Artist Name: Sheya
Career: University student
School: Academy of Fine Arts, Tsinghua University
Major: Visual Communication
The date of this interview is December 10, 2021
This interview is a translation based on the original interview.
──First of all, please introduce yourself!
I am Sheya, an illustrator from China. I am currently a senior in university, studying Visual Communication at Tsinghua University's Academy of Fine Arts. As a freelance illustrator, I have worked with games, music and, film projects in China, Japan, and Canada.
──May I ask what kind of visual representations you like in your creation?
I like narrative screens, also fascinated by analyzing the lighting, shadow, and color of impressionist art, to present their characteristics and charms in the form of digital drawing is my current proposition. Of course, I will try more representations in the future to broaden my creative field.
──Tell us what is the opportunity that lets you become a creator!
Rather than becoming a creator, I think it was when I first encountered drawing as representation as a child that I decided drawing would be my lifelong hobby —— I could draw whatever I wanted with only a brush, and I could realize the world in my mind, no matter how incredible they are. I am amazed that such a great way of creating the world can be accomplished with the simplest mediums (the brush), and I am deeply immersed in and enjoy the process of creating each piece.
──What did you realize until you become a creator?
Creation has been with me through the miserable and confused student times, as soon as I started to create, I would ignore anything painful and completely immerse myself in the painting. I realized that illustration was an important vehicle for me to present my ideas and worldview and that it also gave me an endless edification of spirituality, allowing me to witness self-growth and change of mind.
The most experience I have perceived since becoming a creator is that continuous creativity is really quite hard work. This is an experience and feeling that most artists have, I guess. That's why I'm learning to balance input and output as much as possible so that I can be in a good creative state at all times.
──We can see you focuses a lot on light and shadows and portray characters' emotion in your work, why did you do that?
I like to observe the light and shadows in my life, also like to learn how to represent emotions in illustrations. Light, shadow, and narrative are important elements that inspire my desire to create, the process of portraying them is fascinating and makes me enjoy the creation, so I naturally put more effort into my work.
──What are some of your struggles as a creator or find hard about creating work?
I am currently in my senior year, and I am not a completely freelance creator, always been taking time out to create while finishing my studies. I was under more pressure than ever until graduated, which has often reduced my creative time to almost nothing. The hardest part during creating is when I am unable to continue drawing, the only thing I can do is repeatedly modify and fretted to search for any resource that can help me fix it. Anyway, It is difficulty and suffering that makes the creating process more interesting.
──How do you gather inspiration for your work?
I enjoy life and like to present life details through illustrations. Some of them come from the alleys I pass on way to school, or from a good trip. When I see some interesting streets or full-of-life scenes, usually I take photos to record them, reliving and integrating the elements with my illustrations in my spare time.
──Would you like to share your thoughts about your future work?
In my future works, I would like to expand the themes and composition forms as much as possible, so that I can present a richer variety of illustrations and expressions. The good news is that the graduation project I have chosen is also illustration and visual representations. It means I will announce a new illustrations series, please stay tuned!
──Please tell us what commercial works or projects have you worked on!
I have worked on commercial projects in China, Japan, and Canada. I have illustrated cards for NetEase’s mobile game 『Onmyoji: The Card Game』, also I have done promotional illustrations for the Canadian independent film 『KIN Fables』, and the Japanese mobile game 『COMbat Providence AnalysiS System』. I hope to share the rest of the projects which are kept strictly confidential at present.
『Onmyoji: The Card Game』Illustrations of kaguya&doumegi card
©NetEaseInc. All Rights Reserved
Canadian independent film 『KIN Fables』
『COMbat Providence AnalysiS System』©NHN PlayArt Corp. ©DWANGO Co., Ltd.
──What are your thoughts on commercializing your work afterward?
Currently, I am very interested in commercializing about convert my work into a 3d look. While static illustrations have charm, I am also fascinated by figures that can be viewed from multiple perspectives - it is exciting and fun to see illustrations be a 3d model. I'm also looking forward to working with manufacturers such as figure, mystery box, and BJD brands, so I'd appreciate your advice in this regard.
──Tell us about your favorite art expressions, artists, and artworks you admire!
My favorite genre is impressionism whose works are always hazy and ethereal, full of romantic colors and spontaneous brushstrokes of expression, just like our memories gradually become blurred in the passage of years, only leaving some vague impressions, but forever remaining in our hearts as a good impression. Monet is a typical impressionist painter, and also is one of my favorite painters. I have admired his authentic work in museums, now I still enjoy the sights of his works from time to time for inspiration.
──Could you tell us what you think about the combination of art and commerce and what kind of project you would like to try in the future?
Art and commerce seem to be in opposite directions. Art is sometimes considered a minority hobby, while business tends to be popular and mass-market. But in my opinion, beauty is interchangeable, beautiful things can be a bridge between art and the public. Therefore, I hope that in future commercial projects, I can retain the dynamic characteristics of my personal illustrations, on this basis combine the commercial works.
──Thank you for being interviewed, is there any words you like to say to your audience or other creators?
Here I would like to express my sincere gratitude to my friends who have always supported me. I will try my best to create better work in the future!
Sheya's first and personal art book ALKAID is available on BOOTH. If you are interested, check it out here!
Also, Sheya publishes PSD files of her works with her drawing process on Patreon every month. Support us, and you'll get the PSD data! If you are interested in Sheya's drawing process, please check here!
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