My name is Jesi Garcia, I’m 22 years old, born in Chicago, raised in Cicero. I’m a full-time tattoo artist in Summit and in my free time, I draw!
When did you first start getting into art?
My aunt was an artist. She babysat me since I was 2. I specifically remember at the age of 4 I was being a kid and she couldn’t get me to calm down so she sat me next to her and gave me a paper and pencil and told me to draw her something. I can’t remember what that drawing was but ever since then, I haven’t put the pencil down. I always thank her for putting me on my path.
A lot of your artwork is heavily influenced by tarot decks. When did you first start getting interested in Tarot?
I’ve had a weird journey trying to figure out who I am when it comes to art. I would mostly paint when I was younger and I remember getting depressed that I couldn’t find myself. I was going through a spiritual phase at the same time trying to find my place in what felt right. Tumblr introduced me to Wicca. From there I stemmed out to astrology. I became infatuated with it all and still study it to this day. I found that tarot can say a lot about a person and who they are and I began associating that with astrology in my studies.
Talk about your tarot deck, ‘La Lune Noire Tarot’
People that know me know that I have the worst memory in the world so for me drawing each tarot was the perfect way to study It. It turned into a project with the help of my boyfriend and is currently still in the works. I wanted to create a different deck. Something with simpler imagery that makes each card easier to digest but that still sends the message to the reader. I wanted to create a deck without people in it and without color. A majority of decks are based on the Rider Waite Tarot illustrations and I wanted to do my own thing. The thing with tarot is finding a deck that calls to you, that feels right and what better way than making my own? Needless to say, I’m very excited.
What is your favorite tarot deck?
I own a few decks but right now I’m obsessed with the Salvador Dali deck. I can’t say enough about it.
Outside of tarot decks, where do you tend to draw your inspiration from?
I always laugh at myself (in a good way) because if you look through my feed you’ll see that I couldn’t figure out what my drawing style was. I went from paintings, which I mostly deleted to mandalas which is when I became obsessed with sacred geometry, to Tibetan and Buddhism inspired drawings and finally to the darker stuff. I feel at home with the darker stuff. Though I can safely say that I’m still finding myself and I’m intrigued as to where it’ll take me in the future. As far as inspiration I can’t really look for it I just wait till I see or read something that sparks it in me. Sometimes I’ll just stare at the paper and try to envision my next piece. Seeing all the amazing artists on social media definitely pushes me forward though. Its such an amazing community to be in, doing collabs with other artists and making friends, without a doubt helps keep the ball rolling.
At times your artwork can be strictly black and white, and other times, we see some color. How do you decide on adding color to your pieces?
I used to be petrified of drawing in color even though I paint. I felt that if I added color it would ruin that piece because I wasn’t comfortable with color pencils or markers or watercolors. My boyfriend definitely helped me with that. He’s great with color and he taught me how to use them efficiently and ever since then I started fusing it in my pieces. We went to blick once and I got a random magenta marker. Its made its way into my heart and I now love using the splash of it with my black and white stuff. I always finish a piece as if its black and white. At the end of it, if I feel it needs the color, then I’ll add it. But I never start a piece with ‘this is going to have color’. I just go with my gut.
Why’d you decide to take a break from creating digitally?
When we got an iPad my life changed. The Raven from teen titans was my first digital piece ever. I think I spent a whole day on it. It was great. I got too into the digital aspect of it though and I found that I was losing my touch with paper. I was not okay with that happening so I decided to take a break. Now I don’t know what to do on digital. But its best I feel to do it by hand than to depend on digital. It feels more real in a way.