If you scroll through local instagram, certain Newfoundland profile pictures appear to be redone as digital cartoon portraits with a similar aesthetic. The creator behind these distinct and bold works of art is Kate Fudge of Kate Fudge Art, a 21-year-old artist and event planner from Pasadena.
“I’ve been doing DIYS and art projects since I can remember. I just love making things,” said the artist. “My favorite profiles to create are definitely ones of local people. I love to interact with locals and support local.”
Fudge’s cartoon portraits are not her only forte. She has dabbled in art since a young age and has showcased her talents throughout the community of Pasedena.
“When I was two, my father caught me drawing hundreds of smiley faces on our apartment wall with a Sharpie marker and I’ve been doodling ever since,” said the cartoonist. “I’ve done a bit of everything with art. I’ve painted local business windows, logo design, taught kids art classes, created a corn cutout for Wright’s Family Farm’s pumpkin festival, done a bit of embroidery hoop art, string art, drawing and painting.”
Lately the artist is mainly focused on digital cartoons and produces 15 to 30 pieces a week. A new found interest in art production, Fudge started digital illustrations in June 2018 and has since done hundreds of custom pieces for people across the country and in the US.
“My partner encouraged me to try digital art, so I ordered a drawing tablet and gave it a go! My first doodle I did with it was a bad cartoon of myself. I posted it to Facebook and I ended up getting a bunch of friends and family request to be cartooned. It grew from there and each cartoon brought me closer to the style I have today,” Said Fudge. “I feel so lucky that my hobby turned to side hustle and now turned to a part time job. The support from people has been unreal. It feels wonderful to be able to do my favorite thing every day and get paid to do it.”
Kate Fudge Art‘s social media features a portrait nearly daily, with local celebrities, as well as famous tv stars and musicians. Through Instragram and Facebook, Fudge showcases her pieces and connects with other creative Newfoundlanders through her artwork by posting 4 to 5 portraits of locals a week.
“There is SO much talent here in Newfoundland and Labrador. It’s actually unreal. We are surrounded by incredible artists, musicians, comedians and businesses. I cartoon the people that I think are killing it here. I started with Vicky Mullaley, my favorite local comedian and I got such a good response from that post that I decided to keep doing it.”
Fudge said social media is a great platform for artists to showcase their pieces and gain local support.
“Social media is a great venue to display artwork. It’s free to look at, you don’t have to go to a gallery or anything, it’s right there at the click of a button and it allows you to connect with the viewers,” she said. “ Advice I would give to someone trying to start their own brand: Just do it! Start an Instagram profile and post content every day. Share things that you would want to see on your feed. Be consistent with it. Interact with other brands similar to yours and be a part of the local community. Be patient and work hard.”
And for those who are interested in supporting community artists, follow their social media accounts and “Shop Local! Support Local!” suggests Fudge.
Connecting with the community and collaborating with other engaged folks in Newfoundland, not only helps grow the brand, it also creates relationships across the province.
“It is so important to be connected in the local community and local shout outs have played a huge role in that for me, especially living on the west coast of the province. I don’t get to connect with a lot of St.John’s business owners, but with Instagram and Facebook, I’m able to make those connections and support local. The support I’ve received has been amazing,” said Fudge.
Check out Fudge’s pieces by following Kate Fuge Art on instagram and Facebook: @katefudgeart
Shop Kate Fudge Art, including customized orders, prints and earrings on her website
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