MERYL D’SA interviews LIDIA TOMASHEVSKAYA

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Today

Where are you from? What kind of work do you do?
I am from Saint-Petersburg Russia, but live in Israel now. I work as an illustrator and graphic designer.

When did you begin illustrating? Could you tell us what your process is?
I began illustrating about 6 years ago, after finding a modern illustration catalog in a bookstore. I enjoyed the illustrations in the catalog so much that I decided to try to illustrate myself. I am a self-taught, illustrator. Initially, I was drawing in Windows’ Paint when I was a kid; mostly some dreamy outfits for me and my friend, the clothes we wanted but couldn’t afford back then. Then I decided to work in Adobe Illustrated; I draw using computer mouse only. My first illustrations were for my graduation project for my graphic design school: it was 12 illustrations for all of the songs from Radiohead’s album “Hail to the Thief.”

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Your turn

What are some of the themes you have been working with in your art and what do you hope to achieve by focusing on these themes? 
I think the main theme is a human’s soul and I want to show the beauty and dark sides of it. Sometimes I start from color palette, sometimes from the pattern, sometimes from the idea or the metaphor. I am comparing people and creatures that I draw to myself, and to how I reflect on or react to the world or the people from my past because now these people are merely memories and have turned to some mix of their real personality and my attitude.

The warm tones that you utilize in your work are so beautiful! Could you discuss your style, and how you began working with your palette?
Actually, I never payed attention to or consciously I chose warm colors. It may be because I do not use them in my wardrobe since the colors don’t suit me. But it could also be that I like autumn. I do think that they look great on the dark blue or green background and stand out stronger.

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Chicken ride

What’s your daily routine? Do you go to the studio every day?
Now I’ve started to work in a workspace in Yaffo, but earlier I worked from home. I would be watching movies or shows while I was working, and now I listen to audio books and I can concentrate better in the workspace, even though I lose two hours to get there. I wake up late and work at night; I start my day with hot shower, facial, and short meditation. I suffer from anxiety and have been on the antidepressants for the last three years, so I’m trying to be consistent with my morning rituals to feel more calm and grounded.

Can you talk about your anxiety and how that may influence your artwork or how art helps with your anxiety, if it does?
I don’t think it always helps. It makes me even more anxious because I want to make everything as well as I can and I am afraid of critics. I am trying to make my life more stable and receive a stable income from my art so I depend on this, and since it is really important, it makes me anxious, but I can’t live without it anyway.

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Grief

How did you gain the confidence to share your work with the world?
I see a lot of people who allow themselves to share everything because we are millennials and we want to document every step; so I thought that my art would not the most awful thing to share.

Do you work with many clients. How did you begin to reach out into freelance work?
I signed with an agency a couple month ago, and now am working on my portfolio. I hope it will help me find new clients and eventually make a stable income as the illustrator. But now I work as a graphic designer. It is much harder to get a normal job for an illustrator here in Israel, so I hope move from here as soon as possible.

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Freedom

 


IMG_4627Lidia Tomashevskaya is a Russian-born Israeli illustrator. Self-taught, she started to illustrate in 2013 after graduating from Israel’s Open University Design Course. Her art is mostly about women, about a woman’s soul, woman’s relationships with herself and the world. facebook.com/LidiaTomashevskaya/, @lidia_tomashevskaya, lidiatomashevskaya.tumblr.com/

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