Interview: Isa C.

Today we’re joined by Isa C. Isa is a phenomenal photographer from Costa Rica. She specializes in photographing people, exploring the stories that can be told through a person’s face. Her work is fascinating, showing a fantastic eye and an incredible amount of uniqueness. Isa is so passionate and dedicated, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

Well I’m a photographer from Costa Rica. I’m still learning, but always put out my best work. Currently I’m really into portraits, mainly because I’m interested by people and how much their faces can tell. I love exploring with different styles and get weird with it. I have the most fun when the shoots end up being confusing even to me.

The other part of my art is the editing, this is the part in which I spend most of the time. It’s a long process, but color grading and making things look magical is what I’ve come to love the most.

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What inspires you?

I find it incredibly hard to narrow down the things that inspire me. The more I think about it, the more sources of inspiration pop up in my head. I guess I’ve always been a person that spends more time inside her own head than anything else so, in a way, I inspire myself. I know that might sound a bit arrogant, but I’m not too sure it actually is.

The thing is, most of my ideas come out of, like, odd feelings that a song, melody or phrase may give me. I cling on to that emotion and freeze it in an image because otherwise, it’d be gone. Sometimes I end up shooting self-portraits out of sheer impulse, and the inspiration comes out of my need to constantly create.

On the other hand, my friend’s inspire me when I shoot them. Sometimes I star sessions with close to no premeditated ideas because I want to capture the essence of the person I’m shooting that specific day. So if they walk in with an air of curiosity, I’ll try to make that the theme. Same goes with any other emotion.

I guess, I get my inspiration out of the world I’ve built around myself, and use its unpredictable fluidity to my advantage.

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

My dad has always been a lover of the arts, not an artist at all though. I grew up in a house so completely covered in painting, drawings photos, and sculptures that it was weird to me when I went to other’s houses and they had close to non. As a consequence of his love of it, but lack of ability for it, I was enrolled in plastic arts classes at a very young age. As thing usually do, it evolved into different interests. I hovered all over the arts, but kinda just landed on photography when my dad bought me a point and shoot camera for me to use on a trip and I fell in love with it.

I don’t think so, probably still completely don’t. I like what my art communicates, and I hope to never stop creating, but I’ll always be a part time artist. My photos are part of me, but there’s other sides to me too.

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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 necessarily, but one thing I know is that every photo I put out is most definitely a product of my passion and something I am proud of. There must be tons of edited pictures in my hard drive that will never see the light of day.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Hustle, but with passion. There’s no way you’ll get anywhere if you don’t put in hours and hours of hard work, but if you stop loving what you do it’s not really worth it to me. I’m honestly still a young aspiring artist, so my best advice is to get yourself out there and kick some serious butt.

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

That THE QUESTION. I’m not big on labels, that’s just my personal way of thinking. Why limit myself? It took me a long time to land on asexual, and even a longer time to acknowledge it as part of my identity.

I do like boys, girls and whatever falls in the middle. If I like you, I just do. Regardless of your gender.

When it comes to sex, I’m not repulsed by it, but instead have a certain aversion to it. I find pleasure in it, which is undeniable, but I never want to really do it with anyone. I acknowledge it feels good, I know I enjoy the feeling, I just don’t want to do it. It’s quite complicated to explain, but I do hope I’m making myself clear enough.

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

Not really, artists have a tendency to be open-minded. I’m really thankful for that. That being said, I’m somewhat of a private person. If it doesn’t come up, I will not mention it.

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

That it means I hate sex, or won’t have sex. The fact that I am not sexually attracted to people doesn’t mean that I won’t do it, or won’t enjoy it, if the situation arises.

Another matter is that it’s some kind of defect. As if my aversion to is a reaction to trauma. No one touched me when I was little, no one forced me to do things I didn’t want to do… I just never felt that attraction.

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

Take your time, there is no rush. No one gets to tell you who you are, but yourself. There’s no need to stress about it because regardless of who you mingle with, or don’t, is your own personal business. Labels give people comfort, but can also bring distress. If saying you are asexual makes you feel comfortable, then that’s all you really need.

