This interview series explores the world of cosplay. More specifically the body painting aspect and we got a chance to do an interview with Darya of Darka & BMZ Studios. Her artwork is one of the best I've ever seen and she's done some incredible super-hero projects. Read on to learn more about her journey as an artist and get a look at the amazing work she's done.
What got you into body painting?
- This is quite a long story. A friend of mine suggested I try out at a local bodypainting competition that was about to happen in the city where I live. So without knowing anything, I just dove in I entered into the competition. I had no idea about body painting, I’ve never made one before. So I just participated to get the experience and have a good time. I participated with my best friend who is also a makeup artist and an outstanding painter.
- With less than a month to the competition, we made a few speed tests to fit in the time of the competition. So we went there, we were dancing, joking and enjoying the whole experience. It was exhausting, after five hours our masterpiece was done, the model was gorgeous. And I still don’t know why and how, but we took first place. We were going to represent our country in an international body painting contest without any experience. So after that, I started practicing on myself to try new techniques, learn and do as many tests as I could.
Do you collect or read comics?
- I don’t collect comics! I never had enough space to collect anything. My two best friends are comic collectors and I always ask them to tell me about their favorite characters.
What's the biggest obstacle when using the human body as a canvas?
- There’s a big difference between using your own body as a canvas, and painting on a model. Painting on yourself is very tricky, you need a mirror and you can’t see exactly what you’re painting every moment. Also curves and shapes are sometimes a problem! Painting a model is another story. Models has to be comfy on every moment, they need to breath, they need to move and they have thickles. Communication is very important so your canvas doesn't move unexpectedly.
Who or what are some of your influences?
- My very first influence into body painting where two big and outstanding artists. Matteo Arfanotti is an outstanding body painter with awesome techniques that inspire me a lot. And the second one is KayPikeFashion. She has been doing self bodypainting for years portraying many characters and she inspires me a great deal.
Any pre-painting rituals, must haves, music preference while painting?
- I used to do my workouts before every body painting session to unlock my body and to not feel anxious about sitting on my legs for many hours. Beyond that, I can paint everywhere.
One of your biggest goals?
- I want to be the best bodypainter awarded at the World Body painting festival someday.
What are some adversities do you encounter as an artist that fans might be unaware of?
- Sometimes I need to know when to stop. Meaning that I could be painting for hours, even if probably for an entire day or more. But there are moments I need to listen to my body even though I'm not done and want to finish it.
What's been your favorite project you've done?
- Definitely one of my very first body paintings! Is the Ciri’s from The Witcher inspired body paint I made a year ago. It was my very first time painting garments and I’m still proud of it!
What's next? Future goals?
- I’d love to work doing body paintings for different brands and help this profession to dive into the advertising.
- Don’t compare yourself with other artists, but do it with yourself. See where you were yesterday and compare it to where you are today, it's the only way we can progress.
A huge thank you to Darya for this awesome interview! Learn more about Darka Studio at the link below and check out her amazing artwork!