Art by Erik Mooi
Erik Mooi (1984) Digital/traditional illustrator, loves to create characters in medieval or fantasy setting. Not shy to create creatures as well.
Erik works traditional with pencils and pens but also likes to work digital. As an self taught artist he always wants to learn more to give his art a better look and feel and a better experience for the viewer. want to get in touch or want to know more:
Tell the people who you are and where are you from ?
Let me start by thanking you guys for this opportunity, it’s a great honor to do my first interview as an artist ever! Thanks
My name is Erik Mooi, a 32 year old living in Tegelen in the South of Netherlands (Limburg)
Married and proud father of my 2-year-old son. For the most part, a self-thought artist. I grew up in a family where art was always around. My father worked as an art-director and taught me and my older brother what is was like to create something out of nothing. Started out with pencils and drew the things we wanted to see on paper. At a young age already addicted to the pencil and it never stopped. Always drawing when I had the chance, at school, at a restaurant or at home.
Later in life when I was in my teenage years I stopped drawing when I attend graphic design school. I was told there was no future in drawing and that I needed to learn how to create and design with the computer.
I followed the course ‘multi-media design’. It felt good but there was still something missing. Attended several internships in advertising agencies and end up designing banners, websites and print related work such as flyers and brochures. Moments that I was drawing it were only doodles to pass the time.
The art industry where I grew up is not that big. For many years trying to find what I was looking for I ended up on the internet on websites like Deviant art and Conceptart dot org. There it was! Several years later and didn’t draw for ages I picked up the pencil again. A glimpse of maybe doing this for a living! The only thing I need to do is to step up my game and start all over with fundamentals, anatomy, perspective and what not.
In the evenings I had some time to play with my wacom and learn the things you need to learn how to paint and draw in Photoshop. That was around the age of 28. Later when I was 29 my girlfriend (now my wife) and I found out we were pregnant. Meanwhile I found a job where I could draw from time to time and design for a living. Working all week and preparing to be a father the months flew by. I wanted to be around for my son in the evenings and the weekends so I decided to put my artistic goal on a low priority. Family first and if there is time I will pick up my pencils again. Now that my son is 2 and I’m used to work all week and being a father and rearranged my life I started to find time to pursuit my artistic goals again. So here I am, still a lot more to learn but the fire inside has never left.
Can you tell us about your latest project ?
My latest project was actually a personal project, inktober. I wanted to see how far I could come and apply the things I learned from my anatomy studies I do in the evenings. And off course to put some pencils to a blank sheet of paper again and draw stuff that I like to draw. Also a big thanks to my wife, she took care of our son while I was drawing. Without her support I don’t know if I would finish the month. It were very long nights with little sleep.
What message do you want people to receive from your artwork?
I don’t know if I can call it a message, I think it’s more a feeling/emotion or an experience, a view into a world that doesn’t exists and they perhaps want to explore more. I like to draw things that aren’t real or don’t even exist in our world. I always find joy to explore imaginary worlds and characters. I would love to give that feeling to the viewer where he or she is looking at my work and immediately want to know more about the character or the world where it’s from. Maybe even push the viewer into an imaginary journey in his or her own head. I want to keep my art entertaining instead of sending messages.
Do you remember your first creative work, the moment you knew that you where an artist?
I remember when I was 6 I guess I drew a skull with batwings attached to its head in class. On a very young age I knew I wanted to do something with art. Also that my dad was an artist was a huge inspiration as well. www.facebook.com/emooi
Who are your favorite artist and inspirations?
My favorite artist and inspirations, oh so many! My family has always been an inspiration and motivation. Art on a young age, the covers on the heavy metal bands cd’s like Iron Maiden. And covers that had Frank Frazetta or Boris Vallejo work on it. It also shifts from time to time. But the main reason I started to do this again like I told in the first question is Dan Luvisi. I saw his work and my mind was blown. He could paint stuff that isn’t real but can make it look like a photo. That’s insane! I want to do that too. So yeah, that was my main inspiration. Music, LOTR, Starwars, warhammer 40K, Alliens, Predator, 80’s cartoons like D&D, Thundercats, X-men, batman and a ton more were also huge inspirations that drove me to a sheet of paper. Ah! Don’t forget the old and new computer games! I find inspiration in many things.
What tools do you use to create/ Where can we see more of your art, what other places has your work been published ?
I always start with pencil and paper, there is something about traditional work that can’t be beaten by a computer. If I’m drawing digital, the only tool I use is Photoshop. And for more art you can visit my website :www.erikmooi.nl
What do you see yourself doing in 20 years ?
My goal in 20 years is that I am good enough that I can make a living by doing things I like to draw and create. Also by that time my goal is to have experiences with working on games, books and maybe even movies.
If you could work on a creative project with anyone in the world from any period in time who would it be?
My son. Hopefully he will be an artist as well, it would be awesome if I can build an IP with him and see where it takes us. It was a dream from my father but through his early passing it was never an option. So it would be cool if I get to build something with my son and step in my own father’s shoes. I also would love to do a big project with my brother someday. He is a creative director at a creative communications studio.
Any last words you would like to say to the Section 8 Magazine readers worldwide?
Thank you for reading and you’re time! I hope it wasn’t too hard to read or a big ramble J hopefully it was somehow informative or inspirational. I’m still learning, perfecting and improving myself as an artist so if you would like to follow me on my journey or get in touch, hit me up through one of the social pages or my website! Thanks again, stay creative and keep rocking! – Erik Mooi: www.instagram.com/erikmooi/
Creator, father, motorcycle enthusiast, fitness, art and coffee.