Interview: Dawne

Today we’re joined by Dawne. Dawne is a phenomenal YouTuber who has a channel about traveling. She has recently started it and hopes to help out those interested in traveling. She has excellent advice about traveling on a budget. She’s an amazingly enthusiastic and dedicated artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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Please, tell us about your art.

My name is Dawne, pronouns she/her, and I am a YouTuber. I have a budget travel guide channel for the beginner and non-adventurous travelers. In my videos, I give realistic advice for those that cannot afford luxury vacations. I also try to help with travel anxiety, itinerary planning, and safety.

What inspires you?

I’ve always loved other cultures. I am in love with the world and with humans. To me, life isn’t something that you should punch in, work until you’re exhausted, then punch out. I love the look in people’s eyes when I talk about my trips. I love convincing them to jump off the deep end into an adventure they’d never considered trying before. People inspire me.

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

When I used to watch travel videos, it was always someone who either traveled for work, or had funds to buy expensive gear and vacations. Many also gave travel advice based on an active and adventurous lifestyle. Most of the people I know don’t have a lot to invest towards traveling, and it can be scary to take that first step. I wanted to encourage my friends to go see more of the world, and it sort of blossomed into a travel channel.

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?

Right now, I am still working on building my brand, so I don’t have much of a symbol right now. One feature, though, that I do include is that every tutorial “how-to” video of mine concludes with an optimistic pep talk. A sort of calming call to action – and that action is to get out and see the world.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Don’t worry about becoming famous. If fame is all you are concerned with, you risk losing yourself in the process. Don’t ever give up your originality and enjoyment of the project you are invested in for an audience.

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify as a Demiromantic Asexual.

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

When traveling as an LGBT single woman, I have to be careful where I travel to and where I advise others to go. There have been times when I am researching a location to visit, only to find that not being in a relationship, or not traveling with a man can be looked down upon. Even dangerous. I just try to educate myself as much as possible before telling my audience to visit a location that could harm them.

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

That it means I am antisocial, or just don’t want to be in a relationship. Since I am the only one of my friends and family that is not in a relationship, and I am the only one they know who is asexual, they often combine the two as one.

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

It’s okay not to be sure. There is no rule or requirement that you have to be a certain way or act a certain way to be asexual. You are literally the only one that matters when it comes to being comfortable with your orientation. Take the time you need or change your label every day – it doesn’t matter. You are you and that’s what is important.

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

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC6Ouh9NmQQzN-00-nl7Ljsw
Tumblr: at dawneofanewday
Twitter: https://twitter.com/dawneofanewday

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

Interview: NotAVampyre

Today we’re joined by NotAVampyre. NotAVampyre is a wonderful YouTuber who specializes in media analysis. She makes videos analyzing TV shows, films, and even musicals. Her videos vary in length and subject matter, but all are incredibly interesting. It’s clear she loves what she does. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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Please, tell us about your art.

I’m a video maker on YouTube where I create analysis content about movies, musicals, and television shows like Degrassi, Steven Universe, and Peter Pan. The type of video ranges from review to talking at length about one aspect that I found notable in a work.

What inspires you?

The things other artists create. They are the catalyst for what ends up in my videos, whether it be positive or negative. I’m also inspired by other video creators who paved the way for me to see YouTube as a viable place to start making art, and who helped me consider ways that I could further the genre of videos I make. I haven’t fully implemented the fruits of this consideration yet, but I hope they see daylight in the near future!

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

I’ve always wanted to create art, but I never found a medium that fit. Drawing was fun but I never wanted to practice, and poetry was a great outlet but relied too much on inspiration. But something clicked with YouTube analysis. I’ve always had deep thoughts about my favourite fiction stories, but as a shy introvert, I had nowhere to voice them. I also had no idea that other could be interested in these type of opinions until my friend showed me other people doing what I was already doing in my head. Talking at length about art and why I feel the way I do about it.

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 still finding my style, so at the moment I do not, though it would be fun to have!

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Keep looking for your style. If something doesn’t fit, don’t give up on your creativity. You will find a place tailor made to you skills and that need your personal touch that only you can give. Just don’t use it as an excuse to not practice though!

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m biromantic asexual. That’s actually really nice to say having gone 23 years of not knowing there was a name for how I felt. While not entirely sex repulsed, I don’t care much for it and truly could live without it.