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

My Tumblr is: itsleatherweather (but its personal so there’s a lot of random stuff aside from my photos)

My Instagram is: _isacastillo_ (purely my photography)

My Snapchat: isacastillo90 (I post behind the scenes of shoots and before and afters a lot. Plus, my life if you are interested. FYI I don’t add back people I don’t know.)

My Webpage: https://isacastillophoto.wixsite.com/photography (Includes my portfolio and contact info)

If you came from here and want to talk to me feel free to do so through any medium you find most comfortable! I love talking to fellow artists, and art lovers so don’t be shy!

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

Interview: Margaret Rose

Today we’re joined by Margaret Rose. Margaret is a wonderful young writer who specializes in poetry. She already has a poetry collection entitled I Don’t Have One, which can be found on Amazon. Margaret’s poetry is very personal and she is incredibly passionate about writing, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I love to write. I have been writing since a young age, I wrote a novel on a dare once (which now sits on my book shelf). But mostly I write poetry and keep track of anxious thoughts and questions in journals and on my phone. I usually don’t share anything out of fear. I submit to poetry contests under anonymous, and it’s nice when your work wins but then it’s a little sad when nothing comes of it because I don’t attach a name.

I also paint and love photography, but not nearly as much as writing, and writing is where I would hope to succeed.

What inspires you?

I find watching people over-come their personal obstacles really inspiring and people who really embrace their personality no matter how weird people may think they are. Sometimes liking yourself and accepting yourself can be a really powerful thing. Sometimes people really suffer trying to fit in, trying to please others and it really takes away from their own person. And it can really be a struggle, but hearing those stories about people getting to where they are happy or are on the way to discovering who they are, are really inspiring.

Tyler, the creator and Camila Cabello, if celebrity inspirations are of curiosity. I think they sort of had to make the decision to stay true to themselves and its paying off. Which I like to see. I like to know it’s possible to follow your own path and people will embrace it because they relate. Too many artists, I think, change to fit what is expected of them.

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

I used to journal a lot when I was younger and write stories and then later read them back and see how I reacted to certain things. As I got older I could see where I grew and where I was stuck. And I started to think about things that happened in books or songs see if they applied to me. Then I thought maybe my struggles and my triumphs could help other people, but it took me a long time to share any of my words. I haven’t always wanted to be an artist, but I always wanted to help people. Eventually I realized I loved writing even if no one saw it and maybe in time I could turn that into something.

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 exactly. Sometimes I will place a very specific reference from a time with someone and work it in to a piece just as a little surprise for when they read it. So it’s not something broad that everyone would notice but I think it’s nice for people to read something and be like ‘hey, there’s a person in here, that really did happen, I remember this’. I think friends reading my stuff is terrifying because my writing voice is very different from my everyday voice. Sometimes people are like ‘is that really you writing that?’ So I think of the references as reminders like yes, it is me, hello.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Just go for it. there are so many ways to share your work today that you might as well give it a try. And if you’re stuck or trying to find your style don’t get discouraged. Keep making, keep creating. Create bad shit you want to throw away get it out of the way, that’s when you will come onto something you will be happy with. I write stuff all the time that I just trash, that sometimes leads me to a really nice place. Same with painting and photography.

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

Asexual, aromantic would be the easiest way for me to put it. Although, I think a lot about demisexual but I think that’s a hope. In the past I have fallen in love with the idea of a relationship with a person, but then the real life aspect I’m just like.. nope. Which is hard sometimes.

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

In writing all the time. I’ve had a publisher ask “how can you be relatable if you do not relate to most of the population?” I have also been asked, or it was kindly suggested, that I do not mention how I identify because then people will not know how to interpret your work. Which is discouraging because I struggle myself with concepts of love and relationships. So to hear that no one else will get you or want to get you, is tough. It’s also frustrating that all my other writing gets over looked because publishers are concerned about who or what the love aspect applies to. I write a lot about depression, anxiety and other struggles/subjects that deserve attention.

I have always just taken these comments in stride, I am happy with myself and I expect eventually the people in charge will see that people want more representation and when that happens I will be here, willing to share. I’ve also always told people that I just write the words, and truthfully, you may do whatever you like with them.

