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Yakuza meets: Ceephor Studios

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(Toronto, 30th March. Yakuza Webzine) Bright colors, cute style, fluffy corgies. That’s just a bit of the amazing merch that Ceephor Studios was exhibiting at the last Toronto ComiCon. That was enough for us to develop a crush on her and after the interview, we totally fell in love with her and her art.

Ceephor Studios, or Yolante Charles aka Charlie is a Canadian artist that lives in nearby of the city of Toronto, in Ontario. We found her stand in the Toronto ComiCon and fell in love with her art and style. After peaking at her merchandise (I got some stickers for myself, won’t deny it) she was so kind to accept our offer to give us an exclusive interview to get to know her and her work better.

As a little background info: Charlie has an excellent resumée. She’s being working professionally since 2012, not only in Canada but also in Sacramento, California. She was associated with Scattered Comics until a couple of years ago as well.

@r0cket_cat and I almost done the day at #torontocomicon Tomorrow is the last day to come see my art!

Una publicación compartida de CharlY (@ceephorstudios) el

How did you became an artist, when did you became an artist

I’ve been drawing pretty much my whole life like from 2nd grade is like the very first time I remember being good at it because I remember having this project on dolphins and every single person in class make me draw theirs so that’s more or less when it started but I think I got it to push it more when I got into High School that I grew up to watching like Pokemon, Digimon, Dragon Ball so those were all samples of art I would copy and learn from

And how did you manage to make it your profession

Oh well, what happened is that when I went to California I was a studying Graphic Communications and I was going to this “Comic Club” so often that I learnt about to know about going into conventions and this people were here helping and giving support to other people on how to write and draw other comics and giving them advise. And when they (the school) didn’t want one of my design projects, one of them notice it so they asked me to star drawing comic books for them.

So in the university/college you did design…

Oh Yeah, I learnt Graphic Design, it is not exactly comic but it uses all the same programs and it is good to learn different things so I learnt a little bit of animation, a little bit of typography and manipulation and such but my real passion is illustration.

Which programs do you use?

Oh, Adobe illustrator, adobe photoshop, I learn Paint Tool SAI and I’m going to learn Manga Studio, hopefully soon, It’s on my computer, haven’t got it around to it laughs

Do you have any creative process, do you mind sharing it with us?

Usually I’ll thing about Ideas all the time I have a very active mind so I think about things constantly and usually ideas would appear from nowhere in the shower or something and usually I have a piece of paper where I write down every piece of idea that I have and eventually I go back to that paper and “Oh, that actually was a good idea!” laughs and then I actually try to sketch a piece of the idea and probably 90% of my works is just probably sketches that normally ever see the light of day laughs

So you first sketch and then go to the computer

It kind of depends, I haven’t being using sketching as much lately I actually have a drawing tablet it is a UG so usually I’ll sketch on there, very loosely,  very weird sketches and then I’ll tweet them around and figure it out if I want to continue it from there

How much time do you take to make a masterpiece?

Oh God laughs usually most of my poster or coms take 3 days of working but it’s like work hard-burn out-take a break. I’m honestly not the fastest artist but I’m getting there.

So you talked about watching Pokemon, Dragon Ball Z, maybe sailor moon even

Actually I did watch sailor moon as much as into it as the other ones for some reason. Magical girls stuff wasn’t’ really my thing but Dragon Ball Z was the first one I started copying art from. My very first crush was Gohan I was about his age when I was starting crushing on him laughs

In this period which kind of influencers did you have? Where did you get inspiration from?

Usually most of the people I befriended at conventions some of them are really such an amazing artist and I look up to them, how they artwork are done, how they use their colors, so usually when I scroll down to Tumbrl I throw everything that I like into a folder and use it as reference to learn. My style changed a lot in the last two years drastically: I used to do really thick lines and now they are really thin coloring the lineart now and make it to look like a painting almost and in the future I hope starting doing less anime style and more portraits like. I’m also planning to start a webcomic about millennial life in retail.

