1. What’s your story? Where are you from?
I’m Teddy Kang, a freelance illustrator based in Toronto, Canada. Originally from China, I came to Canada for studying since high school, and graduated from a major of Media at York University. I started to drew when I was 6 year-old, but have stopped to draw during middle school due to academic pressure, but finally picked back drawing in high school because I realized that drawing is a thing that I always want to do, and images are the best way to tell the beautiful stories and to let people know what’s in my mind. I feel so happy and lucky that drawing eventually leads me to be a professional illustrator, and I love what I am doing.
2. Tell us about your aesthetic.
I always fall in love with colourful things; anything that contains and composes with colour attracts me a lot. That’s why I love using colours, and my works always have a lot colours. I think each colour has their emotion and personality, as same as each different person; so it always makes me curious and happy to see how different colour interacts and works with each other; some of them can be friends, some could be enemies, but that’s how beauty and charms are formed.
3. What is your favourite medium and why?
I always like to work with computer and graphic tablet to do my illustration, because I think, as we all live in a digital culture, digital medium does really make our life faster and does help us to achieve the best result, especially for artists; with my graphic tablet and laptop, I can draw more freely, and more efficiently; it also allows to experiment more styles and experiences of drawing, alone with my own style. But I do illustrate on the traditional medium such as paper, watercolour, and coloured pencil as well.
4. What is your artistic process like?
I basically start to make a rough sketch first, and make my illustration into different parts, such as sky, sea, tree, or clothing, shoes etc, and then go deeper into each part and portray the details step by step.
5. Who and/or what inspires your work?
I would like say thank goodness that there are so many great illustrators and artists around the world that keep inspiring me and people, and keep creating amazing works. I was inspired by a lot of great illustrators when I started to decide to be an illustrator, such as Mark Conlan, Tatsuro Kiuchi, Kikil Jung and Maite Franchi etc. Besides of those artists, I am always inspired by the moments of our every life, I always observe deeper through some moments and details that we always tend to ignore, for example, my way from home to supermarket, a piece of colourful cake, or someone’s short plump hands typing on the computer.
6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?
Art leads me to discover more charms and warmths in my life, it keeps me focusing on the beauty of the world so that I can include them into my artworks, and visually transmit those beautiful things to people around me and to people who also love art. Art makes me in a good mood everyday, because you have to be in a good mood in order to create great works as an artist.
7. Where did you study?
I studied at York University, Canada.
8. Where do you see yourself in five years? Working in an agency?
I love what I’m doing now, and I love to work with various clients from all over the world, but I am open to any opportunities and possibilities, and I always like to try some new things as long as it is related to creativity and images. So if it comes to a chance, I would like to work in an agency as one of an individual in their creative team to contribute my creativity and colourful world.
9. What about in ten?
It’s hard to tell now because ten years is still far from now. But one thing for sure is that art and creativity is always my future direction and my whole life career. So maybe I will be an art director, creative manager, or even a famous illustrator, who knows.
10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?
While I have achieved some of recognitions and prizes from renowned illustration competitions such as 3×3 illustration and The AOI, I still hope that I could get known for more people in the industry, and my works will be recognized by more professional group such BallpitMag or SOI etc. Because as an artist, while you produce more and more great works and get a living from what you do, you always want your works to be admitted by the professional people or organizations in the industry, just like actors get Oscar Prize writers get Nobel Prize in literature.
11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?
Haha, this is a good question! I am a complete and a super foodie; food is always accompanying with me and giving me energy while I’m drawing. I love to eat various food, such as Chinese food, noodle, dessert, Ice cream, but my favourite would be SEA FOOD!
12. Favourite book?
13. Favourite genre of music?
I love pop music, folk music and blues.
14. What are your hobbies?
Eating a lot, sleeping a lot, and film-watching a lot.
15. If you weren’t an artist, what would you be?
En…I would be a magazine editor or even an actor if I were not an artist.