Back Again with EddieSketti
Staying connected to great people is something I deeply value. I love learning about what's been happening in their lives and all the new things they've been up to. I recently had the pleasure of catching up with Mrs. Brittany from EddieSketti again. Luckily, this extremely talented lady was willing to let me dig around in her brain a second time; now I'm able to share some more great EddieSketti behind-the-scenes with you.
Misty: If you could have any super power, what would it be? Brittany: To be able to go invisible or breathe underwater
Misty: You can only keep one item from your art box, what would it be?
Brittany: My Wacom tablet, for sure. The majority of the artwork I do these days is digital, and it’s easy to take with me and sketch/draw/color on the go.
Misty: What is your favorite place in the world and why?
Brittany: For now, it’s Japan. I’ve been twice now and it still doesn’t feel like enough. It’s such a beautiful country with so much to see and do, and the traditional culture mixes beautifully alongside the new and modern unlike anything I’ve seen anywhere else. Also the food….I could easily live off of Japanese food.
Misty: If you and I were to trade places for a day, what is the one thing I absolutely need to know? Brittany: You’d probably need to know your way around Photoshop/Clip Studio Paint….and my pets’ feeding schedules :’)
Misty: What would the theme song to the rest of your life be? Brittany: “No Plan” by Hozier
Misty: If you only had 24 hours left to live, how would you spend it?
Brittany: Visiting someplace familiar with someone I feel close to
Misty: Is the artistic life lonely? If so, what do you do to counteract it? Brittany: I would says so, generally because the creative process can be pretty time-consuming. Plus, if you’ve made it your primary means of income, you’re generally doing several jobs on your own in order to run your business. I try to keep in touch with friends/followers in order to make the process more interactive, as well as make time for friends when they invite me out of the house. I’m a huge introvert, so it’s not always my first instinct to go out unless I have to, but I notice a difference in my overall headspace if I go too long without the social stimulation.
Misty: What do you love most about the art world? Brittany: I just love seeing the things everyone makes! People are so creative…and it can come from anywhere; all different ages, geographical locations, etc. I also think it’s pretty amazing the way different people can find a way to relate to something so personal. It’s such an incredible form of expression.
Misty: Is the "starving artist" mentality accurate? If not, how do you think it's changed? Brittany: Ahhh that’s a tough one. I would say yes and no. Social media has made it easier than ever to connect with a large audience of people and get your stuff out into the world. I’ve seen a lot of artists who do it well and are able to live off of Patreon/commissions via the audience they’ve cultivated. Though because virtually everyone uses it, it’s easy to get lost in a sea of talent and trying to find what makes your stuff unique can be tough. I would say without the use of social media as a business tool it’s definitely a challenge making a living off of art in the modern world unless you have another means of getting that exposure.
Misty: Do you think creativity requires putting in your heart and soul?
Brittany: I would say….yes. If your heart’s not in it, there’s very little drive to continue. I guess by definition to me being ‘creative’ means doing something in your own way/interpretation. Otherwise…it’s not very creative.
Misty: What is creativity to you?
Brittany: I guess to me, creativity is one’s own means of self-expression. There are so many ways of being creative, but ultimately, I think it boils down to making something you enjoy or identify with.
Misty: What is your ultimate dream project?
Brittany: Oh man, there’s lots…a big one before was selling my stuff in a convention’s artist alley and I’ve done that now! I think from here I’d like to continue to do artist alley locally, eventually at conventions out of state and internationally, collaborate with other artists, and ultimately make a full time living off of my art and making comics.
Misty: What kind of rituals/procedures/tasks do you do to get into your creative zone?
Brittany: I usually make coffee and put on some music. Music makes it easier to focus and stay in the zone, coffee ensures I continue working a bit longer than I normally would haha
Misty: Do you ever create hidden messages/meanings in your art? Brittany: Sometimes yes! I’m a big fan of dual meanings and irony and I think that shows more in some of my earlier stuff from about five to ten years ago. I used to draw the most when I was dealing with difficult times or transitional periods (high school, college, moving). It was a little darker than most of the fan-friendly stuff I make now, and I miss it as a form of self expression. I might revisit it a little.
Misty: If your art was edible what would it taste like?
Brittany: Ramen and unhealthy snack foods haha
Misty: If you could change one aspect of society through your art, what would it be?