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

That I just haven’t met the right person. Or that asexuality is a choice. I have had and still have moments where I think and wish for a regular relationship. Conversations with people would be easier, no one would make backhanded comments when your sexuality gets brought up, that sort of thing. But then I also know I would not be happy with that life.

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

I would say that it’s okay to struggle, I have days where I am at a loss when I think about the future. How easy would it be to fit into societal expectations for love? Easy. But you have to make a decision to be yourself. And that the people who love you will love you no matter what. You’re not a freak, a plant or have just never had good sex. You are a person who has valid experiences. Don’t rely too much on what society has to say about love and relationship expectations. And if you feel alone reach out, there are SO many people out there in groups and on the internet, where you can remain anonymous, who will just talk to you and not make you feel weird and strange.

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

My writing has been taken from my blog posts and journals and I have selected some of it for my poetry collection, “I don’t have one” which can be found here on Amazon: amazon/idonthaveonemargaretrose

Full link in case above is broken http://a.co/6TFGtjZ

I don’t sell paintings or really post them anywhere I just sort of give them away as people ask.

Instagram: mrg.rose

I have a Tumblr you can check out here: http://aparttimepoet.tumblr.com/.

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

Interview: Jones

Today we’re joined by Jones. Jones is a phenomenal musician and visual artist. He specializes in a variety of music genres and plays no less than six instruments. When he’s not creating music, Jones does a lot of visual art including graphic design and drawing. His work shows an interesting use of color and beautiful visuals. My thanks to him for taking the time to participate in this interview.

The artist
The Artist

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

The only place I fit in this world is behind my guitar (or PC). I’m the weirdo loner that your parents probably warned you about. (And if they didn’t warn you about weirdo loners then you should get new parents). My name is Jones and I like creating music, filming, writing, editing, producing, photography, drawing, and graphic design. I love mimicking psychedelic art (cause the 60’s were awesome . . . duh lol) but my real passion is music. I taught myself six instruments (thanks YouTube!) and decided to get involved in producing my own work. I especially love beat making and sound designing. Anything that keeps me in my room. I’m an introvert. Outside to me is the hallway lol.

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Asli Omar

What inspires you?

Pot, Anime, and music… well that’s the vague answer… What really inspires me are events in my life whether it’s friendships, manic depression, music, or…. pot. I normally use my experiences in songs. I’m a huge lofi indie rock fan so I like to think of myself as the millennial version of Daniel Johnston (Shout out to the few people who know who Daniel Johnston is lol) but rap and metal are another form of inspiration.

I’m a huge fan of Earl Sweatshirt, Tyler the creator, 2pac, Wu-tang, Future, Migos, Kung-fu Kenny and J Cole. My favorite metal bands that inspire my “Dark art” so to speak are: Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, Bathory, Acid Bath, BreakDown of sanity, Killswitch Engage, Alice in Chains, Mercyful Fate, Straight Line Stitch, Heaven Shall Burn and Uncle Acid.

But I’m a huge Indie rock nerd. I love Beat Happening, Beach fossils, Car Seat Headrest, Neutral Milk Hotel, Beulah (basically anything from the Elephant 6 label), A great big pile of leaves, Empire Empire I was a lonely estate, Marietta, The Ton Tons, Modern Baseball, and the War on Drugs.

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Demon Child

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

I wanted to be Goku when I was a kid… but that didn’t seem like a lucrative career choice so I opted out to drawing comics. From there I was hooked into art and drawing. I was always introverted as a kid. I stayed alone and watched cartoons all the time and tried making my own cartoons. I was always the weird kid at my school and I never fit in so I just avoided people and focused on my artwork. I found everyone to be distracting and I only hung out with people that shared my interests in art. It really freaked out my parents because I would stay home and watch cartoons all day then stay up at night acting out what my cartoons would say and do. I was living in my own world of art. It was pretty chill.

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?

Lo and Cho (Lo’s the dude and Cho’s the girl). They were doodles associated with my music because I was inspired by Beat Happening’s first album and the child like appeal of it. I wanted to mimic that for my lofi music. I also made comics with these two that I may or may not release. It’s mostly about tripping acid and contemplating life as a drawing inside of a huge notebook of drawings.

