I explained that we loved the movie Ponyo. In our relationship Mike is Sosuke and I'm Ponyo. The fact that she would yell out "HAM!" had us rolling in our seats because when I get hangry, I can do that in real life. Mike and I are Disney geeks so I asked that Genevieve include the balloon element from Up plus a Mickey balloon. She also included our favorite animals. Mike's favorite animal is a sea otter and one of my favorite animals is the narwhal. What was awesome about our piece was that she not only created what I wanted, but since the characters in the piece were taking a selfie, she included the selife! It's so cool. Mike totally loved my surprise gift to him. These pieces have never really left us either! My icon when folk gchat me is actually the selfie pic. And Mike's image on his gchat is the group picture.
Oblivious meets Genevieve Santos
I’m part of the SJMade CreateSpace in San Jose, where I have my studio-retail space. I take classes at Animation Collaborative, learning from artists I look up to (they work at Pixar). I love long bike rides, being pushed to go camping by my more outdoorsy friends, and meeting my crafty colleagues to talk shop, always over ice cream.
What's the one word you are guilty of using too much?
I use the phrase “I’m so sorry for the delayed response” in emails too often. My schedule has me traveling everywhere so it’s rather difficult keeping on top of my inboxes. I will try to be better!!
How did you end up doing what you are doing now?
I draw because I love animation, and it’s always been that way. As a kid, I taped my favorite cartoons onto VHS tapes, and rewatched episodes frame by frame to study how it worked. I never stopped drawing. After graduating from USC, I worked at New Line Cinema for two years. The company was absorbed by Warner Bros. but luckily and thankfully, I had money saved and a plan to start my business. It was the perfect kick in the butt. I moved to NYC, and traveled around Southeast Asia, all the while building the foundation of my business.
GZA, in the way he is with words, I aspire to be with drawing.
Dogs or Cats, who wins? Why?
I used to hate cats until I had one. I love their independent spirit, sassiness, and the fact that you have to earn their affection.
What is the best part of any given day for you?
Hands down the best part of my day is when I get to draw. I try to draw 2-4 hours a day. It’s tough to find the time sometimes but it’s important, and you can only get better by putting in the mileage.
In a zombie apocalypse who would you want on your survival team?
For the zombie apocalypse, I’d pick Ronda Rousey, the muscle, my boyfriend Kevin because you always need someone who’s got your back, The Doctor from Doctor Who as the getaway/brains, and Mindy Kaling because I so much want to be her friend!
What is the last thing you searched for on google?
An episode of Doctor Who featuring 2-dimensional aliens. GENIUS IDEA! I had to know who wrote it.
If you could talk to your high school self, what would say?
You got it good, and don’t be so scared. You’ll regret nothing.
What is the best thing or meal you ever ate?
Two things: Hokkaido ice cream in Sapporo, and sushi at Jiro’s. In the US, I love The Girl and The Goat. I go multiple nights in a row whenever I’m in Chicago. Yes, it’s that good.
What is a memorable project that you are working on or have worked on?
I recently wrapped my Advanced Character Design class with Chris Sasaki (!!!). We had 8 weeks to research, design, and model packet a character. I’ve never worked so hard, invested so much time to a single project, but I loved every moment. I drew until the wee hours, did my homework at hostels, in the car during road trips, and even visited a Taxidermy studio for research. I fell in love with drawing again, and it was the happiest I’d been. It helped me realize that I want to switch gears a bit and go back to school for animation. So right now, the big project on my plate is my portfolio & application. YIKES!
I am so incredibly proud to be a Filipino American. I've visited the Philippines twice for several months at a time, and have filled piles of sketchbooks inspired by my time there. I have a Halo Halo print series, Maligayang Pasko and Maraming Salamat cards, and touch on other Asian cuisines like boba and ramen. Growing up, I noticed that the children's books, dolls, and commercials featured girls who, well, didn't look like me. So in my illustrations, I try to draw my own life and the rich diversity I grew up in the Bay Area. It's very important to me.
Check out Genevieve at these upcoming shows:
• The Urban Epicurean Festival, Nov. 7-8 at Fort Mason in San Francisco, CA
• "Dreams" group art show at Leanna Lin's Wonderland, Eagle Rock, CA. Show opens Nov. 7. Runs Nov. 7-Dec. 24
• Pop-Up Shop at Leanna Lin's Wonderland for Small BusinessSaturday, Nov. 28.
And she also has her new studio/shop which is open by appointment only. If you are in the San Jose area I totally recommend you check it out! It’s at the SJMade CreateSpace, 1020 The Alameda, San Jose, CA