Hieu is a 20-year-old student who goes under the artist alias of ‘kelogsloops’. Hieu is located in Melbourne, Australia and he has always had a passion for art. Growing up, he dreamt of becoming an illustrator at Disney, and he still thinks to this day, that dream holds quite true. It was a pleasure for us to take an interview with Hieu (kelogsloops) who shared some interesting facts of his biography. We wish you a pleasant reading of kelogsloops success story and viewing of his spectacular illustrations.
First Steps in Drawing
AP: Hey Hieu, thank you so much for finding the time to give us an interview and share your success story with us. We are honored to feature your illustrations on Astrum People and hope that you will enjoy answering the questions we have prepared for you today. Сould you please tell us what got you started?
Hieu: Sailor Moon, and my sister-in-law – that is how I began drawing. I was around 5 or so and loved cartoons, and Sailor Moon happened to be the one thing that my sister-in-law ‘taught’ me to draw, using one of those ‘How-to-Draw’ approaches. As far as I can remember, that’s what got me started in drawing. Since then, I’ve always been “that kid who draws”, and it’s only within recent years that I’ve really begun to make the most of my love for art.
I recently decided to make a switch and put my passion and dream as my first priority; taking a leap of faith to change my course of studies to pursue a career in art.
AP: That is an incredible start. Do you have any formal education in visual arts or were you self-taught?
Hieu: To this date, I’ve been self-taught. However, I’ve made the change to pursue a formal education in visual arts, Animation to be specific, which I start this March !
AP: Congratulations on deciding to pursue a formal education in Animation. Taking into account the development of animation technologies, it is a very promising area. What genre are your illustrations?
Hieu: Originally, I began with anime/manga styles. I loved cartoons growing up, so it was only natural that it was the genre I drew in for the earlier years of my life. As I grew up, I took more to realism, and eventually found satisfaction in having a style that met between realism and an almost cartoon-ish. Along the way, I did dabble with various styles in an attempt to ‘find my own’, but with little success. These included comic-styles, hyperrealism and, even more, Disney-esque/caricature.
AP: So you experimented a lot to find your artistic style. How would you describe your work?
Hieu: I’ve had my work described as ‘dream-like’ or ‘ethereal’, which is a statement that I believe holds true in describing my work. I draw female subjects, often coupled with various different visual elements, playing with light, colour and composition.
Equipment and Techniques
AP: What kind of equipment and techniques do you use to create such beautiful illustrations?
Hieu: I use Adobe Photoshop CS6 with my Wacom Intuos 4 for my digital work. For my watercolor work, I use Winsor & Newton’s Cotman colours primarily, with Koh-I-Noor’s cakes occasionally, and Daniel Smith/Art Spectrum paints.
My process usually begins with a sketch or a concept I have in mind. Digitally, I’d begin with a quick colour blocking of shapes and visual elements, also playing with light and colour roughly to get an overall ‘feel’ of the aesthetic and mood. From there, I refine the details in layers over and over.
Similarly, with my watercolour work I begin with the sketch and light laying down of visual elements, shapes and colours. I use multiple layers of paint to refine the details and amend colours.
2015 Watercolor Sketchbook
AP: Thank you very much for describing your creative process. I’m sure our readers will find it useful. What is your latest project you’ve worked on so far? What inspired you to start working on it?
Hieu: One of my projects that I completed recently was a ‘2015 sketchbook’. At the beginning of 2015, I set a goal to improve my watercolour work, become comfortable with it and no longer fear it. I wanted to make a recollection of my journey and progress through the year, so that at the end, I could look back and hopefully, see how far I’d have come and what I’d improved on, and what I still needed to improve on. Fast forward to the end of 2015, I’d say it was one of the most rewarding projects I’ve ever done, and I’ll definitely be doing it this year too.
The Formula for Success
AP: What is the formula for success in your activity?
Hieu: In all honesty, I’m not quite sure what it is, or if there even is a formula. Where I’ve gotten and where I’m going is still a big mystery, and everything I’ve done so far has just been what I believed was right. I challenge myself all the time to do new things; experimenting with different mediums, trying different styles, drawing different subjects for example. I try to share my work and get out in public as much as I can, and I try to be regular and consistent with my work. I think that’s what I can attribute to how I’ve gotten to where I am thus far.
AP: Who is one person you would like to see interviewed on Astrum People?
Someone like Lois Van Baarle or Alice X Zhang! They’re two of my favourite and biggest inspirational artists, and I believe they have a huge success story that’s attributed to their drive, commitment and love for art that could inspire a lot of people out there.
AP: Thank you, Hieu. We will do our best to contact them. Is there someone who supports you in your creativity?
Hieu: I have a general wave of support that makes me feel at peace with my work by my family and my closest friends. They all know I love art, and really push me to get my work out there and help me in that respect, and that means the world to me.
One person in specific would be one of my best friends, though. She singlehandedly has witnessed all my ups and downs in this whole journey. She’s been there to encourage me in my downfalls, and has never faltered, lost faith or given up on me, and to have that and to know that I have that person there is the greatest support you can have.
AP: Tell us three lessons you believe are crucial for every artist?
Hieu: Set a goal, challenge yourself, and enjoy it. Setting goals became important for me because it meant I had some time to work towards for every day and to know that everything was a stepping stone for something bigger gave me the drive to keep going. Challenging yourself means that you can try new things you’ve always wanted to do, but the best part is looking back, and looking at how far you’ve come. When you look back a year later and realise that what you initially thought was impossible, you realise how much you really can do if you set your mind to it. Lastly, enjoy it, because you should have fun and love what you get to do!
Hieu, it has been a great honor for us to take an interview with you. Thank you so much for sharing such amazing success story with us. We wish you brilliant success, many more spectacular illustrations and, of course, a brilliant career of animator. To learn more about Hieu (kelogsloops) illustrations feel free to visit his personal website featuring ethereal illustrations.
Hieu (kelogsloops): Ethereal Illustrations. (). Astrum People website. Retrieved , from https://astrumpeople.com/hieu-kelogsloops-success-story/.
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