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Interview With A Genius: Rutbisbe

Rutbisbe has been a fixture of Vegebul fandom for many years. Her rich color palettes, attention to detail, and distinctive style have inspired countless other Vegebul fan works. But what about the artist behind the pen? Read on for answers to some of the community’s burning questions about TPTH’s longest-seated resident artist.
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Fan Artist Rutbisbe

Rutbisbe has been a fixture of Vegebul fandom for many years. Her rich color palettes, attention to detail, and distinctive style have inspired countless other Vegebul fan works. But what about the artist behind the pen? Read on for answers to some of the community’s burning questions about TPTH’s longest-seated resident artist.

How long have you been creating art?

Since always. When I was a child I used to communicate complicated feelings with a drawing, I remember my mother asking me to try to explain things talking, instead of drawing them.

 

What did you create when you first started?

The first project I remember consciously creating was a female army. I was ten and my grandparents gave me a color pencil Faber-Castell box for my birthday. I started drawing warrior women, I called them N:F warriors (the initials for “Nació Femenina”, the catalan for “Feminist Nation”)

Lol, I was already aware of the need to fight for women’s rights.

I drew this army for over 8 years and I have more than 1000 figures. In the last years I also drew some males there, I thought there ought to be some good ones who wanted to join the cause 🙂

Much later, in 2008 I scanned them all and you can see some [below]!

I still have this fantastic Faber-Castell box. I used it to make the line art for all my NovAUmber drawings.

What do you find the most difficult part of the process?

To be honest, everything.

Finding a good idea, making a correct composition, not making grave mistakes with the anatomy, drawing the lines, adding the right color and light, rendering it properly, finding a cohesive style… Everything is difficult, and I feel I need to learn it all over again almost every time I draw. It’s part of the fun though, the constant challenge.

 

You have a wide variety of styles and techniques present in your art. Do you have a favorite? If so, which one?

I do have a lot of styles. It’s not really intentional, I would love to have a distinct style that people would immediately recognize. But I can’t. I used to try real hard to “find my style”, but now I don’t do that anymore. I just enjoy the variety of styles I can do. That’s why it’s hard for me to pick a favorite one, I enjoy different things from them all. For example, I enjoy the clear shapes of simplified art. I love to add lots of colors when I detail highly rendered images, I love to get lost in cross-hatching when I make line art…

I also don’t have a favorite technique, as with the styles, I love several aspects in all of them. But I have to confess I usually draw with digital tools. I’m an addict to its versatility, the wide array of possibilities within the programs and, of course, the Ctrl+Z. But drawing traditionally is also an amazing experience, the smell of the art supplies is sublime, the challenge to not be able to erase when you ink… as I said, everything has its beauty.

For me the reference I gather is like the words I need to learn to be able to speak the language of art.

When you seek to improve your art, how do you go about doing so?

I do it always, with every piece. It doesn’t matter what it is, or for whom it is, which style or tool. I always try to improve.

I do it by looking for references, either in real life or with the art of artists I admire. Painters, photographs, film makers… I know my weaknesses – anatomy, composition, hair, eyes, men, vehicles… a long list – and I try to fight these weaknesses by drawing them with the help of references.

For me the reference I gather is like the words I need to learn to be able to speak the language of art.

I also took some online courses. The ones I enjoyed the most and taught me a lot were the ones I did on Schoolism. I totally recommend them!

 

Do you have any formal background in art?

No, I’m an architect. But as I said, I trained with online courses when I decided to try my luck with an art career.

 

Do you have any specific advice for artists who use traditional media to create? Any advice for digital artists?

I consider myself nobody to give advice. I struggle daily with my art. I could actually use some myself!

 

Let’s learn a bit about you. Besides fandom, what do you like to do for fun?

I draw, lol. I love to do a lot of things, read, play with my daughters, watch movies, sail, swim, have a nice meal while talking to friends, walk around, listen to music, go to the beach, travel… but nothing compares to drawing.

 

What does a typical “day in the life” look like?

I have to confess my life is not being “typical” at the moment. I am one of these countless women whose career has suffered because of motherhood.

I have always worked as a freelancer, so it was not that easy to get again some commissions after my first daughter was born, but I managed. The hard time came after my second daughter was born. I was too busy with both girls to get any job at all, and it was a really hard time. There were other issues during that time too, health and family problems, so it was pretty rough. A hard time where the only thing that kept me sane was fanfiction and this fandom. I will always be grateful to this fandom for saving my life:)

Now I’m starting to recover, but it’s still a long way to go to get my career back in track. That’s why it’s hard to describe a typical “day in my life” because they are all pretty different, working on commissions, trying to get new ones, developing personal projects and caring about my daughters. And let’s not forget drawing fanart.

 

If you could choose to be any animal, what would you be?

I am an animal, from the bloody and terrible species homo sapiens. The only animals which have almost annihilated all others and its habitat. If I could choose to be another animal, I would like to be a wolf. Fierce, strong, but still bound to live within a pack.

 

What’s the best piece of advice (regarding art or life in general) that you’ve gotten/remember?

I got two pieces of advice that accompany me always 🙂

The first is what my mom used to tell me always: “Don’t do unto others what you don’t want done unto you.”

The second piece of advice was said by former football player, Johann Cruyff, who played in the team of my city, Barcelona. After being a player he became the trainer and before a really important match, when his players were terribly nervous, he told them: “Go out and enjoy.”

 

We at The Prince and the Heiress would like to thank Rut for the time she took to answer our questions, as well as for the wonderful art we’ve been privileged to facilitate sharing with the community over the years. We hope to enjoy her beautiful works for many moons to come, and may you, the community, always find your creative spirit no matter what life throws your way.

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