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

Luckily, I haven’t encountered it in the comment section of my asexual related videos. I’m certain though that it exists on YouTube, but just not in the channels I subscribe to. If and when it does come up, I’d try to clear up misconceptions if the person is just honestly misinformed. Information and representation is key to ending ace prejudice.

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

That all asexuals don’t want sex, and therefore asexuality is not a sexual orientation. I can’t imagine how frustrating it must be fore aces who love sex but are constantly told that it makes them not ace.

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

You’re not broken. It’s okay if you don’t fit in a clearly outlined box. People are often more complicated than that, and even those who seem secure in their labels are questioning. Explore yourself, and if a better descriptor comes along, welcome it. You weren’t lying. You were figuring yourself out.

I went 23 years thinking I was just a super mature probably straight girl, and discovering that I am asexual only re-contextualizes my past. Not invalidates it.

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

Most of my work can be found at youtube.com/notavampyre, but I’m hoping to start uploading videos to Tumblr as well.

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

Interview: Morwenna Greenleaf

Today we’re joined by Morwenna Greenleaf. Morwenna is a wonderful writer who specializes in poetry and fanfiction. She also dabbles in music, mostly song covers, and visual art. Morwenna takes inspiration from subjects that aren’t often talked about. It’s clear she’s a passionate and dedicated artist, 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.

My art is mostly written word, though I occasionally draw, and sometimes post covers of songs on my YouTube channel, and I have had dance lessons, though I don’t really showcase dancing and don’t really do much anymore. I occasionally write poetry, but the majority is fanfiction written in prose, usually with a theme of fantasy and they can cover really heavy, or not commonly talked about, subjects.

What inspires you?

Well, I guess that events in my life have inspired my stories, but also the stories of others. For example, I’ve always loved watching crime shows with one of my personal favourites being Law and Order S.V.U. and I think that inspires me, because they go into subjects such as rape, kidnapping, and human trafficking. These subjects intrigue me, so I find myself researching them to add into existing stories, or I piece together new stories featuring things like them, which results in a lot of half-finished stories, some of which aren’t yet published so the public can’t read them.

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

What got me interested? Well, I’m not sure. When I was younger, I would always make up stories, whether they be epic sea battles with phoenixes, all from a cluster of clouds, or fanfiction, before I realised it was a thing. I always used to just insert myself into the shows/movies/books and tweak the storyline slightly to involve myself. Drawing? I kind of just slipped into it, like with the writing. I was always drawing over my books and scraps of paper, pretty much anything I could find. Dancing, I think one day when I was about three or four, I saw a ballet on TV, probably Swan Lake, and fell in love. After about four years or so of pestering my mum, I ended up doing four years of classical ballet classes, including character, and two years of jazz classes. Singing has been a part of my life as long as I can remember. I’d sing around the house as a child, and my dad started taking me to karaoke at bars in town when I was about seven or eight, I think, and I’ve recently turned eighteen, so that’s about ten years of karaoke.

Have I always wanted to be an artist? I think I have, somewhere deep down. I love writing stories and singing, and have always, in the back of my mind, wanted to do something artistic. True, it was always performing, like singing/dancing/acting, but it’s all artistry anyway. I even have the small amount of acting experience that comes from primary school plays, hehehe. I love what I do, but I also have no clue exactly what I’m going to do once I leave high school, because I also love things like science (chemistry and physics), ancient history, and learning languages (I’m currently monolingual, but who cares?).

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?

In most of my stories where I use an OC, her name is generally Jessica McCarten, which is my real name outside of the internet. She’s basically me, but with different hair and sometimes different backstories depending on age, situation, and things like that, which are usually dependent on the story. If she isn’t the protagonist, then she’ll usually appear as a secondary character, but pretty close to the protagonist. Also, my profile pic tends to be the same on all platforms except for Tumblr, and if there’s a running obsession for another fandom or a certain type of music, it’s because that’s most/all of what I’m listening to at that time, or obsessing over when writing the parts of those stories.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Advice to young aspiring artists? Technically you could say I’m one of them, *insert awkward/exhausted laughter here*. I would say to keep doing whatever you’re doing and always, ALWAYS, look back over your old work to see how you’ve changed, grown, and evolved. I personally hate doing this, because my voice recorded, to me anyway, sounds terrible, and I cringe as I read over things like my first story on Wattpad. However terrible you think you were, always go back over your work, and you might find something better. Hell, I’m still looking for a story I started in year 4 or 5 because I want to read over it and build on it! The thing is, it doesn’t really matter. Just keep practising and looking over your old work. Maybe if you’ve finished a story, wait at least a year or so then, keeping the original, rewrite it, edit it, do what you need to to make it fit your current style, or to correct grammar and punctuation errors, because I can almost guarantee that you will have them, no matter how much you think you don’t.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

At the moment, as it could change when I’m older and such, I identify as asexual, but I am not aromantic. I still haven’t figured out my romantic orientation, properly, but that doesn’t really matter.

