In honor of the Lindsay Schopfer 2020 Fan Art Contest, I’m interviewing professional artists about their art and careers. Be sure to check out the other interview I did this month with Chris Malidore!
A Little About Maura: This is Maura Moffat, or NamelessOkami to the rest of the internet. A professional artist who currently works on commission I sculpt, draw, paint and make clay dice. Like most artists, I have enjoyed drawing since I was very young. I started with horses, then moved on to dragons and wolves- now I just draw everything! I have officially taken commission work since 2013 and been professionally working since 2016, one of my very first big projects being the Beast Hunter. Now I run a little side shop as well as continue to take commissions on my own time.
Describe the moment when you first thought seriously of creating art professionally.
I would say in highschool for sure, after I was asked to sculpt one of my teacher’s dogs. I had already been taking commissions before that for fun simce middle school though!
Who are your favorite artists? Who inspires you?
Too many to count…but to name a few:
My middle school art teacher who pushed me to challenge myself and learn constantly with art. Without his influence I would never have drawn a human, paid attention to anatomy, watched anime or played dungeons and dragons. All of which still inspire me today!
Jessica Peffer, or “NeonDragonArt” and her inspirational book on drawing dragons. Which also encouraged thinking outside the box.
Hiromu Arakawa, author and artist of the Fullmetal Alchemist series.
Various musical artists such as AURORA, Rush, Zoe Kesting, StarSet… Basically if the music is inspiring, the feeling to create is there too.
There are hundreds more, and I always find new inspiration everyday.
What’s your favorite color to use in your art?
Blue, mostly. And warm browns.
When you doodle, what’s your favorite subject?
My own characters! I write a few stories on the side, mostly fantasy or sci-fi- usually a bit of both. But if not them, then animals.
What’s the craziest deadline/commission you ever completed, and how’d you get it done?
The second book of the Keltin Moore series. I had one month to design the monsters, sketch them and the cover and paint- but it was still both fun and doable. There were a few late nights and binge listening to music but it was fun.
What advice would you give to self-published authors looking to hire an artist to do their book cover?
Make sure you like the style they are comfortable doing their work in, and make sure you feel like you can talk to the artist. I know one reason I love working with Lindsay is because if I have a question about the piece he wants I can talk to him. And vice versa.
What’s your favorite thing to draw in the world of Keltin Moore?
Tough question…. The monsters, for sure! I have a soft spot for the horned devil, since that was the first monster I drew for the Keltin Moore series but I love them all.
Of the multiple commissions you’ve done for me, which one was the hardest? Why? How’d you get it done?
Funnily enough, the most recent set of images for the short stories. Mostly because it was a perfect storm of starting a new job, other commissions coming in around the same time, the time of year and technical difficulties with the computer. In the end, it was a mix of bouncing from different projects, going back to my strength which is pencil and ink, and using my days off to sit down and power through the drawings rather than trying to work on them in short spurts. Next time will definitely be better!
We’re currently in the midst of the Lindsay Schopfer 2020 Fan Art Contest. What advice can you give fans as they prepare their pieces for submission?
Have fun! Pick your favorite book or your favorite part of the story and imagine that! Or, look at your strengths and apply that to the worlds.
What’s something you still hope to accomplish in your artistic career?
Consistency- mostly joking, but my style tends to change a lot. Which is actually good, it means I am still learning! But it does make commission work very… interesting.
Here’s your chance for a little shameless self-promotion! Tell us where we can find you and your artwork!
Instagram and twitter under NamelessOkami!
I also run a dice shop with my friend called Okami and Scry on Instagram, Twitter, Etsy and Patreon
A big shout-out to the fantastic members of my Readers Community:
Randall Hodgson, Mandy Vincelette, Matthew Paxman, Brenda Hayward, Yoshiyuki Nishikawa, Wil Sisney, Jarred Walton, Joel Stanger, and Kelly Wilbur.
If you’d like to learn more about my Readers Community, check out the following link: