Hi, I’m Michael, and welcome to Let’s Talk Process, Issue No. 4! Thanks so much for joining me for the fourth issue of my ongoing artist interview series. You can read more about me here.
My goal for this series is to dig deeper and explore how various creative people specifically approach their daily work. With that in mind, the questions for Let’s Talk Process center around the unique creative processes of artists & authors, how and when they work, routines, and inspirations.
This issue, I’m excited to have cartoonist & illustrator Lisa Poggioli as my guest!
Hi Lisa! To start, tell us a little about yourself and your art.
Hi Michael, I am a cartoonist/Illustrator from New Jersey. My obsession with art and cartoons began when I was a young child. My girlfriend’s parents were friends with one of the animators that animated “Felix the Cat.” I met him once when he was invited to my girlfriend’s birthday party. While at the party, he drew portraits of Felix for all the kids. I knew that I wanted to be a cartoonist after watching him that day. I recently graduated from art school. I mainly work in ink and watercolors. Occasionally, I will also use acrylics.
Your delightful cat character, Dex, has garnered quite a few fans on Twitter. How did you come up with the idea for Dex?
I first came up with the idea for Dex in 1996. He is based on my pet cat Casey. Casey was an intelligent and regal animal. He had an air of sophistication about him. I started a comic strip with him and a couple of other characters. He caught on after I started posting him for Inktober.
Describe your creative schedule. When do you work on art? What does your normal daily routine look like?
I don’t have a set schedule for my art. I will draw at different times during the day due to the fact that I work part time. I usually write down ideas and quickly scribble a “Dex” in the morning. I will clean up and finalize the drawing at night when everything is quiet.
Do you think there are certain times of day that are more conducive to your creativity?
I find that I am more creative early in the morning before I start my morning routine.
How much planning goes into your creative process? Do you set self-imposed goals or deadlines along the way?
There is some planning involved with the creative process. I will jot down ideas as they come to me during the course of the day. I will also bounce ideas off my husband before I begin drawing my characters. I do not have any self-imposed goals or deadlines. However, I do try to draw at least one “Dex” cartoon every week.
Do you have any particular rituals, locations, and/or favorite tools that are necessary for your creative process?
I usually listen to music or watch TV when I draw or doodle my characters. I also have a dedicated work area where I have a drawing table, light pad and cabinets where I keep my art supplies. My favorite tools are a flat ½ inch brush and a round Nos. 2 & 4 brushes. I have had these brushes for many years.
Does social media help or hurt your creative process? In what ways?
I find social media to be very helpful in the creative process. Sometimes I feel isolated when I am working on my art. I find that it can be a lonely endeavor at times. As you know, I love Twitter. It is a wonderful platform that allows you to showcase your art and cultivate friendships. I have met and become friends with many talented artists on Twitter. I look forward to seeing their works each and every day. My Twitter friends are a tremendous source of inspiration. Finally, I would not have been able to showcase “Dex” without Twitter. I have also started an Instagram page to showcase my works.
When you have a creative block or lull in your process, what are some things that help you get back on track?
When I have a creative block, I will usually take a break from everything for a day or two so that I can clear my mind.
When is a piece of art “finished”? How do you know?
I am not always sure when a drawing is finished. I always think that I am missing something. Sometimes I will walk away and come back and look at it again. I will then decide if I will add something or leave it alone.
A huge thank you to Lisa Poggioli for being a part of Let’s Talk Process!
Follow her on Twitter at: www.twitter.com/caseybella3
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