Collaboration Spotlight: Sad Skelly
Collaboration Spotlight: Sad Skelly
We sat down with one of our favorite artists, Sad Skelly, to talk inspiration, mental health, and the creative process. We just launched a collaboration tapestry and blanket for their 'Enjoy The Small Things' design on Cosmic Romantic and we're so excited to be working together!
1. We really admire your artwork; bringing the skeletons you illustrate to life with relatable qualities and coordinating inspirational quotes. Please tell us a little bit about yourself. :)
Thank you so much! Well for starters, my name is Tanya and I currently reside in Sydney, Australia! I've been interested in the arts ever since I was a little girl and I started Sad Skelly in April 2020. I've been having a hard time looking for a job in design and tired of working in retail for almost 5 years so I decided to start Sad Skelly as a way of being able to escape creatively and draw whatever I wanted. It's been a very rewarding journey in learning more about art and more about myself.
2. We love your use of color in the worlds you create for SAD SKELLY. What most inspires you to create? What inspired you to create SAD SKELLY specifically?
Thank you! My biggest inspiration for creating Sad Skelly was seeing other wonderful artists use instagram as a platform to showcase their amazing work. I was inspired heavily by some amazing artists such as Kentaro Yoshisha, Mulga and Wizard of Barge to name a few. I'm also inspired by surrealism like many people such as Dali and Yves Tanguy. I was inspired to create Sad Skelly specifically because skeletons represent human beings. We all have some sort of skeletal structure inside that makes us human- regardless of our skin colour, our nationality or our sexuality. Furthermore, being human means we all feel emotions. I wanted to spread the idea that it's okay to feel sad sometimes and it's okay to not be okay. The main thing is that we express those emotions in the healthiest way and understand that we are not alone in feeling negative emotions. Being someone who deals with anxiety all my life, I struggled with it on a daily basis and it affected everything I did. Being able to share these feelings and turn it into something positive with everyone and having it resonate with people really motivated me to keep going and to know that I'm not alone.
3. Please tell us about your creative process - How do you begin a piece? What software do you use? What do you do when you have a creative block?
I begin a piece by stressfully trying to push an idea into my brain. I realise this doesn't work everytime so I just have to continue looking at art, observing the world around me until something clicks. Then I'll sketch out an idea on Procreate and go from there! I deal with artist block all the time! I don't know how other artists can put out so much content and post so much on a daily basis but I am definitely not on that level yet! I definitely get overwhelmed easily and I am still trying to find balance in my life. The main thing I know is to keep going even when everything in my head is telling me to stop!
4. We truly connect with your art and are so excited for this collaboration with you! What has been your favorite piece you created and do you have more in the works you’re especially excited about?
I'm very excited too! My favourite piece I've created so far is my 'Sometimes the answer is just beneath our feet' because it's a tribute to an amazing documentary called Fantastic Fungi on Netflix. I recently have some stickers in the making so I'm excited to see how those turn out!
5. Is music influential to your creative process? If so, in what way? What is your favorite music to listen to when creating?
Music is great because it can really help me create worlds or the atmosphere I'm going for. I love listening to some cyberwave/chillstep when I'm creating trippy pieces. I'm a huge Daft Punk fan and have been heavily influenced by their music (I was devastated when they broke up). I also love dubstep/edm artists such as Virtual Riot, Nghtmre and Eliminate.
6. Do you ever collaborate with other artists? Is there a particular artist you're dreaming of working with?
I have not yet collaborated with any artists! I'm rather shy and I think I'm still taking baby steps to come out of my shell and communicate with other artists. Hopefully one day I can do an awesome collab with another artist.
7. How do you balance work/school life with your creative projects?
At the moment it's a struggle. I recently started a graduate diploma course and it's full on! I try to take most of the weekend off to study and have a few weekdays for art.
8. You’ve focused a lot on emotion and overcoming tough times with positive insights and affirmations, what do you hope people get out of your artwork?
I hope people who are going through a rough time are reminded that it's okay to not be at your best at this point in time. Life is not a race and we all get to our goals differently. It's not a one-size fits all situation. It's also okay to not be smiling and happy all the time. That would make us robots and a tad creepy. We deserve to feel sad and we should also not put others down for feeling sad.
9. Where do you see yourself at the pinnacle of your art career? What would be your ultimate dream come true involving your artwork?
It's been a dream of mine to work with brands and spread my art style. I think that would be amazing to be able to do that as my career. I've also wanted to learn how to create murals! I need to definitely get my painting skills up to par for that.
10. What advice would you give to fans of your artwork and those who’d like to start drawing?
My advice to beginners who want to start drawing is to do it! I'm a relatively conservative person but over time I realized no one was judging me for what I was doing. It was safe to just be myself and seeing people resonate with my art is super rewarding. So I would say to just put yourself out there and showcase your style.