LOCAL: Martina Martian


Words by LifewithoutAndy

If you need a dose of vibrant optimism in your life, then look no further than Martina Martian’s portfolio.

The Sydney-based artist has been going global with her artworks, whether they decorate Instagram filters, pub walls or mammoth brands like Reebok – but she’s never changed her dedication to lively colours, playful shapes and positive messaging. Recently, she was also selected as part of the Huffer Local campaign, where the clothing brand is looking to shine light on some of Sydney’s best creatives.

Here, we talk to Martina (who’s currently on another American adventure) about her creative process, how it’s changing with technology, and a few gems of wisdom thrown in for good measure:

You’re currently living it up in America. What have you been doing and what was it like seeing Pharrell Williams in the flesh?

I’ve been sightseeing but also organising events, collaborating and meeting amazing people! Being on the red carpet at iHeartRadio Music Awards and seeing Pharrell (the best person in the universe) and all the other Hollywood celebrities was truly surreal. Everything feels like a movie here.

Your artwork is very bright and playful. What emotions or feelings do you hope to evoke from audiences who see your artwork?

I want people to feel empowered and positive about themselves and about the issues we’re facing in the world. I think that bright colours and the right message can often do that.

Your art is also contains a lot of positive and motivational messages. Do you find that creative industries often thrive on conflict?

While people will always love drama and competition I really think the opposite is more effective for creative industries. Collaboration always reaps the best results. It’s unfortunate that most creative people are lead to believe that it’s a tough industry and ‘only the best can make it’. It’s not a competition: there is room for all of us. If not, let’s MAKE room.

You’ve recently been making interactive templates for Instagram with your art. How do you think your creative output is going to change with technology and social media?

I’m always pretty ahead of the ball when it comes to technology and social media. It’s probably because I have a degree in media studies but my work seems to adapt and evolve as social media and technology do. I see my work becoming more interactive and personal with the coming months.

You give a lot of advice to aspiring artists on your social media channels. What’s one piece of advice you wish you’d received when you were coming up?

I wish I’d been told to own my title early. It took me way too long to start introducing myself as a professional illustrator and designer confidently.

How do you define success, and has this changed as you’ve grown older?

Success used to just mean money to me. But now, success means freedom. Freedom to wake up and do exactly what you want to do every day. For me, that’s to create and see the world.

A lot of Australian creatives feel like they’re somewhat isolated down under. Can you relate to this, and any plans to relocate in the future?

Yeah, definitely. Australia is a creative bubble. It’s great because you can stay and really thrive, but the longer you stay the harder it is to break into International scenes where there might be bigger opportunities.
I will definitely be relocating in the future, but for now I’m just travelling as much as possible to figure out where that might be.

What’s on the cards for Martina Martian for the rest of 2018?

More workshops and talks all over the world!

Keep up to date with Martina & her travel on her Instagram here




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