Today we’re joined by FurvaNoctua. FurvaNoctua is a wonderful visual artist who specializes in drawing characters and party members from RPGs and Dungeons and Dragons campaigns. Aside from character art, FurvaNoctua draws things from cartoons and games. They draw both in a cartoon style and a semi-realistic style. It’s clear they’re a passionate and enthusiastic artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
I really enjoy drawing my characters and other party members from the DnD and Pathfinder RPGs I participate in as well as fun scenarios that happen in the sessions. I have also started to sometimes draw animal mash-ups, I’ve drawn a lot of stylised owls, occasionally do some small comics and sometimes draw things from games and cartoons. I enjoy drawing with my girlfriend and draw stuff for her sometimes.
I do a lot of traditional drawing as well as digital. I often fluctuate between mostly drawing traditionally or mostly drawing digitally. I most often draw in a cartoony – I guess also semi-realistic – style. Sometimes I do some more realistic stuff.
What inspires you?
Cartoons, webcomics and video games I like, and just a lot of art I come across.
I often get motivated to draw by watching Doodle Date from YouTube. It’s a couple who draw together and it’s just really relaxing and uplifting to watch!
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
I have always loved drawing and been fascinated with the process of creating animated movies/cartoons, comics and video games. Since I was a kid I wanted to make video games, but I thought that couldn’t be a possibility.
I’m not currently actively pursuing making video games, but I plan on trying in the near future. Even if I’m just going to make a small game on my own, for myself, I’m definitely going to do something with video games!
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 have made signature that looks like a small owl with an F and N for wings (to stand for FurvaNoctua) that I often forget to sign my work with. Otherwise I don’t think so.
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
As someone with depression and ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder, so ADHD without the hyperactivity) I have struggled a lot with actually getting around to draw when starting any task feels impossible and overwhelming, especially a few years ago. What I found helped was to not beat myself up for not drawing and instead just soak up any information about art that came my way. Even if I wasn’t drawing often I could still learn a lot about drawing while being too low on energy. I watch drawing tutorials on YouTube, read any drawing tutorial I come across, examine the colours/lines/light of any drawings I like and look at how they are build. Besides learning a lot, it might also give you inspiration/motivation/energy to get drawing yourself! But either way you learnt something and probably had some relaxing time for yourself in the process.
I felt this helped my art grow a lot after I got out of (my equivalent of) high school and got more time and energy to focus on drawing. I had gotten a lot of knowledge about drawing and now I could really try it out in practice, which was really nice.
So, focus on getting to a better place, passively take in any art tips you come across, do art if you can, but don’t beat yourself up if you can’t. You will have plenty of time to improve.
Another thing I have struggled with which is tied to what I have already talked about, is feeling like I’ve fallen behind and not being where I could have been if I could have just drawn regularly. What I feel has helped me feel happy with where I’m at (but still excited about improving of course) is imagining showing a recent piece to my younger self. Who hasn’t wondered how much their skills will have grown in a few years? If you could actually answer your younger self and show where you are now, they would flip out (for many reasons, but let’s focus on the art)! “Those hands look so good!” “I love this character, they are so cool!!” “I can’t believe I will get this far!” “I’m so glad to see I’ll get better at poses.” You might wish that you were further than you, but I’m positive your younger self would already be very impressed. Knowing my younger me would be happy with where I am helps me be happier with where I am too.
I focused on drawing, but I think both things can apply to about all art and I hope it helps someone.
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
I’m aroace and feel zero percent sexual attraction and romantic attraction.
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
Not specifically in regard to being asexual, but being sex-repulsed certainly creates some struggles. I’m not very good with nudity, so learning to draw proper anatomy still feels difficult to me as most common ways to improve is to do things like croquis. A lot of artists I have asked about good ways to learn anatomy that isn’t croquis have almost all told me that croquis is really just the way to go and everyone can be uncomfortable at first, but you quickly get absorbed by the drawing. They don’t tend to get that I wouldn’t just be uncomfortable, but most likely will have a panic attack before I get the chance to draw… I have however gotten some nice resources from a nice fellow ace artist recently (who doesn’t share this problem, but can understand how it’s difficult), and I’m excited to look at them further!
I find it difficult to find good resources on my own. Having something like croquis, but have the models be in underwear so the anatomy is still very clear, would be nice, but I don’t quite dare to search for people in underwear on the internet.
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
Probably that aces don’t have sex or that aces and allos can’t be in any lasting relationships because the allos would leave at some point because they would eventually want something the aces can’t give.
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
Take your time and don’t do anything you don’t want to do. The expectations and pressure of society might make it feel like you should just go do some stuff you don’t want to in order to be normal and happy, but that’s not true and it won’t help. So just listen to yourself and take your time.
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
Anything that I post goes on my Tumblr: https://furvanoctua.tumblr.com/
My Instagram, where I post anything that isn’t digital art: furvanoctua
My Redbubble shop: www.redbubble.com/people/furvanoctua.
Thank you, FurvaNoctua, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.