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Kinky Sheets

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

If you’re a musician, just starting out I’ll be straightforward in saying this: nobody is going to like you. Don’t ever get discouraged by this fact though. When the Doors had their first show, nobody came. Few years later, they had riots at their concerts because people lost their minds hearing Jim Morrison’s voice. Any skill takes time and it will take a while for some to build up a fan base whether you draw or sing. My best advice is to create something that changes YOUR world first. When I first started making music I’d put it on my iPod and pretend like I was a famous person before I started uploading songs online. I used these moments to critique and rewrite my work and improve my sound. Don’t worry about what anyone else says because your talent is something that they cannot take away. If you want your moment you’re gonna have to stay motivated because time and practice goes a long way. Some people blow up overnight while others never do, that’s just how it is. You just gotta stay focused and do it for you and you alone. This is YOUR world of art, use it to create something meaningful for yourself.

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Frostburg Sunset

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m somewhere between Asexual and Demi/grey sexual. I’m still figuring it out but I find it hard to be attracted to people. Sometimes I can get curious (key word: sometimes) but when I notice someone it’s like “Oh He’s handsome” or “she’s pretty” but it doesn’t lead me to sexual feelings. I’ve had mild interests in sex but not to the point where I wanted to experiment because sex and body parts always looked weird to me. I was always interested in voyeurism and fetishes like BDSM, macrophilia, etc. because I got to notice body types without really touching them. My motto in life was always Snack, Fap, and Nap lol.

I never cared about flirting signals from others and I didn’t reciprocate any feelings whether it was from men or women. In late high school/early college I thought I was heterosexual but when I had sex for the first time it was kinda weird (Nothing wrong with my partner, she was wonderful, I just wasn’t really invested during the times we… you know). I tried experimenting with both men and women and neither really interested me. The only time I actually liked someone is through personality.

But just because I’m asexual/demi doesn’t mean sometimes I don’t get curious. I feel like that’s just a part of human nature to notice members of your own species and to identify with them. Sometimes I notice people and although for the most part it’s difficult to sexualize them sometimes I fantasize (again keyword: sometimes). For me it’s mostly from a voyeuristic standpoint where I’m not involved or I’m looking in from a third person viewpoint. My fantasies are not as common as regular people but sometimes it happens. For the most part, they’re just thoughts and I don’t really have any interest in acting on them but I don’t want to be seen as anti-sex because I’m an ace/demi. I’m indifferent when it comes to sex because it’s not that important to me and I can definitely live without it but if I ever fell in love with somebody’s personality I also wouldn’t mind exploring our buttons together.

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Giantess Ayisha

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

Oh yeah. My friends used to think I was only asexual because I couldn’t get laid. When you’re a black male you have to be this hyper-masculine oversexualize creature and here I am avoiding anything with parents LOL. I probably handled ace prejudice poorly when it happened to me.

But when I came out I didn’t fit in with my friends. All they did was have sex with each other and I felt suffocated by this because I was the odd man out who didn’t want to be touched.

I was also very misogynistic back when I first came out because I used to think hypersexual girls were disgusting. I’m not like that anymore and I now believe that women have the right to sexually express themselves any way they want to without anyone’s opinion but back when I first came out I had a different mindset. It started when the girls that wanted to sleep with me were more puzzled that I wasn’t as hypersexual as they were and they just simply marked me off as gay and spread rumors about me. This lead to the dissolution of a lot of female relationships because I felt weirded out that there was this unspoken pressure to form sexual bonds with them. I became the odd man out not only around my female friends but my male friends also and for that I became a slut shaming bitter misogynist and a loner. Many of my female friends were hypersexual and looked at me differently because I was this anti-sexual Queer that didn’t fit in with any group. Again I’m not misogynistic anymore but back then I had a different mindset and a lot of conflicting emotions that really came in the way of a lot of friendships with other people. For some time, I avoided girls because many of the females around me preached about their sex lives. This was also common with my male friends. I just started avoiding everyone. I especially avoided female friends because I was the “diary” to some and I didn’t want to be. (I also learned that a lot of my female friends could be very Queerphobic.)

