5 Question Interview #53...

We put 5 Questions to Collette from Flying Viper Illustration...

Q) What’s the secret origin story of Flying Viper Illustration and how did it all come together?

While travelling across China I met an old lady selling zodiac trinkets, scrolls and offering to tell you're fortune; she asked me my Chinese zodiac sign, I told her I was an Earth Snake and asked to buy a custom jade seal with a tiny snake carved into the top. When carving my item for me she told me how there are two types of every sign and two types of snake, one spends its whole life slithering on the ground and hiding under rocks, the other works hard, grows wings and becomes a dragon. The story has stuck with me ever since. 

There is also a Welsh dragon-like creature named a ‘Gwiber’ which translates to ‘Adder’ a type of snake, many centuries ago the word referred to a ‘flying snake’ or ‘flying viper’. I was born in Wales and grew up being inspired by the stunning landscapes and local mythology, it seemed appropriate to name my business after a creature that I felt represented my and my homeland. 

Q) What inspires you to create?

‘The Hobbit’ by J.R.R.Tolkien was my favourite book as a child, I later fell in love with the artwork involved in ‘The Lord of the Rings’ movies and the work of Japanese film director Hayao Miyazaki. I've always had a passion for ancient mythologies from around the world, especially dragon legends. This early interest sparked a passion in me that lead me to pursue an artistic career. 

Q) Since you started, what moment has been your highlight so far?

Creating makes me so happy, I love telling stories through my work. My favourite experience so far has probably been my trip to China, in 2012 I won a scholarship to travel across the country gathering drawings and legends surrounding dragons. It was an amazing experience and I'd love an opportunity to go back some day. 

Q) This is your third year at True Believers, what can people expect to find at your table on the day in 2017?

I'll have some new signed art prints available and I'll be selling copies of my first art book 'Welsh Monsters and Mythical Beasts'

Q) If you could pick one line that inspires you from a comic or nerd culture as your life motto, which would you choose?

“Remember to look up at the stars and not down at your feet. Try to make sense of what you see and wonder about what makes the universe exist. Be curious. And however difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you don't just give up.” 
- Stephen Hawking 

Thanks Collette.

Be sure to check out Collette's website and follow her on Twitter @collettejellis

And don't forget to stop by her table at #TBCF2017 and say "Hello".

Read Collette's 2016 5 Question Interview HERE