ahey.. another featured in media Indonesia (Indonesian Newspaper) 19th june 2011 edition..
hard to read? that’s why i prepared the text of the article with english translation for you to read.But i didn’t translate the article by myself. I asked one of my friend to do it. Her name is Namira, she’s really good in english. She is a talented illustrator and 2D animator as well. You might check her blog by clicking her name below.
Written by : Hervinny Wongso
English translation by : Namira Primandari
Quirky Cartoons Loved all the Way to the Land of the Lion
Pamela Halomoan has proven that animation characters made by a young Indonesian can make their way all over the world!
At the age of 19, her works have been showcased in Singapore, England, USA, and Turkey for people to enjoy. Moreover, her characters have even attracted the attention of many visitors during the Singapore Toy, Game, and Comic Convention 2010.
She had always wanted to be a designer, said Pamela who also enjoys traveling. She has come up with hundreds and even thousands of characters but the one that clicked was created in late 2009 when she did an assignment to make a TV commercial. This character’s name is Wolly, with droopy eyes and an unusual form made out of a combination of several animals and objects.
After three years of studying in one of the top design schools in Singapore, Pam, as Pamela Halomoan likes to be called, has been continuing to produce new ideas and expand her imagination. She is currently a freelance illustrator for some local and foreign companies.
For Pam, who has just graduated, her journey has not been easy. She has experienced the bitterness of rejection and disheartening comments about her work.
Luckily, Pam wasn’t discouraged for long. She regained her enthusiasm from the advice of a friend, “If you yourself don’t appreciate your own work, then who will?”.
How did you get into designing characters?
From when I was little, I spent a lot of time watching cartoons with my parents. Then I thought to myself, why doesn’t Indonesia have their own cartoons? Why are all the cartoons always from other countries? From then on I wanted to be able to make an Indonesian character, one that is memorable and can be loved by all cartoon enthusiasts from every generation.
So you’ve had a talent for drawing from a young age?
Perhaps it’s in my genes. My dad and my older brother are both architects. They’re drawing skills are very good. Maybe their talent rubbed off on me a little bit, hehee. When I was in primary school, I took drawing lessons but not for long. Then I began focusing on drawing again after my parents wouldn’t let me major in music for college studies. Basically, I do like to doodle because I think that playing around with pictures and colours is a beautiful thing.
What inspired you to come up with your characters?
What stands out the most from my characters are their droopy eyes, it makes it look like they’re sleepy. I got the idea from looking at myself and my friends who, a lot of times, look like that maybe because of so many sleepless nights due to homework and assignments, hehee. Form-wise, I like to mix and match different animals, like for example a frog and a giraffe, a dinosaur and a crocodile. Then I randomly draw out what it might look like and, tah-daaaaa, it becomes a new character! I like oddly shaped, quirky kind of characters. When the drawing is done, I start coming up with ideas for their names and personalities.
Their personality and biographies are also important because when they are animated, they become somewhat just like us, humans.
So how many characters have you designed so far?
For animation, I have seven characters so far. The latest ones are from an animation using puppets made of clay and mixed media such as cloth, foam, metal, and wood. This animation is my final year project and will be played at our upcoming Graduation Show.
What are the odds you face when creating a new design?
The hardest part is designing something that can deliver your message well. Sometimes the design is not enough for others to understand what you’re trying to say. Like for example an animation that is meant to be humorous but when people see it, they just watch it with a straight face. In other words, the design failed. Besides that, maintaining consistency in your own style is not easy because clients may ask for something that is very different from our usual characters and designs.
When did you first enter your artworks as part of an exhibition?
The first time was during the Papertoys Exhibition in Turkey. At the time, a fellow Indonesian artist, Thunderpanda, recommended me. Thank God, the gallery owner told me they liked it and it was even one of their favourites. Unfortunately, I couldn’t attend it myself because I had class.
From all the international exhibitions you’ve taken part in so far, which one has an impression on you the most?
The last one, in Singapore. I got to meet a lot of people who like my designs. They bought some of my merchandise, had a simple chat, took pictures with me, and even added me on Facebook. It felt really good to be able to make something that other people appreciate and I made a lot of new friends too.
Any advice so we can design just like you? Hahaa.
Don’t! If you want to design, you have to have your own style. I hate it when people say my style looks like someone else’s. So far, the people who say that are just teasing me. But if it turns out to be the same, I’d definitely go back and change it. You will be proud as a designer if people recognize your works as something original, not something that looks like someone else’s work.
So you have any upcoming exhibitions soon?
Yes. This coming August, there will be another exhibition but because of time and financial constraints, I think I’ll put that on hold for now. Right now I want to build up more on networking and hopefully be more active in the international exhibition scene.
Are you interested in making your own comics?
Well, I had an offer from an American comic artist to do one together but because we were both busy, especially me with my final project and all, we’ve decided do postpone the project.. Hehee.
Do you plan to come back to Indonesia?
Of course! I can’t stay away too long from Indonesian food. But because I’m on tuition grant from the Ministry of Education of Singapore, I need to stay here to work for the next three years. After that, I would like to gain more experiences in other countries. After becoming a well-established entrepreneur, I will come back to Indonesia. Because for people my age it’s not easy to earn money in Jakarta, hehee.
What dream do you want to fulfill in five to ten years?
A lot! I want to take part in exhibitions all across the globe, launch even more products, have my own animation or TV show, become a great entrepreneur, and make my family happy. Hehee. My last obsession is to have a panda as my pet. But I don’t think that’s going to happen, is it? I’d feel bad for the panda anyway. Hehee.