Faces: Illustrator Ayumi Takahashi Studio Visit And Interview
Maybe you've noticed: We've got a thing for color and patterns. So when we first saw the work of illustrator Ayumi Takahashi, we immediately emailed her to see if we could visit her studio. Takahashi, a recent Art Center graduate, works between mediums—imbedding her at times cheery and at times eerie images on cut paper, colorful acrylic or spandex-y fabrics.
How long have you been making art? When did you know that you wanted to make it a career?
I have been making art since I can remember. Both of my parents are artists and so are their friends. I would draw or paint while my parents were working at their studio.
What is your favorite medium to work in?
In general, I have always prefer to work with my hands. I love the direct connection between my hands with brushes, paper or sculpture. I really enjoy the process of making and every time I discover new things. My favorite medium to paint is Acrylic Gouache because they make great colors and I love the matte finish. And I also love to work with paper with x-acto knife, I hold it as a pen and cut how I would draw.
Why surface design? What is it that attracts you to repeated patterns?
Surface plays a very big role in my design or art. If the form determines what the final project should be, then the surface design can transform the project into something totally different. Things that attract me to make patterns are that I have always like patternlike works. Maybe because I feel that it's like my life; many things are around me, in its own shape, form and color. And together, they make my life and who I am.
How does color play a role in your work? And in your life?
Color is always the thing I consider a lot for any piece I am making, even in life and fashion. Just having a beautiful, colorful flower pot on your coffee table; wearing an accent color for your body can absolutely affect the mood or your feelings of a day, it also help tell stories of the art work and most important, of you.
You're Chinese, but grew up in Japan and studied in Los Angeles; How do all these different cultures factor into your work?
I don't consider myself Chinese or Japanese or American, even though I have lived in all these places as well as studied abroad in Thailand and London. My nationality is Planet Earth. I love being international, studying, exploring the culture and adding these experiences into my own work. I like to I think of all these people living in different parts of the world, preserving and living in their own cultures. I want to carry forward that very positive, beautiful legacy that human beings have created.
Why do you want to make art?
We, artists have extreme powers. We are educative forces that can push our society forward. I want to use this ability that I have to create change. Because I am not alone in this, and I believe with all of us together, we can make a difference.