Hannah England, a Virginia-based artist, has always been passionate about drawing and storytelling. In this interview, we'll get to know more about her journey as an artist, her creative process, and her dream projects.
Childhood Fascination with Children's Books
Hannah grew up in Virginia as the eldest of four siblings. The narratives and illustrations in children's books have captivated her since she was a young girl. Her interest in drawing and writing her own characters and stories grew as she got older. Hannah's experience as an older sister made her curious about how people grow up, having seen it from three different age perspectives in her own life. She noticed similarities between the types of things people tend to start learning at certain stages of life, which interested her as a storyteller.
Emphasizing Visual Storytelling
Hannah came into the art world from a fine arts perspective, and she emphasizes visual storytelling. She aspires to draw and write stories that can impact people at many different stages of life, with the ultimate lesson of teaching that we are not alone in the struggles we face on a day-to-day basis, no matter how large.
Inspiration from Science Fiction, Fantasy, and Surrealism
Hannah loves science fiction and fantasy, and both are big sources of inspiration for her work. She also enjoys surrealism, and it is an area of art that she is interested in exploring for future work. She first drew inspiration from the way horror stories, which she hasn't liked in a while, use surrealist techniques to alter our perception of reality. She likes how the horror genre often turns reality on its head, like with scary children's dolls, and says that even though she doesn't like horror, she can appreciate the art in general.
Neighborhood by Hannah England
Tackling Mental Health Through Art
Many of the stories Hannah wants to tell are related to mental health, which is its own kind of horror that often gets overlooked. Utilizing her influences, she hopes to shed light on those everyday horrors that we face as human beings through her work.
Dream Project: Full-Length Graphic Novel
Hannah's dream project as an artist would be a full-length graphic novel, which she has several ideas for. But making a graphic novel isn't easy. Hannah's ideal project would need 250 illustrations on top of the writing and story. She opened up about her difficulties finding motivation, talking about a depression she fell into shortly after college. While Hannah was still able to win Inktober during that time, she mentioned how the thought of committing herself to anything long-term was too scary because she did not know if she would have the motivation to continue in the near future.
Finding Motivation Through Consistency
Hannah is currently in an accountability-based creative group where all members have 100 days to engage in some creative activity. One thing she mentioned learning from the accountability group, which she said has been profound in her mental health progress, is the idea of consistency over motivation. Committing herself to doing at least 2 to 20 minutes of creative work every day instead of attempting to maintain a rigid schedule that might burn her out. It has helped her a lot with the current children's book she is working on for the group, and last year she won the Platform Comics 100K Competition. She hopes to continue this process for her later graphic novel ideas.
Connecting with Fans Through Personal Art
Hannah enjoys connecting with her fans mainly through her art. The ideas and feelings she attempts to communicate through her work are very personal to herself and her personal experiences, and she hopes to relate them to her fans.
You can learn more about Hannah England's work by visiting her showcase. You can also purchase her artwork on the RevArt online gallery.