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.
Vera Popova is a Moscow-based artist known for her cute, kind, and optimistic digital illustrations. While Vera found her art style herself, as time passed she was influenced by artists such as Kate Hindley, Benji Davies, David Roberts, Nicola Kinnear, and Sara Ogilvie. When Vera is not drawing, she enjoys traveling to places she has not been before, riding her bike, and reading books. Vera prefers classical literature and especially admires Russian and English writers such as Dostoevsky, Bulgakov, Hardy, Dickens, and Fowles. A motto that Vera lives by is to “keep your eyes on the stars and hope in your heart”.
This interview has been lightly edited for length and clarity.
“I want to participate in the kind mission of ATAS”
What is your creative process?
Vera: Usually, I spend a lot of time collecting materials before I start drawing. This is a very important step for me. Then I start to search for the right image for a character. Sometimes it comes from the first sketch, sometimes I need the whole pack of paper trying to create something I will be satisfied with. Usually the whole process takes a few days, it depends on the details and number of characters.
Which one of your works is your favorite?
Vera: My favorite work is “Believe in Your Dreams”. For me it’s a symbol of freedom and believing in what you choose for yourself in your life. This illustration depicts a wonderful and fantastic path that awaits those who choose to follow their dreams. It is the most important and beloved illustration for me and that’s why I’ve decided to share it with ATAS Foundation (You can get Vera’s print here). Believing in yourself is very important. It’s kind of funny but my name, Vera, means “believe” or “faith” in Russian.
If you could travel to any place in the world, where would you go?
Vera: I always wanted to travel around the world and visit as many places as I can but if I am to choose only one place it will be Hawaii. This is an old dream of mine.
What is your favorite piece of artwork that is not your own?
Vera: “The Beloved” (“The Bride”) by Dante Gabriel Rossetti. I really like the paintings of the Pre-Raphaelites.
What do you listen to while you work?
Vera: I prefer to listen to music full of drive and energy, usually it is rock music. My favorite band is My Chemical Romance and I also admire Nothing But Thieves. Sometimes I listen to podcasts about traveling and art.
Why did you decide to become an ATAS artist?
Vera: I want to participate in the kind mission of ATAS. I want to do good things for the world.