Empath Art - Articolo su Heavy Music Artwork

Empath Art - Heavy Music Artwork Interview

As a music lover Metal find my name in the summary, together with the bands I follow, of a well-known English magazine in the sector ... Really , it's an indescribable emotion, let me tell you !!
Honored to have been interviewed by the English newspaper Heavy Music Artwork , famous for merging art and Metal music and for its publications such as the artbooks of Maxime Taccardi.

You can find my interview published in September # 16. But, as your favorite fatty ghost is always on the right track, you'll find both the translation and the original article by scrolling through this blog post below. Happy reading!

If you want to buy the magazine, in addition to my interview you will find many interesting articles including Ex Deo, Nanowar of Steel, Powerwolf and many others: click here or on the image below !

Heavy Music Artwork #16

"Stefania Russo - Empath Art"

I'm self-taught. I have learning difficulties and this had been weighed on me, wearing it out of shame. Even now, I often fear showing up in important galleries and collaborations, compared to other great artists. During my teenage years, I studied fashion design, which gave me a good foundation in drawing. After school I worked as a restorer of antique furniture and several temporary jobs where the only thought was to be exploited. I have always kept art as a hobby, drawing and experimenting with different media. Then came the first sales and the first commissions, up to the exhibitions in some international galleries and local festivals. A few years ago, I decided to leave everything completely and now I work as a full-time independent artist. I've never collaborated with metal bands, but it's a dream I've had for a long time.


My way of working is quite instinctive. I take the blank canvas and start tracing a face until I gradually complete the rest. I rarely do preliminary drafts (except in exceptional cases such as committees, which have specific directives). I paint and draw practically "at the first". I tried to fix it but I was not satisfied with it. It is my desire to impress the emotions I feel for that specific work of art, as they come out better on the first try. I particularly love the word "illusory" (hence my aka) for this reason. Many of my works, at first glance, convey calm and a fairytale environment. Going into the details, you can see that that tortured creature enjoying his position and his life. Or with a smiling and elegantly dressed girl. Life has so many clear examples of "masks worn", even in the field of entertainment, from mental agony to depression.
I love to draw women, androgynous and queer people. They are the essence of my "dark tales", protagonists with an identity confirmed by themselves but without identity. For me, darkness is not necessarily just darkness and black color. I love to play with the artistic style, especially in an instinctive mood, but this was, in the past, really disheartening. There are those who said I am very versatile and therefore have pleasure in working with me. From most galleries and projects, I admit, my work has been rejected because "I seem to feel confused and without a path / style to follow". It was my first depressive battle over my art but now, definitely, I have learned to follow what I feel as an "emotional" artist. For me it is the perfect key to create a work of imperfection, living every detail that is not noticed at first sight, even if visibly the work might seem very simple.

Escape from reality has always been for me of the utmost importance to face daily life. Listen to music and let yourself be carried away by the notes. I live closed in my room, almost like a hikikomori, and music is my best friend. So you can imagine how important festivals and concerts are.
I don't consider myself a person of great culture; I like things as they come. And this influences both musically and artistically. For example, in Rammstein, I love their crazy lyrics. They represent the vision of how I see things, without too many frills but in a simple way. I particularly like Till Lindemann's poetry for this reason, and it has always been a desire for me to convey it through my works. It was from then on that I entered the theme of the illusory. Bands like Eluveitie and related genres inspired me to represent myths and legends in an emotional key (like Caccia Selvaggia, inspired by Epona and her Wild Hunt, in a physiological state). And folk music like Forndom, whose influence I see most in my work.

Heavy Music Artwork - Interview - Article Magazine Page 1 -  Illusorya - Stefania Russo

With learning difficulties, it's hard for me to be able to memorize so much information. I noticed this flaw in my teens; I was very fond of the legends of the Egyptian gods. I have so many books on that subject, and I still appreciate it. But most of the times when I reopened the books, I noticed the "forgetfulness" of various chapters. I particularly love Norse culture, but even here I often forget detailed information. I don't consider myself a cultured person, but I found my method to print on canvas, albeit in a not incisive form, what I'm passionate about. I often study this symbol or icon for a single work at the same time. I try to memorize some elements that are easy to understand, but as for the single symbols, I often have to pick them up and study them again. I want to include some aspects in my work more, but I'm afraid I seem arrogant in my own stupidity. In any case, I prefer to focus more on the emotional side.
When I receive commissions of this type, I explicitly ask the customer to give me information and suggestions, I deepen the subject by combining it with the emotional factor that the customer is often satisfied with.

Living in solitude and with anxiety, I can safely say that the ideas come mainly from my dreams. They are often very vivid, violent and incisive. I dreamed of various tortures and deaths on my body that I could never have imagined until I woke up to feel the physical pain in that dreamed position (definitely, anxiety attacks). Personally, they keep me alive and I appreciate them. I often paint them on canvas, but I want to be more honest and not be afraid to represent what I want. It is something that I am still studying, without haste.
I was born as a "fairy artist" for the pleasure of others; now I live fully as a "dark artist" for my physical and psychological well-being. The importance of listening to the stories of other humans, of being able to transmit them on canvas. I often receive just these kinds of commissions, and therefore it has given me a way to know humanity more deeply, in an emotional sense.
I am a misanthropist who appreciates hearing the stories of others. Many refer to me as an empath for this reason. For me it is simply my being, artist and otherwise. Being a dark artist is an identity that I have struggled to have, and you never stop growing. Lately I've been drawing a lot of small ink drawings, just to help me be even more instinctive. It led me to a small artistic crisis because they are a bit different from my usual paintings. But despite everything, they are still my creations and part of me. I can't stop thinking that others think of me because I like to vary. Many metal artists do this and Moonspell are a great inspiration for it. This is a good reason to keep your creativity high.

