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1) Do you want to tell us something about yourself and your art?

Certainly. I am Animeshipper123; an artist stationed on Deviantart. And drawing is one of my favorite hobbies. I’ve been a part of the Deviantart community for 10 years now, and I’ve loved every minute of it. I’ve made a lot of friends and learned a lot of things that have helped me to gradually improve my skills.

Leggi tutto: Tickling Artists #61: Interview with Animeshipper123

In the past, I’ve struggled with feelings of inferiority about my art. But I am *mostly* over that now. I turned those feelings into determination to prove myself; and today I feel very much at home with the community. And I’d like to continue to be a part of it for as long as possible.

2) What techniques do you use to draw? Do you have a favorite artist that inspires you?

I feel like my method of drawing is quite unorthodox. I do everything with a single iPad.

First I sketch my drawings on paper, in a sketchbook. Then I take a photo of that sketch with my iPad (I usually take several photos to get the best one). Then using the photo editor on my iPad, I essentially ‘finger paint’ my drawings to life.

It’s slow, impractical, and uncomfortable. But it’s all I have, so I make it work. I hope someday to get a proper artistic setup. When I do, I think it’ll be like Goku taking off his weighted clothing to fight Tien Shinhan.

As for artists who inspire me, I have quite a few.

I feel like I should give PawFeather some credit. One of his drawings (which I discovered accidentally) was my first introduction to Deviantart. And the concept of online tickle art in general. Specifically it was his piece ‘Tails and Amy Torture Sonic’.

I’ve also been inspired by SkaeaDaimonion, the first tickle artist I greatly admired. TottyTK, one of my first friends on Deviantart. Countfire, for their creativity and ease with which they build effective tickle themed universes. EveryDayComix, for their creativity and unique art style.

And most recently. My friend CelofanTKL. Who inspires me with his incredible skill. We have similar interests and were naturally drawn to each other. In the last year alone. He has inspired me to push the boundaries of what I can do more than ever before.

I should also thank my non-artists friends that inspire me to keep going with their fantastic ideas. Let’s call them ‘JJ’ and ‘DM’. And all of the Deviants that suppported my earliest drawings. That really helped.

3) How much was the passion for drawing born in you? And the one for the tickle?

I’ve had both passions for pretty much my entire life. Or at least as early as 5 years old.

I drew all the time in school. Starting with crude marker drawings of shapes and squiggles on printer paper (some of which is still taped to my bedroom wall and shoved in my closet). Leading to 4 years of art class in high school, and eventually an associate’s degree in art from college. It’s always been a thrill for me to take something out of my mind and turn it into something physical. I regard that as an incredible superpower, and I wanted to master it.

My love for tickling must be genetic. It is literally in my blood. I’ve been interested in tickling since early childhood, for as long as I can remember. And for no apparent reason. All I remember is that it started with a fantasy about Bowser tickle torturing Mario.

For a long time I thought that my feelings about it were weird. But discovering that there were people who shared my interest and understood it, made me embrace it. And I’ve embraced it ever since. At least as far as the internet is concerned. I try to keep it out of my personal life.

4) What are the tickling scenarios that you prefer to draw?

My focus is mainly on tickling scenarios that feature male characters. We all know that female tickling is more popular. And my mission has always been to balance things out. And show the appeal that ticklish boys have too. It’s an especially proud moment for me when I open somebody’s eyes to that.

Male characters never seem like they’d expect themselves to be targets for such a thing. It’s a vulnerability that most of them wouldn’t understand. And it can be much more surprising and humiliating for male characters when their ego comes crashing down and reality strikes them. I love doing what nobody would suspect.

Besides having an interest in tickling. I also have a strong interest in feet. And so, most of my drawings focus on tickling feet. I enjoy scenarios where the victim is very heavily restrained, and their feet are left completely helpless.

Another thing I love about art is that you can be unrealistic.

Making characters absurdly ticklish has appeal for me. Or drawing them with ridiculously oversized feet. And I enjoy seeing characters tickled with their socks still on too. Every foot looks attractive concealed in a sock. It has the same thrill as a beautifully wrapped Christmas present.

Tickling someone for no reason other than to torment them is my favorite scenario. One character having this great weakness and the other delighting in taking advantage of it.

Nothing beats that.

5) What are the aspects of tickling that you intend to represent with your art? Example: the laughing, the wriggling, the relationship between tickler and ticklee?

The relationship between the tickler and ticklee is a good one. Especially if they have a rivalry or some kind of history together. Some kind of personal grudge. I think that adds a lot of spice to a scenario.