Brittany: I’d want to influence other humans into doing more for the environment! I know a lot of us do want to do more for the Earth, but there’s just so much to be done, especially right now. I’ve thought awhile about either creating a run of pieces that benefit charity or regularly donating a percentage of my commission/Patreon sum to charity funds that benefit the planet. I definitely want to look into it more.
Misty: Do you consider yourself "a real artist" yet?
Brittany: I do. I struggled with it for awhile but I’m regularly getting commissions and have people that enjoy my work enough to follow me for it, and to me that’s enough. It means a lot to have a purpose beyond myself in the things I make. I’m still not completely financially reliant on my art, but there’s time…and even if that’s never the case, I’ve made some pretty big strides in my artistic journey in a short amount of time. I feel like not allowing myself to be referred to as a ‘real artist’ would just be self-deprecating at this point.
Misty: What's new for EddieSketti?
Brittany: Lots of stuff, actually! Since the last interview I’ve made a lot of different types of physical products I’d never had experience with before (acrylic charms, standees, comic books, etc.), and have sold my artwork at a few different venues. I feel like I’m currently doing something I wanted to do for a long time and anything extra is gravy.
Misty: What kind of projects are you currently working on?
Brittany: Right now I’m still working on my webcomic Grim Café and I’ve nearly reached the illustrated conclusion of chapter 4. Once I’ve completed chapter 5, I hope to finally produce Grim Café volume 1 in printed form. Aside from my comic, I still take art commissions, draw fanart, produce different kinds of fan + original merch, and create for my patrons on Patreon.
Misty: You mentioned in your last interview that drawing for EddieSketti is "a combo of drawing for yourself and a living". Can you elaborate on that and how you keep your balance?
Brittany: I generally stick to drawing the things that I like, and some of those things have a relatively large fanbase. Drawing fanart of characters I like from popular shows/games/manga has allowed me to meet and be exposed to a lot of different people who enjoy some of the same things I do, as well as make a profit on prints, merch, commissions, etc. It’s definitely a labor of love and the most fun way I can possibly think of to make money.
Misty: Have there been any big business changes for EddieSketti?
Brittany: Sort of! I’m always learning and trying new things to see what works and what doesn’t. My aesthetics and business image have also changed some, and I expect it will again multiple times as my interests change and business knowledge grows. That’s part of the fun of it all, though.
Misty: How's Grim Café going for you?
Brittany: GC went on a hiatus for most of the year while I reworked some of the old pages and adapted them for printing. I’m still working on getting back into the groove of producing pages regularly, but it’s continued to get positive feedback from friends and fans, and that’s all I could really ask for.
Misty: Are you still working part-time for other businesses?
Brittany: I’m working four days a week at an independently owned custom frame shop in Seattle. It’s a smaller shop with some really big clientele. It’s a pretty laid back setting and I like working with my hands more than with people directly, so it’s enjoyable.
Misty: I love your new Avengers pets! Where did the idea come from?
Brittany: Thank you! I needed to make some new prints for a superhero-themed event I was selling at over the summer. Dogs are some of the easiest things for me to draw without reference, so doing a series of different dog breeds proved to be the easiest way to get multiple designs done in time.
Misty: When we last spoke you mentioned that you base Grim Café off of your own personal interests. Can you tell me more about that?
Brittany: GC being set in a café speaks a lot to my aesthetics and sense of comfort. I love coffee and hanging out in cozy cafes with personality. I’ve also always had an affinity for the spooky and ethereal, so doing a story about the grim reaper in a more modern, slice-of-life setting is a lot of fun for me. Being a religious person, I draw some inspiration from traditional beliefs and use GC to challenge some of the generally-accepted norms, and also explore topics that come up a lot between me and my friends such as gender identity, sexual orientation, accepting differences, etc.
Misty: I see you are now offering Grim Café merchandise and printable copies. What was that transition like for you?
Brittany: To be honest, it was a challenge. Figuring out the level of craftsmanship I was looking for and where to get it was tough at first, but through some trial and error I’m moving closer and closer to products I’m really satisfied with. Adapting GC to printed form has been the biggest challenge, but the fact that I’m getting it done in spite of the large amount of effort involved speaks (mostly to me) that it’s a story I need to continue to keep telling.