12th grader Christina Qin specializes in animation and recently won a Scholastic Art and Writing Competition Gold Medal. Christina has been drawing for as long as she can remember, but really began taking art seriously in 8th grade as the rise of social media created an easier way for her to spread her art. She began animating when she found her sister’s old Wacom tablet. Most of her animation is done in 2D but she wants to try 3D animation, as technology is making it easier to create smoother frames in less time.
For Christina art is both a relaxing way to take her mind off things and also a frustrating battle with “art block” and inner demons. She mentions that “it can be a good way to escape to another world when your world gets too tough, or a way of making a bad day better.” The more frustrating part of it for her is how easy it is to put herself down for mistakes. She also has her fair share of challenges keeping her from making new pieces. She mostly creates single scene animations but recently challenged herself by doing a full length animation with a coherent storyline and audio. It is now her favorite piece. “Afraid of the Deer You Think I Am” was drawn and voiced by Christina with added double meanings and symbolism throughout the half-minute long short. It took her more time to complete the animation than her smaller projects and now she is looking into making comics, as they are less time consuming. Last year she won a Gold Medal award from the Scholastic Art and Writing Competition.
Her tips for fellow artists is to practice. “The best way to get better at art is to get as many failures as you can out first, because you can only succeed once after failing a hundred times first.” She also urges new artists to get acquainted with traditional techniques before finding their own unique style. She suggests that they practice drawing still life objects and learning figure drawing to make it easier. She also speaks of choosing which pieces to commit to “The last 10% of a piece of work might take 90% of your time to perfect it, so sometimes it is not worth finishing that last 10% of a drawing.” Her final advice is to stick to what you’re passionate about and to use social media to your advantage. Finally, Christina thanks her friends and family for supporting her and her art and urging her to submit her piece as she wouldn’t have without them.
Leia Pagan is a senior at Washington and has lived in Fremont their entire life. This is their second year at the paper and first year as News Editor. They joined to pursue their passion for reporting and they enjoy covering politics and LGBTQ+ topics. Their hobbies include drawing, listening to the kpop group Loona and watching drag performances. They plan to continue their education in English or Art at San Francisco State.