One of the banal traits that can be noticed in every Bengali parent is their immense enthusiasm after getting their children admitted to art schools. Our 5-year-old protagonist’s case was no different. However, unlike most other Bengali children, she did not lose her gusto for art even when university-rush took over her life. A few years later, being influenced by some random lifely coincidence and a sudden appetency to get back to her long-lost hobby, she started using her face as her ultimate canvas and that resulted in the birth of the very unique and diverse art blog “youknow_hue”. Her artwork ain’t mere; each of the posts depicts its own story and important message through its intricate flow of creativity. Today, we’ll learn about the specs and details of this immensely creative personnel’s art journey. Although we’ve known her for a considerable amount of time through Instagram and have adored her work over there, it’s time to go deep and indulge in the stories behind her epic depictions.
Content Editor: Rifah Nawar
IG handle: @parchmentstains
September Featured Artist: YouKnow_Hue
Q. Tell us a little about your creative-journey, how and when did it spark a start?
I had been going to art school and painting on and off from the age of 5 until I got extremely busy and could no longer make time for art in university. For those four years, I was awfully uninspired, disliked my own work and mourned at the loss of my identity as an artist. This year, I felt that itch to paint something, after so long. I could have made with a few old tubes of paint but there was no art paper at home/in nearby stores. Determined to paint, I set up in front of the mirror and used my face as the canvas. It was so much fun I was painting the next day and the next. Transforming myself with face art became highly addictive, stirring me to start the art blog “youknow_hue”.
To be honest, face painting is not a completely new form of artwork. But, youknow_hue’s story behind painting her face shows real passion and that’s what distinguishes her from most other contemporary artists.
Q. What are your indispensable tools and materials?
For starters, a mirror! I use acrylic paint because it can be mixed with other colours more easily than face paint. Thin nail art brushes, soft blush-on/foundation brushes work far better than stiffer options. Since face art can take a huge toll on the skin, a skin protectant (to protect skin from heavy dirt/grease used by factory employees) is necessary. For my SFX work, I use latex, and homemade scar wax and a lot of dollar store products as needed.
If one scroll through her Instagram feed, he or she’d most definitely wonder about how their very favourite “youknow_hue” can get all that done on her face! Especially when we sometimes get to see her bare in the stories and a few rare posts, we cannot fathom what amount of extra care and protection the girl has to put up with to keep her skin so flawless and immaculate as a canvas! Surely, she needs to do a lot of research to have done everything perfectly!
Q. Where do you look for inspiration?
I get my inspiration from movies (esp horror movies), folktales, digital work by other artists, and more frequently, prompt words from my captions. Most ideas come in the shower or when I am extremely busy at work and can’t afford distractions.
No wonder all sorts of great ideas hit us during the most quirky and impossible hours! However, as her audience and avid follower, it feels great to see our featured artist bring out the characters of the folklores, which we’ve read and visualized so far only, to the reality through her work.
Q. Where do you see yourself/ your business in the next 5 years? Do you have a vision?
I hope to be able to maintain consistency in running this blog and make artworks that are unique yet very relatable. Besides artwork, I want to try and talk about issues that have had a huge impact on me growing up, namely mental health issues and the biases in our society. I dearly hope to be recognized and remembered as an artist.
Being familiar with the untold rules of the art and craft world, we realize how important consistency is to grow; not only in terms of a follower base but also in respect of self-development and skills concerned. Youknow_hue’s plan on exploring other important aspects of life along with working on her creative-self is something inspiring and worth following. We surely wish her the best so that she can achieve it all.
Q. Among all the things you create, what is your most favourite creation?
My favourite artwork keeps on changing! However, the “Toxic Parenting” series and the “Japanese Horror” series will always be special.
Given the concurrent issues that are being surfaced about bad parenting, youknow_hue’s coming up with the “Toxic Parenting” series is at the same time brave and laudable. No one likes to speak up about the harsh and bitter truths but these issues do need proper addressing and no doubt, our featured artist pulled off this important job perfectly through her artworks and captions. In addition to that, we believe the “Japanese Horror Stories” was found particularly enjoyable by non-native Japanese followers like us, who always have taken immense interest in the country’s rich heritage.
Q. Other than painting, what other hobby do you have?
I spend a lot of time researching for my captions and planning my art. I love eating, so you’ll find me cooking or visiting new restaurants. I can’t wait for the pandemic to end so I can explore more of Tokyo and nearby cities.
Honestly saying, we can’t either! Youknowhue’s stories do reveal that she really has a thing for food. Moreover, the captions and artwork of her posts are the unfiltered evidence of how much time and energy she invests after making them so meticulous.
Q. Do you have any special piece of work which holds a good memory?
Bringing the Japanese horror stories to life was the most fun I had in a while. The cultural influence behind each tale is astoundingly rich and makes for great conversations with coworkers too!
If you go through Youknowhue’s posts of her “Japanese Horror stories Series”, you’ll see that they are some of her most celebrated posts. On a different note, who doesn’t like to look like the prettiest ghosts on the earth for a while, even if by the dint of a few stencils and makeup!
Q. What is your advice to newbie artists and crafters?
When you run out of ideas, it is okay to copy other work. The key is to keep creating, as you will develop your own style with time. I never look down on tracing/copying, especially when it comes to drawing body parts. Remember we are copying from nature anyways, Also, Renaissance artists regularly paid “homage” to each other’s work through copying. In my opinion, face art is more about planning and research than skill. Anyone with some experience drawing on paper can easily jump on board and create stunning works that viewers will truly enjoy. Experimenting with different ideas, not fearing failure and staying true to self-expression will take you far in any field, not just art. Let’s take advice, give advice in return and do our best in creating/maintaining a wholesome community that supports all artists.
We completely agree with her in this regard! Only by following the great pieces of work, one would be able to create greater pieces of their own. Although this affair of “copying and following” has a grey area in between and many considering this as some big quandary, fail to utilize it properly. However, we’re pretty sure Youknowhue’s advice would come handy to all the aspiring artists and crafters who take inspiration in her work.
Just like our very talented featured artist of September, we too believe in the bartering of knowledge rather than constraining it and building up a holistic network with everyone belonging to the community. Youknowhue started her odyssey as an art blogger out of mere passion and now she wants to spread all the positive energy and good vibes that she’s been able to gather so far. We have got complete trust in her goodwill and can’t wait to see her materialize all the greatest things that she has visualized!
Don’t forget to head over to this amazing artist’s Instagram page and check out her creations, the link is given below-