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

No, I haven’t. However, this could be due to the fact that aside from Tumblr and Quotev (my original platform) and about four people IRL, I haven’t really come out, as I’ve been hesitant about it, and I’m not really sure how people will react. The few people that I’ve come out to IRL have been really nice about it, and not made a big deal. I have to admit though, that I have a plan on coming out to my entire high school if a certain event I wish to partake in (public speaking) occurs before I leave, a term afore the other years. *Spoiler* If I do manage to, I’m doing a speech about asexuality, and will hopefully have a homemade flag to show people before I wrap it around my shoulders. As far as everyone that I haven’t come out to knows, I’m just a straight white girl.

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

Well, probably that asexual people don’t like sex, or don’t have sex. I know that this is true for possibly the majority of aces, but it’s also false for a certain percentage of aces. This has come from people that identify as bi/pan and do a subject that requires presentations on the LGBT+ community, though I’m not sure if any have included aces. As an eighteen year old female ace, I have never understood how sexual attraction works, or had a partner, romantic or otherwise aside from an occasional partner in science/chemistry. However, I have always been intrigued and curious about what the act of sex feels like, just never felt the attraction to anyone pertaining to it. Whenever I’ve heard this one, I stay quiet and just get silently annoyed/irritated/mildly mad, because I’ve learnt if I speak up about things that I’m interested in/passionate for, I tend to receive a lot of shit from people, and this is mostly to people I’ve known since year seven but haven’t come out to as I don’t really consider them friends.

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

Do your research, read the stories of other aces, watch videos on YouTube, whatever you need. I actually procrastinated for at least a year before I decided Yes, okay, I think I’ll identify as asexual now. It doesn’t matter how long you take to figure it out. Take your time, and remember that no-one other than you can tell you who you are or what your sexual orientation is, and don’t feel bad if it changes because sexuality is fluid. For example, here I am identifying as asexual, when for all I know, I could be demi-sexual or grey-asexual, but I haven’t explored anything that would let me know, so until anything changes, if it does, I identify as asexual.

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

People can find out more about my work by looking me up on different platforms. My *main* email is crush.girl.101.at.high.school@gmail.com because I made it in year nine when I was seriously crushing on a guy. My Quotev, Wattpad, Deviantart, and YouTube are all under the name Morwenna Greenleaf, and I have a Facebook page by the name Morwenna Greenleaf, managed by my actual account, and you can message me through the page. I also, obviously, have Tumblr that people can feel free to message me on, and I have Instagram under my actual name, though, like YouTube, I don’t really post often (at jess_mccarten). In fact, you can message me on any of the sites, though there is a high chance that the majority of videos on my YouTube may have their comments turned off, due to fuckheads being, well, fuckheads. When it comes to any of them, I do requests for things, songs, stories, whatever. Feel free to request some things, because, while I procrastinate pretty much everything *Hello! Procrastinated my sexuality!*, if I enjoy the request, I will, eventually, get around to fulfilling the request, and, just feel free to talk to me. I can be really awkward, and drop a lot of terrible, terrible, puns, jokes, whatever the fuck I’m in the mood for, on you, and just be extremely weird in general. Live long and prosper, aces, and remember, Barty Crouch Jr stopped drinking because it was making him Moody! 😉

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

Interview: Audrey

Today we’re joined by Audrey. Audrey is a wonderful young filmmaker who is just starting out. She has just started posting her films on social media, including on YouTube. Audrey mostly makes films that fall into the comedy genre. It’s clear she’s a passionate artist with an incredibly bright future ahead of her, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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Please, tell us about your art.

