Fan Artist Spotlight: Regina Mendoza

Wookiee Study by deviantART artist Okani

Today’s spotlight is on Regina Mendoza, a.k.a. Okani! You can find her on deviantART and Tumblr.

I discovered Regina on deviantART and fell in love with her project that she made for school. The project is a 35-illustration card set that depicts several different Star Wars species. What made me fall in love with her art was the ingenuity and originality behind her approach. I also love the fact that the cards are written in Spanish, which truly demonstrates the diversity behind the Star Wars fandom.

Tell us about yourself.
I am a Mexican female and an art and pop culture enthusiast, who just graduated from college and hopes to find a steady job in a not-so-steady economy (one can dream, huh?) and aspires to do so in an art-related field.

When and how did you become a Star Wars fan?
When I was a child, I was always more inclined to anime and manga, which made me a die-hard otaku. I loved Sakura, Digimon, Pokemon, and any anime the television would transmit at the time. When I was about to enter high school, I started to take a comics illustration class, where I met another girl, who later became one of my best friends.  She was a fan of DC comics and Star Wars and introduced me to these fantastic worlds. The first time I saw Episode IV, I knew there was no turning back.

What’s your project about and how did you come up with the idea?
It’s a 35 illustration project that is written by a Jedi Master, Dardan Ismet, who is one of my fan-made OCs (other characters). Each illustration describes a species. At times, a description of the planet is included as well as his opinions and experiences when meeting them. I tried to also mix it with the feeling of an old “explorer’s sketch book” or something like that. I came up with the idea when I was required to make a project for a class in school. We had to make something book-related with a twist, so we didn’t end up with the traditional book format, and I thought it was a great excuse to make something Star Wars-related; something I wanted to do for years now.

What tools do you use to create your art?
For this project, I used pencil, ink and coffee to make it feel like an old illustration, but I work with both digital and traditional media. In digital media, I use Photoshop CS3 and Paint Tool Sai and in traditional media I am way more flexible. I like pencil, ink, markers, watercolor, prismacolors, ballpoint pens, acrylics, etc.

What is your favorite piece that you have created and why are you fond of it?
I am my worst critic and even when I enjoy greatly when I am working, I always feel like the final result could be better. Often when I look at my work, I tend to focus on the mistakes rather than the things that work well in the illustration and that’s something I need to change soon, but in this project I think the ones I liked the most were the Cerean, Cathar and Togruta cards.

Are you looking forward to the future Star Wars films? What are your hopes or worries?
Definitely, I am really excited. I hope they make a better job than the one they did on Episodes I and II or The Clone Wars. I think they did the right choice with the director and he’s capable of doing a good job, but one can never know. I don’t want to think too much about it, really. I want to get there with an open mind and enjoy it as much as I can.

What are your professional goals?
Being a professional illustrator and being able to make it a way of living. Graphic novels and cover and book illustrations are the things I am more interested to work on. A dream that I hope to make true one day is entering a book store and seeing a book or a comic with a cover I did or something with my name on it.

Any final thoughts?
Thank you so much for sharing my work and I hope it is something the Star Wars fandom can enjoy. Aaaand, I don’t know what else to say! There are so many interesting things in the Star Wars universe and I hope I never get tired of making illustrations inspired by them, so I can continue to share them with you with the hope that you like them as much as I like doing them. Thanks again and may the Force be with you all!

Thanks, Regina! I wish you the best of luck in your future endeavors and I hope to see your artwork evolve into the professional setting you desire. May the Force be with you!

About Johnamarie Macias (1286 Articles)
I love everything pertaining to the 'Star Wars' animated shows! Follow me on Twitter and Instagram by searching for @BlueJaigEyes.

1 Comment on Fan Artist Spotlight: Regina Mendoza

  1. woah! amazing work (in Spanish KYAH!!!!)
    again: good interview!
    looking forward for the next one! :D


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