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Teeming with brilliant pigments, artist Monique Munoz’s digital illustrations drip with an enchanted mysticism that is generally found only in the magical world of a child’s vast imagination. Each piece breaks down into the vivid minutae that is exclusively representative of Munoz’s sentiments. Though her work presents a sense of innocence, there lies a certain depth that comes from the understanding of having lived through the trials of growing up, imparting a channel to the mind’s eye.

Lotus

Lotus

“All my work comes from how I see the world and perceive life,” Munoz states. “Ever since I could pick up a pencil, I think I was drawing. I have and always had a deep passion to illustrate the world and share it with everyone!”

Pencil Sketches

Pencil Sketches

“Most of [my work] stem[s] from an emotion or thought I was having at a particular time. That’s kind of vague…but it’s best way I can describe all my art at once. My art comes from within me–it’s my way of expressing inner emotions that I simply cannot communicate verbally.”

Fear and Loathing

Fear and Loathing

To accommodate her need for vibrant hues, her chosen medium lies in computers with Photoshop and Paint Tool SAI, allowing for an infinite palette. Behind digital creation is watercolor, her “second favorite,” which she has been intrigued by and experimenting with as of recent, making use of the way “the colors flow and blend together.”

Elf Girl

Elf Girl

“I also love changing and adding things at the last minute—digital allows me to do this without being too worried about ruining the original. I can really let myself go and try all kinds of things knowing I cannot make a mistake. It’s so freeing.”

Friendship

Friendship

Though Munoz maintains “very little experience in the professional art world,” she hit the art scene with a degree to back her and a resounding lesson to “put [herself] out there.” She was drawn by interaction in community, which gave her the motivation to forge a career in her craft. Since then, she has been published in print and online ranging from anime to mindful beats and has shown her work in several group expositions. This April, she has a group gallery show with Raw Artists in Toronto.

Unity of Life

Unity of Life

“Opportunities have just recently been popping up at me to potentially make a living off my art. I have worked so hard on drawing every single day since I can remember. It’s more than a dream come true to see people taking interest in my art now!”

Her goal is to soon have a solo exhibit and then take her art on the road internationally. As such, she explicates the value of art lies in its ability to “allow us to express ourselves when we can no longer use words.”

Dreamer

Dreamer

“I am allowing and embracing something to make me feel so naked and exposed.” Her favorite work currently is “We are the Lotus Kids,” due to its message.

“We are born as innocent children and as we grow older we let that innocence slip away.  As hard as life gets, there are people who will remember that innocence and compassion that we were all born with. It’s the simplest lesson but it’s hardest to practice in a busy society. It requires patience and discipline. But once we start practicing, it will come easy to us and we remember, “Oh ya, I knew this all along.”

As Above So Below

As Above So Below

Last thing she learned:

“Tiger balm is NOT made with tiger pee…..my boyfriend tried tricking me into believing this….okay so he did trick me for a couple days. I’m pretty gullible sometimes. I mean, why would he lie!? Because it’s funny. This is the valuable lesson I learned last week.”

The Magician

The Magician