BY Celine May

From watercolour to digital art, graphite portraiture and poetry, we introduce 4 local creatives you should know about and definitely get behind – Selin, Tash, Aliesha and Ambriehl. Each with widely different backgrounds, we talked art forms, the impact of social media, art becoming business, advice for fellow creatives and more.

Check out Part Two of this series here.

Selin - @selin.design

I create artworks from a range of mediums that includes watercolour, pencil, charcoal and digital. My subject matter is predominately people, but I also love going out of my comfort zone and forcing myself to draw things I usually don’t. 

What or who are you inspired by?

Movies!! I love pop culture films, comics and shows. I love recreating fan art all the time but adding my own element to it. I follow comic artists and artists who paint pop culture subject matters such as Olivia De Berardinis. I love comic artist, Stanley ArtGerm, who also taps into realism. My other ideas come from my love from witchcraft, dark art and astrology. I also add some grim darkness to my art but not too scary! There’s so much information in that area and grabbing that information and turning it into something visual can be so beautiful.

What’s it like being an artist in the digital age?

Social media and technology really helped but also challenged me mentally. So many people are on social media so it’s great for exposure, but you can also drown amongst other people’s posts. You have to do what you gotta do and sacrifice a few years working on it. I got reposted by Lily Collins which really helped me get exposure. 

I am currently doing Inktober where you draw an artwork every day of October following a prompt (everyone does it differently) and that is helping me a heap! It’s challenged me though because I do compare myself to other artists who have been doing it for X amount of years where I have for a year. If I post something that might get 1k+ likes and the next post I post is 200 likes, I beat myself up, but I am surrounded by friends and family who bring me back to Earth. I am my own worst critic!! 

Art as business 

I found Halloween is incredibly popular which got my business up and running a bit on my Etsy which is great!! I couldn’t publicise myself much for my Supanova stall online because I didn’t have many followers, but I networked quite a bit which helped my online business!

I recently learnt that the difference between an artist and an illustrator is an artist creates whatever they want but an illustrator creates for other people but is more financially stable. This is where I am starting to explore to expand my business so I am applying for illustration agencies so I could create a career out of it as well. 

Advice for fellow creatives?

Keep making art. When you have doubts, think to yourself “Who are you creating for?” Me. That has really helped. Network, connect with other artists online or art galleries. Buy artist books and learn from them. Support other artists and small businesses. Keep posting online so people can see you.

Enter competitions - Beautiful Bizarre and Talenthouse have great competitions.

Never compare yourself to other artists because my favourite artist has been doing her job for 40 years! When you are ready to give up, talk to someone or a potential mentor.

Also apply for creative jobs - internships, illustration agencies, graphic design studios. Email greeting card companies who illustrate, find companies who have in-house illustrators or designers!

I have a few favourite artists - the list would go on forever, but I adore @oliviapinupart, @isabelle_staub, @lyfeillustration, @artgerm, @enysguerrero, @0073.uv and @babsdraws.

Check out Selin’s art here:

Insta: @selin.design

Website: http://selinala.com

Tash - @happygalaxies

Hi I'm Tash! I love creating cute art. With the use of happy colours and bold lines I enjoy creating little cute characters, mainly planets because I really love space so I try to combine these two to make my own unique art works!  Over the years I loved to doodle on paper, which then evolved into digital art.

Why the switch? 

I was inspired by all the digital artwork I saw so I wanted to try it out. I feel that digital art is getting better day by day and I love the freedom I can have with it, without the fear of making mistakes. It’s also awesome for my galaxy-inspired art because I’m able to use a lot brighter colours to emit positive, joyous energy.

Which programs do you use?

I use ProCreate on the iPad Pro. I’ve learnt so much with it and its helped me grow as an artist. I’m self-taught so I experiment and practice a lot.

Somewhere in between doodling on paper and digital galaxies, you dabbled in making merch?

A few years back, I was inspired by a lot of band merch. Through a lot of trial and error, I created an online store where I taught myself how to screen print my own t-shirts. It was very rewarding because I was creating for certain topics, but now I’ve moved on and realised I'd love to make a brand out of myself. I decided on this because I wanted to sell art from what I make and not from another subject. 

Pictured: Tash won a T-shirt design comp for the band Hellions, with her design sold nationally.

What’s your purpose when making art? 

I think at the end of the day; I make art to make myself happy with intentions to make others around me happy. I create as much as I can so I can always share with the world what I love doing, and so I can get my own name recognised more. I also believe that my hobby can be created into something more, where I'd love to create as a small business as a side hustle, or even full time where I can be my own boss!

Check out Tash's art over on her Instagram, @happygalaxies.

Looking for more artists? Check out Part Two of this series here!

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