#4 Cosmic Convos with Sailor Mars feat. Dana Ulama

Welcome to my fourth Cosmic Convos! In the event you’ve learn my earlier conversations then you already know that I’m a giant fan of science fiction and particularly the subgenre cyberpunk. Films like Blade Runner present a not-so-distant dystopian world the place massive firms rule the world and the road between individuals and know-how blurs. Whereas this will not appear interesting to most individuals, the massive cities and landscapes that such movies painting do have a sure enchantment to many individuals together with myself. The usually neon-lit cities are as massive and delightful as you’ll be able to think about and you’ll discover endlessly.

An incredible artist I discovered by way of Twitter takes you into such worlds. Her work combines science fiction with a psychedelic affect and sketches moments of a dystopian world. I instantly fell in love together with her work once I noticed it and am fully absorbed within the worlds she creates once I have a look at her artwork. Plus a variety of her work has a purple hue, if you already know me you already know I really like purple, haha! I can’t wait to allow you to learn my dialog and uncover the world of Dana Ulama along with me!

Rei: Hello Dana! Though I’m conversant in your artwork, I don’t know a lot about you but. Are you able to please inform me extra about your self normally?

Dana: My title is Dana and I’m 33-year-old digital artist. I’m half German/ half Syrian and I’m presently residing in Cologne. I initially studied trend design but it surely wasn’t proper for me so I dropped out – I utilized to a Design Academy the place I later obtained my diploma in Communications Design. I moved to Berlin the place I labored as an illustrator and graphic designer within the people who smoke & 420 business. I stop my job in 2019 and began freelancing as a digital artist.

Rei: Let’s discuss your artwork! When precisely did you begin making artwork? Have been you at all times thinking about the identical model as you make now?

Dana: I’ve at all times liked to attract. I can not let you know once I began as a result of I really feel like I’ve finished it without end! My earliest reminiscence of me drawing was in kindergarten. I used to be at all times closely influenced by popular culture, TV and music.

As a child I used to be principally thinking about making trend illustrations and drawing mangas (I used to be a HUGE Sailor Moon fan) and later I began to get influenced by the tradition round psychedelic artwork and music and my work grew to become extra trippy. I by no means actually deliberate for a selected model, I assume it simply develop naturally. I didn’t know I used to be going to finish up doing animations – about two years in the past I used to be satisfied I might find yourself in package deal design or typography. Actually, I simply do what I really feel like and see the place it takes me. I really like that about my job.

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Rei: How a lot are you engaged on artwork every day? Does it take a very long time to make your artwork and the way precisely does this course of work? 

Dana: I spent most of my time drawing in Procreate. If I’ve a superb movement going I can spend hours with no break simply drawing – which really led to my present arm harm and that’s the explanation why I’ve to take it simple. Drawing generally is a very addictive course of for me however I find it irresistible, it makes me happier than something. I’d say my artworks take someplace between 8 and 30 hours to complete.

My essential focus is the drawing itself however a couple of 12 months in the past I began educating myself some easy animation and ever since then most of my work finally ends up being animated in Photoshop or After Results after the drawing is full. Earlier than I found Procreate earlier this 12 months I used to be principally utilizing illustrator to create vector primarily based artworks.

For me Procreate made the method of making perspective drawings so much simpler which is why my work this 12 months has been extra centered on skylines and concrete sceneries. All in all, I might say I exploit a wild mixture of softwares.

Rei: I see science-fiction, cyberpunk and, as talked about, even psychedelic inspiration in your artwork. Do you could have any particular sources from which you bought this inspiration?

Dana: I grew up with Sailor Moon which in all probability influenced the model wherein I draw faces. I attempt not to attract in an anime model but it surely was the primary model I ever drew individuals in and I feel it’s arduous to do away with.

Once I was in my early 20s my greatest affect was undoubtedly psychedelic music like Goa, Trance and Psychedelic Rock, additionally motion pictures like Worry and Loathing in Las Vegas or different motion pictures about drug use (I’ve had a number of experiences in that space myself). I really feel prefer it was by way of these psychedelic experiences that I additionally grew to become extra thinking about science-fiction, aliens and area stuff.

