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Interview with Anna Hannon

Published    5/27/2019

Could you tell us something about yourself?

I am a happily married cat mom living in the states, more specifically the beautiful Pacific Northwest. I have played Dungeons and Dragons and other TTRPGs for over a decade and maintain a weekly play schedule to see this day; tabletop games are my passion!

Do you paint professionally, as a hobby artist, or both? What genre(s) do you work in?

I would say both, though more a hobby than professional. I currently lend my talents to Worldbuilding Magazine, an online and community driven magazine whose mission really resonated with me! I stay working within the realm of fantasy, especially dark or horror fantasy.

Whose work inspires you most — who are your role models as an artist?

My longtime role model has been Donato Giancola, ever since I saw his work in my teens on the cover of the Lord of the Rings trilogy book I’d been reading at the time. I also greatly admire Karla Ortiz for her  strength of will and personality – she inspires me all the time to treat others with respect and work my butt off!

How and when did you get to try digital painting for the first time?

I was in a junior high photography class in which we were able to use old model Wacom tablets for our work. Of course I started drawing with it instead and my professor loved what I did so much he GAVE me his own tablet so I could continue practicing at home. I had that Wacom until I started college years after and upgraded to an Intuos.

What makes you choose digital over traditional painting?

I really don’t like messes!! I feel silly about it but it’s true.

How did you find out about Krita?

It was about three years ago when my main computer quit on me, and I didn’t have the cash to buy the updated Windows 10 OS for my new hard drive. I opted for trying Linux Mint, and tested Krita as my Photoshop replacement. Love at first sight! I currently run Manjaro KDE and it continues to be my only painting software (even on my Microsoft surface).

What was your first impression?

It was a very familiar interface coming from Photoshop. I enjoyed the intuitive UI and the ease of adjusting it to my specifications.

What do you love about Krita?

I love the way it looks, I LOVE the brush engine and how much control you have over your brush settings. Also the reference tool??? The best thing I’ve ever seen and I use it constantly.

What do you think needs improvement in Krita?

I’d like a more user friendly text tool but I know that’s in the works and gets improved upon often.

Is there anything that really annoys you?

Not being able to move my selection outlines across the canvas to use the same shape on another area.

What sets Krita apart from the other tools that you use?

It’s open source! I donate often but imagine a digital artist just starting out? I know I couldn’t have afforded Photoshop without my student discount at the time. I also really love the brush engine.

If you had to pick one favourite of all your work done in Krita so far, what would it be, and why?

I think it would have to be my piece “Dana” because it was the first painting I’d finished in a long time, and it was the first time I felt like I finally understood what I was doing! The lighting came together well, and I actually found myself really loving doing the leather texture on her clothes.

What techniques and brushes did you use in it?

I tried to use a minimal amount of brushes, mostly using the round brush set to pen pressure opacity and a custom brush that is the same but with a little texture. This piece I specifically strove to paint in the textures, yes even the leather on her gauntlets and padded armor.

Where can people see more of your work?

I have a website at annahannon.com and I also post sometimes on Twitter: @jedejane

Anything else you’d like to share?

I have been using Krita as my primary replacement for Photoshop. It has been a rare thing for me to ‘wish for Photoshop’. The brushes work great, even on my huge canvas sizes. I really enjoy this software and spread the word everywhere I go. I think the collaborators on this project are doing fantastic work for the community and I support them fully.

Thank you for taking this time to interview me! Love yourself and others, and take care.

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