Faye Yuqing Yan is the New Talent winner of the Editorial Category, sponsored by Procreate. Here, she tells us more about her award-winning project.
It is my major project for my MA studies at Kingston University. I was very interested in learning about the society, history and culture of the UK and some of their ways of thinking when I chose this topic. I was interested in the relevance of people’s behaviour and the psychology behind it.
When I moved to the UK, I saw major changes and unrest in the society around me. It provides a summary of some of the major Brexit debates from the perspective of an outsider who is just getting to know British culture. The visual density and complexity reflect the overwhelming confusion of the Brexit debate itself. It presents relative arguments such as sovereignty, sense of identity, immigration, and economy, to show how issues like globalization and cosmopolitanism are currently challenged; the paradox between supranational governance and sovereign states, etc.
I wanted to break down my own biases, fully accept and listen to both sides, and then build my observations and summary. I started by getting a feel for the emotions from the information available online and then read through academic analysis to understand the topic. After that, I could interview and listen to representative people with questions, for example, I went to a House of Lord’s panel discussion, sat in on events organized by several political parties and Italian Cultural Institute, and chatted with common people. In the later stages of the research, I had summarised some valuable ideas and gathered visual material from some parades and art exhibitions with Brexit and refugee themes for visual experiments. During the drawing phase, ideas were constantly flowing and I was trying to capture the most typical images that came in my mind.
Mostly iPad and Procreate.
I would gather as much information as I could, then filter through the points I wanted to explore, then think about the symbolic plots and visual symbols that would match them, and consider their emotional scale and audience reception. And finally, put them together in a reasonable and interesting form.
The hardest thing for me in terms of content and visuals was finding a proper way to express it. That way needs to avoid offending to describe ideas and discuss issues, in a topic that involves complex groups and extreme opposing attitudes. Perhaps my best solution would be to learn more about and understand their different situations and the positions and then behaviours as a result, Finally to present it in a playful way
It has made me more tolerant of this complex world and more alert to the intentions behind some of the ideologies.
I tend to be a person who likes to focus on getting one thing right for a period of time, so I’m thankful that there weren’t several projects going on at the same time.
It was starting in May 2019 and finishing in July.It took about two months to investigate and about a month to draw.
This was my first attempt at editorial illustration, and the first opportunity to practice the artistic language I wanted to experiment with in large quantities at once. If I could draw again, the figures, some of which I still handle too simply. It could probably have well rounded portray of characters. For the drawing, their shapes could be more refined, the format, composition, lines, and textures could be tried differently.
I couldn’t say it’s advice, just only share some recent thoughts. Perhaps the process of finding the language of drawing is the process by which illustrators learn about themselves, then show the way you observe things. I’m still on my way.
I want to get involved in projects that can develop my creativity and try out more ideas, tools and techniques. In particular, I would like to develop my skills in motion creatives. I also have a desire to create a short animation that I can say I am happy with.
I’m hoping to use my creativity. Actually, Fun, well-paid, and well-known. If it has one of those is just blessed. I don’t really want to set a range or label for myself, I want to experience many things.
Favourite thing to draw
Things I’ve never drawn.
I move a lot. I try to simplify my belongings and tools. Everything I own fits into two suitcases, and they could be even less.
Thank you to The WIA Judges for selecting my illustration, to my family for supporting my study abroad, to my teachers and friends for all the help I’ve received, to the people who have enjoyed my work, and to my past self. I feel very lucky.