To discover more about the living life behind the Art Wonderland I started interview series featuring artists all over the world. Today I’d like to introduce you to Candace McKay , a young talented pop surrealist.
Hello dear Candace, tell us a little about you and how did you find the artist inside you. How long have you been doing art?
I have always loved drawing as a kid. I use to draw a lot of animals and people when I was younger and makes stories about my characters. I believe when I was 16, I wanted to have my own "style", so I experimented a lot with mediums and discovered lots of inspiring pop surrealism artists I found online.
What was / is your major influences? Other artists, books, movies, music or any other media....What inspires you to create your artworks?
Seeing other art is always inspiring. Photographs of girls, nature, anime/manga..Anything really can be inspiring to create art.
How does "a normal day of artist" in your life look like?
Sometimes I'm working on a painting..If not that, I hangout with my family, boyfriend, and spend time with my pets.
What medium do you most often use and why?
I use prisma colored pencils mainly for my girls faces. I am so happy I discovered prisma colored pencils (premier). They are so smooth and can blend super well. It's really amazing what they really can do. A lot of people think I paint the face, but that is just the magic of prisma colored pencils! I love the detail and colors you can blend together with it, it's always my favorite part of creating a new piece.
How would you describe your pop surreal style? What themes do you pursue?
I mainly draw girls and creating their expression, what surrounds them.. I like to create girls that I truly find beautiful . They are made up in my mind and I like to make them come to life through art.
What fascinates you the most about pop surrealism? What "pop surreal art" means to you as an artist?
What fascinates me most about pop surrealism art is all of the different kind of styles there really are. You would normally think, "everything has been done.." but that is so not true! Of course, I use to think that too in the beginning, but everyone has their own style, and their own way of painting. It's really amazing finding hundreds of different type of artists, and seeing what goes on in their minds. What girl or boy they like to draw, what themes they like to pursue..and so on.
What do you love most about creating? What does “being creative” mean to you?
What I love most about creating is the creative process that goes on. I draw straight on the board and see what comes to mind. I love watching what I make have color and slowly come to life. Creativity is in all of us and what's so great about it is you can create anything with it.
Can you describe your typical workflow / artistic process when you’re working on your art?
I first look for the correct references on the internet to use when I have something in mind. It's pretty quiet when I'm working. I work in my small room, on my small desk. Listen to some music sometimes or work in complete silence. It's really just relaxing.
What is your personal favorite artwork from your portfolio and why?
One of my personal favorites is a piece I created when I was starting out.. I never did name it, because back then I just liked to create a piece on a giant wood panel and make another and another. I really love it and is still one of my personal favorites because of this hood I drew on my girl, and it had butterflies surrounding it. I don't know why, but it was the first piece that I was truly proud of. I remember how beautiful I thought the wood gain looked with it too. Such little things that you realize about your painting..everything just fit so perfectly in my eyes! It's one of my first and a really simple painting, but still a favorite of mine.
Where do you see yourself in the future? Professionally, what’s your goal?
I see myself still creating art and that is all. I really want to do..but that sounds like a fantasy to me right now. My goal is to create art , be apart of shows, share my art to others, be inspired and inspire others..
What toughest challenges have you faced as an artist during your art career?
The toughest challenges I've faced as an artist is trying to create something "different" ..and find your "style". that really is a challenge, and still is for me. It's hard to create something and hoping it looks like "Your" work..When people will comment it looks like somebody else's work. It's best to take it as a compliment and move on- to keep creating!
What’s your background? Are you self-taught artist or did you study art?
I am self taught- I've always been doodling everyday on any type of paper I could find. Plus, my mom is also an artist and has inspired me since I was young. I would always try to draw celebrities in magazines.. Always practicing.
What are some of the advantages and disadvantages that you have encountered throughout your career without the formal training of the Art Academy?
It's hard to draw body figures for me, because I don't know the "correct" way of doing so. I've just practiced and have gotten better at it! I really enjoyed learning from myself . Keeps me busy, and is very rewarding.
What’s the best and worst advice you ever received in your art career?
The best advice is to be open and learn from everyone.
What do you dislike about the art world? What is the hardest thing on being an artist? Is the artistic life lonely? What do you do to counteract it?
It's hard when you have an idea in your head, but you can't draw it out. Sometimes you go through phases where you just feel like you can't draw anything! If that happens, I take a break from it and come back even more inspired.
Which creative medium would you love to pursue but haven’t yet?
I really want to be an "oil" painter too.. but I haven't kept trying because my sensitive body doesn't like the smells.
Do you have any tips or inspiring words for others? Maybe advice for beginning artists out there?
Never be discouraged by looking at other artists work and have negative thoughts on your own. You have to keep practicing and don't bring yourself down! Look up to other artists and know that you will only get better and keep improving your way to your goal.
Your favorite quote is ...
Artistically : "All children are artists. The problem is how to remain an artist once you grow up"
What are you doing when you’re not creating? What (other) hobbies do you have?
I like to play video games, computer games.. etc. heh..
Do you have an online portfolio or a blog where we can view your work?
Working on getting a website started soon though! But for now, this is all I've got!
Is there anything else you’d like to say? Is there any project you are working on right now or any ongoing event or exhibition you would like to share with our readers?
I am currently working on lots of projects for a collective I am a part of called the Bad Apple Artist Collective. Two group shows we are having together and a couple pieces for our monthly auctions on Facebook.. :)