Today’s spotlight is on HayaMika!
A 19-year-old student currently attending college for computer animation, HayaMika is obsessed with Star Wars Rebels and Star Wars: The Clone Wars. The ever-strong and inspirational Hera Syndulla is their favorite character, as seen on the right. HayaMika creates bright and joyful pieces, and I absolutely love their style and use of colors!
When and how did you become a Star Wars fan?
My parents were Star Wars fans for a long time, so I have always had a vague idea of what the story was about. I used to play with a toy lightsaber as a child, but knew nothing more about it other than it was called a lightsaber. I didn’t watch any of the movies as a kid because I was always terrified of watching any of the characters loose limbs and/or die and that seems to happen A LOT in this franchise.
I guess you could say I was a late bloomer fan because I didn’t really get into Star Wars until Rebels was half way through season one. I remember seeing a commercial for it on Disney XD and it looked like something big was going to happen in the episode (the commerical was for “Gathering Forces”), so I said to myself, “Hey, well, this actually looks cool and I’m not doing anything tonight, so…”
It basically all started from there and I have since gotten the chance to watch the movies and The Clone Wars cartoon.
What tools do you use to create your art?
I draw my art digitally with Photoshop CC, and sometimes, Paint Tool SAI. I also like to make sculptures with clay.
What is your favorite Star Wars piece that you have created and why are you fond of it?
My favorite so far has to be my Chibi version of Hera. It got pretty decent attention on both DeviantART and Tumblr and it’s the best thing I’ve done to date. It’s also the cutest thing I have ever drawn, so far. I’m also pretty proud of my drawing of Ezra with his hair pulled back like Kanan’s. It was inspired by a dream I had one day.
What’s the best and most difficult thing about being an artist?
Trying to get your work out there is hard, especially with a fanbase as big as Star Wars. There are so many artists out there and it’s hard to really stand out against everyone else here.
Another thing that makes things difficult is learning to accept your own art. I often find myself comparing my artwork to those around me, and while doing that has helped me learn to accept criticism, it makes it hard for me to accept any praise for my work because the first thing that I blurt out after receiving praise is, “No, no, no. I’m nowhere near as good as some of the people I know of…”. Not only does it make yourself look bad because of your lack of confidence, but that lack of confidence makes it hard for your talent to flourish and grow.
What are your thoughts on Star Wars Rebels and Star Wars: The Force Awakens?
I’m super, super excited for the new season of Rebels. I’m excited to see how it progresses, and from what I’ve heard about it, it’s going to be a REALLY rough season emotionally. We are going to learn more about the characters’ pasts and that in itself is going to be a wild ride. I’m also pretty excited for the future films, but I don’t really have an opinion on them. All I know is that I plan to go see The Force Awakens opening night.
How else do you express your love for Star Wars (cosplay, fanfiction, etc.)?
I like to write fan fiction and I’m currently working on two fan fiction series. One is about Kanan recovering from everything that happened in the season one finale (“Fire Across the Galaxy”) and another involves short one-shots about the Master/Padawan relationship between Depa Billaba and Caleb Dume. I’m a horrible writer, though, so they aren’t as great as I wish they were.
Any final thoughts?
If it wasn’t for Star Wars, I’d still be terrified of seeing people loose limbs or die. Thanks to Star Wars, though, I was able to work past those fears and not be so terrified of the idea. Also, Hera Syndulla’s character has helped me so much. I’m dealing with some mental health issues right now, and her character has given me the confidence to push forward in my treatment. She is so confident and doesn’t take crap from anyone and I hope to one day be as strong as her, both emotionally and physically.
Hera is such an amazing and strong character. I’m so glad that she’s become a corner stone for you, and I hope that she continues to be an inspiration to you and many other Star Wars fans. Keep up the amazing and adorable work, HayaMika, and may the Force be with you!