Interview: Vide Frank

Today we’re joined by Vide Frank. Vide is a phenomenal illustrator from Sweden. They’re part of a group made up of asexual and aromantic individuals. Vide was also on a panel about asexual and aro issues at Stockholm pride. Their work is gorgeous and vivid, evoking an incredible amount of emotion, as you’ll soon see. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.

final1-details

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I’m a visual artist, which is a very broad term. I paint and draw both digitally and traditionally but have also dabbled around in sewing, sculpting, writing and jewelry making. I mostly stick to painting and drawing though. I use a lot of different mediums, like watercolor, markers, graphite, oil paint, acrylic paint, colored pencils, photoshop and paint tool sai.

What inspires you?

So many things, like music, movies, books, fanfiction, poetry, photos, drawings, paintings and real life. I’m very driven by my emotions though, so it all depends on how I’m feeling in that moment.

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

I guess I always had this fascination with art, I used to beg my mom to draw things for me and I loved to use my hands to create things. Art has always been a part of my life, although I didn’t really try to improve until I was around twelve, and it wasn’t until I was fifteen that I actually thought of making it into a carrier. I don’t believe enough in myself to actually take that leap though, so I’m studying to become an assistant nurse at a gymnasium in Sweden.

untitled

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 don’t really have a symbol or feature, since I think I would grow tired of it and start to hate it.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

It’s okay if your art look like crap, your dance can be off or you could have fucked up that seam, and that’s okay. Perfection isn’t necessary, it’s just tiring. Keep practicing, keep making mistakes, keep working and someday someone will say that you did well, and maybe that won’t be enough, but maybe it will. Learn to love the journey, not the result (as cheesy as that sounds).

yvfinal-resized2

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

Demi gray asexual, which means (according to me) that I need to have an emotional connection to a person to feel sexual attraction to them, but it’s still very rare for me to experience sexual attraction.

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

In my field? No, but that’s mostly because I’m not very open about my “queer-ness” around my art. In other places? Yeah, defiantly. I mostly try to keep a calm and open mind when I meet these people, and try to calmly explain my point of view with examples and such. Most of the time they understand or we agree to disagree.

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

That we don’t have sex or that we just need to find “the one”. Both are complete bullshit, I can have sex with a person and still be ace, asexuality isn’t about our actions, but about our attractions.

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

You don’t have a find a label or figure everything out, it’s okay to just be. If the people around you don’t support you there’s always other people in the world, someone out of the seven billion are going to understand.

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

You can find my art on my Instagram at plantrot:
https://www.instagram.com/plantrot/

Or my portfolio http://vide.teknisten.com/

You can also buy some of my works at my Redbubble: http://www.redbubble.com/people/videfrank
(or contact me at vide.frankh@gmail.com)

tattoo

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

Interview: Bridget

Today we’re joined by Bridget. Bridget is a phenomenal hobbyist who loves to draw. She loves to draw a variety of things, mostly using pens and markers. Her images are positively beautiful and show a great eye for lines and color, which you’ll soon see. Bridget is a passionate artist with a wonderful amount of enthusiasm. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

cdjolslviaa3yqg

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I’m not a professional artist, but drawing has been a hobby of mine for as long as I can remember! I mostly draw in pen or marker and usually just in black and white. Color is still something I find a little intimidating except for in little splashes!

What inspires you?

Seeing the work of other people definitely is inspiring. An artist I follow closely at the moment is Dana Terrace…seeing her work made it click for me that as an artist you can truly make anything you want, even if it’s a little creepy or strange. The wonderful thing about art is that there are so many ways to make it, and none of it is wrong!

cef98ihuiaeezjt

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

Art is not my professional field, but it is something I’ve practiced on and off since I was a little kid. I actually got my degree in technical geography, so while art is not at the center focus of my work, it still helps to have a good eye for visual displays.

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 at the moment!

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

I still consider myself to be a young inspiring artist, but something I’ve picked up along the way is to look at a broad variety of artistic styles. I know that I always have trouble drawing eyes, and so I’ll go and look up several different artists and practice drawing in their style until I find a combination of something that works for me! I’d never claim or post anything that I copied from another artist, but it is definitely very helpful to practice by copying the pros.

lantern
Lantern

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

Until recently I identified as asexual, but recently I’ve discovered that I’m closer to demisexual.

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

In my field I have not encountered any, but I also don’t tend to bring up my sexual preferences in everyday conversation, ha ha! In my personal relationships I have had some difficulties…I dated someone for several years, and about halfway through the relationship it dawned on me that I did not experience the same desires as my partner did. My partner didn’t understand, and often left me feeling like I was ‘broken’ or not fulfilling my side of the relationship. It caused a lot of heartbreak. I ended the relationship; there were several reasons why we didn’t work out, but our differing sexual goals definitely played a part.

