Today we are speaking to yuroran who is a master at acid-bright colours and is an expert at merging this palette into amazing Jrock themed art as well as other subjects. This interview will cover how yuroran developed as an artist and will be showing us their Jrock themed work. Let’s get right to it. ◇◇◇ Thank you for agreeing to speak with us, please introduce yourself. I’m yuroran! Spanish-Venezuelan artist. When did you start drawing? I think like most artists, I started as soon as I could pick up a pencil and never really stopped. My mom keeps drawings I made when I was around 5 years old. But as for taking it seriously as a career option, I’d say it started around 2004. That’s a brave thing to do, being an artist isn’t easy. So, how did you get into Jrock? This is really embarrassing, but the absolute truth is that I was around 14year old, surfing the internet with a friend looking for AMVs [laugh]. We ended up finding one featuring GACKT’s Last Song. I instantly fell in love. Later, one artist lead to another, and before I knew it my entire playlist was in Japanese. No one could quite understand how or why I got so obsessed. But the truth is that it led to some very fun times and great musical discoveries! I even ended up learning the language and finding my true calling (teaching it). I am very grateful for that embarrassing AMV. I wish I could find it again. Let’s have a look at some of your work that has Jrock as it’s primary theme, what do we have here? This is the cover of a scrapbook for LM.C made in collaboration with other fans. Aiji received the physical, printed version, and even made a comment on how good it looked. I was over the moon! [laughs]. Those were good times. I made another cover for the scrapbook of the following year too. I was a huge fan of The GazettE’s “Inside Beast” and all of BEAUTIFUL DEFORMITY back when I made this piece. It was the polka dots, I guess. This is a piece I made commemorating hide’s 50th birthday I believe. He’s still a huge source of inspiration to me. I’ve seen it reposted around the internet quite a lot… (don’t do that). There was a contest on J-MELO asking for VK inspired fashion designs, and some of them were featured with Shou (A9) as a host, mine was among them. It was exciting to see him comment on it! Which is your favourite Jrock piece? Looking at this, you’d probably think “how on Earth is this Jrock related?!” But the truth is, this image was a contestant for a spot in LM.C’s My Favorite Monster music video. And it won! It was featured for around 2 seconds only [laughs] but I remember being extremely proud of the fact that my favorite band at the time took a glance at something I made. These are amazing and a lot of them are highly conceptual. How do you get over artistic blocks/feeling unmotivated? I just let them pass. Sometimes you’re just not in the mood to draw, and that’s fine. Usually, blocks come from setting unfair expectations upon oneself—making amazing art every single time, quickly and efficiently. But humans can’t work at 100% all the time. Not everything we’re going to make is gonna be a masterpiece. Actually, 90% of what we need to make in order to be “good” has to suck. We gotta dig out that 10%. As for motivation, this is rather difficult to explain because recently I realized that the reason I thought was motivating me to make art was actually holding me back from enjoying it at all. So my motivation hit a strong -1% in recent years. But once you build discipline (and have deadlines incoming), motivation is something you learn not to rely on. tl;dr: Relax, it happens to everyone. Keep drawing when you feel like it. And do it anyway if you absolutely must (if it’s your job), because it will allow you to move on with your day. Art Inspired by music and fashion. That’s good advice. How about inspiration? What inspires you to draw? Characters! I love characters. I find myself always wanting to create characters, making them fit into complicated universes (some that I create myself too), designing their appearance, personalities, and quirks to the smallest detail. Another thing I love is fashion (which is not a surprise considering how much I used to love VK). Lately, I am not actively making art related to Jrock music like I used to, and my focus has shifted towards stories, picking up inspiration from manga and anime series. What was your process for improving your drawings? Experimenting a lot with different styles, studying anatomy and color theory helped a lot. Watching the process of experienced illustrators also helped me settle for some techniques. And maybe the most important thing is to use references/studies of your subject. Aside from that, it’s painfully obvious but still worth mentioning: I just kept doing it. That’s the only way to get better. Name three artists who inspire you to draw. Currently I’d say… Sara Kipin, Kohei Horikoshi, Yusuke Kozaki for illustrators. Utada Hikaru, LM.C and DASEIN for musicians. Please show us a photo of your desk/drawing tools! My current workspace is unpresentable now (laughs). I still haven’t settled in properly, so this picture is from a couple years ago before I left my parents’ home. It was a nice, comfortable desk. Now that I don’t have it I miss it a lot. Please cherish your desks. The rest of the tools (Wacom tablet, sketchbook, pens, etc.) are pretty much still the same! Isn’t the artwork great? JROCK NEWs would like to thank yuroran for speaking with us. See more of the work on Instagram, Twitter and Tumblr. Do you know of any other talented Jrock illustrators? Make sure to send us a link in the comments or email [email protected] for us to check out! Give us your opinion!