they’re comfortable with, and others get it right away, so just figure yourself out at your own pace. Labels are just labels at the end of the day.

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

I have a website at www.mystanimations.com as well as a deviantART (http://mysteriousshamrock.deviantart.com/) a YouTube (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCTnW7e19gEgCUdXCZkTGtdg) and a Tumblr (http://mystmoon.tumblr.com/) I also sell my work through Redbubble (http://www.redbubble.com/people/mystmoon92/shop) and Society6 (http://society6.com/mystmoon) I’m available for commission through all of these channels.

Space Ace
Space Ace

Thank you, Helen, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Kenzie Pulley

Today we’re joined by Kenzie Pulley.  Kenzie is a wonderfully talented and versatile visual artist.  She really enjoys drawing and often tries to tell a story through pictures.  She wants to make people think with her art.  The images she sent along with her interview are incredibly interesting to look at and will probably make you think.  My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

IMG_3148

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

My art is kind of just scribbling. I turn on some music that I’m feeling and aggressively scribble some shape until I know what I want to draw. I hardly ever erase things. There’s a lot of layering involved, especially with coloring. I’m a sucker for colors, but lately I haven’t been able to color much of anything besides commissioned work. I seem to use a lot of reds and blues in my colored pieces. I like to focus on characters and emotion when I draw. My main goal is to tell a story through my drawings or make people feel a certain way or wonder about the person they’re looking at. I want to make people think

What inspires you?

Music! Oh man. Music is my main muse as well as just people I see around or shows/movies I watch. I can’t really do very good work without music or some sort of background noise. I kind of draw to the tone or feeling of whatever I’m hearing. Things I see really influence the sorts of characters I end up portraying in my art.

IMG_3156

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

I started drawing just at a couple months old and I don’t remember a time where I wasn’t doodling or coloring something. But in kindergarten I started reading Harry Potter and fell in love with just the little illustrations at the headings of each chapter. I started to draw a lot more things, but they were always animals. My whole family sent me books and supplies all the time and I started to really focus my energy in all mediums of art. I’ve always loved watching behind the scenes in movies and seeing all of the art and development that goes behind everything and movies always made me feel so much. In my senior year of high school I was torn between political lobbyist or a more artistic path and I watched Interstellar and was sitting their crying about beautiful black holes and I just was like, “Wow, what the hell, man? You love this stuff! Focus on it! Do it!” And yeah, that was the deciding moment.

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?

Not really? I am pretty boring.

IMG_3155

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Don’t be afraid to draw things you love. Even if you think you may be judged for it. You and your skill really do suffer where they could be growing when you stifle your own freedom of expression. Don’t be afraid to say no to people and stand up for your own voice.

Be open to what other artists have to say about their own journeys. I’ve learned so much, not only about others, but about my own style and wants and made so many friends just from listening to others and being open to what they have to say.

IMG_3149

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

Right now, Asexual Aromantic. Still wondering about myself a little, though.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Not so far, most people are really accepting when they find out about it but just ask a lot of questions about what it means if they’ve never heard of it before. I’ve had some people say some really ignorant things, for sure, but I kind of try to forget about it.

I always try to do my best to clear all misconceptions out. A lot of times, I’ve noticed when someone asks a question that’s actually rude, it’s really just that they have no idea that asexuality is a real thing and no one has called them out and explained things. I try to explain everything as clearly as I can and they usually seem to understand afterwards. I’m all about clarity and patience when I get upset or hurt about something.

IMG_3153

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

“You don’t feel anything/have a heart/care for anyone”

Being that I’m neither very sexual or romantic, and have yet to really even date, people are really confused by me and how my heart works? I have had and have a lot of friends and acquaintances and I am very good at meeting new people and getting along with them. I’m very particular about my friendships and have very high standards for my friends. I can be arrogant and sassy and I don’t really like touching others in any way, but I do care a lot and all of the other people I’ve met that identify similarly to me are very much the same. We just have very different wants compared to others.

IMG_3150

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

You are amazing. Never forget that. You are not missing something and there is absolutely nothing wrong with you. Don’t let people define you, be you and know that people are always going to be here for you, you just have to look. Accepting and loving yourself is different than accepting your sexuality and I hope and know that you can do both if you haven’t already! I wish you each the best in your lives.

