One of the leading talents of boo!berry studio, Yinyee Tai is quite the creative talent. The studio acts as an independent Graphic Design & Creative Communications company, specializing in Brand + Design for print and web based projects. She isn’t one to go into big explanations about her work, but let’s just say that drawing keeps her really happy and these simple illustrations allow her to momentarily return to our simpler childhood where colors, hope and happiness are all around us. Read below for the full interview…
You describe your work as a return to our simpler childhood. Do any of your pieces explore the complex themes of adolescence and how young adults strive to cope with the reality of growing into their situation?
Yinyee: My previous works reminds me of my simpler childlike mood, where things are very optimistic and full of happiness. While attempting to maintain the same positivity in my new pieces, it explores more of adult themes where how things would be in my fantasized world. Well, everyone grows, it’s nature but remaining young at heart is very important.
Tell us a bit about boo!berry studio and how it got started, and the type of vision you hope to achieve with your brand.
Yinyee: boo!berry studio is a graphic design studio which consists of a compact team of multi-talented people. After I quit being a full-time graphic designer, my passion in design never really ceased, and jobs started to come from friends. Hence I founded this studio and started taking on design works from new clients. boo!berry studio’s mission is to help our clients communicate using smart, simple and conceptual design and w e take only two or three projects at a time so that we can do the best work and give projects the attention they deserve.
Is vector illustration a hard method? What are some of the pros and cons that come with it?
Yinyee: I’m a self-taught illustrator. Each technique has its own visual realm and you are allowed to visit when you need, while I have explored some other methods but vector is the one that I love best! I love the rawness and unfinished hard edges; the best part is the flexibility to amend and revamp artwork because they can be scaled up or down without any loss of quality. The disadvantage is that sometimes the creation of artworks is limited compared to other methods of illustrating.
Describe your creative process a bit.
Yinyee: Inspiration usually comes in the middle of the night, mostly before I sleep, ideas would pop out and I will try to sketch them down. Sketches are used to jot down the atmosphere I want to create, but some ideas do come again and again even after days. So whenever I’m in the mood to recreate them digitally, I will do some research and start vectoring using either a mouse or wacom. After finishing, most of the time the artworks will be given a finishing touch in Adobe Photoshop.
How does graphic design play a role in creating your illustrations?
Yinyee: I would like to think that both of them are quite similar, as graphic designers convey a specific message while illustrators portray their own feelings and visions in their work to communicate to audience; both are significantly important in helping one another.
Which do you prefer to do?
Yinyee: I’m juggling between both and I’m learning to focus on one thing at a time so for the moment, I would like to focus on improving my illustration skills and have more work for illustrating.
You state that one talent ultimately develops gradually to multiple disciplines. Where else do you see your career going?
Yinyee: I’m looking forward to share with others through blogging and create boo loves berry in 3D or custom-made products.
Do you have any favorite Asian films or Anime? Care to share some of your favorites?
Yinyee: I’m from Malaysia and there’s a movie called “Sepet” that I find it interesting and different from other local movies. Directed by Yasmin Ahmad, it tells a tale of a love that blooms between a Chinese boy and a Malay girl. Sepet is a Malay word which, in this context, refers to the ‘slit eyes’ of the Chinese. Another movie would be “Megane”, a Japanese film I saw recently. With our hectic busy lifestyle today, this movie conveys an important message, to let us know simple things around us are simply happiness. For animation, I love each and every work of Hayao Miyazaki because his animation has some sort of pureness and symbolic meaning behind his characters. Other Japanese anime like Nodame Cantabile, Doraemon, Slam Dunk, Nintama Rantarō, Chibi Maruko-chan are my favorite cheer-me-up anime!
How do you decide which colors to utilize in your illustrations?
Yinyee: To choose the mood that I want to portray, I will try out different colors – it’s easy since my illustrations are done digitally. Usually my artworks consist of strong choice of colors maybe because I love strong tonal contrasts especially turquoise, magenta, purple, blue and orange.
Lastly, any advice for any creatives out there?
Yinyee: Always strive towards your passion, determinedly and stay focused. Take notice of the opportunities that will crop up. Learn new skills and upgrade your knowledge to move forward as there are so much to learn from mentors and friends.
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