Wingspan: What kind of art do you specialize in?
Zhang: “The two types of art I specialize in are pretty different. I’ve been oil painting since I was around six, so it’s a medium of art I’m very comfortable with; and that’s why I also like realism so much! contrast to that, the hobby I’m pursuing now is digital art, where I have a more cartoonish style! I’ve only been drawing digitally around less than a year but I love both equally.”
Wingspan: Do you take any art classes?
Zhang: “I take art lessons outside of school for oil painting! As for digital art though, it’s all self taught through experimenting and binge-watching speedpaints.”
Wingspan: How does art fit in your day-to-day?
Zhang: “Art really doesn’t fit into my schedule to be honest, but I kind of force it in my daily life haha since I’m a junior who’s also taking 8 apps, I don’t really have a lot of time for my hobbies, so I usually take time out of sleeping to draw.”
Wingspan: Do you share your art at all?
Zhang: “I do have a platform to share my art! I’ve always wanted an art account since 5th grade and I’ve tried to make one in 8th grade, which resulted in me giving up. 9th grade I tried again and it didn’t work out once again but in 10th grade I really hit it off!! (@hoshirii) it was my first successful IG art account and I drew a bunch of fan art which got me to around 5k followers! But repeating drawing fandom art gets boring after a while, so I decided to abandon that account despite all my progress to start anew on @ryunmii. It’s very important to love what you do, which really drove me to create original art. fan art is always bounded to get more engagement and likes, which makes creating original art sometimes very unmotivating but being able to create whatever I want has really driven me.”
Wingspan: How do you feel when you draw?
Zhang: “How I feel when I draw really depends on a lot of factors. I could spend a long time on a drawing but end up hating it. Not every art piece evokes the same emotion from me but usually, I always feel proud of myself for coming so far when I’ve only been drawing digitally for around a year. I always try to draw something I like, so even if I’ve spend hours and hours on a piece, if at one point i feel unmotivated to continue, I take a break from it no matter what.”
Wingspan: How long have you been drawing?
Zhang: “I feel like everyone says this but i’ve truly been drawing since I was little. I remember entering a bunch of art competitions when I was in kindergarten and 1st grade, so my interest in art has always been there! I only started taking oil painting seriously in 9th grade and digital art in 10th grade though.”
Wingspan: Can you tell us what materials you use?
Zhang: “For oil painting, I’m not very sure on what I use but all my materials are from Michael’s! They’re not the highest quality but they get the work done! For digital I’ve been using FireAlpaca as a software to draw, which is free. and my trusty Intuos pen & touch medium tablet.”
Wingspan: Do you have any tips for aspiring artists?
Zhang: “This is going to sound generic but practice! You’ll never get good at art if you don’t practice. We all started at the same point but it’s our dedication and hard work that gets us where we are now. I think middle school me who’s always wanted to have an art account would be very proud of the current me. If you have trouble drawing hands, don’t avoid drawing them, That’ll really just make the problem worse, watch youtube tutorials, and draw whenever you can.”