Photo taken by Ashley Primm email Afarland@gmail.com
I recently had the great pleasure to speak with renowned Jason Shonk and I have to say this young man is so talented and his artwork is magnificent and he is drive with such passion you can see this in is work, on his facebook page where you can see how he celebrates the beauty of the curvy figure and an advocate of loving who you are at any size and he brings to light the beauty of all through his pinup artwork specializing in BBW and SSBBW Jason Shonk’s artwork celebrates the beauty of the plus-size female form and Jason shows how you should love yourself unconditionally and he does an amazing job. Below is the interview I was granted.
1. When did your love for drawing start? and how did you nurture and develop your skill? I have been drawing since I was 3 years old! My grandfather, who was a farmer by trade, had carpentry skills, and would do drawings of one of his projects. I would sit next to him and watch him do these rather simple doodles, and be totally fascinated by it! That is probably what aroused my interest to start my own doodles!
I eventually went to college and majored in studio art. But for the most part, I had to learn on my own, that I was the only family member with the art ability. And once I graduated from college, I took additional private lessons in painting so that I could broaden my subject matter beyond b/w drawings.
2. You mentioned that you would watch your grandfather draw some of his projects and you would watch him, did he notice your love to draw and if so how did he further influence you?
Everyone in the mediate family took notice that I had some sort of an ability. By the time I got into school, it was a definite that I had the art talent. Of course my favorite class was art! And of course, my art teachers always seemed to like me!LOL I did occasionally enter art contests through out school and even did art shows in 4H. By the time I got into high school, it was pretty much a given that if I did go on to college, it would be for a study in art.
3. When in school was it hard learning some of the techniques?
I ask this because i personally could not get a grasp on some of them lol I had enough understanding of the theory behind it that I could easily pick things up.That was certainly a benefit once I got to college,until they tried to change my style and approach, that was a challenge for me! In school, art classes was enjoyable to me,it was everything else, such as math, science, gym class! LOL
4. What were your favorite pieces to draw when you first started out?
When I was a child, my favorite subject matter was drawing farm equipment! I would draw tractors and barns with the silos! Thats what happens when you grow up in a farming community in Indiana! I eventually found a love of portraiture that I started doing when I was in the 4th grade. That was the subject matter that fascinated me most from then on.
5. Do you have any of your drawing that you did when you first started out?
No, I think my mother has one that I did of a donkey pulling a cart! I don’t even remember doing it. It actually looks good! It even looks better than some of my later drawings!LOL
I don’t think I have anything that I’ve done from that time on through college. Once I decide it ‘s no good, it gets filed away in the trash!
6. Have you done any gallery shows? And if so how was the experience for you?
The last gallery show that I did was back in 2007, with an art group from a church that my wife and I were attending at that time. That particular show was a great experience, but not felt compelled to pursue that avenue.
I have been in galleries in the past but it was not a very good experience. They weren’t willing to promote me unless I was an established artist! It is sort of like looking for a job and they only want to hire somebody with experience. How are you supposed to get that experience if no one is going to give it to you!
Needless to say, being in a gallery wasn’t as glamorous as it seemed! That is why I decided to pursue posting my work online to give myself greater control as to market myself, as opposed to a gallery that wasn’t willing to even display my work.
The last gallery I was in was in Tubac, Arizona.I sent them 3 paintings and found out they never even displayed them for the public! That was the last straw for me!
7. Is drawing at this time a hobby and or a full time occupation for you?
I have been on Facebook since April of this past year. The response that I have been given has been overwhelming and very humbling as well.
Actually both! My goal this coming year is to make it more of a full time occupation!At the moment, I work a full time job as well try to manage my online art career! So in theory, I work 2 jobs!
8. What advice can you give upcoming artistes? My advice would be to have a vision, to be goal oriented, and most of all, be prepared for disappointments and setbacks. But remember,those setbacks doesn’t mean failure, use it as motivation to carry on with your dreams.
9. Where can we find your artwork?
Right now, you can find my work on Facebook, on a page that I manage, titled, Phat Beauties by Jason Shonk. I specialize in drawing the plus size woman in the mode of the classic pin up models that you see in the magazines and advertisements.
10. If someone would like their portrait done by you can they contact you? They can private message me on my Phat Beauties page. You can also go to Jason Shonk’s web site to see more of his work Phat Beauties http://www.phatbeauties.com/
I want to thank you so much for sharing your story and taking the time to speak with me Jason and thank you for sharing this with my readers and I want to say that you are such an inspiration to many and your artwork is amazing.
I had the the great honor to have Jason Shonk do a portrait of me and I have to say I was overwhelmed how the portrait came it looks amazing and the detail are breathtaking I am truly humbled because he really went all out and his artwork is truly wonderful.