I’m an aspiring film maker I guess you could say. I’ve been making short films for a while, but I just started posting some on YouTube and social media. I like making comedy short films the most because they get a message across in an enjoyable way. I’m hoping to learn more about professional film in college next year where I’m majoring in Film Studies!

What inspires you?

Life itself really inspires me. It sounds weird but many of my film ideas come from my experiences in life. I like to put a funny spin on things because if you can’t laugh at life what’s the point! Pinterest also inspires me. I love that app.

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

I actually started high school thinking I was going to be either an Engineer or a Teacher! Needless to say, that changed. I didn’t really realize that I wanted to become serious about Film until last year. I had grown up around it, my dad taught a high school Film class, but I never seriously thought of it for me. It’s when I started making short films that I realized how much I loved it and would actually like to take it to the next level.

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 currently, but if I start to make my YouTube channel more official, which I’d like to, then I’ll probably start to develop an intro/outro that puts my name on my work.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Art doesn’t have to just be a hobby. If you take what you do seriously, then you should focus on it. The world needs more art and what you do is important. If you’re nervous about your friends and family seeing your work, don’t be. They are almost always going to be the most supportive people in your life. Also, social media is an amazing platform for art. Use it to get your work out there. Even if you don’t think it’s good, someone else will. And who knows, maybe you’ll inspire an upcoming artist to focus on their own art!

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I currently identify as heteroromantic asexual. I say currently, because I’ve never felt a strong connection for a boyfriend so I haven’t ruled out Demisexual in my future. But for now, asexuality is the sexuality that I feel fits me.

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

Not really because I embrace my sexuality so much. In fact, I’m even looking to do some skits about asexuality because it’s so underrepresented in our media today.

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

That it’s just a phase. I’ve been fortunate enough that no one has said it to my face, but it’s definitely been implied when I tell people. When I told my mom she was very supportive. She loves learning about sexuality and gender identity but I know she doesn’t fully understand it so I don’t blame her. Even she implied that my sexuality might change as I get older. Which could be true, but for the moment identifying as asexual has made me understand more about myself and has given me an identity and a group of people who I can relate to.

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

If you think you might be asexual or somewhere on the ace scale, go with it. If you feel differently in the future there’s no problem with that. But for me, finding an identity has made me much happier and I feel like I belong. Many people don’t know what asexuality is and because of that, student can feel out of place and like there’s something wrong with them because they don’t feel sexual attraction. That’s why I really feel we need more representation in the media. The way I figured out I might be asexual was through a Cosmopolitan article interviewing a couple asexual women. Little things like that can do wonders for confused individuals like me who had never heard of asexuality. But if the media won’t represent us then it’s our job to spread the word.

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

You can check out my YouTube channel here!

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCzHaJ97rA4U_tlVnXIEiC4A

(The channel name is audreylee but there are several people by that name on YouTube)

Also check out my Tumblr: audgelee. I’ll be posting a bunch of ace jokes and anecdotes that hopefully some of you guys can relate to!

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

Interview: PJ

Today we’re joined by PJ. PJ is a phenomenal actress and a singer/songwriter. She’s also a YouTuber and a former state title-holder for talent. PJ has recently finished filming her first film role, which is super exciting. When she’s not working on her art, PJ is also an asexual and autism self-advocate. She’s clearly a passionate and talented artist, 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 do a variety of things. My strength is definitely music (singing and songwriting), but I also have a passion for acting, YouTube, and modeling. I just recently finished filming my first movie (sorry, no details can be shared yet)!

In music, my strength is opera (even though ironically, I don’t like singing it that often). I’ve also written a song about asexuality/aromanticism, but since I’m not with a record label yet, I can’t really share my music with the world. I have this huge vision that can’t be done without a little help. I hope to be signed one day!

What inspires you?

Coldplay. As an autistic person, they’re my obsessive interest. If it weren’t for me being exposed to Coldplay at such a young age, I wouldn’t be involved in music at all. At 5 years old, I was already mimicking Chris Martin’s recognizable vocals. It’s honestly how I learned to sing. Coldplay inspires me on a daily basis. They’re all I really listen to. Then again, I also really love Owl City. My music is kind of like a mix between the two.

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

I’ve wanted to be a singer-songwriter and actress for as long as I can remember. My interest in YouTube started a couple years after YouTube launched. My dad was also a professional drummer, so I suppose I got some of my musicality from him. I just always knew in my heart that I was meant to enter the entertainment field; even though it’s still a bit of a struggle for me.

