Let’s Look At The World With A Unique Perspective - Interview with Deer Jan
Life is all about perspective! We bet you must have heard about the thought experiment with half a glass of water. Optimists would deem the glass as half full, while pessimists would see the glass as half empty. For Deer Jan, her glass is filled with an imaginative world that is alive, detailed and friendly!
Taking a close look at Taiwanese illustrator Deer Jan’s work and you’ll discover different ways of how you look at things! Ranging from a bird’s eye view of a tranquil village to a first-person perspective of making sticky rice dumplings, Deer Jan always looks at the world with a unique perspective and tells the best stories with her colour pencils! Previously an art teacher in Taiwan, Deer Jan decided to kickstart her illustration career after pursuing her degree in illustration at Kingston University, London when she turned 29. Now with a total of 3 children's books in her portfolio, Deer Jan has successfully honed her talents and made her dream come true!
Let’s explore an eccentric world through Deer Jan’s eyes in all the wonderful scenes she’s captured for us.
AWW: What’s the best thing about being an illustrator in Taiwan?
Deer: Illustrations are being appreciated and widely used here. Many experienced illustrators are happy to share their thoughts and tips to beginners. Some independent bookshops and galleries are also offering their space for creators to exhibit their artworks. Overall, you can be recognized as an illustrator in Taiwan.
AWW: Can you share an illustration that best represents you and Taiwan?
Deer: This illustration is from my latest collaborative picture book. I drew a family taking a random walk in the streets. These buildings and scenery are really common in Taiwan.
AWW: We saw that you’ve shared lots of hiking photos on your Instagram. Can you recommend the best hiking spot to visit in Taiwan so our readers can visit it when the world re-opens?
Deer: The northeastern coast is the best! You can go hiking on the ridge of the mountains, and enjoy the spectacular view of the Pacific Ocean. Some historical relics are hidden in the hiking trails which makes the journey more interesting!
AWW: Have you met any furry friends that surprise you when you’ve hiked in Taiwan before? What was it and are there any animals that you can easily meet when you hike in Taiwan?
Deer: I hear birds chirping most of the time. Sometimes I can recognize the sounds and which kind of birds they are. I also often meet colorful lizards and frogs when I go hiking.
AWW: The illustrations you drew contain so many details from daily life, they bring us a lot of joy and allow us to explore the little things around! Where do you usually gain inspiration from?
Deer: I gain inspiration from my daily life. But honestly, my life is quite ordinary, so I like to collaborate with other authors and make picture books for their stories. I feel like I can live another life and be someone else when I am drawing.
AWW: Can you recommend 3 illustrators that you want to collaborate with or follow closely on Instagram?
To find out more about Deer Jan, please visit the artist’s IG account | @deer_jan
All images provided by Deer Jan.
About We Love Milk Tea Series
Since showing up on social media in 2020, #MilkTeaAlliance has been around for a while, and represents a shared love of tea drinks in Hong Kong (Milk Tea), Thailand (Iced Thai Tea) and Taiwan (Bubble Tea)! But the similarities are way more than that. Yes, people from all 3 cities love traveling and sharing their experiences, but there was also the way the youths were suddenly thrust into the world’s eyes as well. You could say that tea drinks are a powerful symbol of emotional connections and support!
This summer, we’ll be introducing the beautiful souls we met in these 3 cities. Let’s see what made their creative souls rise and shine!