What was worse was that some of my male friends would avoid me because I wasn’t interested in girls while others would accuse me of making up asexuality to get “closer to sleeping” with their girlfriends. It was insulting because it was like my sexuality didn’t matter to anyone. Even when I told them “I’m asexual, I never slept with any of your girlfriends” they would give me puzzled looks and brush me off. It was even harder explaining my asexuality to friends that I used to have crushes on. Every crush that I ever had I liked them for their personality. Some instances it got sexual but I was much more interested in their persona than the sex. When I came out some of these friends would hang it over my head like “didn’t you used to like me, what happened?” etc. I felt broken because I thought I was heterosexual then the more I experimented with people the more I realized how different my sex drive was compared to theirs. It was like I couldn’t shake my old hetero identity and my old identity wasn’t even the real me. It was an awkward time. I even used to joke about how college “ruined my sexuality” because I thought rejection was the cause of my lack of sex drive but it was the simple fact that I was always different and experimentation with both sexes showed me how different my sexuality was compared to my peers. Now I just avoid making friends and talk to people online. It’s easier to find people who like the same interests as me online instead of the real world.

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Frostburg Watercolor

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

That asexuality is the result of a mental illness. It’s insulting because there are plenty of Aces who ARE NOT mentally ill who live perfectly normal lives and there are Aces who do have mental illnesses that do not relate to their sexual orientation. It makes it difficult for Aces who actually suffer from mental illnesses to seek help because they fear that their entire sexual orientation will be put under the microscope. ASEXUALITY IS NOT A MENTAL ILLNESS IT’S AN ORIENTATION JUST LIKE OTHER SEXUAL ORIENTATIONS. DON’T FEEL ASHAMED IF YOU HAPPEN TO BE MENTALLY ILL AND ASEXUAL BECAUSE THE TWO ARE NOT RELATED IN ANY WAY, SHAPE, OR FORM.

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Hello

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

Don’t take your sexuality so seriously. Feelings change and shift all the time and in the end Gay, Straight, Trans, and Asexuality are all labels. If you follow your heart and find what you love out of life the right people will come along eventually and you can establish any relationship you want with another person (just don’t be a creep about it). Don’t be worried if you’re struggling to find your sexual orientation. There’s nothing wrong with staying to yourself and there’s nothing wrong with experimenting. Just trust yourself to make the best decisions when the time comes and know that you don’t need all the answers all the time. Sometimes life just happens…

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

https://soundcloud.com/94sheets
https://apppk.bandcamp.com/ <- For Lofi/indie pop fans
https://apppk.bandcamp.com/album/projct-skybomb-cloudy-dreams-forever <- Chillwave beats

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Lianne la Havas Watercolor

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

Interview: Mia

Today we’re joined by Mia, who also goes by Aljoscha online. Mia is a phenomenal photographer. They specialize in nature and architecture photography. Their work is brimming with life and an astonishing amount of detail. Mia truly captures snapshots of life and places with their gorgeous pictures. They are an incredibly talented artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to them for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

Basically, I’m interested in any kind of art, because my family has an artistic disposition. I tried several things like drawing or making music but photography is the one field where I see my qualities. I do this as a hobby but I try to specify my work to nature and architecture photography.

I love to travel and I want to show other people what I have seen on my journeys. And of course photos are the best way to do this. 😀

What inspires you?

First of all, nature is a huge inspiration for me. It just offers the best subjects. Also cityscapes are incredible amazing. You just need to visit other towns and you see such a difference. It’s the diversity I want to capture and that gives me the inspiration to do my hobby.

Other huge inspirations are several photographers, e.g. Olaf Heine and Farin Urlaub. They both are in really different fields of photography but their works are impressing as heck. Their works give me a self-confidence boost à la “I can do this too!”

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

As I said I saw the works of Olaf Heine and Farin Urlaub and I wanted to do the same. First I thought I couldn’t do this because these people have a good qualification and worked in their field for years. I was nearly giving up when I saw that my brother autodidactically learned how to photograph and it turned out really well! This was the moment I got the self-confidence to also start photographing.

