ARTIST OF THE WEEK: SUJINApril 20, 2017
Talking bad girls, 90s sportswear and the art scene in South Korea with illustrator, Sujin.
UO: The female characters you draw have a bad girl image. Why have you chosen this type of style? Is it a personal reflection?
Doing bad things is really difficult in our society and there are so many rules and social barriers. I’m a very timid and sensitive person and I’m really afraid of making mistakes; I control myself too much in my life and I feel that I am oppressed by so many things. I want to be free to do my art. I think that is the reason the characters look bad. In my paintings, I want the characters to do what they want and feel what they want to feel.
UO: What is your background in art?
My major is in Graphic Design, but for me, drawing is more fun. One of my professors recommended that I start drawing when I was a junior in university. So I started my work again and graduated with my degree in illustration.
UO: Describe your art in three words.
Destroy your everything.
UO: The girls you draw reference fashion from the 90s. Is 90s fashion a personal interest of yours?
Yes, I really like 90s fashion. I think 90s fashion represents both sides of the male and female character. I love this double-sidedness. Sometimes it looks awful but sometimes it looks really beautiful. I want to draw this duplicity, and 90′s fashion is a good way to show it.
UO: Are the characters you draw based on people you know?
No, I draw people in my imagination. Actually, I don’t draw any particular person because I want my characters to be anyone. It could be me, you or some other person.
UO: What is the art scene in Seoul, Korea like?
There are two sides I think. Several small art events have popped up, but in general the whole art world is getting smaller. I’m really upset about that, but there are so many great artists in Korea and I think now are beginning to feel a shift in the generation, as if a transition period is coming. I hope that I’d like to play a part in that.
UO: How do you stay creatively motivated?
Well, I don’t know how I do stay creatively motivated but I’m always sitting in my workplace. I draw some doodles and then that makes me want to paint. Doodling is a good way to get started.
UO: Where do you most commonly find inspiration?
Movies, fashion, photos… There are so many ways I could find inspiration. I try to find and observe some visual things to be inspired by when I have the time.
UO: How have you seen your work develop over the past few years?
Yes, I like my current paintings more and I think they are stronger than the past few years. When I started my work, I drew lots of doodles, not paintings and I couldn’t finish my painting that day but now I have more completeness than over the past few years. Now, there are lots of things left I have to draw to develop my skills, so I hope in the future my work will get better than now.
UO: What are you currently working on?
I give the name ‘NANA’ to my characters and in my paintings, the main theme is ‘Self-destruction’. I want to paint more about this theme with NANA so I’m working now to make an artbook about it.