MokinaArt loves dragons. In fact, her fascination with the great lizards is only matched by her uncanny talent to give them expressive features, while also making them look impressive and menacing.
Her highly original style (or, more accurately, blend of styles) is also perfectly showcased in our Destroyer of Worlds Limited Edition design, starring -what else?- a smug-looking dragon.
But she loves other things too. Animals, both real and mythical. Nature. Hiking. Learning new things. And, of course, good music.
We sat down with her for a very insightful chat. Here’s what it looked like:
Where do you live and what does your workspace look like?
I live in a small village in Slovakia, north of the Czech border. It is a very nice place surrounded by beautiful nature and dense forests. As for my workspace, I’m not a very demanding creator, so I have a small corner in my child’s room where I’ve set up my PC and graphics tablet.
Your art is focused on fantasy creatures and animals. Why are you drawn to this topic?
I’ve had an affinity to animals since I was a little girl. They always fascinated me with their wild and free nature. I’ve been through several phases of animal-related artwork, and I was especially fond of horses and animal fanart – I loved The Lion King, for example. Over time I became interested in mythology and focused most of my attention on dragons. I hope dragons will never cease to fascinate me, as they inspire me to come up with great ideas and discover new ways to create. I see a lot of energy and mystery in them, and it fascinates me that everyone who draws dragons has their own idea of what they look like, even though no one has ever actually seen them. Unfortunately, animals are not my primary focus at the moment, but I always like to paint them in my free time.
How did you begin your journey as an artist?
I’ve always been interested in art. I first started drawing intensively in elementary school. Even back then, dragons were my favorites, I was drawing them everywhere! When I got my first tablet, my enthusiasm grew even stronger and drawing my art in a digital format was a huge change for me. I learned from my brother that I could share my work online so I joined various communities where I was posting my attempts. I received a lot of insights and constructive criticism, which motivated me to keep going. I was pleased to see that I was improving with each painting and my enthusiasm for painting kept growing so I decided to study art in high school and college. During school I became interested in selling my artworks so I started drawing commissioned works, which showed me a new path. I knew then that this would be my career and I focused on becoming a real, full-time artist.
How did you develop your art skills?
I developed my skills with hard work and determination in my heart. I earned my degree in digital and conventional graphic design, and although I learned some important things there, all my art skills are self-taught with the help of the internet.
How has your style changed over time?
Since I’ve been drawing digitally, my style has been changing pretty much every year! I don’t yet have a definitive style that I identify with. That’s why I like to experiment with different drawing styles: I’ve gone from 2D illustration, to quick sketches, to paintings aiming for realism. Of course, it also depends on my mood and what I feel like drawing at any given moment.
Speaking of, what inspires you?
I love to observe nature and its workings and imagine all kinds of scenes I could draw; I consider it an endless source of inspiration. My home country provides a lot of stimuli, whether from hikes or photographs, but my imagination is also stimulated by the right choice of music.
Which are your biggest artistic influences?
It’s hard to pick just one artist – I have a lot of favorite artists that I look up to and who are a great inspiration to me. One day I would like to get to the professional level of artists like Even Amundsen, Anna Podedworna or Lorenzo Mastroianni.
What motivates you to create?
Being able to work on what I enjoy and not stress about a different kind of work that would kill my mood. Thankfully, all I have to do is look at Instagram and I’m in the mood to draw.
How do you define success as an artist?
Each artist defines success differently. Some see success in exhibiting their work in prestigious galleries, others in selling their work and making a living. I personally consider success to be having the opportunity to draw and share my art with the world on a daily basis. And when someone commissions some specific design, it’s always a pleasure to be able to make people happy that way. Their shows of gratitude are absolutely worth it.
What are your goals for the future?
In the future I would like to expand to 3D modeling. I have always been fascinated by the possibilities – it’s a whole other universe for me and I would love to delve more into this art form. Of course, I also want to continue to improve my digital paintings and maybe finally discover my definitive style.