I love to draw more than just about anything, and I draw and paint nearly every day. I have been drawing since I could hold a pencil, but it took me years before I considered doing it full time. In my upbringing and education, it was more of a pastime or hobby, but not a stable profession. I started my professional career as a cartographer. It took a long time to evolve from cartographer, to fine artist and illustrator, graphic designer, and then animator. But the artist in me would not be contained and found a way out.
I started out by drawing maps, using traditional tools such as pen & ink. I later moved on to colored pencils and paint. I found I had a special love for drawing portraits of children and animals. These are the subjects I draw and paint the most.
Over the years I began to learn to use a camera, and software such as Adobe Photoshop and Corel Painter to create drawings and paintings. I then learned Adobe After Effects and Adobe Premiere to create animations and videos to make my drawings move. This eventually led to my going back to school and earning a Master’s Degree in Motion Media Design.
I have been greatly influenced by children’s book illustrators, particularly when the illustrations are rendered in pen and ink, or black and white pencil.
Chris Van Allsburg, Brian Selznick, and Brett Helquist are three of my favorite illustrators.
The painters who have influenced me are too numerous to list. I will always love all of the French Impressionists, but Mary Cassatt will always be my favorite. I love how she took simple domestic scenes and managed to show the wonder and contentment in the everyday.
I love Andrew Wyeth for his emotional, limited palette watercolors, and the illustrator and painter Alan Lee for his pencil, pen & ink, and watercolor forest imagery. I am also inspired by Edward Hopper for his use of color and light and for also for his ability to capture emotion and to tell a story with everyday scenes.
There are many animators who I admire: Brad Bird, John Lasseter, Glen Keane, Chuck Jones, Joanna Quinn, Ollie Johnston and Frank Thomas. Their stories are flooded with emotion and feeling, and their characters are very real to us. These fine directors, producers and artists all motivated me to first dip my toe in the world of animation and video, as well as simply inspiring me to be a better artist.
It is important that to me that I express emotion and tell stories and teach with my art. If I can get an emotional response, then I feel that the art I have created has fulfilled its purpose.
Creating art brings me joy.
Boris Lermontov: Why do you want to dance? [Vicky thinks for a short while]
Victoria Page: Why do you want to live? [Lermontov is surprised at the answer]
Boris Lermontov: Well I don’t know exactly why, er, but I must.
Victoria Page: That’s my answer too.
—From “The Red Shoes”