Man can Link work it. #myart #botw #link

Una publicación compartida de CharlY (@ceephorstudios) el

Which part of this process do you find more the most enjoyable?

Actually is the sketches, when you start drawing your lineart you lose a lot like the little details. I like to see people’s sketchworks, like the wireframe underneath it because it has so much personality. As the human mind fill the little gaps, they look prettier sometimes and then I see my sketch art and I say “I hate this” laughs

And what about the most difficult part?

Well, I hate both linearting and coloring and that’s funny because that’s what you need to get the job done but it gets so tedious. It also depends on how I start, normally I try to space it out but like for example for the Toronto ComiCon I got two big pieces done and I got to the point where I was physically ill of looking at my art and I wanted to break my tablet screen but then you finish it and it you feel like relief.

Which kind of suggestion would you give to young artists who wants to be part of this comics and illustration life and such?

I’d suggest to keep on drawing. The thing is that a lot of people when they look at their art they hate it and get discouraged but when you’re at that point is because your mind knows that you can do better but your body hasn’t caught up to that skill so you have to keep on practicing your art and then when you star hating it again and that means you’re getting better.

Another suggestion that I’d make is that in this era and age be sure to have another job that pays it. Often I use my retail job to pay for my work that I do. It has its profits, but it’s always good to have something to fall off.

Criminal Minds Valentine’s I made like… 2 years ago Go eat some chocolate and have a lovely day #criminalminds #myart #valentines

Una publicación compartida de CharlY (@ceephorstudios) el

You talked about getting into portraits, do you prefer doing it on digital or traditional media?

I prefer digital, I mean I love people who can do traditional I think it is absolutely beautiful but I live on the “ctrl+z” key laughs If you ever see me stream you’ll see me drawing a line for about 10 minutes, always “ctrl+z” “ctrl+z” over and over again.

What about your fans?

I have a few very dedicated fans that come to see me every time I am at a convention I feel so warm and so happy and I feel that I’m doing the right thing in life because sometimes I feel like to give up because it is a really hard business to get into and the introduction of webcomics and patreon and stuff that kind of help out, a lot.

What about the copyright, how do you deal with the legal part of this?

The thing is that with most anime conventions is that they don’t really care about copyright, in their minds is more like free advertising. There are of course a few you have to watch out first, you never draw any Disney stuff, for the longest time you actually couldn’t draw any Undertale Art like it was not allowed at all, so at the time I was drawing things, but I wasn’t allowed to sell them then, all of sudden (I think it was about a year after the game release) it was released so let’s try to sell some artwork and then I jumped in! Actually it was just before last Toronto ComiCon and OMG I made so much money on Undertale Stickers and ran out on my design on Undertale art, almost every single time.

I’d suggest to… if you’re drawing something and you’re unsure, just do a quick check on the copyright laws but most of the conventions don’t really care and if anybody bothers you about it, just take it off online.

And what about your copyright, your art?

My art? If anyone wants to draw my characters I’d be so very happy, I do not care at all laughs

Because sometimes people get mad at their art stolen

I always put watermarks in all my stuff, but you can take off watermarks though. But I’ll be a little flattered before getting kind of upset about it. But the thing is that when I started to draw I started copying poses, and even entire pictures and that’s how people get started so there is an amount of leave-way that you have to allow, not to metion the fact that I draw fanart so to me to say that you cannot draw my characters it’s a little bit hypocritical. Some very big artist don’t allow people to draw their characters and I found it questionable because if people wants to buy the official art of your stuff, they’ll buy the official art but normally I’m on the artist alley because I want to see other styles and versions. So If you want to draw my characters, go ahead just make sure to tag me so I can see it and squeal about it laughs

Did you fall in love with her as well? Here you have her social media so you can be up to date with her lastest artwork and merch.


Maria Caterina Bruciapaglia

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