Mya Popova’s childhood was spent in the midst of make-belief adventures. In Russia, where she was brought up, the setting was provided by intricate trees she loved climbing and stone yards that were pretend castles. The mountain ranges consisted of living room furniture. Perhaps from a desire to make her imaginary world more tangible, Mya turned to drawing at an early age, using wall paper as her first canvas.
When she was 8 years old, Mya’s family immigrated to Canada, and drawing became her favorite hobby. After some years passed, she confidently auditioned for an Arts School. The audition was successful, and with the encouragement of loved ones, she completed the program. Currently Mya continues to expand her artistic boundaries, often with a group of other artists, family and friends.
“Octophant” ~ Mya Popova
ZOUCH: What is art?
MYA: To me, art is any means of expressing that which inspires a person to create. Be it visual, musical, political, lyrical, movement, taste, lust, etc… For better or worse, art is a method of self-expression.
“Phantasmagorica” ~ Mya Popova, Dominic Simone, Rosanna Pizzo, Elena Popova
ZOUCH: What are your dreams as an artist?
MYA: My mission as an artist is to inspire others on a personal level, the way other artists, writers and musicians have inspired me. To help others see that life is not “just the way it is” but is, in fact, all up for their own making and interpretation. My hope is that visual artists will soon have a greater audience and appreciation. Yep, I dream big.
“Spherical Storm” ~ Mya Popova
ZOUCH: What got you into art?
MYA: My first exposure to visual arts was provided by my mother. Observing as she sketched fashion and costume ideas, I excitedly drew in faces and accessories for her models, with her kind (probably misguided) permission. I have loved drawing since childhood, often working with my sister and friends. At that time it was a way of expressing the whimsical energy and fantasy that comes with youth. With the encouragement of my family, my love for art grew over the years until I found I cannot function without it!
“Two Heads Are Better Than One” ~ Mya Popova, Dominic Simone, Rosanna Pizzo, Elena Popova
ZOUCH: What inspires you?
MYA: It is a difficult thing to describe in words the effect artistic inspiration has on me. And in many ways doing so diminishes its impact. Anything we come into contact with can trigger an idea if we expand our perception. For me, it is often provided by dreams, music, books, movies, nature, architecture, adventures, and more. Inspiration ebbs and flows. But when it comes on strong, it shows itself in a number of ways. Sometimes I would have an idea on my mind and it would suddenly transform into an image. Sometimes I would see an image which my mind would interpret as something different, forming the beginnings of a new artwork. Other times I would just start drawing/sketching/painting/ and see where it takes me!
ZOUCH: Is art necessary?
MYA: Well, you are asking an artist, my answer might be subjective! For me, art is absolutely necessary. In this big, crazy, and confusing world, it is the one way I feel I can contribute something tangible, that is me.
Art is necessary on many levels. Starting from personal: it is a means of interpreting and expressing what we perceive. And from experience, even people who have never practiced visual art enjoy and benefit from it when they finally try. It is not about beauty or perfection—that is incidental—but self-expression. It is a process of expanding your self-awareness, through which we can improve and be in harmony with ourselves.
On a greater scale, people are constantly affected by art. Especially when the population finds something relatable, that expresses what they themselves felt or thought (but often didn’t even realize it). Art is also a way of freedom and friendship with others. With people growing more and more isolated from one another, art is becoming a greater necessity. On an even larger scale, art can direct ideas, trends, and feelings of the general population.
“Head In The Clouds” – Mya Popova