Monday, September 12, 2022

Artist Spotlight: Zack Smith

If you're in Salt Lake or Utah County next week, take a day or two to check out Salt Lake FanX. When I lived in Utah, I attended FanX/Salt Lake Comic Con for five years and it was a blast! If you're into cosplay, celebrities, or geekdom in general, you'll feel right at home. But in the meantime, I wanted to spotlight a friend (who I met at FanX because of his Digimon artwork) and an artist who'll have a booth at the Con: Zack Smith. I sent him a few sample questions to introduce himself and express his life as an artist, so I'll let him take it from here. 


Where are you from and how does that affect your work?

I'm from Utah. I've been a doodler all my life, but never considered art as a possible career path until I was on my LDS mission to Mexico and would send little drawings to my friends on their missions. When I came home, I decided that I wanted to pursue story telling, and decided to study Gaming and Animation at UVU, from which I graduated in 2017. After graduation, I decided I wanted to work on a comic project, but also became aware that my Inking ability was sadly lacking, so I started drawing and posting to Instagram as inking practice. During this, I applied and was accepted into Salt Lake FanX as a vendor in Artist Alley, so suddenly I had to make some real art. My first project was to make a coloring book, and a bunch of prints. From that point the rest is basically history. I got into doing conventions, and have been working on art and improving ever since.


Tell me about your favorite medium.
 

I tend to work with mixed media - I do all of my line art by hand, and scan that into my computer to do my color digitally. However, in the past few years I've gotten addicted to alcohol markers. I love how I am able to create a sort of watercolor effect with them. I love the soft, muted colors.

How do you develop your art skills? 

I work on developing my art skills constantly. I used to look at every one of my drawings and dislike them, but the further I go on my journey as an artist, the happier I am with each drawing. I feel like I'm finally getting closer to where what I draw matches the vision I have for the drawing in my mind. The main thing is drawing every day. I used to force myself to post something every day to Instagram, and while I've relaxed on that, I still draw every day, I just give myself more time to make sure that the art I'm producing is art that I am happy with.


What memorable responses have you had to your work?
 

At the first convention I sold at, one thing that stands out to me was a group of guys walking past my booth, and one of them pointing to my drawing and saying "That looks f***ed up!" I was having a pretty hard time as it was, so that didn't help, but I'm glad that I didn't take it personally, and I kept going. Selling at multiple events this year, I've been gratified to have many people tell me how much they love my work, including the drawing the guy made fun of. 

What do you like about your work? 

The fun thing about being an artist is that I always get to see my own growth, even from one drawing to the next. Considering that I never planned on being an artist, I'm glad that my life has led me to this path, and I'm excited to see what art brings me in the future! 


What superpower would you have and why?
 

I generally would like to have the superpower of super speed  - I would love it if I could get to places faster, and get more done!

Your top 3 fandoms of all time

For my three top fandoms, that’s a tough question! I tend to enjoy a lot of different fandoms! I would definitely have to say Digimon and Pok√©mon, however, but I can’t really pinpoint a third that has been super strong for me.

Zack will be at Salt Lake FanX next week, alongside his brother Jacob (both probably in cosplay). Check booth A825 to buy some prints of their art.

If you're an artist (even if you're not a Latter-day Saint) and would like to be featured on our blog, send us an email to mormongeeks@gmail.com or message us on Facebook/Instagram. 

Zack's Instagram (click here)

Jacob's Instagram (click here)

Zack's Facebook (click here)

Jacob's Facebook (click here)

Zack and Jacob's Cosplay (click here)

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