‘Comparison is a thief of joy, don’t put restrictions on yourself and your art’ – Niyi Osundare

'Comparison is a thief of joy, don't put restrictions on yourself and your art' - Niyi Osundare

By Ayomitide Aina & Havillah Ogutu

“The desire to create is one of the deepest yearnings of the human soul.” – Dieter F. Uchtdorf.

This week, we had a chance to interview Niyi Adeogun, a Canadian-based visual artist, design engineer, and founder of design agency ZeroResistance. In February 2019, Niyi’s works featured on Spotify UK. 

Could you please give us a little introduction?

My Name is Niyi Adeogun, born and raised in Lagos, Nigeria. I am a visual artist/design engineer based in PE, Canada, and I run a creative brand/design agency called ZeroResistance.

I moved to Canada for school to study design engineering in 2016. And I have been involved in creating digital and conceptual art since the beginning of 2017.

Wow! That’s really impressive.  So when did you start designing?

Well, I must say that I always had an interest in the things of art since I was a kid. I was so fascinated by how people would create art, technology, or things in general. My love for art depleted because I always compared myself with other artists’ works. I felt like if I couldn’t be better than other artists, then there was no point of me partaking in it. So I took a break from art in grade 9. 

Moving on to my final year in high school, I got to know who Jesus is, and I rededicated my life to God. In 2015, God began to revive that interest that I always had for art. I started designing clothes then because I was trying to start a clothing line with one of my closest friends.

This is so cool, and so inspiring at the same time.  We’ve seen your recent works on IG, and we’re definitely glad you grew out of comparing yourself with others.

Yeah! I had to lol.

So, was there any success with the clothing line?

It didn’t go as planned, but we still trusted God, and I knew I always wanted to do something with creating dope streetwear clothes. So understanding that I got the impression to start creating digital art.

It wasn’t successful lol, but we learnt from that experience. I feel like I needed to go through it so that I would know how to do it differently when I face the same situation again.

Sounds like you have a penchant for getting back on your feet. Love it! So, where do you find the inspiration to create such beautiful digital art?

I draw inspiration from different places. I draw inspiration from nature, i.e. just by sitting in front of open water lol, the bible for sure or sometimes it could be looking through other works that I find very interesting. Sometimes I have dreams of design ideas, and I try to immediately create them as soon as I wake up, so I don’t forget.

We often feel this way about writing too. The most challenging part of the process is taking what’s in our head and writing it out articulately. What about you?

Haha, I feel that!

The most challenging part of my process is precisely that lol. Sometimes I may not have all the resources to create exactly how I see it in my head, but I have learned to take breaks in those moments. It helps keep you less frustrated, and it could even help you pivot, and who knows, by doing that you could create even something better.

We couldn’t agree more. Can you share with us your greatest accomplishment so far?

Hmm, tough question…I feel like everything I have done up to this point has been my greatest accomplishment. Working with so many talented creatives, from graphic designers to photographers to animators to musical artists, has been a blessing and exciting. I consider the journey/process a great achievement and learn from art exhibitions that we created, collaborations, and partnerships that we established. I am grateful for all, and I am excited to create more.

Pretty inspiring! We look forward to seeing more of your works. Finally, do you have anything you’d like to share with other creatives?

Don’t put restrictions on yourself and your art style. Try new things, practice new techniques; take up diverse projects to help grow your skill and knowledge. 

Comparison is a thief of joy, I had to learn that and try to consciously remind myself of all what I just said because there will be times when you feel like giving up. You will feel frustrated, but if you can surround yourself with people who can encourage you to create it makes it easier. 

My reason for creating is that I believed God has called me to create for His glory. Find your reason for creating and always remind yourself that it helps get through those challenging moments, and it’s worth it.

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