IMG_3152

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

My Instagram: @color3r3d
My Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Kenzie-Pulley/301160116576768
My Blog which needs to be updated: https://www.zindigonothings.blogspot.com
My dA: Kenzielovesmusic21
I’m working on a Tumblr for just my art as well!

IMG_3151

Thank you, Kenzie, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Tia D.

Today we’re joined by Tia D..  Tia is a wonderfully talented visual artist who dabbles in animation.  Her drawings are quite beautiful and I was particularly impressed with her use of color.  Her images are quite eye-catching as you’ll soon see.  My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

Alison and Conner
Alison and Conner

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I usually draw and animate as a hobby, but just recently I have joined a group of a few other artist, writers, and musicians in making a partly-animated web comic!

What inspires you?

Lots of things! I do really like nature and animals, but I think what inspires me most is all the other artists that I see and meet online. They really help me to keep going with my work!

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

My mom was an artist, and the trait was passed down onto me and my sister. I have been an artist for as long as I can remember! Sadly, my mom doesn’t draw anymore; but she does enjoy seeing my work.

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?

Hmmm… I don’t think I do. 😮

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Don’t feel down about any of your art. Each drawing is another step towards greatness! I made my style by looking at art by other people, seeing how they draw things, and incorporating it into my own art! I would still mix it all up or change things that didn’t work, and I would never completely copy one person’s style. Just grab ingredients from what you see and your art will improve by a lot!

Icon

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I am a hetero-romantic asexual. I don’t feel sexually attracted to any gender, but I can feel romantically attracted towards the opposite.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

I tried to come out to my parents, but they told me that Asexuality is a dumb label and that I’m too young to be thinking about it… I couldn’t do anything about it, but everyone else has been very accepting of it!

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

People often think that Asexual means Aromantic, or that Asexuality means just that a person doesn’t feel sexually OR romantically attracted to ANYONE, but that just isn’t right!

Signless Bleeding for Toasty
Signless Bleeding for Toasty

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

We are not broken. Despite the small amount of us there are, despite how many people don’t believe we exist or make fun of us, our pride stands tall. Don’t be ashamed of who you are. Don’t feel that you need to have sex just to fit in or to feel welcomed. You are all special and amazing just the way you are. Hold that pride close to you! Fight no matter how many people try to take your pride away from you! We are strong, we are a family, and we will protect our pride and each other’s pride! We are a community!

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

My art blog is tia-draws-things.tumblr.com, and my Deviantart is talkativetiad.deviantart.com!

Trickster
Trickster

Thank you, Tia, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Eva Holder

Today we’re joined by Eva Holder.  Eva is an amazingly talented illustrator.  They’re currently a student by show a remarkable amount of skill and a great eye.  Their work is incredible and quite interesting to look at.  This is an artist with a very bright future ahead of them.  My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.

Anomie
Anomie

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I like to experiment here and there but mostly I’m a student illustrator with a style somewhere between manga, BD and British comics, and more recently American children’s cartoons and the illustrative styles that have become prominent from the renewed popular interest in them. Contrary to popular belief though, I don’t want to write comics for a living, I don’t think.

What inspires you?

Anything goes! Things in pastel, unusual people on the street, Japanese and British street fashion, cute things, shoujo manga and “otaku” culture in the Western sense, other comics and books and things and sometimes current affairs- I’ve illustrated about Islamophobia, North Korea, feminism and gender identity before, for example.

App
App

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

In primary school they got you to write down what you wanted to be when you were older every year and every year, without fail, I put that I wanted to be an “artist or an author”. I think the author thing came first for a loooong time until I read the start of “Blackbird” at about 14, which is a shoujo manga that seemed to be in with all my friends- all the volumes got passed around person to person. Soon after that I got an iPod with internet connectivity and discovered reading manga online, I started copying panels obsessively and it just kind of went from there?

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?

I think I’m really bad at detailing backgrounds and things but sometimes there are little references- I wrote a comic back in January that was scripted and briefed for me by and indie publisher Planet Jimbot, and they asked for a sort of style/feel around manga and Doctor Who, so although I’m not hugely into Doctor Who, the main character’s Erin’s tshirt has “42” on, which I hope is sort of tongue in cheek in a similar way.

