Interview of Qintong Li by Sophie Pellegrini
Tell us a bit about yourself!
Hello, my name is Qintong Li, but I also go by Echo, much easier for pronouncing, haha. I was born and raised in a small city near Beijing. From 2006 to 2010, I studied graphic design in Beijing. And then in 2011, I came to Los Angeles to study illustration. Now I am a freelance illustrator working in Los Angeles.
How did you get started in the arts?
For this, I really need to say “thank you” to my beautiful mom. Since I was a child around 6, my mom wanted me to study something for fun: a musical instrument, dancing, or drawing. I chose drawing; from that moment, I always carry a pencil with me everywhere.
Tell us a little about your artistic work process.
My favorite mediums are graphite and watercolor; graphite is easy to control when I’m holding it, watercolor is not. I love the texture of watercolors especially when I use too many water and it leaves a water spots on the paper, that come out with a Wabi-Sabi feeling.
What other artists do you admire?
MAURICE SENDAK!!! He is the god of my illustration career. I couldn’t say more how I love the classic “Where the Wild Things Are.” The passion, knowledge, and love he puts in his works always make me want to trust that art can make the world warm and colorful forever. Which I’m trying to do in my works.
Are there any songs/films/books that have had a real impact on your creative processes or work?
Could I say “Where the Wild Things Are” on more time? Haha. Recently, the movie Room gave me the same feeling too.
What is your proudest accomplishment?
Last term when I studied in the Art Center College of Design, my work was selected for the Society of Illustration Student Scholarship Competition in NY. It was a great ending of my college experience, and also a beautiful start to my career.
What are you grateful for?
My lovely parents. All my teachers in Beijing and Los Angeles.
What’s the last song you listened to?
Falling Slowly from the movie “ONCE”, performed by Glen Hansard and Markéta Irglová.
What’s the last movie you watched?
Scent of a Woman.