Growing up as a Taiwanese American, Rebecca Hsu searches for ways to reconnect with her culture through conversation, and transforming such dialogue into work that can be shared.
"Art is my way of reconnecting with my culture, especially since my work is largely inspired by traditions I loved as a child," she tells Creative Boom. "My biggest inspirations are fellow Asian American artists who have found new and creative ways to merge their Asian cultures and American identities through art."
An illustrator and designer currently based in the Bay Area, Rebecca started with an Industrial Design background and worked with various ceramic artists as a production assistant.
"My work is derived from a fascination with vintage objects and ceramics. I am on a constant search of ways to tell the stories from my culture, sharing them as modern visuals that embrace the art history that also revolves around it."
Her most recent pieces have been on the theme of the Lunar New Year, which in her family has always been "an exciting celebration. These works make me cherish and feel nostalgic about my memories from childhood".
The piece she is most proud of so far is her 'Orange Picnic' illustration, an important artwork that shifted her creative direction.
"It's a simple piece that was inspired by a figure sculpture from the Tang dynasty, but I redrew it as a young girl in a Chinese gown with oranges in a basket. Since I created it, I started to produce more pieces that were simple and quirky but incorporated a bit of my culture, and thus began discovering my style and focus within illustration."
"My style is a digital rendition of traditional Chinese paintings. I draw a lot of inspiration from Chinese scroll paintings, especially mimicking the line variations from calligraphy brushes and the simple use of colour. I have also been exploring virtual museums as a way of learning about the history of traditional and ancient art, and I am always fascinated by the amount of detail and symbolism incorporated into seemingly simplistic scroll paintings."
Rebecca is planning on going back to school next year to focus more deeply on storytelling through illustration, in hopes of using her artwork to tell other people's stories.
"I want to focus on creating pieces that tell stories of Taiwanese traditions and festivities, especially for my personal journey to dig deeper into my culture and cultural identity. I still love creating with my hands, so I look forward to not only improving my digital illustrations but also exploring three-dimensional mediums."
Follow Rebecca Hsu on her journey via Instagram.