Also, I don’t think it’s a secret but if I can, I get eggs into a composition. Fried eggs, specifically.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

I’m going to skip all the stuff that’s already been said and say: don’t get starstruck! Don’t look up to artists too much- I see crazy skilled artists beating themselves up because they’re not as good as so-and-so, or have worked on projects where people will go out of their way just to please a certain artist! To start with, a singular obsession isn’t healthy; taking inspiration from here and there and nicking a dozen different styles and colour palettes from a dozen different artists all in one go is what leads to a unique style, not obsessing over one artist. Plus, man, your art is rad, appreciate it for what it is and don’t compare yourself to others too much dude!  Take a minute to be proud of your achievements!!

Beyond this Earthly Realm
Beyond this Earthly Realm

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m aromantic asexual, and sex-repulsed at that.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

I’m fortunate that the people I work with are chill about it and I don’t think it comes up much, but maybe I don’t like bringing it up because it has come up in work environments before and the results weren’t good. Besides the basic “that doesn’t exist” or “so you reproduce asexually?” I had someone straight up say that if I wasn’t interested in people then I must be interested in animals. Mostly though it’s just erasure, like getting asked “so are you gay or straight?” as if those are the only two choices.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

Probably that it doesn’t exist- it does!! And if more people knew about it earlier, I feel not only would it be way better for people on the ace spectrum to feel normal and validated, but also I think people in general would have a much healthier attitude to sex.

Within the ace community too, I feel sometimes there’s a lot about ace peeps being so worried about being alone and not having some kind of SO that there’s the inference that ace people can have sex to please their SO. I realise it’s cool if you’re fine with that and that’s what you’ve worked out, but asexuals aren’t second class and in a world so saturated with sex and sexual imagery, I don’t think it occurs to some allosexuals that maybe sex is not the be-all and end-all and that maybe putting the sexuality (or lack thereof) and feelings of your SO before your own libido isn’t such a bad thing.

Finn
Finn

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

Take your time homie! Unfortunately, with the lack of education on asexuality, you might upset people in your journey to working out who you are and it can also be dangerous, so please stay safe! In the end though, when you come out the other side potentially with a better understanding of what’s romance, what’s sex and what you like (or not!! That’s also cool; labels can help you feel part of a community but also not wanting labels is fine, don’t let anyone gatekeep that community for you) you will hopefully feel like things you’ve overcome have taught you things about yourself and other people.

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

My art blog is evacchi but I also have a Facebook, Instagram and Storenvy!! Also I like a good natter so hit me up if you want to chat about anything uvu

Numérisation
Numérisation

Thank you, Eva, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Emerald

Today we’re joined by Emerald.  Emerald is an amazingly talented visual artist who specializes in drawing fantasy scenes.  She has an affinity for dragons in particular.  She also draws a number of animals.  Scrolling through her DeviantArt page, I was amazed at the striking imagery found in her work.  The detail is remarkable.  My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

Well, what’s to tell … I’ve been drawing ever since my hands were dexterous enough to hold a pencil. I started out with wacky colour combinations in watercolour, then progressed to stick people, then to animals. I’ve been drawing animals and fantasy variants ever since.

These days, I’ve become most known for my dragons. Fantasy is my preferred genre because of the endless possibility…I never know what will show up next!

What inspires you?

The real question is: what doesn’t inspire me? I look outside and pretty much see everything I need there. Sun in the clouds, wind in the grass, moon reflecting off the world at midnight … everything in the natural world inspires me. Sometimes my pictures will be based on critters I see in dreams, and you can usually tell when. Those ones are pretty strange.

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

I don’t recall. It was a long time ago. I think I was born with the desire to create, and the outlet that manifested was visual art. These days, I’m fueled by the desire to paint what I feel and see with honesty, and to make the world a more beautiful place. I don’t really have a field per se, I’m just a hobbiest at this point.

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?

Hmm … if anything, it would be spirals. I seem to like spirals …

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t be an artist. ESPECIALLY not yourself. With artists, we are our own worst critics. It’s a constant battle to keep on top of your own internal censor, but trust me, the world wants to see what you have to offer, even if it may not feel like it.

Also, patience. It’s the name of the game. Nobody turns into Van Gogh or da Vinci overnight, it often takes a lifetime. Give yourself time. You’ll get there.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

That’s kind of in question for me right now, but I identify as an asexual hetero-romantic.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Relating to my art? Not usually. Being a fantasy and primarily animal artist, I don’t get pressured by commissioners or anyone else to do anything explicit. Sometimes, when I do draw people, I am extremely conscious about how I draw certain points of anatomy.