At this point I thought I was completely asexual. However, I entered a new relationship about six months ago, and it surprised me to find that I was experiencing some attraction to my new partner in ways I never had before. This has led me to the conclusion that I’m demi, and also that it’s entirely possible for my identity to shift with time and experiences.

space
Space

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

That something is wrong with you for not feeling sexual attraction, that you have a disorder of some kind. It took me a long time to come to terms with the fact that I’m not ‘broken’…when I finally found resources describing asexuality, I was thrilled to have a word to describe how I identify myself.

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

That it’s totally okay to shift your stance on your identity. Assigning a label to your identity is a great thing to be able to do, but don’t feel like you’re locked into it forever. It’s okay to change your identity as you explore your preferences!

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

I post my art to Instagram, at bridget_tuttle_art

dance
Dance

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

Interview: Lon

Today we’re joined by Lon. Lon is a fantastic visual artist who also does a lot of crocheting and writing. She hasn’t met a medium she doesn’t like. Lon is an incredibly passionate artist who loves creating, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

img_0005

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

Well I guess I should start out by saying that I draw primarily in traditional style using pencil, ink, and markers. But I do also dabble in digital artwork. I also crochet everything from blankets to hats to fingerless gloves. I write as well and I am currently, working on a novel which I hope to publish.

What inspires you?

My digital artwork is inspired by stained glass windows and my traditional artwork is inspired by old school storybook style artwork.

As for what I draw, I tend to step outside and look at the area around me or look back over old vacation photographs. I live in Iowa near the Loess Hills on the boarder of South Dakota and Nebraska. It’s an absolutely beautiful area; especially in the fall. I tend to pull inspiration for my crocheting from the colors in nature and what kind of patterns I see among the forested area near me.

For my writing I pull inspiration from authors like C.S. Lewis, Tolkien, R.R. Martin, Brian Jacques, Patrick Rothfuss, J.K. Rowling, and Ted Dekker. Each of them unique in their own right and amazing at how they pull all the pieces together. I strive to create as unique and indepth works as they have.

img_0008

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

I started out drawing traditionally very young. I would see both of my parents drawing and tried to draw along with them. My mother drew mostly with charcoal or oil pastels and though I grew to dislike both mediums simply because I draw more finely I still admire how beautiful her artwork is. My father drew with pencils and ink. His style of more precise and realistic sketches eventually inspired my personally style, although I kept my moms more whimsical and storybook tone in whatever I drew.

As for my crocheting, my mother taught me. I distinctly remember watching her crochet when I was young and trying to copy her for years until my mom decided ihad enough coordination to handle using the crochet hook and string. From there I took off on my own trying to teach myself as I went and learning her more unique tricks and stitches along the way. The style of crochet I use was apparently invented jointly by my mother and my great grandmother and is unique compared to most stitching styles. I didn’t know this until recently when a stranger made thr observation but I am delighted to know that I’ve continued something unique to my family.

The inspiration for wanting to write in general and my writing is more difficult to pinpoint. I would have to say the roots of it started with my dad reading to b before bed. My dad used to read The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and later Harry Potter with different voices and brought the stories to life. I would have to say that looking over that period of my life it must have been then that I realized somedayI wanted to create a story that would bring people together and create fond memories as well.

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?

As I touched on with my crochet work I use a unique stitch that I’m quite fond of but for my artwork I tend to combine a storybook style into everything I draw. I rarely use full realism but rather draw in a very stylized way. With my writing I strive to bring in detail without overloading the story. I try to “paint” the world I see in my head fro my readers to see as they read.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Practice, study anatomy, do your research, and don’t give up. It took me nearly twenty years of constant practice to get where I am on all of my pusuits. Also for crocheting, make sure you’re stretching and holding your fingers/wrists correctly or you’ll hurt yourself.

img_0009

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’ve only recently realized I’m in the asexual spectrum but I’m comfortable in saying that I’m asexual.

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

Mostly I’ve seen ignorance or confusion with the few people I’ve worked up the courage to talk to about it. I’m not “out” quite yet as I’m still learning about it myself.

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

Just from observations on Tumblr and online in general I’ve seen a lot of misconceptions and denial. In person? Again I’m not out yet so I’m admittedly naive of people’s perceptions in my area.

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

Find a community, do your research, and I guess realize ultimately you aren’t broken. You never were.

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

You can find me on DeviantArt at Ecanusiofiel or StarryFeathers. I crocheting stuff will be up on an Etsy shop eventually once I’ve finished a few more pieces to post.

img_0586

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

Interview: Sam

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.

charge!

WORK

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.

furry fyrry furry

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.

is this gay

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.

spade's pet

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.

spicey greys

ASEXUALITY

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.

stabbing pain

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.

two

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

villian kids

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