When I was a child, I was actually really annoyed that everyone in my family was so talented. I think it was because I am by far the youngest one and I wanted to be able to do all the art stuff my family did at the first go. I took me some time to realise that it takes time and patience and that you have to practice a lot. Now I’m happy with what I’ve already achieved and that I make people happy with my art.

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’m currently working on a signature. 😀

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Take your time! And don’t be sad if it doesn’t turn out well immediately. It’s hard work but in the end it was worth it, I promise. Also share your art everywhere you’re comfortable with. And always stay positive! When you see other peoples’ works don’t get sad – tell yourself you can do this too! Because you really can 🙂

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify as polyromantic (sex- / touch-repulsed) asexual.

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

Luckily not. When I’m taking photos / traveling I’m alone or with people who don’t know I’m ace — and that’s fine.

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Font de la Cascada

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

The most common misconception I heard about is that asexuals are broken and need to be “convinced” to have sex. People don’t seem to understand that you can be totally fine without having sex and that this is not bad.

And of course that asexuals wouldn’t belong to the LGBT+ community.

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

Keep calm. There’s nothing wrong with you and your identity.

Also make sure you have someone you can talk to – on the internet or in real life, doesn’t matter. If you’re sex-repulsed immediately tell your partner and talk about it. It’s important that they accept your boundaries and that you don’t push yourself into something you don’t want and / or you’re uncomfortable with. And don’t be afraid that you won’t find someone when you’re asexual! You’ll and so did I. It may be hard sometimes but life would be boring otherwise. 🙂

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

All my works are on DeviantArt: https://fdjpunx.deviantart.com/

Also I have a blog about photography where I post my works too: https://wuestenkind.tumblr.com/

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Strasse Bei Nacht

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

Interview: Mady

Today we’re joined by Mady. Mady is a phenomenally versatile young artist who hasn’t yet met a medium she didn’t like. She specializes in music, playing both the flute and the piccolo, though she does play other instruments as well. When she’s not making music, Mady enjoys drawing, photography, and baking. She clearly has an enormous amount of passion and enthusiasm, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

So I do participate in a few different artist outlets. Music is what I am most skilled in as I’ve been practicing and performing for about 10 years now. Flute and Piccolo are my main instruments, though I do occasionally mess around with others! My favorite pieces to perform are usually from a movie score or a stage musical. I love how easily the emotional flows from them since they are designed to illicit a specific emotional response from an audience while a composed piece on its own is more open to interpretation.

As for other things I do a lot whenever I have free time! I like to write, cosplay, bake, take photos, doodle, etc. Honestly most artistic outlets have become a hobby of mine even if I’m not that good at it!

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What inspires you?

Gosh I feel like there are so many things. Honestly, I tend to find most inspiration in the people around me. I’ve met so many people over the years that are so dedicated and passionate about their craft that I can’t help but also want to be the best I can. That sounds so cheesy to say, but it is how I feel!

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

Well for music I would almost be tempted to say it was in my blood. Kind of like a destiny thing! Everyone in my family is musically inclined. I mean literally everyone. To be honest at first I very strongly strayed away from anything musical. My dad is musician and plays in a band on his off days from work so for some reason when I was a younger that caused me to shy from it.

In fifth grade I joined Orff Orchestra to get out of sitting in the gym in the morning and that was kind of the end of that line of thinking. The middle school band teachers came and did a presentation on beginning band and the rest if kind of history!

Everything else was something I picked up along the way. There was no specific moment like with music. They were hobbies that I just came to enjoy.

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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 can’t think of anything that really that stands out to me. I think everything I do just kind of has a look or sound to it that relates back to me in a way? Which I do think is true of most artists. There isn’t something tangible for my art; it’s more of a feeling if that makes sense?

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Try not to compare yourself to those around you and never give up! This is something I personally have a problem with and always need to remind myself. It’s okay not to be at the same level as someone else, no matter where they are in life. You’re allowed to go at your own pace and that isn’t a bad thing!