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 wish I did!

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Here are my 10 rules for success:

1. Go for it and don’t hold anything back. Give it your all. Be confident in your work.
2. Listen to your heart/audience. I’m only here in this position because people kept telling me, “Hey, you’re really good. Have you ever thought about putting yourself out there?” If people believe in me, I’m not going to let them down. It was people encouraging me to be my best that got me this far.
3. As for the haters, just ignore them (which I know, can be difficult). Haters come and go. Followers stick around as long as you do.
4. Be your awesome self! If people don’t like that, too bad. They’re probably missing out on how wonderful you really are.
5. Reach out. Some connections are pretty important.
6. Keep perfecting your craft. Your work can ALWAYS use improvement; even if you think it doesn’t. I’ve surprised myself a lot. I always thought I was done, but then switched a few things up and-BAM! It was even better than before!
7. Keep persisting and working. If you’re having a writer’s/roadblock, don’t let that stop you from working on something else… and then coming back to that block when you’re ready!
8. Stay positive. I know this part is difficult as well, but trust me. It’s important.
9. Learn from your mistakes. Let’s be honest, you’re going to screw up at one point or another. The good news, however, is that the next time you come back, you’re going to be even stronger than you were before.
10. Strive to be YOUR best. I don’t aim for the #1 spot; I aim for the best I know I can be. The only thing I’m good at is being me. Don’t pay attention to what someone else is doing.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I am heteroromantic asexual, and extremely sex-repulsed (apothisexual, if you want to get technical). Yet, I LOVE kissing, cuddling, etc. Just everything except sex (which makes me physically sick for some reason).

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

Luckily, no. In fact, it’s just the opposite. Some people praise me for figuring myself out at such a young age. I actually receive more prejudice and ignorance for my autism than my sexuality (and I’ve been openly asexual for years). I’ve been dealing with the autism stigma and stereotypes my whole life, so at this point, I’m pretty much immune to any hate. It doesn’t bother me at all. I actually think it’s quite hilarious.

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

“It’s just a phase.”

I first suspected I was asexual when I was 14, found the term at 17, and still identify this way at almost 21 years old. I don’t think it’s a phase if it lasts for several years.

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

Ask yourself, “Has this always been me?” I’ve had many things happen to me that further confirm that I’m asexual. Most of the time, I’ve just felt out of place. What was this “sexual attraction” that people kept talking about? Why do I only feel the need to hug, kiss, and cuddle someone? Instead of being “turned on”, why do I experience nausea? There were just too many things that lead to me finding asexuality.

If you’re struggling about coming out, I feel you. I was once there. If someone doesn’t like you because of your orientation, again, that’s too bad. Your orientation does not define you; you define it.

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

I highly encourage anyone who may have questions about asexuality to message me on my ace blog: at theapothisexualace. Other than that, my Instagram is at peytonjustine, my personal Tumblr is at peyton-justine, my YouTube channel is Clodplaye; named after my original Coldplay-themed Tumblr: at clodplaye and my Coldplay-themed Instagram: at clodplaye. Lastly, my Twitter is at Clodplaye as well. I have other social media accounts, but I don’t really post to them that often.

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

Interview: M. Rubio

Today we’re joined by M. Rubio. M. is a wonderful student filmmaker who specializes in short films. His films fall into a variety of genres: comedy, horror, drama, and even surrealism. When he’s not working on films, M. is writing, mostly nonfiction essays. It’s clear he’s a passionate artist with an incredibly bright future ahead of him. My thanks him for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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Please, tell us about your art.

Well, I make short films and I write a lot. I guess category wise, I would be considered a student filmmaker. The stuff I publish are usually nonfiction essays about my life or thoughts. In terms of short films, I post occasionally, sometime random stuff, on my YouTube Channel. I intend to release a four-episode miniseries sometimes this summer though.

In terms of the art itself, the stuff leans towards awkward, dry, and self-aware comedy. Occasionally I lean to some drama or just pure surrealist comedy, it mostly depends on my mood or if I am assigned to make something that requires that tone.

My personal favorite work so far is this short where I put a voice over to a college horror film. This film is pretty much my style in a nutshell: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3ioj8HpSc6k&ab_channel=CannonBlasterakaM.Rubio

What inspires you?

