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Meet Amanda Huynh of AHuynhArts in Studio City

Today we’d like to introduce you to Amanda Huynh.

Amanda, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
What a daunting question!I’ve always drawn my entire life, making little books about my favorite Pokémon, drawing my Neopets for the beauty contest, and owning god knows how many “How to Draw Manga” books. I never really took it “seriously” until junior year of high school where I realized I had to go to college and major in something. I lived out in the IE and made the move to LA for art college. My college experience is what defined my career in work now as an introduction to motion graphics, but also the realization of what kind of work I like to do personally (Through procrastination of course! What better way to procrastinate from making art by making even MORE art?). To this day I am still exploring what that means to me as I am an always changing person, so is how I create my art.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
I always knew in the back of my head that art will be something I had to do. I think having that focus helped me keep me on this path. I can’t imagine myself doing anything else.

However, art is so vague and risky to do. A lot of my struggles stem in questioning my self-worth and my place and value in a community that is getting larger and larger each day and whether or not that will be enough to keep me financially afloat. Especially because it was something I never realized I needed to take seriously until the ending of my time at high school, it was a scramble to even understand what is there more to art than just drawing for fun on the back of your homework assignments. Then that eventually lead to the fear that all of this work I’ve done in preparation for graduation would amount to “nothing” plagued me a lot. It strained my passion and relationships. I am only so happy now that I have been to untangle most of those fears from holding me hostage. Of course, these fears still linger. They never really go away.

If anything, my current struggle now is “what’s next?” But this is a challenge I look forward to walking through! Learning to come and accept change, even though it’s still terrifying and hard, is at the same time, so exciting and thrilling.

We’d love to hear more about your work.
I am currently a junior freelance motion graphics designer and animator. I just hop around studios helping on projects that need it in any way I can. On the side, I just draw my feelings! Sometimes I dabble into making zines and exhibiting in galleries. This is the most fulfilling part of art for me as being able to see my work tangible and ready to be shared with the world makes my impact feel real. What I’m most proud of is having my own identity in my work. I feel like my work has become distinctive enough that people recognize that it is by me. I started to get away from the idea that my work had to be a grand narrative illustration and fell into just drawing what came out of me naturally and I think that sets me apart from some people! I don’t care too much anymore about how grounded my work is, but how much it can convey whatever I’m feeling at the moment. In the end, my work is and always will be an extension of myself. I think people can resonate that with my work and that’s what makes me proud, people seeing who I am and understanding it as me as an individual and maybe even a reflection of themselves.

What were you like growing up?
I was a sweet little girl! I never wanted to get in any trouble and I just wanted everyone to be nice to each other. I’m sure my past elementary self would see me now and be embarrassed! I was also super into anime, yet too dumb to navigate the internet to find episodes of shows I wanted to watch so I just have an infinite loop of anime opening songs in my head with no actual context of the shows they’re from. I spent a lot of my time on the internet though, whether that’s a good or bad thing… Not like that’s changed any bit, haha! I spent a lot of time on Neopets, GaiaOnline, and DeviantArt so definitely a cursed combination of websites.

Growing up was a lot of identity issues that I kept hidden behind doors, in regards to who I was mentally and how that manifested into my physical identity. Religion, gender identity and representation, and existing as an Asian American have affected me. As I grow older, these issues slowly fade away into acceptance of self. Art has made that progression to heal a bit easier.

I’m sure a lot has changed since I was a little kid. I was super soft spoken and shy then, and now I’m pretty much the same, but sometimes louder and more obnoxious.

Contact Info:

Image Credit:
William Nguyen

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