Thursday, October 1, 2015

Creative Style: Flora Chang: Happy Doodle Land

Today we are so lucky to feature Flora Chang of Happy Doodle Land  on her creative
style journey. I met Flora through an online class we took and I just fell in love with
her fun, imaginative line drawings and her joyful sense of design and color.
When I look at her work through the years I see the seed of where she is now, its all
there but the growth is amazing! She posts lots of small videos of herself drawing
which are so great to watch. There is lots of eye candy here so scroll all the way down!!

(I apologize for a few technical issues with font sizes on the blog, I'm working to correct)

1. How did you arrive at the style you are working in currently?

I've always loved to draw, but I didn't go to school for illustration. 
I was a graphic design major. I began to work full-time for Hallmark 
in 2001, and in 2002, I was moved to the Kids team. As most designers 
on the Kids team were "hybrid", meaning they needed to both design 
and draw, I, too, started to illustrate for the cards I was working on. 
I learned pretty much everything related to digital illustration from 
making real products; I also learned a lot by observing my co-workers 
and asking questions.

My personal style was really simple in the beginning; I mostly did just 
black line drawings with one or two colors on top. I rarely did "actual" artworks 
(by "actual" I mean "painting").  Painting scared me. (It still scares me now, 
to some degrees, but I am trying to do more of it nowadays so I could get a 
little more comfortable around paints.) So I just doodled, a lot. I carried a 
blank sketchbook and a black marker with me, and I drew in my book all 
the time; this has become a habit of mine till today.

Sometimes I scan my black line drawings and then just add colors in Photoshop, 
and I sometimes I use the line drawing as templates and re-create the whole 
piece digitally.

As time goes by, I get more and more comfortable with Photoshop and 
illustrating in general, my artworks also become more colorful. Like I 
said earlier, doing actual painting scares me, however, I love the quality 
that can only be found in hand-painted artworks, so I also try to incorporate 
textures into my digital pieces whenever it's appropriate. I still love doing 
flat and graphic works, a lot of my more recent pieces are less flat when 
comparing to my earlier ones, though they are still pretty simple, they 
often have more textures and more expressive brush lines.

2. Are there any other styles or techniques you are playing and 
experimenting with now that you think will incorporate into your work?

Since I've been designing children's products for almost 13 years, 
naturally my artworks are more geared toward kids. I absolutely 
love making art for the little ones, but I also crave to do stuff for adults. 
This is the territory I am still learning and trying.  Growing up in Asia, 
we are so used to all the cute (or "kawaii") artworks that are actually made 
for grown-ups, but over here in the Western world, those artworks would 
look almost too baby-ish. That was a big challenge for me in the beginning, 
and still is till today, to find a balance when I create for kids and adults.

I want to do more art by hand and get more comfortable around paints. 
I love watercolor. 

Thank you so much Flora! 

See more of Flora's work here
and on instagram here


warmcoat said...

Great interview! Ive been following her for a while on instagram. Its fun to see her earlier work.

jennifer said...

Gals you enjoyed it!!