Depends on what you mean specifically. In terms of the stuff I make, I am inspired by the things around me. I have a very Seinfeld mindset in that I write and film what I know.

In terms of inspiration in general. I admire people that have a strong moral ground or are amazingly creative. Bonus points if you are both. Examples include Jim Henson, Fred Rogers, Hayao Miyazaki, Fumito Ueda, and Lemony Snicket.

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

The turning point was watching Roger Ebert’s commentary on Citizen Kane. Citizen Kane is great, but the commentary adds a whole new layer for me. It opened my eyes to a whole new world of storytelling. I watched it when I was a junior in high school, and I thought film was simply pointing a camera at something. The Roger Ebert commentary completely changed that.

I always wanted to be a story teller of some kind (I always had an active imagination), and that commentary convinced me that the film medium is the one I should pursue is film.

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 really. I guess there was always a layer of self-awareness, awkwardness, or dryness to my work, but there was never a unique signature of some kind.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

It is okay if you don’t know everything or aren’t good at everything. No artist is an expert on their craft. You don’t have to be perfect, you just have to be good and strive to be better. That was a hurdle that I wished I learned early in my life. Art can be an intimidating field to get into.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify as hetero demisexual.

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

No prejudice, but tons of ignorance. Thankfully, it wasn’t the toxic ignorance. But almost everyone I talked to about my sexuality, I had to explain to them what asexuality/demisexuality was. This is not a problem for me, since I love explaining my asexuality. It never gets tedious. Mainly because, I love seeing the light bulbs light up when I do explain it.

That said, I am particular with who I come out to out of fear of prejudice. I live in the South, so certain people have a more hostile ignorance. You can usually tell which ones are which just by having a five minute conversation with them.

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

That asexuals are all frigid. One of common things I have to clear up are the fact that asexuals can be sex positive. I have to explain that there are a variety of spectrums with asexuality, and with sexuality in general. Not only is allosexual/asexual a spectrum, but how we view sex is also a spectrum.

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

Sexuality is an identity and identity is very fluid. That said, there are a lot of people, some of those people aggressive and toxic, that don’t know it or don’t believe it. There will be times where YOU have to clear up misconceptions. With that, you have to be an expert on sexuality.

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

There is my YouTube channel, which I put all of my stuff on. Give it a look: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCha-tfYIjwdzylWfcz1BDGw?&ab_channel=CannonBlasterakaM.Rubio

I also blog on occasion. I usually put it on this site: https://themrubio.blogspot.com/

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

Interview: Amanda Akins

Today we’re joined by Amanda Akins. Amanda is a phenomenal and versatile artist who does a bit of everything. She does quite a bit of visual art and crafts, including drawing and scrapbooking. She’s also in a band with her sister called Phine Wine (you can buy their EP on Amazon and iTunes). It’s very apparent that art and creativity are a huge part of Amanda’s life, as you’ll soon see. 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 do a lot of different types of art and creative things. I have for as long as I can remember. I paint, draw, scrapbook, other crafts, sing, write, edit graphics and make YouTube videos

What inspires you?

Music is probably the biggest thing that inspires me. It puts me in a certain mood where I just get motivated. Also past experiences and other people’s experiences, especially when it comes to writing. I get a lot of inspiration from movies and other people’s art as well. I love seeing other artists thrive. I’m one of those people that will see an amazing work of art and then want to go out and do the same thing.

amywinehouse canvas painting
Amy Winehouse Canvas Painting

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

It’s always just been a part of who I am, I think. I’m still figuring out what I want to do with my life but being creative and creating something for others to see and appreciate is definitely up there.

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 but I think it’s a really cool concept to have that. Especially if people recognize it throughout your work.

bow
Bow

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Don’t stop. Never give up. It sounds really cheesy but it’s incredibly true. I had an art teacher in high school that told me to sketch every day and you will get better and I wish I took that advice. Your motivation needs to be pure. If you’re just looking to make art to get recognized then it’s not genuine. I think you really have to love it because it’s obvious when you don’t.

walking dead painting
Walking Dead painting

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I still am figuring it out but right now I identify as grey ace specifically. But I usually just tell people I’m asexual as a general term.

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

I haven’t thankfully. I don’t usually tell people that I’m ace unless it comes up because it just doesn’t seem important for people to know.