In recent times I’ve been primarily impressed by digital and experimental music, significantly Dreampunk, Vaporwave and Lo-fi and movies like Akira, Blade Runner or Ghost within the Shell.

Rei: You typically sketch very dystopian worlds. What message or feeling do you need to convey together with your artwork?

Dana: It’s much less of a message and extra of an environment that I want to convey. For a few years I’ve handled anxiousness every time I left the home – I can get impressed by random avenue nook of no matter metropolis I presently dwell in, however I see all of it by way of a filter that makes all the things look barely extra surreal.

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Colors are essential to me. They add extra to the ambiance than the small print within the drawing. I really like utilizing purple together with neon tones – it feels dreamy but synthetic, which works completely for urbanscapes.

I assume a few of my drawings are dystopian, which is the cyberpunk affect – however generally I simply need to take the viewer away to a distinct world, get a break from actuality. I not too long ago began experimenting with alien typography, each textual content might be open to interpretation and it offers me an opportunity to interrupt away from the standard Tokyo or Hong Kong-based cyberpunk skylines.

Rei: Do you could have different artists who look as much as and encourage you?

Dana: There are such a lot of, I can not title all of them however a few of my greatest influences are Kidmograph, Xsullo, Seerlight, Maddog Jones, Deathburger and Baka Arts.

Rei: Your work has solely been offered on the NFT platforms for a number of months now. When did you begin this journey to create NFTs out of your work and the way are you having fun with it to this point?

Dana: I’ve minted my first NFT on Tezos in June – it was soooo wild ever since. I had finished weeks and months of analysis on crypto and NFTs and I’ve had an enormous respect for the complete crypto area and was virtually afraid to affix, since I’ve learn principally about how arduous it’s to promote a chunk, or get accepted to one of many main platforms or about scammers.

However shortly after I used to be invited to Basis I used to be simply blown away by how profitable I used to be – I anticipated to not be seen in any respect or promote something and as I’m typing this I’ve offered 19 out of 20 NFTs on Basis. And I’ve learnt to like the neighborhood a lot!

I at all times thought I used to be shy and never the sort of individual to do a variety of chatting however Discord and Twitter turned out to be my favourite locations on the Web – I’ve met so many fantastic individuals and creators I really feel like it will not of occurred with out NFTs.

Rei: Do you could have any particular objectives you need to obtain within the NFT area? 

Dana: My objective normally was at all times to have the ability to make a residing with my artwork. NFTs have given me a substantial amount of independence – I used to rely on shopper work and like many different illustrators or artists I typically considered creating an earnings by printing merchandise – which is one thing I by no means actually appreciated to be sincere. I don’t prefer to see my work on telephone instances or T-shirts.

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Earlier than NFTs I might create an illustration and there was at all times only one query at the back of my head: Is that this appropriate for mass manufacturing? That is now not related for me. I can now deal with high quality and by myself imaginative and prescient and create it anyway I would like, I now not have to fret about whether or not it appears “industrial” or not.

What I’m wanting ahead to is having an opportunity to collaborate with different artists – I’ve met so many superb individuals within the area.

Rei: Judging by your artwork, I see that you’re already considering so much about what the world may appear like within the close to future. Inform me the way you envision the world for the following 25 years. How would this appear like to you and what place would NFTs have on this world?

Dana: NFTs are nonetheless on the very starting and I’m positive they’ll have an amazing (constructive) affect on the complete artwork and an leisure world. The hype may fade away however I’m satisfied NFTs will stay related for severe creators and collectors.

But it surely’s arduous to foretell the place the know-how will take us –  I want extra individuals would take an curiosity in a decentralized internet however the previous has proven us that almost all of individuals select comfort over privateness and safety and proper now the crypto area can seem intimidating to some individuals: it takes analysis and work to handle your tokens and keep away from scammers.

I nonetheless really feel considerably new to the world of NFTs however educating myself has helped me overcome sure fears that I had. I’m extra afraid of the quantity of knowledge that firms like Google have saved about me than I’m of scammers within the crypto area.

Rei: Lastly, the place can individuals discover extra about you and your artwork?

Dana: Social media is a full time job and I’ve deserted my Fb web page after the creator instruments grew to become too buggy. I’m now specializing in Twitter, Behance and Instagram. NFTs can be found on Foundation and HEN solely.

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