Today we’re joined by Linda Burgess. Linda is an extremely talented and versatile visual artist. She works in both digital and traditional mediums. Linda is incredibly passionate about animation and hopes to be an animation director. Judging from the quality of her work, I’d say she definitely has a bright future ahead of her. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
I do traditional art, digital art, character design and animation. Most of my work I’ve sketched out traditionally and then scanned and finished digitally. For my animation, I used to do all of it traditionally, but have recently started experimenting with it digitally.
I tend to stick to cool colors with my paintings, and for that reason a lot of my work has night skies as backgrounds, I don’t know why-but I’ve always hated painting with warm colors, it’s something I have to work at growing out of in the future.
Probably my favorite field of work is character design and animation (even though I’ve been focusing on my improving my digital painting the past few months). It’s one thing to draw something, but a whole other thing to breathe life into it.
When I draw out character designs I get to take an original character I’ve thought up and dive deeper into who it is as a person, I draw out the same character hundreds of times, in different poses, with different facial expression, through this process I can began to decide and form who I want the character to be as a person.
And then the best part is animating it. The first time I ever animated something I literally started crying, it was an extremely special moment in my life. I’ll never forget watching one of my drawings-who had always stared up at me blankly from a sheet of paper-now jumping around and waving up at me. I felt like I had given life to something, and it was at that moment I knew: this was what I wanted to do with the rest of my life.
My goal is to become an animation director one day, and in truth, I’ve fallen in love with every aspect of movie making. Animation is the closest thing I’ve come to finding magic in the real world.
What inspires you?
A lot of things inspire me: cartoons, comics, music, and definitely the work of other artists. But the thing that inspires me the most is animated films. There’s something about going to a theater to watch a movie in 3D and immersing yourself in the experience of the film. Laughing, crying and cheering the protagonist on through their journey and feeling like you’re right there alongside them through their journey, it always makes me feel like a kid again. It’s my favorite thing in the whole world to do.
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
My father is an artist so I’ve been making and learning about art since I could hold a pencil. But I didn’t consider pursuing it as a career until I was fifteen. My father is what you would call a starving artist, I grew up in a small town and even though he is an amazing painter there really wasn’t that much work, so I never knew you could actually make any real money from it unless you were famous.
So for the longest time, I had plans to pursue a degree in English literature. It was the moment I made my first animation, that I decided I wanted to make animated films. The more I learned about animation, the more I decided I wanted to tackle and improve every aspect of my art I could. I bought a drawing tablet, started painting, learned how to write out storyboards and draw out character designs and started animating more and more. I came to love each day more and more, because I knew I could pursue and improve the thing I love the most.
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 don’t sign a lot of my digital work (which I should), but instead print them off and sign them by hand when I sell them at anime conventions. Most of the time it’s just my name in cursive, or just my initials.
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
Always pursue what you love. Don’t make art to impress others, make art to impress yourself. When you start drawing, draw because you love art for what it is and that’s: taking nothing and making something beautiful out of it. I think that’s why a lot of artist’s give up early on, because they compare themselves to better artists and become depressed and think: I’ll never be that good. None of that matters, everyone starts somewhere, do art because you love it and for nothing else.
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
I definitely identify as asexual and probably aromantic. It’s incredibly hard for me to be attracted toward someone and I think it’s only happened one time in my entire life.
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
Mostly just the: “You’re too young and you’ll do it one day when you’re older.” But I just ignore these replies, I’m eighteen (almost nineteen), I’m pretty sure I’ve figured out whether or not I want to do it by now.
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
Most people I know have absolutely no clue what it is in the first place, so when I have to explain it to them they just look at me like I’m some kind of mythical creature.
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
You aren’t broken, you aren’t ill. You are an amazing, wonderful person who just happens to have a different preference from most people. I know sometimes it can be scary, but you were made this way for a reason. Always love and believe in yourself, never let society decide who you should and shouldn’t be.
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
You can find my website here, which has most of my work: http://lindakburgess.weebly.com/
Also my Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/people/Linda-Burgess/100009533223660
And Deviantart: http://lindaburgess.deviantart.com/
And my Tumblr where I spit out a bunch of random fanart, comics, ship art and other sketches I don’t post anywhere else: http://lindakburgess.tumblr.com/
Thank you, Linda, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.