Today we’re joined by Rebecca Mann. Rebecca is a wonderful and talented art student who does both 3D and 2D art. Her 3D art is sculpture, which focuses on feminine forms. She also does a lot of drawing and sketching. There’s an emotion and vibrancy to her work that draws the viewer in. She’s definitely an artist to watch out for. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
I am an AP 3D Art student in my final year of high school, so I do a lot of sculpting while I’m there, but when I’m not I sketch in my notebook and draw on my computer. All my 2D art is just for hobby and consists of characters I made up when I was in 6th grade or characters from games or shows I am currently infatuated with. My 3D is usually the female human figure, as it is my concentration.
What inspires you?
Women, absolutely women. Specifically, diverse women, as in diverse bodies, colors, cultures, religions, backgrounds, everything. Drawing them and sculpting them gives me so much more love and respect for myself, as a woman, through them. I also love telling stories, even if they are only to myself. I love showing those close intimate moments that don’t need sex and I love facial expressions and hands. That is why I keep sketching the characters from my own stories and the stories I love the most from others.
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
Well I have always drawn, but I got the want to draw when I was first shown anime (Bleach) in 6th grade. I was a total weeaboo and wanted to live in Japan and draw manga, but I haven’t wanted that life in a looooong time. I honestly do this as a hobby to relax myself, which is why almost everything I do is a sketch, but I hope it can be used to make videogames in the future as a way to share stories in an interactive way. I never sculpted until this year for art class because I hate painting and didn’t want to do it, so sculpting is a new adventure for me.
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?
Well I always draw in cartoonish ways, but one of the things I find most noticeable about my work is how the eyes face the same way. I feel it gives the face better flow. And a lot of people tell me my women are often very muscular, which they aren’t wrong. And I remember one time I saw a character that would be impossible to cosplay, and it pissed me off, so I told myself I would make all my characters down to earth enough to cosplay. I don’t think I have much of a signature, but I do think I have a recognizable style that reflects who I am.
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
Oh my gosh, OK, never, and I mean NEVER, let anyone tell you your art won’t take you places, because it most definitely will!! And NEVER stop creating! Art blocks are a given but never let your limits define you, break you limits by not giving up, eventually they can’t catch you. Look at other people’s art, the art that inspires you, and let it guide you! And something very important that always pissed me off when other people told me: LOOK AT REAL LIFE! It doesn’t matter if you are doing abstractions or cartoons, basing it on realism, even if just a little, helps give your art the solid foundation it needs!
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
I am a sex repulsed heteromantic asexual. I have always been indifferent about sex but became sex repulsed after ending an abusive relationship.
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
I am actually not out in my school except for a few close friends and my boyfriend, who actually goes to a different school. It will forever annoy me, however, how I will make a purely non sexual situation or create a human figure in a nonsexual way, and it will be seen as sexual, and labeled as sexual without my say. This is why I am scared to ever create an asexual character and share them with the public.
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
That it is a choice or that I am faking it. I haven’t come out to many people, I don’t want to deal with the harassment, but when I did and they rejected me, they always said I would find a man who would change my mind or I was just a lesbian that hadn’t figured it out yet. One case of “it’s not real” rejection I received is when I came out to my mother, who laughed at me in my face and didn’t discuss it further. (I didn’t even try my dad)
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
Test things out! There is no shame in trying something and finding out it is or isn’t for you. If you later find out your romantic or sexual orientation isn’t what you thought that is perfectly fine! If you don’t fit perfectly in any box or label, feel free to use what you think best describes you, even if that means you have to kinda explain things to others after introducing yourself.
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
I don’t share much of my work online, but I do post fanart on my personal blog eatallthefoods.tumblr.com from time to time. I have never posted my OCs or because I don’t think people would find them interesting and I haven’t posted my 3D because I haven’t done it long.
Thank you, Rebecca, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.