Shannon Sockalexis

“Hey, that would make a great illustration!”

An Artist Statement by Shannon Sockalexis


A common misconception about digital art is that it’s not real art. Just recently, I had to explain to my mother that I wasn’t just clicking a mouse and magically creating fully painted images on my computer. It’s a tool that I can use to help further progress my skills in both traditional and digital mediums. All of my art for the BFA/BA Show has been done digitally and traditionally, with most of the major designs and conceptions being done on physical paper.

I draw inspiration from movies from Disney, Studio Ghibli, and directors Mamoru Hosoda and Makoto Shinkai. I’m also an avid reader and gamer. Oftentimes, though, I’ll see something in ‘real life’ that can be incredibly inspiring– like a hairstyle, or a way that a person dresses which creates that “Hey, that would make a great illustration!” moment for me. But really, anything can be a great illustration.

With these works, I intend to make people think. I want people to look and say, “This reminds me of…” or “This makes me feel…” because it’s the viewer that perceives the piece in the end. My intentions creating these pieces can be different in the beginning, but the feeling of the end product is something that each person sees differently, and that’s what I love about making art.