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

That we are all the same and we’re not. Asexuality and sexuality in general is a huge spectrum and trying to fit people in boxes is counterproductive. I also think when talking to people about asexuality you really have to explain and make sure that your perspectives aren’t the rule. That not everyone that identifies as asexual has the same experiences or beliefs I guess you could say. I would say a lot of people don’t actually understand the general definition of asexuality and that’s what I find myself explaining most of the time.

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Paradise Pier

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

That it’s okay not to know right now. That it’s okay to identify one way and then change that. We all change and we all grow so why wouldn’t our sexual orientations grow with us. You are valid and your feelings are valid and you matter. Do research and do what is comfortable for you. For me it was figuring out a word for exactly how I was feeling and even know I still am figuring that out with my sexual and romantic orientation and that’s okay. Maybe you don’t want to identify at all but it doesn’t make you less of a human being. Keep doing you and doing what you love.

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

I have a website where I sell a lot of my arts and crafts at: https://www.mandasscrapcrafts.com/

I also make music with my sister in a band called Phine Wine. We have Instagram, Twitter (linked below), Facebook, and YouTube. And you can buy our EP on iTunes and Amazon mp3.

Twitter: at phinewineband & at mandamargaret7

Instagram: at phinewineband & at mandasscrapcrafts.

lily ipad drawing
Lily iPad Drawing

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

Interview: Emmy

Today we’re joined by Emmy. Emmy is a wonderful young YouTuber who enjoys making skits and vlogs. She’s very passionate about what she does, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I’m a young YouTuber, who makes videos weekly. They are normally either skits or just me talking to the camera.

What inspires you?

The thought that one day I can make someone smile because of my videos

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

I have always wanted to be an artist and a friend of mine recommended that I try YouTube.

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?

At the end of my videos I always remind my viewers the keep smiling.

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Keep trying even if no one believes and you, and always- always smile.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m biromantic and asexual.

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

No

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

People seem to think that it’s not a real identity,or that I’m doing it for attention. Asexuality is real.

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

You are valid, and you don’t need to label yourself right away. It’s perfectly okay to be questioning your identity for months and even years. Don’t let it stress you out. And there are many people in this world who are just like you.

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

My YouTube channel.

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

Interview: Red

Today we’re joined by Red. Red is a fantastic YouTuber and a digital illustrator. Her YouTube channel is called “Overly Sarcastic Productions” and according to the channel, is dedicated to “sarcastic, yet informative, summaries of classic and not-so-classic literature and mythology, as well as major historical events!” Who isn’t interested in that? Aside from the YouTube channel, Red is also a dedicated visual artist who draws some truly adorable characters, as you’ll soon see. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

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A Very Asgardian Christmas

WORK

Please, tell us about your art.

I’m a YouTuber with plans! My art is mostly digital illustration and comics, but I also write, sing, and am trying to get into voice acting. My channel is separate from most of the other visual art I do, which is mostly sketchwork, comics and illustrations for the worlds I’m writing in at the moment – currently my focus in that dimension is fantasy, but I’m planning on branching out. My YouTube channel is devoted to education, and is an attempt on my part to make stories and texts typically considered “boring” interesting for an audience with my attention span – that is to say, short. It’s also great practice for voice acting, sound design and music, and the number of frames I have to draw for a single video also means I get in a ton of linework and painting practice. I’m currently focusing on improving my digital painting and my voicework, and am planning on starting a webcomic if I ever find the time.

What inspires you?

Mostly other people’s art, heh. It drives me to improve my own work and experiment in new directions. Also cartoons! It’s a great way to learn and absorb a lot of voice-acting.

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Jttw

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

Both my parents are artists – my dad is a writer, and my mom is a painter – so yeah, I’ve pretty much always wanted to do art in general. The voice acting specifically, though – I can’t remember what specifically got me interested in it, but it’s definitely a more recent development.

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?

Nope

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Mermaid

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

Practice, practice, practice. It’s the only way to improve. Look at other people’s art in terms of what it can teach you, not how much better or worse it is than your own. Don’t be afraid to try new things, and REALLY don’t be afraid to mess up.

And remember – perfection doesn’t exist. Your work will never be perfect, and that’s okay! Just strive to improve, and realize that improving doesn’t mean you were bad before you got better!

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Powerhouse

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I’m asexual, but pretty solidly romantic. Recently I’ve started questioning exactly what my romantic orientation is; currently I’m sticking with “panromantic” as it seems closest.

