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Marie Toh

Marie Toh

Meet Singaporean artist and illustrator, Marie Toh.

 

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

I’m Marie, an illustrator from Singapore currently doing my Masters in London.

 

Describe the city you’re living in and what it’s like to live there.

London is a place that it’s hard to not fall in love with; it’s filled with many interesting people and there is always something happening.

 

London is a place that it’s hard to not fall in love with; it’s filled with many interesting people and there is always something happening.

What is the best and worst thing about living in your city?

The best thing about London is that you will never get bored and there is something for everyone. Whilst there are many things to love about it, being one of the major cities in the world, it can feel lonely even in all the hustle and bustle especially since my family isn’t with me.

 

Give us 3 words that describe what it’s like to be a creative in your city.

Vibrant, Raw, Authentic

 

How did you start your career in art?

I did my BA Animation in Singapore. After graduation, I went into graphic design as I knew I did not want to work in the animation industry in Singapore. That was also the time I started to do more illustration work, which somehow led me to publish a children’s illustration book based on my graduation animation. Through that experience, I decided to take illustration more seriously and applied for an MA in illustration in London. Since then, I’ve learned so much, both from school and through different illustration projects and jobs.

 

Were the people around you supportive of your decision on working as a creative?

Yes, even though there is that Asian parent’s stereotype, I was blessed with the best parents in the world who believed in me and my work. Without them, I would not be where I am today.

 

What are some goals and ambitions you have for your future work?

So many, I really hope to grow continuously and mature in my work; maybe to be able to work on a film.

 

If you could collaborate with any person in the world who would it be?

David Lynch or Wong Kar Wai.

 

How would you describe the women around you?

Beautiful, vulnerable and loving.

 

Were there any local female creatives that you looked up to when you were growing up?

To be honest, no. One female creative I did love growing up was Sylvia Plath, but she was not Singaporean.

 

I guess being a female, we not only have to create good work, but there is a unbalance expectation to look physically good as well and also to be very articulate, otherwise, we will not be on par with others.

 

Are there any challenging aspects of being a female in your industry?

I have yet to have an upfront encounter about being a female in the creative industry, but from the previous question, it made me realize that the ones who do make a name for themselves, few are females. I guess being a female, we not only have to create good work, but there is a unbalance expectation to look physically good as well and also to be very articulate, otherwise, we will not be on par with others.

 

Do you have any advice to young women who are aspiring to work in your field?

Be authentic; authenticity is something that cannot be faked. Work very hard too, but not to the point where it consumes you.

 

 

Photos courtesy of Marie Toh.

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