Interview with Victo Ngai:
Victo graduated from Rhode Island School of Design majoring in illustration. Her works have received recognitions from American Illustration, Communication Arts, Spectrum, Society of Illustrator New York, LA Society of Illustrator, 3X3, CMYK and Applied Art.
EFII: I often think of you as a “rising star” in the Illustration industry because I see you progressing at an incredible rate. To what do you attribute your success as an artist?
Victo Ngai: I am very grateful that I have had a good start but I don’t think I am anything close to being successful yet. There are a few things that helped me a lot-
First, dare to desire. “It’s not how good you are, it’s how good you want to be”. I was mediocre in RISD for the longest time but I always wanted to be good-the desire to get better has been the strongest motivation for me to work harder.
Second, work hard on the right things at the right time. It’s easy for students and new illustrators to be overwhelmed and prematurely spend a lot of time on promotion while the priority should really be building a strong portfolio. Focus on learning and making art.
Third, luck. I have been lucky to have great people around me. My teachers taught me everything I knew about editorial illustration. Art directors have taken the risk and given me my first jobs. Friends and mentors have been very generous referring me to new art directors…I guess there’s nothing one can do about luck but I believe in Karma- if one is genuine and nice to others, it comes back as a full circle.