Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Artist Profile: Agnieszka Futa

Bold and intriguing are a few of the words one could use to describe the work of Agnieszka Futa. Known by some as sawayaka, this 20 year old hails from Lublin, Poland and is a graduate of the Secondary of Fine Arts In Lublin. Though she specialized in artistic fabrics (like batiks) and weaving, she prefers working with digital art. When she’s not drawing she enjoys hanging out with friends, drinking, head-banging, and annoying her cat. Her illustrations were recently featured in purpleSKY magazine and for those of you who love her work she’s currently open for commissions.

How long have you been doing art and what got you interested?

I've been drawing and creating stuff ever since I remember, it has always been a natural aspect of my life. I don't think there's a particular thing that could have spurred an interest in art in me, I guess I simply inherited it from my mother - she's also an art school graduate.

Can you name some of your influences and what is it about their work that inspires you?

First and foremost - Japanese woodblock prints. I like the fact that ukiyo-e artists never tried to convey a sense of illusion in their works, they simply wanted to create something aesthetically pleasing (and in some cases - something with an actual message that would be easier to get across with a limited amount of means of expression). The Japanese have a great sense of color, shape and composition and that's definitely something I look up to. As I mentioned earlier, minimalism also gets to me, I don't like to spend hours trying to create an illusion of reality (like I had to during my despised painting classes), I'd rather focus on general expression and mood of my pieces.

My favourite ukiyo-e artist would be Utagawa Kuniyoshi, not only because of his admirable skills - his sometimes brutal and macabre images have a certain appeal to me too. While we're at that 'brutal and macabre' theme, I have to add a few more influences to my list - and that would be film and music. I love things like short, absurd movies (like David Lynch's 'The Alphabet' for instance) or music videos whose creators aren't afraid of taking it to the next level (like Floria Sigismondi). As for the music, I'm leaning toward heavier stuff - not necessarily visceral (I'm certainly not a true metalhead), but definitely it has to be vivid and give me energy.

Your work seems to contain various graphic design and print elements, how would you describe your own style?

Well, it definitely has some elements of underground manga in it (I'm thinking about artists like Furuya Minoru or Matsumoto Taiyou). A bit insane yet stylized. I put my main focus on colors as I think it's the most important part of every piece of art (unless it's black and white of course) - flat, vivid colors and thought out color schemes (honestly, I can spend a lot of time on it) would be the most noticeable characteristics of my style. The rest lies in my subconscious-ness and thus I cannot describe it ;D

How do you get ideas for your artwork? Are you ever trying to convey anything in particular?

I SEE THINGS *laughs*. I basically draw what I see when I close my eyes while I'm tired or drunk or both. Sometimes images come to my mind when I listen to the music, sometimes I base them on a dream that I had. I don't think I'm trying to convey anything, perhaps I do, but as I said, it revolves around my subconscious-ness - I can't really verbalize it. My works are probably my emotional states transferred to pictures.

Can you describe your process to creating a picture?

1. First, I get the idea (see above :]).
2. I plug in my magnificent tablet.
3. I openCorel Painter X.
4. I make a general sketch.
5. I draw a finished line art over it (with a 'pen' brush).
6. I save it in .psd format and open it in Photoshop.
7. And this is where the fun begins - I can spend hours coming up with various color schemes, effects and whatnot. I can't really describe that part as I simply try out as many things as possible until I'm satisfied (and sometimes I'm not and I just stop working on the picture to spare myself some frustration).

What type of environment do you work in?

Uhh, in my room (green walls, lots of cds, skulls, usually some beer cans and a full ashtray, some books, random things) in front of my monitor, sitting comfortably in my armchair :3

Is there any particular music you listen to while you're working?

Nothing in particular, whatever I feel like listening at the moment.

What programs and traditional media do you typical use?

Corel Painter X and Adobe Photoshop 7. I used to draw the lineart with ink and then scan it and add colors in Photoshop, but ever since I got a tablet I don't do it anymore.

Are there any projects you're working on or any you hope to work on in the future?

Well, I finished working on a commission for the purpleSKY magazine some time ago and right now I'm just simply taking commissions from random people or draw for myself. Nothing I'd call a 'project' though. I don't have any particular plans either.

Do you have any thoughts on the art industry?

Not really. It's like everything else in the world, some good points, and some bad points.

Do you have any experiences working with any other artists? If not, are there in particular you would love to work with?

Kind of yes, I did a collaboration piece with Inechi which you can view here. It was a really fun experience and we're looking forward doing something like this again (I mean, when I'll stop being lazy/busy :D).

Out of all your pictures, is there any that means the most to you?

Perhaps it would be 'Welcome home, brother' (pictured to the right) but I'd rather not get into details, it's a quite weird story actually. Anyway, all of my babies mean a lot to me, so it really is a tough choice…

What are your future goals and aspirations?

I would LOVE to be a respected free-lance illustrator and earn enough to make a decent living. Right now I'm just starting (having graduated recently and everything), but most of all I'd like to work around music-oriented things (like t-shirt designs, CD jackets, posters, things like that). I was lucky that my first bigger commission was from a music magazine, so I guess it was a good start.

Do you have any other hobbies or interests besides drawing?

Criminal psychology, movies, weird manga, music, beer, concerts. I used to be into photography and painting but that was a looong time ago, while I was still attending school. Now I'm cured. :D

If you were not an artist, is there anything else you could see yourself doing?

I wanted to be a psychologist a few years ago. But then I came to a conclusion that human minds are boring and repetitive (no matter how much you might believe the contrary, it's the truth) when it comes to their deepest, the most primal aspect of personality. I decided I don't want to spend the rest of my life analyzing it for money. I'd rather have some more fun than that. So yeah, If I wasn't an artist, I'd become a roadie or something.

If you had a time machine, what time period would you go back to and why?

The nineties, just because everything seemed more real then, I can't find a good explanation for it though. It's just the way I feel.

Do you have any favorite quotes?

Uhhh... Not really. I don't quote people. I'm able to produce weird sentences by myself.

Do you have any advice for any aspiring artists?

If you have an overly technical approach to your works, you'll fail as a human being :D. Just have fun and that's all. If you put your vital energy in your art instead of cold calculating, people will notice it and appreciate it more. And it will sell better! XD

Visit the following links to see more works by Agnes:

http://dizect.com/ - Main portfolio
http://sawayaka.deviantart.com/ - deviantART account

You can also contact her at afuta[at]o2.pl


Sabine said...

Aaah, great interview. Need to read more of these. Came here through Agnieszka Futa's site.

Anonymous said...

hah! hell yeah dude

batkoment =^___^=

guess who

Anonymous said...

hah! hell yeah dude

batkoment =^___^=

guess who