Today we’re joined by Laura. Laura is a wonderful artist from France who does a lot of traditional drawing and also writing. She publishes both original work and fanfiction online, both in French and English. Laura recently started getting into drawing and her work shows an artist with an incredible eye. She’s obviously an incredibly passionate artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.
Please, tell us about your art.
I struggle with considering myself an artist, I think I just dabble, but I’ve been writing for… ten years now? Both Fanfictions and original works, short stories. And I draw, although I really started this year to get seriously into it (I did a “one drawing a day” challenge and held up to it pretty good). I draw traditional drawing, mostly black and white, but I’d like to get more into painting when I have the time.
What inspires you?
For fanfictions, my ships haha, and what I want to read in fanfic and can’t find. For short stories I mostly write for contest, so I follow the theme! I write fantastic and sci-fi and I’d like to write for a living some day. I think I put a lot of myself into it too.
For drawing, it can be anything, what happened during the day, an event, the places I visited or the people I met. I do fanart too, portraits, landscapes, typography… anything really. Life inspires me, music too, the world in general.
What got you interested in your field? Have you always wanted to be an artist?
When I was maybe ten I started writing the stories I imagined about my favourite characters and show, and when I discovered fandom later I fond out it was called fanfiction. I’ve wanted to be a writer for a very long time, even if I admit it only just now. Writing makes me happy.
I’ve been drawing for even longer I think, back when I was a little girl, but I gave up on it on the way. Then I went to architecture school and it made me want to go back to it. I never wanted to be an architect though, it kind of… happened. I didn’t plan on doing anything with my drawing either but now I don’t know, maybe?
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?
Hm, I don’t think so. But my pseudo have been Inrainbowz for almost as long as I’ve been on the internet and I’d like to keep that as a symbol, be it in a signature or a penname. I’m thinking about it!
What advice would you give young aspiring artists?
Not too look too much around, at least not for comparison. Of course it’s great to be inspired by others, but you’ll always find someone better than you. It doesn’t matter. It’s actually an advice I try to apply to myself, because I always look at those who do better than me, have more comments, more feedback… The internet can be tricky with this, can make you feel like you don’t get recognition because you’re not good enough, but the truth is it’s mostly luck. And if there is just one person who likes what you do, just one who felt something, who was moved by your art, for whom it changed something, then it’s worth it. It’s enough. Even if this person is you.
Where on the spectrum do you identify?
I’m asexual and I identify as panromantic, but I’m thinking more and more that I might be aromantic too, it’s a work in progress.
Have you encountered any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field? If so, how do you handle it?
Yeah, of course. I’ve had people, acquaintances and friends, thinking I (or ace people in general) just “hadn’t met the right person” and that “when you fall in love you’ll want sex then”. I don’t think I’m very good at handling it, usually I just shrug, because what do they know? Truth is I used to have those opinions too, so I know where they’re coming from and why they say that. I rarely feel like educating people and I don’t come out that often.
What’s the most common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?
That it will pass, it’s not real. And also that it dooms me to a life of celibacy. It’s actually a little sad how people think a relationship absolutely can’t work out if you don’t have sex regularly. Once again I used to think so when I was younger, but even out of the ace spectrum, relationships are way more complicated than that. And there are people understanding and cool about it still, they exist.
What advice would you give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their orientation?
Don’t deny yourself. I know it’s scary and you might think that it’s something bad, that you don’t want it, but you have to be at peace with yourself, and you can’t do that if you force yourself to do things you don’t want to do, and if you lie to yourself. It will only hurt you. And it’s a bit cliché, but you’re not alone. Find others like you. I can’t say how much Tumblr helped me on that matter, what a relief it was to find blogs and people who shared similar experiences. When you read enough you can finally be convinced that there’s nothing wrong with you, just like there’s nothing wrong with all those people you get to interact with. There’s more to life than sex and romance, there’s plenty left to discover and experience.
Finally, where can people find out more about your work?
I write fanfic in English on AO3: http://archiveofourown.org/users/Inrainbowz, and in French on fanfiction.net: https://www.fanfiction.net/~inrainbowz. Both my short stories (http://l-ecriture-des-choses.blogspot.fr/) and poems (http://l-ecriture-des-choses.tumblr.com/) are in French only. And my drawings are here: http://inraindrawz.tumblr.com.
Thank you, Laura, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.