There’s something satisfying about a character tormenting and having power over their personal rival. It’s even more intense if the characters are mortal enemies. Or even friends pulling off a light hearted tickling prank; or getting some kind of revenge. All very attractive scenarios. And they’re all about, ‘what has happened before’.

I’d go so far as to say that the relationship between the characters involved can make or break the effectiveness of a scenario. It really is key. Hence why I believe creating scenarios based on a source material you’re familiar with is so great.

6) Online there are countless photos and videos of tickling sessions. In your opinion, what do illustrations offer more than images of real scenes?

I think that fictional characters have a certain beauty that real life can never achieve. We often practice tickling in our minds. And in our minds we have a vision that is more ideal than real life. Something we can only replicate through illustrations.

I think there’s less guilt too. As sadistic as we all claim to be, I doubt most of us would be cruel enough to push a flesh and blood victim to the point we imagine in our drawings…Honestly, watching a real person suffer feels a lot dirtier.

It’s a separation of fantasy and reality. Real people need to be respected. You can’t kidnap a stranger and endanger their health by tickling them to a point of insanity. But illustrations and imagination allow us to do pretty much anything we want, without fear of repercussions. And match the ideal vision in our head, guilt free.

So in short, I think illustrations are better because they’re harmless to others , and they can be exactly what you want; without the limits of reality.

7) In your opinion, what makes tickling so interesting for fans of this phenomenon?

It’s all about power, really. The idea that something as simple as a touch can be like torture to a person is amusing; it almost doesn’t seem like it should be possible to gain such effortless control. The MISCHIEF of it. I think it represents the sort of relationship we all wish that we could have. One way or another. There’s a fluffy, adorableness to it that can’t be denied.

It’s funny, it’s a way for people to bond, and it makes you feel happy to be in that position of power. More so if you’re getting revenge for a previous experience. Which creates a fun, endless cycle.

Being ticklish and being vulnerable to tickling is something that everybody understands. It’s like a universal language. And with that, imagination and personal preference take care of the rest, to help keep things interesting.

So really it’s in how it makes people feel. Some people just resonate with those feelings more than others.

8) What are your works of which you are most proud?

I try to feel proud of all my works. I’ve always said that:

as long as you can still look back on your old works, and cringe, that means you’re improving’. And that’s something to be proud of.

But to be more specific. I’m particularly proud of my cast of OC’s and the comics and adventures I’m trying to make with them. I have a lot of ideas. And every time I can bring one to life, I feel immensely proud. Because it’s something a younger version of myself never would’ve thought possible.

And not just with tickle art. I’m proud of my regular art too. Fan art and otherwise. So it’s difficult for me to isolate specific works that I’m the most proud of. I’m just proud to be an artist. It’s not the easiest thing in the world.

9) Do you have any particular artistic goals for the future?

Yes! As I said, I still have a ton of ideas and plans rolling around in my head. For comics, group projects, and even remakes of old works.

My goal is mainly to draw as much as I possibly can. Every time I draw something I get the feeling that I’ve immortalized one of my ideas. And I don’t have to worry anymore about them being lost to the test of time.

By immortalizing my ideas, people get to know me. It gives them an understanding of how I think. And that makes me feel good. It’s also helpful for building stronger friendships.

Which is another one of my goals.

I hope to keep entertaining people with my art by crafting new, bigger, and better stories. Possibly even reach a point where I can use my art to support me financially. I’ve never quite felt skilled or equipped enough for that yet. But my confidence is growing thanks to lots of practice and support from my friends.

10) Do you think AIs will end up enriching or impoverishing the art of tickling representations?

I really think that it all depends on how AI is used. In my opinion, it’s okay to use AI for fun, or for inspirational purposes. And I think technology is fascinating. It’s really amazing that we’ve reached this point.

However, I don’t think that anybody who relies strictly on AI can truly call themself an artist. And I certainly can’t respect them as one. I don’t want to see people become dependent on it. Because I enjoy individual artists for their individual style. And AI can never replace that.

I think that it can enrich the artistic experience. If it’s used for the inspiration process, and not the ENTIRE process. Relying on it undermines everything it means to be an artist.

It’s insulting to real artists, who work hard to hone their talent. And it’s nothing to feel proud of.

Of course, if you’re just playing around with it to see what you can get, I don’t think that’s wrong. And that’s something I’m guilty of. But I will never sacrifice my personal touch by becoming dependent on AI.

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