"I start to be interested in drawing at the age of three and all my relatives usually said: she will be an artist!" Painting vs. computer graphics — the creative way of contemporary Ukrainian artist Natalia Steshenko

© Natasha Steshenko
— A graphic artist is a childhood dream or a protest against the parents 'you must become a specialist in respectable specialties…'? Or exactly your family has become the main inspiration in finding yourself in this field?
— I became to be interested in drawing at the age of three, and all my relatives usually said - she will be an artist! At school, except drawing, I was not interested in any subjects, so my parents did not interfere and only contributed to my development in this way. In fact, I'm not the only artist in my family. My grandfather painted reproductions of such famous artists as Ivan Shishkin, Mykola Pymonenko, Volodymyr Makovsky, Ivan Kramsky. And actually my grandfather was first who taught me to draw.
© Natasha Steshenko
— Do you like experimenting with styles and materials? Is there a favorite, a dominant one?
— While studying at university, I tried many different techniques, tools and styles. This experience has been useful for me as a designer, where I work mainly with computer graphics. But most of all I love painting, so I spend a lot of time painting using dye.
Gradually, I formed a style for my paintings and now I work mainly in it. But it is changing all the time and I am trying to improve it. Recently, I became interested in ceramics. Now, in parallel with the paintings, I make a series of sculptures.
— Which Ukrainian and foreign authors are you inspired by?
— I have always loved academic painting and impressionism. I like the works of Taras Shevchenko, Mykola Pymonenko, Gauguin. And I am inspired by what surrounds me in real life: people, everyday life - everything that happens on the street. You can also find a lot of interesting things on social networks. Every day I keep dozens of pictures in my collection, not only artists, but also photos, videos, illustrations, children's works, design, graffiti - everything that seems interesting to me.
— After what work (series of works) did people start talking about you on the Internet?
— The painting «Reconstruction» quickly gained popularity. In just three days, it had 40,000 views on Facebook. For my untwisted page, it was fantastically large number!
© Natasha Steshenko
© Natasha Steshenko
© Natasha Steshenko
© Natasha Steshenko
— Tell us about the process of creating your work.
— I take a lot of photos, collect material. Everything that seemed interesting to me, to which I would like to pay attention, gets to my image library. I always make sketches, compose, select a palette, then draw a picture. I try to recreate real places, people or events.
— Did you ever occur to you that by depicting the realities of Ukrainian cities, you will find a noticeable reaction from society?
— In these depicted realities, almost everyone recognized themselves or the life situation in which they found themselves at least once. Many people complain that they do not live well, that there is a complete decay everywhere. I believe that it is not the place that makes a person better, but the person makes the place. Therefore, instead of complaining, people should not wait for support or help, and start learning and working hard to be proud of the place where they live.
— Which of your works sell best and why?
— The most popular among fans are paintings from the series "Space for Meaning". Maybe because of the bright palette, or maybe because many in the soul they responded. I think I will be able to answer this question more precisely later.
© Natasha Steshenko
© Natasha Steshenko
© Natasha Steshenko
— Among the works of the series «Space for meaning» probably everyone will find something that impresses him. And what is your personal «Space for meaning» or 'space of dreams'?
— I live in Obolon (district in Kyiv — editorial note) nd I am completely satisfied with this place. Here I get inspiration and work on paintings, I have the opportunity to observe real life, assess the situation in society, see the needs of people.
— What software do you use when creating projects as a designer?
— In my work I use mainly Illustrator, Photoshop and Figma, sometimes I draw by hand.
— What do you like more: creating masterpieces in digital space or real?
— In real, maximum in augmented reality.
— How do you see your future? What place in the world of painting and design would you like to occupy in 10 years?
— In the near future I plan to finish a series of paintings "Space for meaning" and start a new "Space for harmony". I have a lot of ideas for paintings and I want to implement them as much as possible.
Through my work I communicate with people, sometimes I open their eyes, sometimes my soul. And if at least one of my paintings made a person slow down, look around and rethink something in this life, then my work is not in vain.
And what will happen in 10 years? It seems to me that this is a long time, until then I will discover new horizons, which I have no idea about now.