First in the exclusive interview series of Perakean artists from the Nando’s Art Initiative features 21-year-old Ng Pui Jo.
Hailing from Menglembu, her first-time participation this year saw her work, “Death of Eden King” shortlisted in the digital art category.
She finished her diploma on illustration, movie and game art in The One Academy and is currently studying for her bachelor’s degree in illustration at the University of Hertfordshire in the UK.
“I was a science stream student and only started to do art when I left my high school at 17. I appreciate my parents’ support since they allowed me to follow my interests and get into what I’m really into. Although relatives said it was such a ‘waste’ not to choose a science subject in university, I am glad I made the right choice. Even though the journey of chasing your dream is painful, it’s good to be doing what you want,” Pui Jo shared with Ipoh Echo.
All she wants to share via her works is the world of imagination in her mind which can be beautiful, fancy, dangerous and even scary! She also incorporates humanity issues in her work to serve as a reminder to people and herself.
On the inspiration of her creations, she explained, “Every small thing in my life inspires me, what we need to do is to be observant and combine it with our imagination. The easiest example, when the tree shakes, an adult will think it is caused by wind but a child will think the tree is dancing!”
Eden is a kingdom where spirits and humans live together and “Death of Eden King” depicts the death of the King due to the mistrust and betrayal from the kingdom mentor who is also his comrade in arms.
Besides the Nando’s Art Initiative, she was also involved in the 6th Malaysia International Shoe Festival 2015, Esmod Batik Portrait Painting Project and Blossom Arts Festival Malaysia 2016.
She usually works with Photoshop and enjoys doing watercolour and line art sketches. “I really like the impasto technique in painting and hope to nail it in both digital and traditional media in the future,” she added.
According to her, physical tools like Wacom, line art pen and watercolour should be accompanied by a creative and mature mind as well as a good concept and story. “I am still learning and finding my way to develop my own style. Hopefully one day I can come out with a series of work in my particular style,” she enthused.
Citing Zeen Chin, a Malaysian illustrator as her inspiration, she is now working on illustration comics to create more illustrations in continuous form instead of just one painting.
“I know life is tough and sometimes it might sap one’s will. All I want to say is do not regret your choice and always think of the original intention of why you wanted to do art,” she pointed out. Thus her advice for aspiring artists: “It is never too late to start your art journey.”
Interested readers who would like to commission a piece from her can email her at firstname.lastname@example.org or swing by: https://www.artstation.com/miniriver.
After a glimpse into the world of imagination of the talented yet humble Pui Jo, next issue will feature another Perakean artist, Hug Yin Wan, the grand prize winner in the fine art category of Nando’s Art Initiative 2015. Stay tuned!