Feature: Inktober 4, 8, and 9

Interview with: Katrisha Charpentier

Where do you draw the most inspiration for your drawing/animation?

I draw most of my inspiration from nature, I grew up around the woods and always loved the beauty of trees and plants. Each and every tree is not exactly the same. They’re all unique in their blooms, leaves, bark, and they’re all so intricate. I also draw inspiration from my love for animals. Even from a young age, I always loved learning about animals, as well as growing up with pets. I like to show the innocence and cuteness in animals.

What challenges do you face when starting a new project?

Challenges I face when starting a new project are focusing on one single project and not starting new projects before finishing old ones. As an artist, my mind constantly has ideas going through it, and sometimes I struggle to focus on just one idea/project. Giving myself some discipline to stay focused can be a bit challenging.

Have you ever found yourself stuck on a piece? What methods help you overcome those roadblocks?

I have found myself stuck on some pieces before. It’s usually the projects that are more long-term and have taken months to a year to finish. I feel I’ve gotten stuck by just trying to continue to feel the passion I did at the beginning of the project. In the past, I’ve gotten through this by looking up references, as well as inspiration from similar artists on a film or an art piece. Seeing other art pieces or new references help me to go back into working on my project with a fresh pair of eyes. Sometimes you just need to take a break and let yourself refresh so you can feel the passion and excitement build up again.

What made you first want to take up drawing/animation?

From a very young age I always knew I wanted to be an artist. I was constantly drawing and took my coloring as a child pretty seriously. I even kept my coloring pages in an organized binder at the age of 7. When I hit middle school, I saw the movie Ratatouille and loved what I like to call the “noodliness” of Linguine’s movements. That’s when I knew I wanted to be an animator. I always loved drawing and working with computers, and it felt like a perfect marriage between the two things I enjoyed. I wanted to learn how to really bring my drawings to life and put a smile on people’s faces.

What advice would you give to someone who is interested in pursuing visual art as a potential career path/hobby?

For future artists thinking about pursuing a career in the visual arts, I would say to make sure this truly is your passion because this isn’t an easy career choice with a clear path to a job. If you’re gonna do this, you really gotta love it, and you gotta feel passion for it everyday. I would also say whenever you’re feeling really inspired, make some time to create because that’s truly when you make some of your greatest work!

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Katrisha Charpentier was born and raised in little old Rhode Island where she was constantly exploring the woods and drawing the animals and trees all around her. Her love for art continued to flourish, and she is now a Chicago based, recent graduate of Columbia College Chicago with a BFA in Traditional Animation. She specializes in drawing animals, nature, and landscapes in watercolor, animation, and illustration. She enjoys creating movement through animation and illustrations that bring people joy and comfort.

“My main subject is nature and the beauty of animals. I love to capture the spirit of the animal through my drawings and really make it pop with color. With color you can really convey the joy and raw beauty of plants, animals, and everyday life. I like my pieces to be fun, interesting, and, most of all, relatable!”

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