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

Panromantic Asexual! (Though I’ve found I tend to lean more towards ladies than fellas)

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

Mhm personally I haven’t dealt with too much as I’m not very vocal about my sexuality. It’s kind of on a need to know basis so I’d be willing to bet most people I know, excluding my friends, have no idea I’m ace. I did have a friend once brush me off and patronize me, but after talking with them they came to understand a bit better. I, of course, have also had the general stupid comments about being a plant or partaking in mitosis.

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

Probably that it doesn’t exist in the real world and that it’s only a “Tumblr Thing” It’s frustrating to hear because for me personally without Tumblr and the internet as a whole making information about sexuality so accessible, I wouldn’t have realized I was ace. I spent a long time confused and unsure of what was wrong with me. I never really had physical crushes and was never able to relate when my friends would point out someone and gush about how ‘hot’ they were. Tumblr helped me start looking further into terms and information and has led me to where I am today. It’s not a perfect site and definitely has its faults, but I really do think it has the potential to be a wonderful place for spreading information.

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

It’s okay to be unsure and afraid. You don’t have to have all the answers. Even just recently I had to make some adjustments to how I see and refer to myself. Life is constantly a learning experience and that’s okay! Have fun being yourself!! No one else can do it better!

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

I post anything I create that I’m proud of on Tumblr at venasven. Any and all of my cosplays and photography can be found on Instagram at the same name! Venasven!

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

Interview: Logan

Today we’re joined by Logan. Logan is a phenomenal visual artist who does both traditional and digital art. He uses a variety of materials, but loves to draw. His work is brimming with astonishing detail, imagination, and vivid colors. It’s clear he has a wonderful love of art, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to him for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

My art is very odd topic, for it ranges in many different forms. Digital, Traditional, painting, paper craft, clay, sometimes even photography. But of course I draw more than anything. Everything I draw is so full of life, as my friends and family put it, and while I’m still learning poses and proportions, I think I’ve found a good art style that’s easy enough to doodle with, but also exaggerated enough to make complex pieces.

What inspires you?

Cartoons and anime really inspire me, as I would like to animate as a full-blown job someday. Some of my biggest influences have to be Welcome to Hell and Gorillaz. The expressions and moods of both inspire me to make more drawings like that, ones that have a mood and can tell a story. Some of my other friends who are also artists inspire me as well. I can think of three people that helped me get better at things I’m not all that good at, such as color scheme and line art. One more thing that inspires me is one of my favorite book series Amulet. The art is so charming and the storytelling is amazing. I hope one day I could make something as great as it.

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

When I was younger, I actually wanted to be an architect. I thought the pay was good and I over designing things. I soon grew out of that when I learned how much things you would need to be one. In fourth grade I got really into Sonic games, as I’ve never had a new game before then and I loved to play the Sonic mega collection. Naturally, I started to doodle Sonic characters in class, I still have some of those drawings too. And like most Sonic fans, I made a lot of OCS as well. This actually got me into making stories and worlds of my own. I remember I had about 27 sonic characters that were all connected somehow, I ditched a lot along the way and now I number it down to about 10. It actually wasn’t until sixth grade that I got really into drawing, and by then, I was also into creepypasta, which got me even more into storytelling. Since then, I’ve wanted to be a cartoonist or an animator and I don’t ink that’ll change anytime soon.

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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?

While I wouldn’t call it special, I do have this small trick that helps me draw different sizes of body’s. (I haven’t perfected it yet though) what I do is nothing but circles for the limbs and give the torso a rectangle shape. This way I can edit how big I want the character to be. It’s a bit hard to explain so I tried my best, but it does help me quite a bit.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Don’t stop drawing something just because someone doesn’t like it. I became the artist I am today because I drew things that would be considered cringy, emo, or childish. But I didn’t let that stop me from drawing something I enjoy, I kept on drawing, heck, I catch myself drawing my Sonic OCs from time to time still. Don’t let people make you feel ashamed for something you like is what I’m basically saying, keep on drawing what you want to draw, not what other people want you to draw.

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify as a Biromantic Asexual

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

I have a few times, but they weren’t as bad as other ace people might have it. Some teasing and someone asking if I actually loved my girlfriend because I was ace.

