Hieu, who goes by the alias of ‘kelogsloops’ is a 19 year old Melbourne artist who spoke to UCIA about his passion and love for art and design that has left him conflicted with his career path.
Kelogsloops is currently studying Physiotherapy,which he says, “is a bit of an odd choice considering how much I love art. It’s a little complicated though. I am going through a conflict of whether I should change my course to Animation/Graphic Design, or to just continue studying.”
Since he was five years old, kelogsloops has been drawing and has, “always been ‘that kid’ who draws.” Growing up, Kelogsloops loved watching cartoons, “I used to watch the anime series Sailor Moon and Pokemon on CheeseTV. My sister-in-law showed me how to draw Sailor Moon when I was really young, and that pretty much was the first step towards this passion I have for art. Drawing Sailor Moon was my first ever drawing experience when I was five, so I would estimate I have been drawing for around 14 years.”
Drawing from his own world and mind, kelogsloops said, “Most of my work is driven from personal experiences in my life. Feelings, memories, thoughts or events really drive most of my work. I like to tell stories and portray a feeling of some sort through my work in hopes of resonating with somebody else. A visit to DeviantArt (a huge online art community, kind of like Facebook, but for artists) is never short of inspiration either, you could spend hours there and forget everything.”
Different artists have different ways in which they like to produce their work. kelogsloops said, ”I like to spend heaps of time sketching and doodling random stuff in my sketchbooks, but when I want to draw a complete piece or anything, it starts typically with a source of inspiration of something in my life, or a specific idea that I flesh out as a sketch. From there it’s just a decision of what route I’d planned it for initially; watercolour or digital. Either way, I sit at my boring, plain little desk and pump out some creativity away all night long!”
Kelogsloops loves all types of art but said, “Typically I’m most inspired by contemporary digital artists and illustrators, the kind you find on DeviantArt or in a gaming/film/animation studio. I’m really moved and inspired by the kind of art that can tell you a story, or show a feeling. Something that can resonate.” His favourite things to draw are eyes, female faces, hair and the (female) figure.
Kelogsloops is a big user of DeviantArt and has had a lot memorable responses from his work through the website. “There is this artist from Netherlands who goes by the name Loish (Lois Van Baarle). See, she’s this insanely talented and a monster of an artist who is huge across the world. She’s been such a huge icon and inspiration to my work. One day I woke up to find that she had followed me (watched me) on DeviantArt. She didn’t say anything, but she favourited one of my drawings and I kind of just sat in silence to contemplate what had just transpired for a few minutes.”
Kelogsloops has a long list of people that have inspired him over the years that he has been drawing. “Artists like loish (Lois van Baarle), escume (Anna Dittman), alicexz (Alice X Zhang), Agnes Cecile (Silvia Pelissero) and Glen Keane are probably the biggest influences on me right now. I love the work of Henry Matisse from the Fauvist art style as well. Really, anyone who chases dreams inspire me. Just that courage to give it everything, is what I find fixating. So there’s tonnes of people that I find across social media with inspiring stories. Those are the kind of people I want to be, because they inspire people!”
With over 21,000 followers on Instagram, 6,000 likes on Facebook and over 164,000 page views on his DevianArt account, kelogsloops has a massive following amongst users of social media. When asked about the impact that social media had on his work, kelogsloops experiences have been mostly positive. “I always had this one goal in mind with my work; I wanted to inspire somebody. Ever since I started using social media, I’ve been so fortunate enough here and there to receive some of the kindest and warmest compliments, advice, critiques and perspectives. Social media has helped me actually spread my work and my name, but most of all, it makes me feel like I can actually inspire people and reach out. That kind of feeling really motivates you and drives me personally to try even harder.”
As artists we all have big hopes and dreams that can be long and short term goals that we would like to achieve. Kelogsloops said, “I have always dreamt of becoming an animator at Disney, but if I could make any wish I wanted, I’d like to open an animation/film studio in Australia, or even a school. When you say ‘animation studio’, I’d immediately think Disney, Pixar or Studio Ghibli. I’d like one day for there to be an Australian one that becomes a household name.”
Kelogsloops is an extremely talented artist, who has recently launched his online website selling his own digital art and water colour paintings. His love for art and design is evident as he said, “My number one passion and dream in life has always revolved around art and design.I dream to become an established artist, illustrator and animator!”
If you would like to find out more about kelogsloops or purchase any of his artwork, please check out his sites: