Quarantine Tales of a Modern Day, Bored Artist

Get ready to take notes coz for today’s interview, we have with us a unique artist who knows a thing or two about combating quarantine boredom. Popular for their funny, underwhelming, meme-worthy drawings of people, our guest is known by the page art_quarantine2020 on Instagram, which has over 4400 followers!!

Interviewer: Thank you for agreeing to do this with us. Before we get into the main course, why don’t you tell us a little about yourself.

art_quarantine2020: Hiii! Thanks for having me here. Firstly, I would like to emphasize that I am not a real artist. I am just a student who got bored during the pandemic last year and started this page as a hobby.

Source: Instagram (c) art_quarantine2020

Interviewer: I see, tell us more.

art_quarantine2020: When the lockdown started, everyone got holed up at home and the internet started getting really slow . I got super bored so I came up with the idea of drawing some of my friends just for fun…. and they came out very ugly. That’s when I realized how bad I am at drawing . hahaha…

I started this page in march 2020 and posted some of my sketches.. but I ran out of materials like paper and pencil so I stopped for a while and then this year at the end of May I started doing it again..

Interviewer: Wow! And here I thought you were only pretending to be bad at drawing. haha.. What about the peace sign on your Instagram dp then? Didn’t you make that?

art_quarantine2020: hahaha… no, that is my first drawing book. It’s the cover photo of my book.

Interviewer: OMG! haha sorry about that. Btw, how many drawings have you made so far?

art_quarantine2020: I have made around 3750 drawings. Besides the posts on Instagram, some request me to send them privately and not post it there. Also I have removed more than 50 as requested.

Interviewer: Bet you didn’t know your page would get this much attention.

art_quarantine2020: Never in my wildest dreams did I think it would go this viral. haha..

Interviewer: So what do you do with all the drawings? Do you still have all of them?

art_quarantine2020: Yess… I still keep every drawing with me.

Interviewer: Really? What are you planning to do with them? That’s a lot of paper!

art_quarantine2020: I don’t know….. I just keep them, I never thought I would make money this way so it’s very important for me… and also I can tell and show my grandkids that this is what I did during total lockdown…hahahaha… so I guess I’ll just be saving them.

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Source: Instagram (c) art_quarantine2020

Interviewer: hahaha…. It does make for a good story to tell your grandkids. That’s so cool! Btw, if you hadn’t picked this hobby, what would you have been doing?

art_quarantine2020: I don’t know, maybe watching movies.. I used to be very unproductive.

Interviewer: Hahaha do you think you’ve become more productive after this drawing project?

art_quarantine2020: If there is a request, I love doing it and I also try to post it as quickly as possible.. I try to finish one drawing in 1 to 5 minutes… so yeahh maybe I became more productive.

Interviewer: That’s so great! Not many people found ways to be productive during the lockdown. How’s productivity at the academic side of things though?

art_quarantine2020: There’s not a lot of interaction happening between teachers and students… So I don’t find myself being serious with online classes right now. It’s hard, but I don’t really hate the experience either.

Interviewer: And what about art? Are you thinking of pursuing it seriously?

art_quarantine2020: Right now, I am not thinking about pursuing it seriously. My priority right now is to fulfil my clients’ wishes.

Source: Instagram (c) art_quarantine2020

Interviewer: Must admit, what you’re doing is such a great way to pass the time and earn a little. And just 5-10 rupees per drawing is quite the deal, and funnily enough, you deliver exactly their money’s worth. What made you think this price point would work and that people will jump on it immediately?

art_quarantine2020: At first I used to do it for free but as I started to get more followers, one of my friends suggested that I should charge some cash . I doubted it will work but I did it anyway and some people even started giving me tips for my quick response and work. It was beyond what I had expected.

Interviewer: What do your clients mostly want from your art and what’s their reaction like?

art_quarantine2020: They want it funny and ugly, it’s what they mention every time they send me their requests. And I do get positive comments most of the time, so I guess they are happy with my art.

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Interviewer: That’s great to know. You know, your work actually reminded me of this page on Instagram I saw last year. It’s called dailypurrr… have you come across it?

art_quarantine2020: No… I haven’t. I’ll check it out now.

Source : Instagram (c) dailypurrr
Source : Instagram (c) dailypurrr.
Cat owner: @thurstonwaffles

Interviewer: Sooo… What do you think? See any similarities?

art_quarantine2020: Yeah I actually do, but they are real artists and I am not. hahaha… My clients are mostly from Mizoram right now, but I would love to have an international audience just like this dailypurrr artist. And it’s also given me some ideas for my project… thanks to you! haha

Interviewer: haha you’re welcome. What kind of ideas are we talking about here? Anything to do with shifting to digital drawings?

art_quarantine2020: I actually did consider moving to digital few months ago. But that would mean me having to actually learn it, so I’ll have to increase the rate and I don’t want to do that. I like how things are now, and I intend to keep it this way for some time. Let’s hope for the best though. Right now I just want my page to make others happy especially during this lockdown.

Interviewer: That’s really nice of you. We also hope you keep making progress in every way possible… Like how you’re currently doing this “sleeping beauty contest”. How is that going btw? Are you planning to do more of that in the future?

Source: Instagram (c) art_quarantine2020

art_quarantine2020: It is going better than expected. We have about 90 participants so far and hoping to get more. And yes I’m planning to do more contests like this in the future.

Interviewer: Well I’m glad that it’s not too late for me to contest. So on that note, will you be willing to draw a friend of mine? I want it to be a surprise.

art_quarantine2020: Of course, why not? hahaha…

Bandame sleeping (c) art_quarantine2020

(…some moments later)

Interviewer: Omgggg thank you so much for this! It’s every bit as glorious as I expected it to be…hahahahaa

art_quarantine2020: Anytime! Glad you like it!

Interviewer: So what do you do to set the mood for your work? Listen to music?

art_quarantine2020: Yes, sometimes I do listen to music when I draw. I love listening to Hayley Williams, Queen , and Justin Bieber most of the time.

Interviewer: Care to recommend a song or two for our Spotify Artist Playlist?

art_quarantine2020: Sure….. Find Me Here and Over Those Hills by Hayley Williams are my favourites right now.

Interview: Great! Thanks a bunch! And of course this interview would be incomplete if we don’t talk about your decision to stay neutral and not reveal your gender to your clients. What’s that like? There must be a lot of funny stories regarding that.

NEOtakus Artist Playlist 2021

art_quarantine2020: I love that people confuse my gender. I’ve been called miss, sir, uncle, and aunty and it’s seriously so funny me. hahaha… I think I’m going to keep it this way. What do you think? Should I reveal or nah?

Interview: Nah! You should keep the mystery intact. I think it’s hilarious that even I don’t know your gender even though we’ve chatted on multiple occasions. haha

art_quarantine2020: hahaha okay okay!

Interviewer: Before we wrap this up, anything you wanna say?

art_quarantine2020: To everyone reading this, I know lockdown is hard for a lot of you to take care of your mental health. You are not alone in your struggles so go easy on yourself and try to maintain a routine that works the best for you. I would like to say thanks to NEOtakus as well for this opportunity!

Interviewer: Thank you so much for your time… I’d say we’re taking away a lot from talking to you, especially that we should be bored more often in our lives to find our way to something great.

Guys! You’re in for a treat if you still haven’t seen art_quarantine2020’s work on Instagram. Do the artist a solid and follow their page by clicking here. Also don’t forget to follow our artist playlist on Spotify, just click here!

Right, that’s all we got for today. Tune in next week for another interview here on NEOtakus!

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