Interview of Agniya Tolstokulakova by Sophie Pellegrini // I don’t even remember myself when I was not drawing, it’s been a way to express myself since early childhood.
Interview of Agniya Tolstokulakova by Sophie Pellegrini
Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Agniya Tolstokulakova and I am a freelance illustrator and a visual poet based in New York.
When and how did you get started in the arts?
I don’t even remember myself when I was not drawing, it’s been a way to express myself since early childhood. I was very fortunate to always have my parents support my passions, so it was a natural choice to pursue a creative career.
What’s your favorite medium to work in? Why?
I have a love affair with pastel colors and dreamy watercolor washes, so I like to mix acrylic paint and ink.
What inspires your art and the subject matter you choose?
Childhood melancholia, fashion trends, fragility and strength of females.
Tell us a bit about your work process.
I start with
writing down ideas, then I transfer words into visual concepts by creating 3-5 sketches. Once I finalize my drawing I will go in and fill areas with ink washes and color block the rest of areas, which is actually my favorite part. Last but not least is scanning and editing in Photoshop.
What do you wish you saw more of within the visual arts?
I wish there was broader representation of people of different backgrounds, religions, and sexualities in the visual art world, I think that would help people feel more connected to the art.
How do you spend your time when you aren’t creating art?
I enjoy simple things whether it’s practicing yoga, walking around the city, people watching or reading in coffee shops, I think there is something beautiful and sublime to everyday occurrences.
Do you have any advice for new artists who are just starting out?
Don’t limit yourself creatively, never stop learning and exploring new things and try to develop your own artistic language that goes beyond using a certain medium or stylistic approaches.
List 5 things that fascinate you.
People around me, other creatives, nature, music and New York City…
How can we keep up with your work?
My website is agniyat.com and you can follow my Instagram at agniya.t.