Art is everything, and everything is art.
– Josephine Kong
Josephine Kong is a 24-year-old aspiring artist. She was born into an artistic family, so she have been pursueing art for most of her life. She was exposed to learning and practicing many forms and mediums of art, but drawing has always been her niche. The theme of most of her work has revolved around feminism and the power of the female gaze. She has always been intrigued by the forms of the human face, especially the eyes which she really try to portray as the “windows to the soul”. She tries to evoke both beauty and power by using color, value, and realism to depict the emotion and depth behind a simple gaze.
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
My name is Josephine Kong and I am an aspiring artist. I have been doing art my entire life, and I guess you can say it’s in my genes since both my parents and older sister are artists and influenced me to start at a young age. Art was always the subject I gravitated towards the most and found myself excelling in, so that was definitely my favorite part of growing up.
Where do you usually gather the inspiration for your works?
Beauty and the power of the female gaze are the primary inspirations for my work. Eyes were hands down my favorite thing to draw, and I started to explore the concept of the eyes being the “windows to the soul” through my work by portraying the emotion and depth that comes within a gaze.
Is there any particular piece you prefer?
My series of watercolor eyes are my favorite. I started them while I was studying abroad in Florence for my final project of my drawing class and continued when I returned back to the states. I was really inspired by a particular artist by the name of Marion Bolognesi, who uses color and technique in such a unique and expressive way to portray faces.
What’s the best part about being a woman artist?
Being able to address feminist concepts and ideas through my own creations without being judged for my gender.
What is the most difficult part of being a female artist?
Being an artist in general is hard. It’s difficult to make a living from just being an artist, and the price of a piece of work doesn’t always translate to the actual value of what it’s worth. In regards to gender, history is proof that female artists are definitely less appreciated/well known. You always hear of all the great artists such as Picasso and Van Gogh, but rarely ever a woman’s name. Of course times have changed and it is now much more common and accepted that females are artists and just as talented and capable as their male counterparts.
How do you manage in such a situation?
I always remind myself that art is a form of expression and everyone, regardless of gender is entitled to expressing themselves. Even if I’m not making a profit from my work it fulfills me in other ways that money can’t.
Did you ever feel like giving up?
As opposed to giving up I have taken “breaks” when I wasn’t feeling very inspired or motivated to create new pieces due to time management or my bad habit of not being able to finish works I’ve already started. I’m somewhat of a perfectionist to a fault where if I’m unsatisfied with even just a basic sketch I will not continue unless I’m focused and my progress is meeting my own high standards. The best piece of advice I gave myself was that even beauty has its imperfections. My advice to aspiring artists is to find something that you truly enjoy, make it your own and be the best that you can be at it.
How do you look at your previous pieces?
I can see how I’ve progressed and developed through the years, and they remind me that the amount of time and energy you put into something reflects its outcome.
What is your dream project?
I would love to start my own style brand that solely caters to the modern female, complete with my own makeup looks, hair and clothing line. It would aim to style young females into fierce and powerful women, contrasting the typical “girly”, “delicate” and “feminine” style that has always applied to women while blurring the lines between women’s wear and men’s wear.
What is up and coming for you, as projects?
At the moment I am focusing on building my career path but I am always open to new opportunities.
What do you want to do next?
I plan to take my interest and passion for makeup to the next step and take classes so that I can get certified and be on my way to becoming a makeup artist.
For more artwork, visit Josephine’s website and Women Artists of the World.