By Sarah Makse
Drake…unicorns…flamingos, oh my! The illustrations of Sydney based artist Fionna Fernandes are a technicolour teen dream that draws upon her love of pop culture and fashion to create intricate, unique designs. Whether her pieces are used for campaigns or adding some life to your Instagram feed they are fun and individual with a style that is truly her own. Teensoul chatted to the talent about what inspires her, what goes into creating her art and advice for teens wanting to pursue their dreams in the art world.
Describe your art in three words.
My art is colorful, bright and fun. My style is unique through my use of vibrant color combinations and expressive mark making patterns. There is a youthful flavor to my aesthetic.
Describe yourself in three words.
I am shy, youthful and lazy. I am quite introverted; I would rather watch a movie at home than go out for dinner. As an adult, I still love to watch cartoons, collect soft toys and wear colorful clothing. I am not very active… my physical activity is walking around playing “Pokémon Go”!
What is your greatest inspiration for your art?
My main sources of inspiration include:
• Childhood influences like Lisa Frank, Super Mario and My Little Pony
• 90s cartoons, fashion and graphics
• Disney films and characters
• Japanese culture, particularly kawaii (cute) clothing, food and toys
• Fashion labels such as Lazy Oaf, Spangled and Skinnydip London
• Other illustrators including Laura Callaghan, Hattie Stewart and Kelly Thompson
• Instagram, where I follow the work of artists, brands and fashion bloggers I like
• Pinterest, where I gather images of fashion, nature, and art that I enjoy
How did you develop your personal style?
I developed my unique style by experimenting with vibrant colour combinations, expressive mark making patterns, and combining digital and hand generated elements. Early visual styles I experimented with were psychedelic and oriental, which eventually developed into the aesthetic I have today.
What materials do you use for your art?
I use an Artline pen for my linework, and acrylic paint for the light-hearted pattern backgrounds. I scan in the linework and background patterns onto the computer. I use Adobe Photoshop to add color, shading and distinctive highlights, as well as combine digital and hand generated elements.
Where is your favourite place to create?
I don’t have a studio yet. I still create all my artwork in my bedroom! I like to create art at home, as I feel very comfortable and at ease in this space.
What recommendations do you have for young illustrators wanting to make their mark on the field?
1. Practice drawing whenever possible to constantly develop your visual style.
2. Never give up on your dream, keep trying to work towards it. It takes a lot of patience, practice and passion. If you work hard enough you will be able to achieve it.
Unicorn emoji. I adore anything “My Little Pony” related.
“Crave You” by Flight Facilities. The song is really catchy.
Dream travel destination?
Tokyo, Japan. I went there for a holiday last year – so incredible. I want to go back!
The 90s. I’m a 90s kid. I absolutely love 90s toys, cartoons, fashion and graphics.
Biggest celebrity crush?
Adam Driver. I really like him in the TV show “GIRLS”. I made this fan-girl doodle of him on my Instagram.
Want to see more of Fionna’s fabulous work?
Check out her website: http://www.fionnafernandes.com and follow her on social media @fionna.fernandes.