Annix Sarmiento is an Industrial Design student from De La Salle College of St. Benilde, who loves to draw, collect comics, art books, and zines. She’s also taken part as an exhibitor at the local Komiket, as well as other art-related fairs and bazaars. She has a self-published zine entitled Kew Conversations, containing some of her best work, and also has a knack for sticker art. Besides her love for the arts, Annix also enjoys video games (especially retro games), as well as enjoys hanging out with her dog and eating ramen. You can find more of Annix Sarmiento’s works on Twitter, Instagram, and Tumblr.
I have always been into art every since I was a kid to the point that I can’t really remember the exact moment where or how I started but I’ll say that I remember drawing all the time in front of my TV and getting influences from the cartoons, movies and shows I watched then.
Growing up, I was always that kid who drew and doodled on her notebook during class, after class, going out to dinners and so on. I would often befriend people who were also into drawing and into the things that I was also into. I would also be that “kid in class who knew how to draw” where people would end up asking me to draw for them which was good for the recognition but kind of “sucky” since I don’t get anything in return.
It was my childhood dream to take up animation or anything related to art but like every parent who does not see art and animation as a “serious career”, I had to convince them that this is what I want and met them half way with (initially) Interior Design then shifted after my first year to Industrial Design. I guess it was after my first year of college where I actually realized that I should become more serious with my art based on the fact that I couldn’t even pass an art portfolio during college admissions since all I ever did was doodle in notebooks.
Q: From that moment, and throughout your journey as an artist, what has been your biggest struggle?
Confidence and self doubt. Ever since, there would be people I know from school who I’d always get jealous of how well they draw and do art. I would always low-key compare my works with others and tell myself “LOL! Your art sucks.” and would always find ways to seem as if my art is as good as others. I would also most of the time hide my notebooks from my friends back in high school and grade school since the first thing I would always think of is how they would compare my work to theirs/others. I could not take criticism that well too.
I’d always tell myself that everyone has their own kind of style and preference. Your kind of thing and style is what makes you, you, and everyone learns at their own pace. And lastly, comparing is bad…just don’t.
Q: What would you consider is the ONE thing that REALLY helped you level up your skills?
Influences and inspiration! They’re everywhere! From the internet, from books to shows to daily experiences. I use them all as references as to what I want to do and make.
Q: What is one thing you’d wish you’d known before you started your artistic career? Why?
That I should have gotten my art out there earlier. Even just posting random doodles and scribbles on a sketch blog would actually help me to improve and do better. It doesn’t necessarily have to be something extravagant for you to show it off. People would appreciate your art even if it’s something you doodled during class or something over your notes.
The experiences I have while and after making art. Not necessarily experiences when I post/sell/show art to people online and in real life but the events and moods I experienced while doing it. I dunno it’s kind of hard to explain but there’s this feeling of accomplishment you get after you finish something. Whether it’d be a simple ink doodle in my notebook or a full on illustration. Even if I’m not 100% satisfied with what I’ve drawn, I know that I gained and learned something (like an exp. pt in my virtual skill bar).
Q: What does your average day look like? (And when do you fit in the time to create art?)
Go to school, and if I’m not in the lab cutting and sanding wood or doing plates, I’d probably be drawing on my sketchbook. And also in the middle of class (I mean what art student wouldn’t).
It’s also kind of my daily ritual to draw at night before sleeping. I’m kind of a night owl so I tend to do work at night till the A.M.
Q: How do you deal with distractions or challenges that you encounter while you’re working on your art?
I would deal with the distraction first and get rid of it, then go and continue working. I also make sure that the distraction isn’t super time consuming if that’s the case. Or sometimes I’d multitask (such as Netflix and work on art at the same time).
Look up things online from my influences or surf the web. I would also try and doodle anything like experiences or my current mood and transfer them on paper.
Q: What would you say has been your most EPIC win so far?
That I was able to make and sell stickers and eventually make art prints and zines. It was one of my goals during my teen years to turn my art into stickers and slap them on different places.
Q: What would you say has been your biggest failure?
Not being confident enough to get my art out there earlier. I felt like I was too late since I just started learning and getting serious in the art world after my first year in college. But throughout this experience, I learned that it is never too late to get started.
Q: What, for you, has been the best way to promote yourself and your work to potential fans, clients, or publishers?
I try to post my work regularly on social media whether it’d be a sketch or an art work. I would also join different art marts, fairs, bazaars and other art related events to be recognized and to meet people.
To finally be satisfied and confident with what I do, who I am and what I make.
Q: What, for you personally, has been the source of your ideas, creativity and talent?
Aside from people I influence, I get my inspiration from my everyday experiences such as places I go to, my current mood and what I feel, and the little things I see and feel around.
Q: What is your big “WHY”? Why do you feel the need to make art? Who are you doing it for? What’s the hidden reason behind your big dream?
I like to think making art as a personal way to escape reality; kind of like taking a breath before diving back in. There’s a lot of negativity we face everyday so I’d also like to think of it as a way of adding some color to the world.
Scott Pilgrim by Bryan Lee O’malley, The Avatar series (both The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra) and SuperMutant Magic Academy by Jillian Tamaki.
Q: What are the top books, art books, blogs, podcasts, or workshops you’d recommend that helped you level up your skills?
Seconds by Bryan Lee O’Malley, Here by Richard McGuire, and Our Cats Are More Famous Than Us: A Johnny Wander Omnibus by Ananth Hirch. Jake Parker’s sketch art books and videos help a ton especially if I’m looking for motivation.
Q: If you could work remotely, from anywhere in the world, where would your office be? Why?
Somewhere in Japan most probably! I get a lot of my inspiration from their environment so it would be cool to actually be there. Also hope to visit the country one day.
Bryke (Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dante DiMartino), the creators of Avatar: The Last Airbender and The Legend of Korra. This show and their works really inspired me ever since and how they were able to create my favorite fictional universe.
Q:Who do you consider your biggest mentor that helped you improve your skills?
(Doesn’t have to be someone you’ve met personally. Can be someone you look up to, or someone whose art has inspired you to get better, over the years.)
Jake Parker. His whole process in creating art is just very inspirational and motivational especially when I’m facing problems related to my art and works.