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Renderosity artist Jollyself shares her passion for surreal

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Helping Hands by Jollyself

Renderosity artist Jollyself goes by several names. In real life, she calls herself Jazzie or Debra Ritchie. On Renderosity, we call her a master of the surreal.

As Jollyself, Ritchie creates surrealistic art with an edge that comments on modern life.

Her art has been well received with the community awarding her several times with Renderosity Artist of the Month, the latest was awarded in April 2016, and 2017 Artist of the Year.

Ritchie was kind enough to pause her Photoshop to answer questions about what inspires her and what her process is for creating images with a point of view.

How long have you been creating digital art and why did you start?
Ritchie: I started in digital art in 2006 when I found Renderosity galleries and started browsing and becoming completely enchanted with what I saw. I started researching and found DAZ Studio's free 3D software. Playing around in that program, I found out pretty quickly that I could use the digital software to realize my aptitude for the surreal. I was too untrained in paints and canvas to be able to scratch that surreal spot in my head. Imagine my joy. So I became a member at Renderosity and have been obsessed ever since.

What inspires your creations?
Ritchie: I am one of those people who rebels against "the norm" in art, in thought, in politics, in life, in perspective. So anytime I can twist an idea to the extreme, or anytime I can look at "normal" through my own whacked out perspective and depict that in digital, I am happy. I like to play with adages in my work, and I am inspired by the most mundane things. Like turning a phrase toward the surreal or flipping a normal concept upside down and taking that to the digital canvas.

What is the process of creating images like for you?
Ritchie: I enjoy the process and the twists and turns it can take me inside the image. A lot of times I start out with a firm concept and path to get to that concept and find my initial idea and the image evolving spontaneously several times.

I enjoy the creative work far more depending on the software I am using. Poser/Daz rendering does not spark my creative juices like Photoshop does. Using the render engine to provide a base character and then using Photoshop to flesh out the concept is the usual process.

Photo manipulation in Photoshop is my "ideal" and most fun process to get to my final works.

What is your favorite thing to design?
Ritchie: Well, of course, the surreal, but I am also one who loves statuary in the extreme (bigger the better) and I also love miniatures. So digitally creating with extreme scales is my favorite thing to do.

What do you think your best piece of work is and why?
Ritchie: I think "Witness the Life" is my best piece. The concept is eternal, the technical aspects of the digital art shows off my love of using organic and nature to tell my story and it causes one to consider the premise and what it really means.

What is something people would be surprised to know about you?
Ritchie: In my younger years when the hands were still strong and tireless, I sculpted in wet and polymer clay.

When my daughter was little I outfitted my outdoor shed into a power tools workshop and built her a large "Barbie-scale" dollhouse making most of the furniture and using polymer clay to make the dishes, lamps, miniature food etc etc. It was a 14-month project and the completed tiled, carpeted three-story house was given to her for her seventh Christmas. It was a joy and a chore to build. So the surprising thing about me is that although I am a tiny five-foot woman...I can run a mean bandsaw.

Find more of Ritchie's creations in her gallery.

Read more from:
Artist Spotlight
Tags: 
Debra Ritchie, Jollyself, Renderosity, Renderosity Artist, surrealism
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