BUTTS, FARTS, GROSS THINGS - Interview with Kayla Marok

I mostly wander around my apartment in my underpants. If I'm hungry I'll make some toast or something.

We love the weird, gross-factor about your work! Can you tell us what inspired your style and way of thinking?

I love anything to do with poops, dicks, butts, boobs and boogers. They make me laugh. But I'm also an incredibly emotional person and my drawings are heavily influenced by how I'm feeling that day, even though most of them just look like monsters with a penis for a nose.

Where do you find inspiration for your illustrations?

I'll start by staring at nothing for a little while and try and check in with myself. Am I pissed off? Depressed? Stoked? Sometimes I'll squint my eyes and look at the shape of an object, or a stain or something and start a drawing based on that. I also like to use 'random word generators' online.

Have you gone to Art School? If yes, where did you go and what was the experience like?

I did three years of Fine Arts at Heritage College in Gatineau, Quebec, Canada. It is only a two year program, but I had to repeat a painting class. I didn't put any effort into the assignments and made up elaborate stories about the 'meaning' of the painting. The professors clearly saw through my bullshit. But, I was nineteen and I wanted to smoke weed instead of going to school. A few years of working in coffee shops went by and I decided to go back to school. I attended the Animation program at Algonquin College in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. It really kicked the shit out of me and, for a while, I forgot I enjoyed  drawing. It made me a better artist, but also made me a little embarrassed of my lowbrow, gross, kinda shitty style (WHICH NO ONE SHOULD BE, EVER). It took a little over a year of being out of school, but finally I was like fuck it, I like 'bad' art. I don't care anymore.

What do you love most about illustrating

I just love making shit and sharing it with people. I love seeing what other people make and try and imagine their process. Creating is a very intimate thing, whether it's drawing, music, comedy, etc. Sharing what you make takes some guts.

Do you find hints of your personality in your artwork?

Hahaha, absolutely. Everything from the use of color - to the subject matter - to the title is a reflection of me. I'm mostly just thinking about farts, and sex, and stuff though.

Are there any current art trends you are not a fan of?

Nah, you do you. Who am I to judge?

do you have any projects you’re currently working on?

I currently work as a Layout Artist at Mercury Filmworks, an animation studio based in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada. Shout out to them, they are a great company to work for. But, after an eight hour day of drawing for Disney Jr shows, I like to come home and just pen vomit all over my sketchbook and then post it on Instagram. I don't really have anything going on right now, sorry.

What are you currently fascinated by and how is it influencing your work?

Well, it's not really anything I'm fascinated by. The thing that I feel influences my work the most right now is being alone most of the time. I live alone, I work from home a lot and I don't have many friends. You start to kind of lose your mind after a while, because you're forced to get to know yourself, which can be really scary. Drawing, for me, is very calming. Creativity is a good tool to help with anxiety and depression.

What goals do you have for this year?

This year I'd like to focus on opening up an online shop and selling / sharing more of my work. One step at a time, though. I'm not going to beat myself up for taking it slow or not meeting my goals. Don't ruin what you love doing by making it stressful!

What is your favorite song, artist, and/or band you listen to while you work?

There are so many. But I'll leave you with this amazing playlist on YouTube of some grocery store music from 1975 called "Sounds for the Supermarket."