It’s not that I’m shy about it, having grown up seeing the paintings of my grandma who is almost exclusively a nude figure artist. I just feel like there’s a lot of pressure to make a human figure sexually appealing, and I try to push against that. To me, all bodies and forms are beautiful, in a purely aesthetic sense.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

That we were either scarred by some past event, or that we literally reproduce without a partner. (Trust me, it’s more common than you might think!) Another one is that it’s simply a matter of “finding the right one”.

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

You are human. Don’t ever think you’re not. You are not broken. You are still worth as much as any other human life, yes, even in a society that worships and idealizes sex and romance.

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

On my trusty deviantART account! I’ve been there for 7 years, and most of my major work is there. Check it out!

http://elementalshifter.deviantart.com/

Thank you, Emerald, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.

Interview: Shelby Miller

Today we’re joined by Shelby Miller, who also goes by Shubbabang.  Shelby is an incredibly talented visual artist.  She works in both digital and traditional mediums.  The images she sent along are quite intriguing and I have a feeling we’ll be seeing a lot more of her work in the future, which is quite exciting.  My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

Wolf
Wolf

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I work with digital and traditional pencil/colored pencil and have been interested in studying animation as well as doing character designs. A majority of the content I put out are comics, though I still also draw fantasy related characters or creatures. My style ranges a lot from cartoon-ish to slightly more realistic. I used to put out a lot of fan art as well but I’ve been trying to do more original work recently, and at the moment I have a webcomic that’s still in the early stages of the art process that I’m hoping to be able to start sometime next year.

What inspires you?

For non-humor based art I take a lot of inspiration from movies I adored when I was growing up. Specifically the older 2D animated movies that had unique or interesting art styles you didn’t see often like Atlantis: The Lost Empire, El Dorado, Prince of Egypt, etc. My comics however are usually based off of events in my life or everyday things, just with a bit of silliness added in.

What got you interested in your field?  Have you always wanted to be an artist?

For as long as I can remember, I’ve been drawing. I’ve still got sketchbooks from when I was in elementary school filled with doodles of random made up animals. It was around the time that I started to get praise for it that I thought “Hey, I think I could do something with this.” Of course I was around five years old and the praise was usually from adults trying to be nice I think, but regardless it helped me decide what to do with my life!

Water Girl
Water Girl

Do you have any kind of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in our work that you’d be willing to reveal?

Since my art style tends to vary a lot, I don’t have anything consistent other than my usual watermark.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Practice as much as you can! Look up and gather references to use! No one starts out being amazing and if you get discouraged, try again the next day! You may not see the progress at first but when you look back there will be a huge difference. Another thing that helps especially if you’re drawing human figures is knowing a little bit about anatomy. One of the classes I took in college was anatomy and it wasn’t even art related, but it really helped me learn how bones and muscles move and look. Also, don’t be afraid to leave your comfort zone when drawing. Try a new brush, a new technique, a new color, anything you don’t normally do and you might find out you like the result!

Expressions
Expressions

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify as heteromantic/asexual. It was actually recently I had figured it out and it helped explain a lot of things for me such as why I wasn’t into intimacy or why sex wasn’t such a big thing in my life. In fact I had no idea sexual attraction was a thing until I started looking this stuff up, because I’ve never encountered it before.

Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Well, not directly towards me. Though it’s because I identify as heteromantic that I haven’t announced it as much where I put my art out, mainly because I know there are people who think that doesn’t count as asexual. For the most part I ignore it because the only person who gets to decide what I view myself as is me.

What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

That it either doesn’t exist or that people who are asexual don’t like anything romance or relationship related. I used to be bad about that as well when I first learned about it (which was 3 years ago) and it wasn’t until I figured out what the difference between sexual attraction and romantic attraction was that I actually realized that I might fall into that spectrum.

What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?

You don’t have to decide right now, and you can change how you feel. There are many different ways to experience the world of romance and sometimes it’ll take a bit to figure out just where you land on the spectrum. Even so, you’re still valid and I’m rooting for you.

Finally, where can people find out more about your work?

Right now I post all of my work on my Tumblr at shubbabang.tumblr.com. In the future I’d like to have my own blog or site, but for right now I mainly use that.

Lions
Lions

Thank you, Shelby, for participating in this interview and this project.  It’s very much appreciated.