That moment you stumble upon an Instagram account worth following on the Explore page is equivalent to stumbling upon a cheap Malaysian restaurant overseas. Jynwaye’s page was my plate of nasi lemak in San Francisco. It was love at first scroll. All of her illustrations were beautifully intricate and ridiculously lifelike. There is a particular video where she wiped off a page full of Kit Kats only to reveal that one of it is not like the others, peep it here. When I showed my roommate, the only explanation she could come to was witchcraft. Or mad talent. Read on to delve into the mind of this young creative:
My name is Jyn. I’m 19. I’m a Kuala Lumpur-based illustrator and exhibiting artist, currently living in Oregon, USA. Fun fact: I enrolled in a local art college after high school, quit it after my first day, took up Science, bought a one-way-ticket to the states, and moved across the globe to pursue a degree in Environmental Sciences. Currently working two jobs, accepting art commissions, and getting a college education because A. I believe you will never know your limits until you push yourself to them and B. I need money to afford my online shopping addiction.
Do you have an artistic background? How did you hone your talent?
As a matter of fact, I do not. When I was really young, my mom enrolled me in dance and music classes (and every after-school program possible). Art was not one of them. I’ve never seen myself as an artist or a creative person. It wasn’t until high school when I discovered my passion for art. I remember being really bored in Biology class and doodling on my eyeglass case with a friend’s marker pen. My friends took note of my work and got me to draw on button badges, bottles, shoes, all kinds of stuff. I bought my first paintbrush when I was 17 and started exploring different mediums and art styles. I posted my art online, particularly Instagram because I liked how the feed is similar to an artist’s digital portfolio, and my artistic career kind of took off from there. The consistent support and recognition I received on Instagram really helped boost my self-confidence and shape my style as an artist.
What are your thoughts on the art scene in KL?
Kuala Lumpur is evidently home to a thriving, varied arts scene. The synthesis of past and present tradition and multiculturalism has helped shape the city to the cultural capital it is today. I was invited to exhibit some of my work at a couple local art events this past year and was amazed by the amount of talent and creativity in the room. Compared with other Southeast Asian countries, Malaysia is considered one of the more conservative, “old-fashioned” countries, giving people the impression that the local art scene is timid, almost. Being able to experience a rich tapestry of art and culture of KL City in a tiny event space was a real eye-opener to me.
What do you wish to see more of in KL in terms of art?
More platforms created for budding artists to showcase their artistic talents. The “starving artist stereotype” abolished. Emerging art aficionados. Street art.
Who, dead or alive, would you like to collaborate with?
Lorraine Loots, Furrylittlepeach, Elle Wills. I look up to them because they’re more than just artists, they are content creators. They have very distinct art styles and each artwork they put out is unique and original. They’re talented, ass-kicking, all round awesome females. Collaborating with them is definitely on my bucket list.
List 5 things that cause your imagination to run wild.
- Trippy music
- Walks/rides without destination
- Long-haul flights
- Art Instagram accounts
What is a quote you live by?
“Don’t think about making art, just get it done. Let everyone decide if it’s good or bad, whether they love it or hate it. While they’re deciding, make even more art.” -Andy Warhol.
If you could be a piece of art in any museum, what and where would you be?
Rough Waves by Ogata Korin. The Metropolitan Museum Of Art.
Any local artists we should look out for?
Instagram username: @dribblack. World class.
What are your upcoming projects for the future?
Can’t get enough of Jyn’s illustrations? It’s about time you follow her on Instagram. Be prepared to feel slightly unworthy and scroll till an early onslaught of carpal tunnel overwhelms you. You have been warned.