Rolando Mata is an artist and illustrator in Chicago. He received his Associate of Arts from Harper College in 2018. He earned an Art Merit Scholarship at Northeastern Illinois University for 2019. His work involves drawing human figures and environments to tell a narrative. The inspiration for his work comes from the aesthetics of graphic novels. He is currently working on earning his Bachelor of Arts in Studio Art at Northeastern Illinois University.
Finding Yourself is a series of work that features characters struggling with identity problems. The artwork is stylized illustration that consists of observational and imaginative drawings. The aesthetics and stories in graphic novels inspire my work. Characters question their self worth through internal thoughts and become frustrated with themselves, daydream and have anxieties about keeping these feelings to themselves. They have positive and negative thoughts about their self worth to become confident people. I drew the characters as expressively as possible, so the viewer in their own way can be able to relate to the common struggles we all experience.
The process of my work involves using observation, imagination, and technical skills to create imagery for the figures in order to tell their conflict. The illustrations are on 18” x 24” drawing paper and the shadows and crosshatching provide depth to figures and objects. Black and white are considered the absence of color. In the drawings, white represents the potential the individuals have while black represents the fears they have. The drawings are arranged in a sequential order because there are cracks in the background to represent the inner panic of the character except the last drawing has vertical lines to represent a calm state of mind.