Inspired from daily life, CCU student Su Jia-Rong illustrates “Wolabear”

Published on Mar 18 2014

A scarred bear with a very expressive and funny-looking face, it is a character called “Wolabear” illustrated by CCU senior student Su Jia-Rong from the Science of Law Program in Department of Law. Su Jia-Rong runs a Facebook fanpage in the name of Wolabear, posting a series of interesting illustrations. Her drawings are inspired by daily life; previously, the popular soft serve ice cream in convenience stores, No Nukes demonstration and other current affairs are all her topics of illustrations. Approximately 1 year, the fanpage has attracted over 2,000 likes. Seeing her great talent, CCU 9th ZiJing Film Festival invites her to produce all the publicity.

Such scenes of people squashing into vehicles on holiday eves or people raising their smart phones high for Wi-Fi connection, all the interesting life anecdotes could be Su Jia-Rong’s inspiration. Another example is the current fad, soft serve ice cream in convenience stores. “Recently, people are crazy about posting selfie with ice cream on Internet; speaking about ice cream, the impression of “fat” comes to my mind. If I put another character “噗豬” on top of a cone, its muffin top must look like ice cream,” says Su Jia-Rong.
“My mom always says that it was easy to pacify me when I was little. She just had to hand me a notebook and pens, and she will be free from me for an afternoon,” says Su Jia-Rong. I also like to casually draw on textbooks in class or passing notes with my friend and “Wolabear” is created in those doodles. Later, she draws many animal characters like foxes, pigs, or goats based on her friends’ personalities. Prompted by her classmates, Su Jia-Rong creates “Wolabear” Facebook fanpage. Besides daily illustration postings, she regularly holds contests, giving hand-made postcards as prize. She also sells hand-made bookmarks, notebooks and so on.

Speaking of how to discover inspiration from daily life, Su Jia-Rong says “I will recall what have happened today, but sometimes nothing special I can really draw.” As an introvert, Su likes to observe people and link them to life experiences. She also claims that good inspiration doesn’t wait. She remembers one time that bursts of creativity came to her before she went to sleep, so she scratched the idea down. “Yet, as I woke up tomorrow, I couldn’t really understand what I was drawing,” she says and smiles.

However, in the process of creation, hurdles are inevitable. “When I switch my drawing from working on papers to on computers, my hands seem to be incapable of catching up with my flow of thoughts. Even though I have a perfect vision in my mind, I can’t illustrate it out on graphics tablets,” says Su Jia-Rong. The keen senses toward perception and characters’ spirits are important. It’s hard to be satisfied as the final product doesn’t meet my expectation. Taking the example of representing the sense of crowding on a bus, I repeatedly revise it till it is satisfactory to me.

“Browsing Wolabear’s illustration has become my daily routine.” “I can feel the sense of humor in life from her illustrations.” Fans’ feedbacks are Su Jia-Rong’s motivation to keep her drawing. Even though she has to face the dilemma whether she chooses to be an illustrator or a more stable job of being a public officer, she insists on running the fanpage. Su indicates that there was a fan privately messaging her and asking her for advice whether keeping on the road of designing is a good choice or not. Yet, as the fan saw Su’ illustrations as she pulled an all-nighter finished them, the feeling of fighting for their dreams together is really nice. “I never thought I can bring such great influence to others,” says Su Jia-Rong.

Currently, despite the fanpage, Su Jia-Rong is also the on-site illustrator for CADO, an illustration gallery. Previously, she was invited to produce posters and publicity for CCU 9th ZiJing Film Festival. There are 7 bears with lab coat, gown, work cloth and the likes representing the 7 colleges of CCU. Besides, the festival’s opening animation is from her hands as well. “I just want to draw my own bear and hope that people would like to put my illustrations on their products.”In the future, Su Jia-Rong will let “Wolabear” keep appearing on Internet. She will try hard to build up her “Wolabear” illustration brand just like any other famous illustrators do.

Wolabear fanpage address: