Artist Feature of the Month – December Q & A with Zoe Davis

Eve Lazarski

Zoe Davis, a senior at Wauwatosa West, makes bright drawings featuring acrylic and ink. She draws inspiration from scene, horror, and scrapbooking, and hopes to go to art school. I spoke with Zoe about what she had to say about her experience as an artist.

What type of art do you make?

I usually make 2d art, like painting. I really like to emphasize juxtaposition, so I’ve been really into mixing cute stuff with evil stuff. Also, just in general I love using bright colors and all that. And mixing. So I’ll put glitter on pieces it definitely should not be put on.

Are there any specific mediums that you really like to combine?

I love working with paint and ink at the same time, because I think, well, specifically acrylic paint, it can have a really strong color. And when you line it with something that’s strong, like ink, because you can’t really line anything with a brush.

How did you start making art?

I typically like to think about it for months and months. I’m like, oh, I should do that. And then I finally do it. I used to do that. But more recently, I just kind of go with the flow of things. I’ll sketch out pieces and then I’ll line them and then maybe I’ll add color, maybe I won’t, it’s very in the moment.

What’s your inspiration for your artwork?

I love working with really, really bright colors, like pink and green. I wear them every day and just make me so happy. So I always do something bright . I’m also really inspired by the manga artist Junji Ito. I’m inspired by a lot of horror movies. Like Jennifer’s body, Midsummer, Carrie, and also more things from my childhood like Monster High. I recently got a lot of inspiration from early 2000s scene culture, specifically is giving me a lot of stuff and really old internet culture, which I think is super interesting. And also scrapbooking. Seeing people make bullet journals and how they organize it, and how a person can physically interact with the space is really interesting.

What do you hope to do with your work later in life?

I want to become a career artist. I’m a senior so hopefully I won’t get into a lot of debt, but I would just love to sell my art and do art on commision. Because doing commision, it’s so fun for me, just having a person say, Oh, I want this, it really makes me happy. And I’ll say, okay. And as an artist, you see so many flaws in your art, all the time, whenever you make anything, and having someone else see it and think it’s beautiful. And I’m just like, really? Quick, you think it’s pretty? And of course I thought it was pretty. I gave it to them. But I just love seeing their reaction.

What’s your advice for other young artists?

Just draw all the time. Draw whenever it makes you happy. Who cares? And honestly, it sucks to fail. But be really excited to fail because what I learned with art is that failure is just a stepping stone to getting where you need to go. All it is, is just something you need to learn about. And I think like, it’s a problem that a lot of people have, when they mess up. They say that they can’t do anything about it, but with art you definitely can, and it can lead to something even more beautiful.

This column showcases artists from East and West. Contact us to be featured!