One day I was searching through Tumblr, selecting all the pictures that I liked, as you do, when I stumbled upon this amazing design, it was a sketch of a woman wearing a modern day outfit, but it had been infused with African fabric, I immediately was intrigued. So I clicked on the person’s page and began to look endlessly through every picture, only to find that this individual was more and more talented, the more pictures I looked at.
I say this often, but it still remains relevant, creatives love creatives, there’s nothing better than being inspired by someone or something, or finding someone who has immense talent. Ojo Agi takes a picture and somehow manages to breathe life into it, in a way that I haven’t seen a lot of artists or designers do, there’s is something so animated about her drawings that it basically tells a story. Her drawing style was the first thing that caught my attention, because it was very different than what I would usually see, and most importantly, she predominantly used marker pens, not paint or colouring pencils, but she used them flawlessly. Ojo’s talent is something that I believe needs to be shared and revealed, because it isn’t something that you just come along every day, but I’m thankful I did.
A quick Q&A to help you to get to know about the artist that is, Ojo Agi:
FAB:When did you realise that you had a talent in drawing and illustration?
Ojo:Drawing and illustrating has been a hobby of mine for as long as I can remember. People have always complimented my work, but even to this day I’m still trying to develop a real talent in it.
FAB:What inspires you to draw the most?
Ojo:So many things—people I see on the street, interesting photographs I see on the internet, a technique by another artist that I might like to try, a song that is playing on my iTunes or maybe a character I have in my head for a story.
FAB:How do you decide what to draw, do you just randomly pick from things you’ve seen or is it deeper than that?
Ojo:Both. I always draw people. Sometimes I know who I want to draw and other times I just have a concept that I go with or an image that I reference.
FAB:How did you come up with the name Penelope Mars?
Ojo:“Penelope” is my alter ego, a nickname given to me by a friend that I’ve come to really like. “Mars” is from Sailor Mars, my number one idol. She’s so determined and selfless and confident, and I look up to her even though she’s a fictional character.
FAB:What’s the most random hobby you have, that people wouldn’t really expect?
Ojo:I knit hats and scarves, and I like going bowling even though I’m terrible at it.
FAB:How did you develop your drawing style?
Ojo:Practice, I think, and trying new things. I started using markers a year and a half ago, and I think that’s become a key part of my style. I also get influenced by a lot of artists, whether I want to or not.
FAB:What aspect are you more interested in for instance, illustration or fashion design?
Ojo:I think fashion design is really what made me pick up the crayons in the first place, even if I do it a lot less now. Hopefully I never have to pick just one ^.^ I like it all.
FAB:Are you at university? If so what course are you doing and why did you choose it
Ojo:Yes, I am. My major is Health Sciences and my minor is Women’s Studies. I think I want to work in a career where I can directly help people and I’m finding more and more that I care a lot about women’s issues. Hopefully I can integrate the two.
FAB:What’s the weirdest thing about you?
Ojo:I don’t think I’m weird, for the record, but my friends gave me some suggestions. Apparently I dress like an old person and I’ve dyed my hair blue, so that’s weird!
FAB:What individual, celebrity or not inspires you the most?
Ojo:It’s really hard to say, but I’m greatly inspired by beautiful words. So, authors like Miranda July or musicians like Simon & Garfunkel pick me up a lot.
FAB:What made you start up a tumblr?
Ojo:I’m not a very talkative person but I still have a lot to say…so I thought I’d blog instead, avoid the direct human contact lol. It turned out to be a great way to share my art.
FAB:Are you sometimes in shock or awed at the responses you get to your drawings?
Ojo:Yes. For one, the request for this interview was pretty shocking! Some people are incredibly enthusiastic about my drawings and it’s really kind. I don’t know what to say other than thanks!
FAB:I noticed that you are trying to develop different methods of creating an image, such as colour pencils or painting. Which method would you love to conquer the most?
Ojo:Painting is definitely the medium I want to master. Wet media is really challenging for me. Digital media is also something I’m working with right now.
FAB:In your life what is the number one thing you are hoping to achieve?
Ojo:I don’t know if you’re supposed to work for it or if it’s supposed to just happen serendipitously, but I want to fall in love (corny, I know).
FAB Country of Origin: I was born in Canada to a Nigerian family.
FAB thing about your country of origin: The “tribal” trend seen in stores like Forever 21 and Urban Outfitters is based from Nigerian Ankara fabrics. I wish they’d call it “West African” and not “tribal”.
Your FAB dish ,you love to eat: Anything with bacon, cheese and/or avocados.
A FAB thing about you: I was born on Canada’s Day so there are always fireworks on my birthday!
FAB thing you like to do in your free time: I love to bake.
Click here to view her Tumblr page