Today I want to introduce you to one of the most versatile and fantastic deviants I’ve met on dA: =Deus-Nocte! She’s currently working on her manga MidWinter, her characters designs are amazing but also very well developed, the characters have their own distinctive traits and personalities that make them be relatable and charming. There are many things I could say about =Deus-Nocte but I think you should take the chance to find them out on your own <3 She’s definitely worth talking to!
Hello there dear! Why don't you tell us something about yourself? And now... how about something nobody knows about you? ;D
By day, I'm a professional illustrator that works at a game company; by night (and weekends) I indulge in my passion of making my own manga! You could say I'm quite the workaholic. When I have time to unwind, I'll enjoy the occasional video game, social gathering, or I might just draw something from my series that isn't the actual comic.
Hmm, something no one knows... Tea is something I prefer hot, and Coffee I'll only drink if it's cold. (And with lots of sugar)
What is the "first" memory you have related to art? Did you love drawing just as much when you were a toddler or did you prefer other crafts? (If you remember, that is xD)
I clearly remember sitting in front of my TV when I was about... 7? and just constantly drawing something from Pokemon, YuGiOh!, or DragonBallZ. It usually was just portraits back then, but it didn't stay that way for long.
That being said, I've been scribbling since I was 3. Art always has been, and always will be, what I do. As an only child, I had no siblings to play with, and my mom never made it her job to entertain me. If I was bored, it was up to me to find something to do, and what better than to pick up a pencil and draw?
Another reason I attached so heavily to it, I think, is my speech impediment. My voice has never been very cooperative for me, so I had to find other ways to express myself and communicate. Even today, it's a struggle for me to do something as simple as telling people about my own series, which is disheartening when trying to promote it. But I don't let it stop me!
What influenced you to start drawing in Manga & Anime style? Do you enjoy trying other styles too?
It was definitely all those childhood shows I was telling you about! I just kept watching more and more as I grew up, and as a budding fanartist that wanted to draw my favorite characters and make them look right, it influenced me for sure. Looking at my art, I feel that some traits from Fullmetal Alchemist and Bleach are what have stayed with me the most (though admittedly with proportions and anatomy more grounded in reality)
I like trying different styles every once in awhile and exploring my boundaries (and I'll always, always push myself!), but it isn't something I'm driven to do. As a professional that is trying to develop a brand around my artwork, consistency tends to come first so it's memorable.
You're currently developing your manga. Can you tell us your experiences while creating it? How did you come up with the ideas? Do you try to convey any message to the readers of your stories throughout the plot?
Man, it's been a ride. I could probably write a literal book on our journey with this, but I'll try and keep it short! It all started with a dream...
...No, I'm serious, a literal dream. And it wasn't even my own; my co-creator had it. It was a scenario I was really excited about continuing, so I proposed we make it into an actual RP. We threw in a bunch of our own characters and plots into one collaboration. The further we got, the more realized that we may actually have something here. 9 months later and we've got a complete first draft of an estimated 30 volume manga.
But we weren't done. Next came a butt-ton of editing, lots of research, building a team, and finally producing the actual comic. This project has spearheaded a studio of (currently) 7 members, including myself, that we have plans to make into a legal business entity within the next year. It is insane how much it has grown from a little side project for fun; now it's the foundation for several of our careers.
As for ideas... On my creative end, I really love mixing things. I like taking a stereotype and turning it on it's head, developing it in a unique way, or smashing a few together. And it's important not to fret over being original, because nothing is original anymore, and that's okay! It's all about what you do with the concept to make it engaging, relatable, and fun.
In any of my work, I really like to blur the line on what's right and wrong. Show it from different perspectives and make sure the reader doesn't have a clear indication of who the good guy is. Those stories are always the most interesting to me, and I strive to do the same in my work.
Of all the characters you've created, who do you feel the closest to? Do you relate to anyone in particular? If so, why?
Hands down, it is Nox, the main character to my graphic novel. I have never had a character that is so alive within me. I honestly consider him his own person. I really can't say I relate to him most of the time, but I understand him and care about him deeply. He is the only character that I do not get tired of drawing, to boot, which I am very grateful for as a manga artist, haha!
I will say that unlike some people, I don't view my characters as children. I feel more as if I share a mind with them (him especially), something more akin to piloting a jaeger out of Pacific Rim.
What are your tools of the trade? Do you think the tools make the artist?
When it comes to comics and big illustrations, I am entirely digital. I love the versatility of the medium and it's something I've worked with since I was 13. For my sketching, inking, and painting, I subscribe to Paint Tool Sai. For cel shading, effects, and screentoning, it's all Photoshop. I do very much enjoy the occasional copic piece, however!
That said, tools are definitely not what make the artist. It helps, for sure, to have tools at your disposal... but it takes skill to use the tools correctly!
Is there anything else you'd like to share with our readers? Feel free to express yourself!!
If you have a dream to create your own intellectual property, whether it be a manga, novel, video game, movie, whatever--just do it. It takes an insane amount of work and isn't for everyone, but if you have passion, the will to keep going, and an open mind about your work--a mind open to critique--then you can do anything.
My path to success is paved by tilting every variable that I control to my favor. You control yourself, your knowledge, and your actions. Adapt to situations and really make the effort to educate yourself on every aspect of your endeavor. Turn your weaknesses into strengths and set goals for yourself, big and small. Every small accomplishment is instrumental in your ultimate success!
Thank you for letting us get to know you better sweetheart!! Good luck with your future endeavors <3