As promised, here's my interview with Whorechata. Also featured on TheAssembled.com.
Up and coming artists are constantly on the grind booking shows and events, gaining exposure, travelling, and perfecting their craft, which is why they're harder to catch than a unicorn. Lucky for me, Los Angeles based artist and graphic designer Leslie Kodama, better known as Whorechata in the art world, took some time out of her busy routine to chat with me about her art, upcoming projects, and everything in between.
JoannAnna: Who are you?
Whorechata: Leslie Kodama, Whorechata, and I'm a designer.
J: How'd you come up with Whorechata?
W: I like stupid little witty jokes and sayings. One time I wanted to drink some horchata and I asked my coworker to get me some, but I called it whore-chata, so I guess that's how I came up with that. I can think up more.
J: How would you describe your art to a blind person?
W: Mostly black and white, seizure-giving, psychedelic, and a lot of pattern usage.
J: How long have you been doing art?
W: All my life, it was the only thing I was good at. I took all the artistic genes in the family.
J: Where do you make your art?
W: It depends, sometimes in my room in my apartment. Sometimes at a random spot, random coffee shop, sometimes in the library. Anywhere that I feel that I can work. Somewhere peace and quiet when I'm not having A.D.D. moments.
J: Do you have a favorite piece of work that you've done?
W: I don't have a favorite but I like to say I like all my work. It's what I'm proud of and people can appreciate it so I think I've succeeded to some degree. They always tell me it's something new and different which is kind of exciting. I like to keep it fresh.
J: How do you get work out there?
W: Network. I'll just start talking to people. When I went to Europe my suitcase was full of my zines and stickers. Basically I stuck my sticker everywhere so that maybe it'll catch somebody's eyes. I took my zines to little shops, skate shops, boutiques, bookstores and started talking to people. I really went there without any expectations and I came back with a lot of encouragement and contacts. It was pretty great.
J: Do you stick to graphic design only or do you paint too?
W: Mainly graphic design, it's where the money is at. But I wanted to be an illustrator. I like very cartoony, simple drawings. I still draw but I haven't touched painting in a long time.
J: Anyone you'd like to collaborate or work with?
W: I like is this girl from Australia, Deanne Cheuk. She incorporates a lot of patterns. Also this guy, Scott Barry his illustration is pretty damn legit. I started getting into motion graphics again and I did the visuals for Assembly Line's Halloween party. It took a lot of work. My DJ friend who's also a designer, Filthy Rich, she's gonna do a set to the visuals. We have plans for collab work together.
J: What other projects do you have planned?
W: Other than collaborating with Filthy Rich, I'm trying to make another zine inspired by cookbooks, working on printing some shirts, and trying to launch a clothing brand. On Friday, January 29th I'm having a screen printing royal battle and website launch party.
J: Do you have a name for your brand?
W: Pluie is my brand of my designs. I was gonna try to just make girl's stuff but now I'm thinking about unisex. It's still in the process.
J: What's Pluie? Does that mean something?
W: Rain in French.
J: What inspires you?
W: Anything really. Recently I've been really into travelling. Seeing different things, and how people live their culture. Just anything.
J: Where have you travelled to?
W: My recent trip was Nicaragua for a week. That was pretty fuckin' awesome. I've gone to Paris a couple times, Amsterdam and Holland a couple times, Italy, Spain, England, Japan, Turkey, Germany, Seattle, Mexico, and Canada. I've never been to New York, it's some place I really want to explore, but I really want to go to Peru first.
J: Do you have a favorite place?
W: That's hard to say because I find something special about each country and city. But I would love to live in either Paris or London for a couple of years. I wanted to move to Berlin because the cost of living was cheap. But the cold, I don't think I can handle the cold.
J: Can you speak any other languages?
W: No. I wish.
J: When you're not designing what do you do?
W: I like to go to bookstores to check out what's out there. I'm always online looking at clothes. I like music. I'm trying to get into djing, not as a career, but just for fun. And I watch a lot of food network.
J: Favorite show on food network?
W: It's a tie between Barefoot Contessa and Everyday Italian. I'm just saying she's a pretty healthy girl, I know she knows what she's talking about. And Giada because she's the most attractive. But hands down, Mario Batalli.
J: What do you like to eat?
W: Cupcakes, ice cream, a lot of rice and bread. Basically carbs. And my favorite flavor is strawberry.
J: What kind of music do you listen to?
W: l listen to 90's hip hop, electro, house, and some 90's RnB. I listen to underground stuff too. Dubstep, Brazilian baile funk, African music, it doesn't really matter. My favorite band is Radiohead.
J: Do you have a guilty pleasure?
W: I do. Kylie Minogue. I don't know man she's Australian hot!
J: Bad habits?
W: Of course, cigarettes. Is drinking considered a bad habit? How 'bout pot? Oh and I eat really unhealthy. It's not something I'm proud of, it just happens.
J: Shout outs?
W: No Moda design duo from LA and to Assembly Line. That's fam right there.
J: Any last comments?
W: I'm slowly trying to take over the world. Not slowly, I'm taking over the world. Watch out!
J: And lastly, pancakes or waffles?
W: Waffles all the way. Except Dutch pancakes they're pretty damn awesome.