Interview: Melissa Wilkinson

Today we’re joined by Melissa Wilkinson, who also goes by Art by Little Miss Luna. Melissa is a phenomenal visual artist who specializes in digital art. She frequently draws cutesy characters. For the most part, she has been drawing anime stuff for artist alleys but has recently branched out and done some drawings of plants. It’s clear she’s a talented and dedicated artist, as you’ll soon read. My thanks to her for taking the time to participate in this interview.

WORK

Please, tell us about
your art.

I’m an unabashed anime fan, so I tend to draw cutesy stuff.
I’m working on refining my style and branching out into other areas but I
always come back to cute because, ultimately, it’s what I like. I’ve learned I
don’t need to apologize for it. I’m a mostly digital artist but lately I’m
trying to learn watercolors!

What inspires you?

I draw a lot of fan art so I love taking inspiration from
cartoons, especially ones like “Steven Universe” that are mature beyond their
core audience. Outside of fiction I take a lot of my inspiration from food.
There’s so many colors and textures present in the edible!

What got you
interested in your field?  Have you
always wanted to be an artist?

I took a graphic design class in eighth grade and I’ve liked
digital art ever since. I gave up on it to study hospitality when I went to
college, but ultimately I came back to it and got a degree in graphic design,
too. I didn’t always want to be an artist but I was always interested in
creative things like cooking and writing.

Do you have any kind
of special or unique signature, symbol, or feature you include in your work
that you’d be willing to reveal?

I used to have a silly little symbol I’d stamp in the corner
of all my drawings of a heart with bat wings. Now I just have a logo I use on
my business cards.

What advice would you
give young aspiring artists?

The best advice I can give is when you’re working on
something and you’re starting to get frustrated, walk away. Take a break, take
a nap, breathe. You won’t produce any good work if you’re angry so come back to
it when you’re calm again. You can look at it with fresh eyes and try to figure
out what’s going wrong.

ASEXUALITY

Where on the spectrum
do you identify?

I used to identify as alloromantic but currently I’m going
by demisexual.

Have you encountered
any kind of ace prejudice or ignorance in your field?  If so, how do you handle it?

Not from other artists, no, but from my family, certainly.
Most of what I hear is that I’m confused or I just haven’t figured myself out
yet. Ultimately, I just have to accept that not everyone in my life is going to
understand me and that’s ok. It doesn’t really matter if they don’t get it so
long as I feel comfortable with who I am.

What’s the most
common misconception about asexuality that you’ve encountered?

That it’s just a phase and that the internet has poisoned my
mind and made me think I’m a “special snowflake.”

What advice would you
give to any asexual individuals out there who might be struggling with their
orientation?

Once, during Thanksgiving break from college, I was hanging
out with my friends from high school. They all started talking about their
sexual experience from their first semester in college and I felt so utterly
uncomfortable that I kept sneaking off into the bathroom, hoping that when I
got back they would have moved on to something else. Eventually I left and went
home and cried in my mother’s lap. I had no idea why I felt such a disconnect,
why I felt so lost. A year later I read about asexuality on Tumblr and I
realized that there was a word for why I was the way I was, and that there were
other people like me. The internet is your friend. You are not alone. Arm
yourself with knowledge and know that you are perfectly normal and there are
people who will support you. I’m one of them. Shoot me a message on any of my
social media accounts and I’ll be happy to talk things over! Ace artists have
to look out for one another.

Finally, where can
people find out more about your work?

Lately I’ve been mostly using my Instagram (at artbylittlemissluna)
but I also upload things to my DeviantArt (Little-Miss-Luna) and my
Facebook (at artbylittlemissluna)
and Twitter (at art_by_LML). I
also have an Etsy store (at artbylittlemissluna)
if you want to see the products I make and sell with my art!

Thank you, Melissa, for participating in this interview and this project. It’s very much appreciated.