Abieto Art: An Interview with Emi Olin
with Gina McKnight, Monday Creek Publishing
Looking at The Athens News several years ago, I saw a photo of Emi Olin at the local Rathacon. She was signing her award-winning art and interacting with the crowd. A graduate of Alexander High School, currently attending Ohio University, Emi has won several accolades at the local and state level. At the age of 14, Emi won Ohio’s Doodle 4 Google competition (read the article in The Athens News here!). We are thrilled to have Emi as a Monday Creek Publishing artist!
GM: Describe your studio and where you like to create...
EO: My studio is a small, simple drawing space filled with anatomy books, plants, and fairy lights over the wall. I like to balance the lighting from the screen to my surroundings without using too much of a harsh single source (like a lamp). Sometimes, when I'm referencing a certain object, I'll try to have it right beside me until I finish the piece!
GM: I adore your magical art. What mediums do you use?
EO: I use traditional ink and digital work as a main form of practice!
GM: Who is your favorite artist?
EO: Frank H. Netter is an anatomical artist I hold true to my heart for his illustrative narrative for medical research and illustration. I also love an artist named Janice Sung, for her abstract art focusing around women, plants, and abstract conjectures throughout the work.
GM: Do you have a muse or other motivation that inspires your creativity?
EO: Whenever I create art, I like to think that I do it for someone. I often look to my friends for artistic input, and simply to be around them and feel encouraged, happy, and content with what I create. While in college, I also do my best to incorporate my skills for professors to view, constantly gaining new insight, opportunities, and skills to further aid me in my goals to become a children's book and medical illustrator!
GM: Of all the pieces you've created, do you have a favorite?
EO: One of my favorite pieces so far, is a piece called Honeycomb. Throughout my artistic career, I have very strong bonds towards symmetry, complex detail, and contrasting colors. I completed this piece first as a study for faces, which ended as one of my first details of a human face. I continued to flesh out the details, made mistakes, and found those mistakes as new insights to the layering processes available I had never considered before. The stark contrast and heavy uniform of symmetry constantly brings me a sense of organization, and suddenly with a twist of ununiform color schemes. It reminds me that even if I want to organize my entire life and all of its contents, things will always blend, things will spill, and it reminds me to do my best and breathe.
GM: You have a large local (as well as world-wide) fan base. People enjoy seeing your art. Are you currently exhibiting? Where?
EO: Yes! Currently in 2020, since March and in the Summer (2020), I will have a showing in Casa Nueva, Athens, Ohio, where originals will also be available for purchase! I chose this space specifically for the ties I hold to the restaurant, the staff that has known me since I was small, and as a way to give to their business.
GM: What are you currently creating?
EO: Currently, I am in the process of creating a project with Mark M. Dean, author of Doggy Deck Day and Fancy Flowers by Faye to create another book titled, Habit Rabbits, which explores narratives teaching children how to teach themselves healthy habits to keep themselves and others healthy. This book was originally prompted to start later in our book series. However, given the current pandemic of COVID-19, this project was brought to the front-grounds in efforts to get the book out and give to children to help parents teach their children about habits without scaring them of the current world situation.
GM: List 10 things your fans may not know about you...
EO: 1.) When I was younger, I was allergic to orange juice. However, I loved the stuff and would steal it every moment I could and would break out in horrid hives the next day. It was always worth it. I have since gotten over this allergic reaction, but I miss the scheming days of asking for orange juice the moment my mother looked away, chugging it down as fast as I could, hiding the evidence, and playing with the other children as nothing happened.
2.) I have the ability to lucid dream! I managed to achieve this ability by keeping a dream journal, where I detail all of my experiences in a visual form. Although, it's very dear to me, and not many are allowed to see it.
3.) My favorite color: Periwinkle!
4.) I can fire spin, and love to spin fire over the summer when the grass is damp (don't want anything catching on fire!!)
5.) I made my own major in my university! I was originally Pre-Med, but I decided that I wanted to go into iconographical illustration, but still focusing on anatomical thematics. As a result, it took me a while, but I managed to create my own Medical Illustration major! So far, I am extremely happy
6.) My favorite season is summer! The warm sun on my feet, going to ponds, hiking up hills to watch the subset, campfires with friends, fireflies at night, fresh fruit and vegetables? Sign me up!
7.) I have moved (so far) in 19 houses in my life, which means that for every year of my life, I have lived in a new house! It's a great way of keeping chapter memories of my life
8.) I use Painttool SAI vers. 2 and Photoshop as my digital software!
9.) Favorite food? Inarizushi! It's a bean-paste soaked in sweet liquid in a can that you can open up down the middle, stuff with rice (with a dash of rice vinegar) and eat with a little topping of red ginger! My grandmother made it every time we came over for events, and I remember eating them so fast, I would choke on the rice. I still do, but at least now I have a cup of water close to me when it comes.
10.) I love sewing clothes and animals! I'm terrible at ceramics, however. But! I've always wanted to make my own bowl and plates collection.
Connect with Emi…