In our ATAS Artist Spotlight series, we take a deeper dive into our artists through their work and the creative process and stories behind them.
Miriam Presas is an American artist known for her soft, warm, and blocky digital 2D art. She is influenced by other artists, as she is constantly amazed by the diversity in styles, interpretation, and delivery, and likes to try what she sees in her own artwork. When Miriam is not drawing, she enjoys PC games, arcade games, and worldbuilding. A personal motto that Miriam lives by is “one day a professional, forever a student”.
This interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity.
“Being able to help out through my own artwork sounded like a great opportunity”
What is your creative process?
Miriam: For illustration work, I typically like to look around on Pinterest for model and color inspirations, I keep those with me while I’m painting and use them as reference for lighting and proportion, but usually tend to fluctuate the references into the way I’m going by adjusting colors and composition to fit the mood and theme that I’m going for in my painting.
Which one of your works is your favorite?
Miriam: So far I’ve really enjoyed a really recent piece I made called “Waking Selene”. I actually got about halfway through the first version of the painting, to where I had most the face and background painted, and I felt myself fighting it and overworking it, to the point where it had gotten completely off track from the feeling I wanted. I decided to scrap it and start over because I knew I wasn’t going to be able to save it. Starting from scratch, I could feel the flow go more naturally and was definitely more in tune. I particularly like this piece because it’s different from the beautiful people I usually draw, as in, it’s a goddess that’s just been woken up, and her hair is a mess, she’s rubbing her eye, and she’s not carefully adorned in elegant clothing. So it was more fun to work with a piece that had more narrative.
If you could travel to any place in the world, where would you go?
Miriam: I’ve never really had a huge appeal to travel. I’m from a pretty calm town and I’ve always really enjoyed it, but if I had to choose I think I would enjoy some more rural parts of Europe, like Norway, even though I’m terrible with cold weather.
What is your favorite piece of artwork that is not your own?
Miriam: A very long list, but artist Zeen Chin has an amazing work titled “Child Heart” that I really love. His use of color and lighting really shines in something as vivid as the narrative that he went with.
What do you listen to while you work?
Miriam: It really ranges, sometimes I listen to things that go with the theme of my artwork and sometimes I listen to playlists that have nothing to do with what I’m working on. Most often it’s movie soundtracks, lofi, and indie pop.
Why did you decide to become an ATAS artist?
Miriam: I really liked the cause that ATAS is working for. I’d done a little bit of research into art therapy in the past and I thought it was really fascinating, so being able to help out through my own artwork sounded like a great opportunity.