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

Er, not really? The closest I’ve gotten is the occasional plant joke.

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Shard

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

That it means you don’t want a relationship. It’s a little rough being written off as a non-viable partner just because you’re neutral on the subject of sex. I’m not a robot, I just like cuddling!

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

Don’t be afraid to get it wrong. I went through a lot of labels before I clicked with “asexual” and am currently trying to settle on a romantic one – there’s nothing wrong with saying “I’m not sure yet!” or even “I’m picking a new one!”

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The Crew

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

My YouTube channel is my biggest endeavor right now, so by all means check it out! It’s called Overly Sarcastic Productions (https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCodbH5mUeF-m_BsNueRDjcw), and most of it is summaries/retellings of old books and myths.

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The Tempest

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

Interview: Claire Marie

Today we’re joined by Claire Marie. Claire is a marvelous singer who has her own YouTube channel. She mostly does song covers (which she uploads) but she also writes her own songs. Claire is very obviously enthusiastic about music, as you’ll see. 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 am a musician and actress. I upload covers on my YouTube channel, and I also write songs, although I only have two videos of those online at the moment. As for acting, I did theatre all four years of high school, and have attended multiple acting camps throughout those years as well. I actually attended a summer camp this year focused around Shakespeare and his works (which I basically fell in love with), and although I haven’t gotten the chance to do anymore acting since, I’m planning on adding Theatre as a minor next semester!

What inspires you?

I am a person with a lot of emotions, and that’s where all of my art comes from. But I am also inspired very much by other artists. I believe very strongly in the principle that if you want to become better at something, you should watch how the pros do it. When writing songs, I look up quite a bit to great lyricists such as Sia and Ed Sheeran. I love the way they describe the subjects of their songs, and how they express their emotions so beautifully and poetically. Acting-wise, I’m inspired a lot by David Tennant, who I first grew attached to in Doctor Who, before finding his other amazing work in movies, TV shows, and Shakespeare! Whenever I’m watching him, I always make sure to take lots of notes on his acting style.

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

I have always wanted to be a singer, ever since I was little, and my love for music has never wavered in the slightest. I never really thought about acting until I was older, in middle school, but once I got into that, I was just as passionate about theatre as I was about music. Back then, it was the stardom and spotlight that drew me in, but now, although those things are definitely perks, it’s more about doing something that I really love and know that I’m good at.

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 really – the thing that makes my work unique is just me! 🙂

What advice would you give young aspiring artists?

There are people out there who aren’t going to believe in you. Everyone thought my dream to be a singer was adorable until I hit about 6th grade, and then, all of a sudden, I was being told I needed to be a doctor or a lawyer, something that would actually make money (even now, my mom keeps telling me it’s not to late to start becoming a dental hygienist). This extremely sudden change really devastated me and was a huge blow to the relationship I had with my friends and family. My advice is that it’s going to hurt, but don’t let it stop you. Although it might be wise to pursue something more “practical” for financial reasons, make sure you are still doing something you are passionate about, and don’t drop your dream until you find another dream you like better. I ended up double-majoring in International Affairs and French, but that doesn’t mean I’m forgetting about my love for music and acting. It just means I . . . . found something I love just as much music and acting.

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ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum do you identify?

I identify as asexual and questioning-romantic, although I am leaning more towards pan-romantic.

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

All the theatre communities I’ve been a part of have always been super open and accepting ones, so I’ve never had any problems with ace prejudice there, and a couple of times, I’ve actually even been able to find other aces! However, music is a lot of times very sex-centric and much of it includes all kinds of sexual objectification, and that’s where I usually hear the line, “How can you not want sex?” or “How can you have a relationship (or find someone attractive) if you’re asexual?”

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

I think the most common misconception about asexuality I’ve encountered is that every asexual is exactly the same with respect to their comfort with sexual activity. While some asexuals love to hook up, others are completely averse to the idea, and I think that just confuses a lot of people.

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

If you’re looking for a romantic partner, make sure you find one who acknowledges your asexuality and won’t try to push you to do anything you aren’t comfortable with doing. Sexuality is confusing enough as it is without someone trying to convince you you’re something you know you’re not.

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

You can check out all my music on my YouTube channel, The Clurricane. I’ll hopefully be releasing an album and another music video (along with the usual covers) by the end of the year, so stay tuned and subscribe!

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