Interview in original language
English interview version

"Stefania Russo - Empath Art"

I'm self-taught. I have learning difficulties and this had been weighed on me to shame. Even now, I often fear introducing myself to galleries and major collaborations, compared to other great artists. During my teens, I studied fashion design, which gave me a good foundation in drawing. After school, I worked as a restorer of antique furniture and several temporary jobs where the only thought was to be exploited. I have always kept art as a hobby, drawing and experimenting with different media. Then came the first sales and first commissions, up to the exhibitions in some international galleries and local festivals. A few years ago, I decided to drop everything temporary job, and now I work full-time independent artist. I've never collaborated with metal bands, but that's a dream I've had for a very long time.

Heavy Music Artwork - Interview - Article Magazine Page 2 -  Illusorya - Stefania Russo

My working way is quite instinctive. I take the blank canvas and begin to trace a face until I gradually complete the rest. I rarely do preliminary drafts (except in exceptional cases such as commissions, which have specific directives). I paint and draw practically "at first". I tried to remedy this but was not satisfied. It's my want to impress the emotions I feel about that specific artwork, as they come out better on the first try. I particularly love the word "illusory" (hence my aka) for that reason. Many of my works, at first glance, convey calm and a fairytale environment. Going into the details, you can see that that tortured creature enjoys its position and life. Or with a smiling and elegantly dressed girl. Life has many clear examples of there "worn masks", even in the field of entertainment, in mental agony up to depression.

I love to draw women, androgynous and queer people.They are the essence of my "dark tales", protagonists with an identify confirmed by themselves but without identity. For me, dark is not necessarily just darkness and black color. I love playing with the art style, especially in an instinctive mood, but this was, in the past, really uncomfortable. Someone said I'm very versatile and love work with me in this case. Most galleries and projects, I admit, was rejected my work because it looks like I feel confused and without a path / style to follow. It was my first depressive battle about my artwork but, now, definitely, I've learned to follow what I feel like an "emotive" artist. For me, it is the perfect key to creating a work of imperfection, living every detail that is not noticed in first life, even if visibly the work seems very simple.

Escaping from reality has always been of utmost importance to me to face daily life. Listening to music and letting myself be carried away by the notes. I live locked in my room, almost like a hikikomori, and music is my best friend. So you can imagine how festivals and concerts are so important.
I don't consider myself a person of great culture; I enjoy things as they come. And this is also affected through music and my art. For example, in Rammstein, I love their mad lyrics. They represent the vision of how I see things, without too many frills but in a straightforward way. I particularly like Till Lindemann's poetry for this reason, and it has always been a desire for me to convey this through my works. It was from then I entered the theme of the illusory. Bands like Eluveitie and related genres have inspired me to represent myths and legend in emotional key (like Caccia Selvaggia, inspired by Epona and her di lei Wild Hunt di lei, in a physiological state). And folk music like Forndom, whose influence I see most in my work.

With learning difficulties, it's tough for me to be able to memorize so much information. I noticed this defect during my adolescence. I was very fond of the Egyptian gods and their legends. I have so many books about it, and I still like it. But most of the time I reopened the book, I noticed the "forgetfulness" of various chapters. I especially love Norse culture, but even here, I often forget the detailed information. I do not consider myself a cultured person, but I have found my method to print on canvas, albeit in a not incisive form, what I am passionate about. I often study this symbol or icon for a single work at the same time. I try to memorize some elements that are easy to understand, but regarding the single symbols, I often have to pick them up and study again. I want to include certain aspects more in my works, but I fear looking arrogant in my own stupidity. In any case, I prefer to focus more on the emotional side of it.
When I receive commissions of this kind, I explicitly ask to costumer to give me information and suggestions, I go so much into the subject by combining it with the emotional factor that often the customer is satisfied with .

Living in solitude and with anxiety, I can safely say that the ideas come mostly from my dreams. They are often very vivid, violent and incisive. I dreamed of various tortures and deaths on my body that I could never imagined until I woke up and felt the physical pain in this position (definitely, anxiety attacks). Personally, they keep me alive, and I appreciate therm. I often paint them on canvas, but I want to be more honest and not be afraid to represent whatever I want. It's something I'm still studying, in no hurry.
I was born as "fairy artist" for the pleasure of others; now, I fully live as a "dark artist" for my physical and psychological well-being. The importance of listening to stories of other humans, of being able to transmit them on canvas. Often, I get just these kind of commissions, and therefore it has given me a way to get to know humanity more deeply, in an emotional sense. - I am a misanthropist who appreciates listening to the stories of others. Many refer to me as an empath for this reason. For me, it is simply my being, artist and otherwise. Being a dark artist is an identity that I struggled to have, and you never stop growing. Lately, I've been drawing many small ink drawings, just to help me be even more instinctive. It led me to a small artistic crisis because they are a little different from my usual paintings. But, despite everything, they are still my creations and part of me. I can't stop thinking about that other people think of me because I like to vary. Many metal artists do this, and Moonspell is a great inspiration for that. This is a valid reason to keep creativity high.

Heavy Music Artwork - Interview - Illusorya - Stefania Russo

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