1. What’s your story? Where are you from?
I come from a small town near Sarasota, Florida. I basically lived there my entire, from the age of five onward. It was definitely a big change for me when I left to attend college in a big northeastern city like Philadelphia. I was no longer surrounded by retired people enjoying their free time at the beach.
2. Tell us about your aesthetic.
My aesthetic…hmmm, if I could only pick one! I have a lot of different influences—I’m a huge fan of artists from the early twentieth century, like Alphonse Mucha and Gustav Klimt. Intricate linework is what I generally vibe with, but lately, I’ve been experimenting with looser, shaped-based work, especially when I draw figures and patterns.
3. What is your favourite medium and why?
I mainly work digital, but with a traditional mindset. I still can’t compose a piece of art completely on the computer—I need to draw it out first. My go-to when I work traditional is gouache and oil pastels because they are so easy to layer.
4. What is your artistic process like?
I’m a list girl—I need to take a lot of time to think about what my art is trying to say before I can sketch it out. Once I have an initial sketch I tend to mess around with it in Photoshop, cropping it a few different ways and whatnot. That’s when the hard part is done, and the rest is just intuition.
5. Who and/or what inspires your work?
I think a lot of what inspires me comes from my own life experiences—funny things that happen to me, things that people say that make an impact—those usually end up as sketches somewhere. But I’m always looking at other artists’ work on Instagram and in print media everywhere I can get ahold of it. Anything that has a lot of bright colors and patterns draws me in.
6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?
Art is my life. When I tell some people that they find it hard to believe, but it’s completely true. I can’t emphasize enough how much art has taught me to grow not just in technical skills but in relating to other people. I was very isolated as a teen, and I didn’t go out much. It wasn’t until I became a full-time art student that I began to understand the potential impact my art could make on people around me. The most valuable thing art has taught me is the power of empathy and staying true to your intuition.
7. Where did you study?
I am currently a junior Illustration student at the University of the Arts.
8. Where do you see yourself in five years?
I can’t answer that question because I really don’t know. I know for certain I will be living somewhere, making art, and for me, that’s all that really matters. Working in-house for a magazine or newspaper would be pretty sweet, but I would also be content illustrating and writing my own children’s books.
9. What about in ten?
I will have at least one new cat…or twenty. They will all live happily in my big fancy art studio.
10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?
I want my art to tell a story that makes people react. Every time I create art, I think, “What will this mean to the people that see it?” I never make art for it to just look pretty—I want emotions to be stirred and questions to be asked in response to it.
11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?
Curry, any day of the week. I’m a sucker for anything Indian and aromatic. I also love fruit smoothies and baking my own sweets.
12. Favourite book?
This is going to sound corny, but The Perks of Being A Wallflower. It just hits home with my own personal experiences growing up, and it reminds me that life is best lived in the moment.
13. Favourite genre of music?
I am all over the place with music. I mostly listen to Indie folk and ambient instrumentals, but I also listen to anything from R&B to electronica when I’m in the zone. It’s really dependent on my mood.
14. What are your hobbies?
I love to cook, watch travel shows, and read about other places. I want to travel a lot once I finish school, so I’m always curious about other cultures and religions. I also do yoga and journal to break up long periods of art-making.
15. If you weren’t an artist, what would you be?
Most likely a yoga instructor. Yoga is my way of destressing, and it would be really cool to help others use it similarly. But I can’t imagine living without making art! I will always be an artist at heart, in whatever I choose to do for a living.