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

Something I hear a lot is that asexuals can’t have partners. That’s kinda bullcrap. While I don’t speak for everyone when I say that, aces could and would totally date someone if their partner was accepting. I’m lucky that my girlfriend is also asexual so we don’t have to deal with that.

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

I totally get it first of all. I remember that I was very confused with myself when people would talk about doing things I had no interest in and people finding it weird, I remember thinking I had some sort of mental disorder that was preventing me from feeling those things. While I don’t think I’m the best at giving this kind of advice, I just want to say to y’all that everything will turn out fine. It’s OK to be confused and it’s OK to think you were this and end up not being that (heck I thought I was a straight cis girl for 14 years) and if you never really figure out what you are, that’s OK as well, nothing is black and white.

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

Well, I have a Tumblr, a Wattpad, and an Instagram all under the same name, Sonicrocks152.

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

Interview: Simon

Today we’re joined by Simon. Simon is a wonderful young artist who is quite versatile and enjoys working in a number of mediums. While he does some writing, Simon prefers visual mediums and does a variety of visual art. It’s very clear that he’s an incredibly enthusiastic artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to him for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I do a lot of different art. I love writing, drawing, painting, digital art, chalk drawings, minor calligraphy; I do video editing and photography if I have the time.

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What inspires you?

Day to day life style. Especially if I’m just past a hard time like I am now. (A bit of teen gossip and stupid stuff with my “friends”). Long story short I found out who actually cares and dropped those who didn’t and I feel so much happier, and ready to create. I love watching other artists create as well, and even looking at how-to books to get ideas.

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

This is going to sound a little redundant, but I think where my appeal to art comes from is because when I was younger all I got for my birthday was school supplies, and I was never good at sports or anything else, so I said “what the hell, let’s try this,” and it was probably the best choice I’ve made.

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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 do! In all my recent pictures you’ll see a fish with a crown and in the fish it says “Fishermen” and underneath “Prince” in cursive. Made after a character I designed and fell in love with.

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What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

If you’re friends we’re like mine, in which there was another artist in the group, or even another artist in general that is “better” than you, do not, under any circumstances allow yourself to be below them. Keep doing what you’re doing because you aren’t doing it for them. You wanted to do this, and one day your stardom will come. No matter how much better they seem, I promise you one day you’ll get there. I promise you you’ll regret giving up and giving into them. I almost did and I could’ve lost it all. You keep working on yourself and if anyone shadows over you, know you will progress and get better. I know it’s hard to not compare yourself to other artists, but believe me, it’s so much easier that way. Just because they’re progressing further doesn’t me they’re better. It just means they progressed further. I’m sure your art is rocking and you’re doing your best. And that’s all you could ever ask.

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

Oh boy I’m here. I am somewhere between flat out asexual and Demi, I guess. I feel like if I forged a strong enough bond with a romantic partner I could feel sexual attraction, but I know I don’t feel sexual attraction like everyone else does, if that makes any sense. I guess I’m “asexual until proven otherwise”? (I don’t mean any offense I’m just trying to make light of my situation ;))

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

I can’t say because so far I’ve never run into it.

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

Ugh this where I wish I was more active in the Ace community because I can’t answer this either. I guess it’s that they cannot have sex, but like I myself, when I’m older, I’d be willing to do it if my partner wanted it. That’s about all I know, I’m sorry.

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

Goodness child, if you’re asexual, that’s a-okay! I didn’t even know being asexual was a thing until maybe two years ago. I’m glad I know now, because it’s cleared up quite a few things. Such as when everyone fans over someone for being “hot” or “sexy” and I didn’t feel any emotions towards who they were talking about, just that they were somewhat good looking but I didn’t see all the fuss. This also doesn’t mean if your ace you can’t find people hot or sexy. Just if you don’t, that’s okay. If you don’t feel sexual attraction, it’s awesome, it’s all good. You’re okay. Besides if you identify as ace and figure out you’re not, that’s also fine! You don’t have to stay Ace for your entire life.

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

Haha my Tumblr under (at nest-friends-are-best-friends) #my art or my Instagram at fishermenprince.

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