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She is known for her colorful and lively monster illustrations in the Monkiddo series. Jayee's bold artwork explores important societal themes and brings fresh perspectives to them. Her latest cover design depicts So-So in a busy train station, inspiring viewers to embrace their uniqueness and pursue their dreams with courage.

Published on
6 May, 2024

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Can you tell us more about you and what you do?

Hello there! My name is Jayee, and I'm an illustrator and art director hailing from Negeri Sembilan, Malaysia. I'm extremely passionate about creating vibrant and fantastical monster illustrations, and I've been fortunate enough to bring them to life through my series called Monkiddo. This series is set in an imaginative universe that's overflowing with characters and monsters. I've explored society and daily life themes, particularly centered around working culture and office stories, through my illustrations, comics, and collectible toys. My style is typically bold, vivid, and colorful, and I blend graphic design and doodles to create a fresh and approachable visual expression that resonates with audiences. My ultimate goal is to bring joy and contentment to everyone who views my work.

Every artwork tells a story. What inspired your cover design, what narrative or message are you conveying through your cover design, and can you share the creative process that led to its final form?

The cover art, inspired by Monkiddo's universe, portrays So-So standing amidst a busy train station during the morning rush hour. The image represents the daily routine that most of us follow. However, So-So stands out from the crowd by facing the opposite direction, symbolizing the desire to break free from the monotony of daily life. The cover art aims to inspire individuals to discover their unique path, embrace their individuality, and pursue their dreams with courage. Let this cover art serve as a reminder to break free from conformity and take the first step towards self-discovery and personal growth.

How does creativity connect to self-expression for you?

I used to live in a small village ("kampung"), but I moved to Kuala Lumpur for work. However, I found it overwhelming to keep up with my 9-5 routine, and felt like I was missing out on important moments in life. I decided to step out of my comfort zone and make a change. This artwork represents my journey and encourages others to find their own path and inner peace. I hope it inspires people to break free from the rush of everyday life, be true to themselves, and find calm within.

How do you define your individuality as an artist, and in what ways does this uniqueness manifest in your creations?

I am passionate about storytelling and enjoy observing the people around me. This is what inspired me to create Monkiddo—a world where everyone is a unique monster, each with their own shape, size, and characteristics that make them special. I love to imagine things such as pyramids, space, oceans, and stars, and often incorporate these elements into my work as an artist. My ultimate goal is to bring joy and fun to people all over the world through my illustrations, by adding value to my creations. I hope to engage with my audience and share my passion for art with as many people as possible.

In your perspective, what role does creativity play in empowering individuals and communities, and how have you witnessed this power in action?

Creativity is a powerful tool that allows us to express ourselves in unique ways. It encourages self-discovery and helps us find our voices, while also providing a sense of liberation. Through art and storytelling, we can overcome adversity, find healing, and inspire others. Whether it's a community coming together to celebrate their heritage through a mural or an individual using creativity to cope with personal struggles, the transformative power of creativity is truly remarkable. As an artist, I aim to infuse joy and fun into people's lives while fostering engagement and value through my work.

Have you faced any challenges in maintaining your individuality in your work, especially in the face of trends or external expectations? How did you overcome them?

Balancing my individuality as an intellectual property (IP) creator with external expectations can be challenging. However, I have found that my characters offer a great deal of adaptability, allowing me to explore different styles and approaches. In order to maintain creative control, I believe that trust and open communication with clients are crucial. By doing so, I am able to navigate this balance more effectively, ensuring that my artistic vision remains intact across various commercial projects. I will continue to strive for this balance and to produce work that is both true to myself and meets the expectations of my clients.

What advice would you give to emerging artists who are trying to find and express their individuality through their work?

As you continue to create, you'll discover more about yourself and your artistic style. Take your time in this process of self-discovery and enjoy the journey of experimentation and exploration. It's important to allow yourself the freedom to make mistakes and learn from them, as this is how you'll grow as an artist. Remember, every creation is a step forward in your journey towards discovering your unique artistic voice.

What’s the one thing you want to accomplish this year?

In 2024, I am fully focused on achieving my dream of owning a studio. It will be much more than just a workplace - it will be a place where my team and I come together to create and spread joy through our art. We are determined to make a positive impact on the world through our creativity and collaborative efforts.

Where can we see more of your work?

Follow me on Instagram @itsmonkiddo

Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path’—A5s Trio Book
RM 148.00
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
Pre-order: Monkiddo ‘Find Your Own Path'—A5s Wirebound
RM 148.00
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