Broken isn't bad

Broken isn't bad

Omule : Can you tell me how everything started?
Broken isn’t bad : Broken isn’t bad started in the beginning of 2016, when I opened my Instagram account at the urging of a friend and started working under this pseudonym. It was a period of my life when I felt quite depressed and unmotivated. I worked as a graphic designer in a big corporation and just ended my long-term relationship. I was in search of myself and felt really broken in a psychological sense, so it’s amazing how these few words have made a big impact on me, and showed me how to move forward.
The growth on Instagram since then has been absolutely insane! The more followers I was gaining, the more I was earning from selling prints, so it was reasonable to turn my passion into a profession, and quit my 9-to-5 job in order to fully dedicate myself to art.
Omule : What is like to be an illustrator? Where do you get your inspiration from?
Broken isn’t bad : For me drawing is a form of meditation. I mostly create for myself (at least that was in the beginning) in order to express what I see and feel for my own self-healing purposes, because drawing has been the best way to channel my emotions - either good or bad ones. Not all of my work is inspired by my current life though - poetry, music, literature inspire me even more and my drawings can be also influenced by things that happened to me or to someone else in my life.
I always join quotes to my drawings which I feel most related to. Sometimes I know exactly what feeling or situation I want to interpret and after drawing it on paper, I search for most appropriate quote, other times I come across some quote that I am really moved by and then I turn that exact quote into drawing. I love astronomy, astrology and spirituality and everything is space related, probably because I’m impressed by infinity of the universe which to me represents infinity of my (and everybody else’s) inner world - dreams, thoughts and ideas that we all carry within ourselves and that are limitless and inexhaustible.
Omule : Can you remember some of your earliest influences?
Broken isn’t bad : Yes, of course. Henn Kim was definitely the first artist I came across on Instagram and was highly inspired by her work. Also, I’ve been always a big fan of tattoos and would say that tattoo art actually drew me to my style and to drawing itself. I have always loved black and white dot work and line-based tattoos that combine geometric and nature-related elements. I remember back in 2016 I tried to draw my own tattoo that I wanted to get tattooed in future, and I just continued drawing in that line based, minimalist style.
Omule : What is your ideal creative environment like?
Broken isn’t bad : I can be quite flexible when it comes to my work environment, I can work in a coffee shop, in my bedroom or even on a plane, but I usually stick to my most comfortable space which is in my “office” at my parents’ house where I have all the equipment and tools.
I love working under the mild ambient noise, hearing birds singing or vehicles under my window, and it’s important to me to feel calm and at peace knowing nobody is around to bother me (although there’s times I miss working with colleagues).
Omule : How is your process ? Do you have any kind of creative patterns and routines ?
Broken isn’t bad : My working process depends on a situation, my mood, the book I read or some quotes I come across that day, things that have happened to me or to my closest people, or just on the little mundane things. I try to keep my daily drawing habit, so I almost never wait for the inspiration. I think habit is more important than inspiration - it’s persistence in practice. Most of the time my ideas come naturally when I start sketching and I very rarely plan a piece in advance. It can happen that I have a certain idea in my mind but as I’m sketching it my mind goes elsewhere and I come up with another, even better one. I already have dozens of ideas in my head and I take a lot of notes in my phone. I write down quotes and sentences from books, internet blogs, random thoughts, dreams etc. and whenever I have an artistic block I just read back through my notes.
Omule : What do you like the most about your work?
Broken isn’t bad : The most I love about my work is my work-life balance. I have a great degree of control and freedom within my job. Being my own boss, I love that I have flexibility in schedule. Some days, I don’t work/draw at all, I just pack my orders what can take even the whole day. The other days I don’t feel inspired and I stay in the apartment, cook something, read a book, go shopping, go longboarding.. Having that balance keeps me engaged and excited - but at the same time, I love that my job enables me to love and enjoy my other passions in life.
Omule : Would you say that keeping things simple is your strongest skill?
Broken isn’t bad : I would, and I would say that simplicity is not easy to achieve. In fact, I personally find it very difficult and have had to work really hard at it. I am the type of person who loves minimalism and plainness in all aspects of my life, be it a home decoration, clothing or art, and keeping it simple is very important for me.
Distilling ideas into coherent thought/artwork can take time and hard work. Being concise and figuring out how to do something simple but with deep expressivness is, in the end, immensely rewarding.
Omule : What kind of tools do you use?
Broken isn’t bad : Until recently my artworks were made traditionally - with pens on paper, although I sometimes did use my old Wacom graphic tablet and drew directly in Adobe Photoshop. A year ago I bought myself an iPad Pro and Apple pencil so now I mostly work digitally and have gotten so used to it that I would say that I definitely prefer vector art. I love the possibility to experiment and sketch without the pressure to get everything right the first time and without paper waste. It also saves time that I would normally use for scanning my traditional drawing and adjusting it for printing purposes.
Omule : Do you have a favourite place to go on a holiday?
Broken isn’t bad : I don’t actually. I always try to visit as many new places as possible, I love traveling with my friends and every year we go somewhere else. I visited Vietnam and Thailand this summer, and now am already planning a winter vacation and browsing new destinations.
Omule : Tell me five things you can’t live without.
Broken isn’t bad : Family, friends, traveling, yoga, mountains (snowboarding) & some me-time (time I take to socially isolate myself from other people and be alone with myself, my thoughts and ideas).
Omule : What’s your favourite food ?
Broken isn’t bad : A Croatian meal called “Krpice s zeljem” or translated to English - Squared pasta with braised spring cabbage - a very easy recipe but very delicious, and it always reminds me of my Grandma.
Omule : What would be a great achievement for you?
Broken isn’t bad : The past few years has been really challenging and I was working hard to produce new work and build a real business for myself. Being able to make a living from it, having a follower base and their support as well as having the creative freedom to draw exactly what I want and some me-time to go on holidays, travel somewhere, take some days off for my other activities is a bigger accomplishment than I have ever expected. I just want to continue doing that.
Dan Molloy

Dan Molloy

Jay Freestyle

Jay Freestyle