October 3rd, 2018
Jesse Gussow

The artwork by Amanda Darko is incredibly easy on the eyes. Her use of pinks gives a soft alluring feel to her work that is only emphasized more with her light line work. Taking popular culture characters and bringing them to life in her style is fantastic. Slightly sexually charged images are both fun and a little dark. That’s the true power she wields: finding the darkness in these characters and for a brief moment, lifting up our rose coloured glasses to catch a glimpse of their dirty secrets.



Where are you from?

Lagrange, Georgia. I now live in Centerville, Georgia.



How did you get started on your artistic journey?

I watched ‘Titanic’ when I was 5. I loved the idea of being able to draw someone or something. So I started drawing every chance that I could.



How would you describe your work?

I’m not sure. I just thought it was simple creepy and sometimes beautiful art, but according to other people, it’s “gross”, “ruins childhoods”, “macabre”, “dark”, and sometimes “romanticizes suicide”. But we all have our own opinions.



What is the best description of your work that you've heard someone else say?

That it’s realistic and that I capture the eyes the best and that I use vibrant beautiful colors.



Where do you find your inspiration?

Sometimes from people, pop culture, beauty, death and sometimes from other artists who are gracious enough to give me permission to replicate their work for practice and fun.



What is your complete process for a new piece, from the idea to completion?

The idea just sits there in my mind until I put it on paper. I don’t sketch it out or anything, I just start drawing the actual outline, then I color. When drawing people, for instance, I start with the outline of the face, then eyes, nose and mouth and I go from there. My technique for getting really smooth texture is by using white Prismacolor pencil to blend and then I apply more color over that.



What was the first thing you seriously drew?

Embarrassingly enough, Kate Winslet naked in ‘Titanic’.



Do the portraits you draw have a specific name?

Yes, they do. I usually do fan art, therefore they are named after what they are depicted of.



What does your work say about you?

To me, that there’s nothing I won’t draw and that I’m completely comfortable with nudity of the human body; male or female. And that I find even the most darkest things beautiful.



If you could be an insect, what kind would you be, and why?

A butterfly. Because they are the most beautiful of them all; even though they are common, they are each uniquely different. Once they evolve from a caterpillar, they are able to fly and reach new heights as well as show their true colors.



What reaction do you feel your work invokes in others?

So far half of the time it's admiration or love, the rest of the time it’s disgust or hate.



What are some of the best reactions you've received towards your work?

When people say it ruins their childhood. I don’t know, I just find it entertaining when people show hate or disgust. It’s just art, it doesn’t affect them personally, but they act like it does.



What are your goals for the future?

To in some way become successful or known. I don’t know how that will happen, but all I can do right now is to keep drawing better and better. I’m wanting to create that one masterpiece that will set it all off. I’ve just got to wait for the idea to come to me.



Do you take commissions? If so, what was it like to receive your first commission?

Yes I do. It felt so great because people actually wanted something from me and liked my style. It’s the best feeling in the world to be chosen out of all the artists that are available.



Do you prefer Oreo or Fudgee-O cookies?

Fudgee-O all the way.

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