The Artist Routine : Diana "Roz" Bessel

Hello, thank you for taking the time to answer this written interview. Let's start with an introduction, tell us about yourself, what do you do in life, your background?

Hi! Thanks for having me!

My name is Diana, but on my social media and among my friends, I go by the name of Roz, and I’m a Russian, mostly self-taught freelance artist!

I went through a short but very disappointing experience of an old-school art education (which I quit at the age of twelve), which almost murdered my desire to create in cold blood, but with the great help of the art community, I managed to learn to have fun with my art — and here we are!


Can you share with us your favorite creation among the personal or professional works you have done?

Introduce us to this project, why did you do it? What was the context of its creation?

Once upon a time, a 22 year-old-girl (me) decided to fill in the pop-cultural gap and watched Harry Potter movies for the first time in her life, and got herself a new fandom interest :D

This fanart started as a simple sketch study for learning how to convey the character’s likeness, but it soon became a full-colored illustration that I’m happy with! Maybe that’s the secret of these kinda accidental works — you just have fun without expecting anything extraordinary from it!

Approximately, how long did this project take you to complete? (in hours, weeks or months depending on the project)

I don’t usually pay close attention to how much time it takes me to finish personal projects, especially random ones like this one because more often than not, they’re being made at the end of the day as a treat.

But with this one, I spent two evenings of chill drawing to get it done, so I think it took roughly four hours with all these creative searches — this flower, for example, came out of nowhere, and I was like ok, I guess that’s how it’s going to be :D You never get something like that while working on commissions because you got a whole plan laid out from the start!

Take us through your process to arrive at this result as if we were 5 years old:

Okay, buckle up, kids, Russian Mama gonna tell you a story! (Joking) It’s not going to be a story, because it would be extremely boring and also lists rule 😎

So here we go, stages of the process: 

1. First off, I search for refs

2. Rough sketch next

3. Remember to flip the canvas (it’s very -and I can’t stress it enough- IMPORTANT)

4. Simple color blocking 

5. Okay, that’s nice, we can do shadows now!

6. Sprinkle with some details

7. Okay, it’s almost done, just gotta add a simple background!

8. /Unexpected appearance of a flower/

9. Welp… It looks nice, tho! /Rendering of the flower/

10. Done!


Let's do a mini role play, professionally, who is Jean, your main type of client?

Individuals

Jean contacts you for the first time, he absolutely needs your services for his project. Walk us through a typical collaboration with Jean, from the first contact to the last interaction?

Well, first, I thank Jean for reaching out because it’s always nice to find a letter in your email box! After that, I ask him to tell me more about the project, and if that’s something I can do, then we discuss the details: Jean’s preferences for poses, clothing, color scheme; and also, deadlines for the project, payment, and etc.

Once everything is talked over, I receive a 50% down payment and start working on a sketch (or the sketches, if the project requires creative searching), and when it’s done, I send it to Jean, so he can check if everything’s alright and make some changes if needed.

Then I finish the project and send it to Jean for the final check and minor adjustments, he sends me the second half of the payment, and that’s it!

For me the most serotonin-boosting part of the whole project is to see the final result, so I let Jean know that I’m so so SO grateful to him for allowing me to participate in it!


It’s important to be excited about the project as much as your client is

From your perspective, what made this collaboration possible, exciting, successful?

Well, I’m always excited to work with new people, and I hope Jean would feel it too :D

But in all seriousness, in my opinion, it’s important to be excited about the project as much as your client is — this way, you’ll be personally interested in making the result look the best way possible.

The key is to have as much information on the project as you can get, and that’s why I try to think it through and ask my client all the questions right away, so as not to bother them with "Um, excuse me, what color are your character's socks?" kind of questions at three in the morning a few days later. Success lies in details and communication!


We are almost at the end, is there anything else you would like to add or clarify?

Nope, but maybe in a couple of months, I'll wake up in a cold sweat with thoughts of "Jesus, why didn't I use the chance to clarify /something embarrassing I wrote above and didn't notice/!!", haha (Note: you have my permission to not use this part, I'm a mess)


Success lies in details and communication!

That's it! Thank you so much for your time and for sharing so much with us! Last question: Where can we follow you and contact you?

Thank YOU!! And you can find me on Twitter (@rozbesselart), Instagram, and Tumblr (@rozbessel)! Best of luck ✨

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