Today we’re joined by Sam. Sam is a phenomenal digital artist who works with a variety of different media. They use both traditional and digital media and a lot of their inspiration comes from their love of webcomics. Sam’s work demonstrates a remarkable skill and vivid imagination. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
Most of my art is a combination of traditional and digital. I draw and ink by hand, and then color on my computer. I also sometimes use colored pencils or markers, and lately I’ve been practicing with gouache, which is a type of opaque watercolor paint. I’m not very good with paint yet, but I’m getting better!
I mostly draw my own characters, the majority of which are from a comic I’m currently working on. On occasion, I’ll draw little bits of fan art when it crosses my mind, but not as often. I’ve been branching out a bit lately, trying some more world-building type art, and art with clearer settings/backgrounds.
What inspires you?
I read a fair assortment of webcomics that I love and that are good inspirations. Three of the biggest inspirations for me, comic-wise, would be Paranatural, The Glass Scientists, and Harpy Gee. Some cartoons/animated movies with nice art styles inspire me, as do some games. I like Legend of Zelda and Pokemon a lot, and draw stuff from them sometimes. Some books make me want to draw too! The main one I think would be the How to Train Your Dragon books.
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
I’ve been drawing for a very long time! I drew a lot when I was very little, and just kept doing it and improving myself. It was a nice way to control stress and boredom, and it just makes me happy.
I got interested in comics because I love the idea of visual story telling, and I saw how happy different webcomics I read made people, and I wanted to make something like that. I hope my art makes people happy.
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 particularly. I’ve tried a couple of times to do something like that, but I’d only do once or twice, and then forget.
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
If you want to draw, or wish you could draw better, you can! Lots of people I talk to say all they can draw is stick figures or something like that; when I first started drawing, that’s all I did. Stick figures!
You can draw, it just takes practice. You’ve gotta do it a lot. Doodle on the bus, or the margins of your notes in class, or on your napkin while waiting for your food.
If you draw something and it doesn’t look very good to you, that’s no reason to stop. It’s why you should try again, and try to make it better the next time. Please don’t compare your art to someone else’s. That won’t help at all. However, you can try looking back at your old art and see how much you’ve improved.
You’ll always be changing and improving.
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
I’m aro/ace! I’m also panplatonic
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
Eh, not so much, but that’s mostly because I’m not out nor have I mentioned it ‘in real life’. Although, my family is of the mindset that you have to get married and make a family to be successful, even though none of them know asexuality actually exists.
There’s the ‘you just haven’t found the right person yet’, or ‘you’ll change your mind one day’ floating around also.
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
That being ace makes you more ‘pure’ or ‘innocent’. That ace people cannot have sex/don’t have sex ever. Stuff like that. Asexual doesn’t necessarily mean sex-repulsed.
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
If you think you’re ace, that’s okay and normal! If you’re not sure you’re ‘ace enough’, remember, it’s a spectrum! If you’re ace, you’re ace; you’re on the spectrum somewhere.
And don’t feel like if you’re ace now, you ‘have’ to be ace forever. It’s okay to grow and change. Maybe twenty years from now you’ll decide you’re bisexual, et cetera, or maybe you’ll still be asexual. Both are good and okay, and whatever happens in the future doesn’t change what you are right now.
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
You can find my stuff lots of places!
I have an OC blog which is where most of my art is: http://halfwaytown.tumblr.com
A more ‘normal’ art blog (aka, not just my characters): http://licantaur.tumblr.com
A DeviantArt: http://licantaur.deviantart.com
And a webcomic! : http://forgottenpassages.smackjeeves.com
Although, the comic still being worked on and no pages are up yet. When it updates, there will be an announcement on the above listed locations.
I also have an ask blog for the How to Train Your Dragon Books: http://askhiccupandcompany.tumblr.com
Thank you, Sam, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.