Emily Diaz: Miss-i-n g

In each of the works below, slide the bar in the middle of the photo to the left and right to see juxtaposed images.

Coffee | Missing the Coffee
Movies | Missing the Movies
Beach | Missing the Beach
Picking Flowers | Losing Flowers
Stargazing | Seeking to Stargaze
Lighting Sparklers | No Sparklers
Together | Apart
Promise | Broken Promise
Heart | Broken Heart
Without | You
By | Myself
Til Death Do Us Part

Artist Statement

Coloring and Wondering

I would like to express myself fully and completely in my artwork. I almost want to get to the point where I am absolutely vulnerable. Here’s the irony… I never like to share myself in that way and I’m a total introvert (by nature) in social dynamics. However, when it comes to my art, I want to push myself forcefully into my open creative world. For social means, I want to express everything I never/rarely share, or another way to put it, things I refuse to talk about because I don’t want to start conflict. For cultural means, I would like to explore diversity in race, ethnicity, and standards. I would like to keep it as open minded as possible and expand horizons on thinking and believing in people.

I wish to connect with people physically, mentally, and emotionally through digital animation. I want people to remember that it’s okay to feel and show emotions. I admire all types of media artists, but I connect mostly with Puuung, who is a digital animation artist, Puuung. She posts videos on YouTube about the small acts of love and publishes a book series “Love Is”. She shows emotion behind her pieces with humble interactions between her characters and expresses them fully. Her characters “Her” and “Him”, although don’t have any distinct story of how they met, show their love throughout their lives in mini episodes and illustrations. Puuung posts animations of a couple’s small acts of love and the wide spectrum of seeing each other in passing, to holding hands, to doing absolutely nothing is what spoke to me the most about the idea of love. They express the comfort you feel when you’re in love with someone so much.

Also, I’m highly influenced by Disney’s “Silver Age”. All of the animation was hand-drawn and character creation was well done; this included Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, Lady and the Tramp (one of my personal favorites), Sleeping Beauty, 101 Dalmatians, The Sword in the Stone, and The Jungle Book. They were not only the final films Walt Disney oversaw before he died, but also led the challenge of creating more Disney films without him. I believe that’s what power these movies captured. I want to create just as magical animations as these films one day.

Character creation with original story plots is what I desire to do the most. I love Disney, and the fact that they keep creating these diverse characters in their respective settings with their own story, is so fascinating to me. They carry themselves with their own attitude and individual charisma – we see this through Disney’s animation process. Most of my work is character creation and I’m more recently adding mood boards to match particular characters to further push their untold story. Even if their story isn’t shared, at least there are more details to further describe what I’m imagining and hopefully express what the viewers are imagining their story is as well. I find the “secret life” aspect behind Digital Art to be extremely compelling for me. I’m the type of person to see “color” when I see a person and when I listen to music. (I’m not sure why, but I’ve always had this unique ability!) Whenever I see animation and character design sheets, I’m able to see their “colors” as well. This is how I know their “secret life” aspect is super strong. I’m not only able to see the character’s movement and expressions to describe the character’s behavior, but also their “color” or sense of aura in living and breathing. I always ask myself every morning, “What color do I feel today?”. As for seeing other people’s colors, having this ability is both a gift and a curse. I can only do so much to be there for someone, but no matter what, their colors are dimmed, shaded, stained, or blurred.

I’ve always been a drawer. I actually began focusing on drawing the anime and manga style when I was around 10 years old. I collected books and developed my style techniques of drawing. My style has not really a cartoony look, but more so a balance between stylized to illustrative imagery. I wish my style was more realistic now, but I think I would lose myself if I actually did. I like imagining things that aren’t real, so if I drew things more realistically, I believe I wouldn’t be the same artist as I was before as I’m ever evolving. Digital Art requires a lot of dedicated time and investment in effort. There are so many things to consider, such as the process of brainstorming, the process of creating, and the process of editing. Of course, there are the usual unplanned challenging factors of art block, lack of motivation, insecurity of the piece, etc. It’s a love/hate relationship sometimes, but I’m happy with my result in the end. I hope to achieve a sense of fanciful with my work. Whether they are happy or sad – who hides them or who shows them – that is what I wish to impart/concede. I often wish that I don’t lose sight of this goal, as I have briefly in the past. Pursuing a career in Digital Art is difficult. Although society as a whole is undermining and disapproves of the arts (as a whole), I still show my love for creating art all the time. Art, for me, is a way to express yourself when you don’t know how to. Whether or not there are enough words or effective actions, art is always a base for me to express myself fully.

ABOUT THE ARTIST

Emily Diaz has always been drawing since she was a young girl. Attending Lock Haven University for four years, she will be graduating with a BFA Online and Graphic Design degree. She loves animating and storytelling because she enjoys exploring the hidden life and emanating colors of the moving characters. As a Disney enthusiast, Ms. Diaz believes this is where her life has led her, and continues the challenges (of both traditional and digital) she’s experienced to become a better animator.

Ms. Diaz was raised to be independent and grew up to be exactly that, but with the mindset of a Disney movie (live her life until something spontaneous happens, except the spontaneous hasn’t happened yet). Emily Diaz thinks everything’s meant to happen for a reason, whether good or bad. Her experiences as the new and different little girl, the energetic middle schooler, the quiet teenager, the lost-in-thought college student, the unrequited lover, were all hurtful at the time but contributed to her growth as a person. Although it wasn’t the greatest to others, it meant a lot to her in her own world.

Her drawing spectrum has grown in various ways throughout the years. From doodles of animals to manga-style personas, from semi-realistic character designs to attempting realism, and from dull to bright color palettes. 2019 was the year where Emily began to express herself through different versions of animation styles using various animated representations of herself. Each of their own, with unique settings, color palettes, and emotions to show. These faceless, nameless, and receptrical sketches are expressing something Emily Diaz doesn’t know how to; these characters have become an extension of her very being.