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Shu Yee

Shu Yee

Meet Malaysian illustrator and graphic designer, Shu Yee.

 

Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am Shu, an illustrator and graphic designer. Bumped into a love-hate relationship with animation. Quite shy. Love skateboarding, books, and music. Band Hyukoh and Radiohead are my favorites. Ice cream melts sadness (mostly).

 

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

Penang is a multicultural city known for famous street food and heritage sites, weather is quite hot and humid. I think Penang is still a growing city in every aspect, quite moderate-paced compare to big cities.

I have also been in Australia for 2 years, lived in various suburbs in Melbourne and Victoria state. It is busy in the city center, everything is constantly moving without a pause, there are endless things to discover, mixed feelings of excitement and anxiety, while Shepparton is a more peaceful and laid-back place.

 

Bumped into a love-hate relationship with animation.

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

Both cities have great food! (Melbourne and Penang) and also another best thing in Melbourne is an art bookshop I used to go to. I usually spend 1-2 hours over there browsing through books and zines.

Worst would be sleepless winter night with freezing toes in Australia and the public transportation in Penang.

 

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

 

How did you start your career in art?
When I found that words are not enough for me to fully articulate and express the ideas and thoughts in my mind, art/ illustration is like some kind of therapy to me, but then I realized it can do more than just that.
I love drawing since I was a kid, but it was purely for fun. Never took it seriously until I had to decide where to go after my high school only then did I realized it is the only thing that interests me. So I went to art college, majored in graphic design and advertising. I’m still passionate about drawing but I only started to pay more attention to illustration after I graduated.

 

When I found that words are not enough for me to fully articulate and express the ideas and thoughts in my mind, art/ illustration is like some kind of therapy to me, but then I realized it can do more than just that.

Were the people around you supportive of your decision on working as a creative?
Not so sure about that, I mean coming from a typical and traditional Asian/Chinese family, they just want you to have a stable life, and creative work is a pretty strange, risky, and new concept to them, but I am grateful for my parents for sending me to art college.
My friends are pretty supportive along the process, we went through college together, and I remember my very first art-market experience, they were there to support me, I am really grateful for that.

 

What are some goals and ambitions you have for your future work?
To keep exploring, keep learning, create fun and beautiful things that bring value and are meaningful at the same time, and to be better than the old me.

 

To keep exploring, keep learning, create fun and beautiful things that bring value and are meaningful at the same time, and to be better than the old me.

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

 

How would you describe the women around you?
They are hard-working. Even when in struggle or foggy periods of time, they still give each other encouragement and support which I think is super important in growing up, and it is fun to be with them!

 

They are hard-working. Even when in struggle or foggy periods of time, they still give each other encouragement and support which I think is super important in growing up, and it is fun to be with them!

Were there any local female creatives that you looked up to when you were growing up?
No, I am not really sure why, maybe I was pretty boy-ish in my teenage years so I wasn’t interested in female/ girlish stuff, but I started to discover and notice more great female figures in the past few years.

 

Are there any challenging aspects of being a female in your industry?
Not in my experience. I think attitude, personality and the work you create matter more than the frame of gender.

 

Do the work and have courage.

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

 

Photos courtesy of Shu Yee.

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