Today we’re here with Murrz, an artist based out in California. Your webtoons and comic strips are so random and witty.
You have a touch of Korean-style humor, as in having no-filter, blunt yet cute. Then, you take all that to another level. However, anyone—anywhere can relate. It proves how we come from different backgrounds, yet, we have more similarities that connect us.
How was your experience growing up as an Asian American? What were some of your struggles growing up Asian in America?
My experience as an Asian American was that I never felt different. I always knew and thought of myself as an American, up until I started to experience and understand how my immigrant parents were treated differently and how society started to label me as Asian as I grew older.
My struggles growing up Asian in America have been similar to most Asians in America. We tried to mask our Asian-ness out in public and try to mesh and blend into society as seamlessly as possible.
How have those experiences helped shape your creativity?
I think because people naturally feel more drawn to read easy, cute, light-hearted comics. I felt more comfortable telling my stories and experiences as an Asian American to show readers our relatable-ness to the struggles we face.
How did you come up with the name MURRZ?
My name is Mary, and as I was growing up, my friends kept shortening my name, although my name is pretty short. Haha. It went from Murry to Murrz.
When did you start creating art?
I’ve been drawing ever since I can honestly remember, from drawing on napkins at restaurants to drawing Power Rangers and Sailor Moon for my friends to cut out and pass out in elementary. It was always fun to try to draw something that brings people joy. When I started creating Murrz was in 2018.
Was there an epiphany or pivotal moment that set your mind to go all-in?
I always knew I wanted to draw a comic, initially a more serious, graphic novel type, but working full-time, it was almost impossible because it takes approx 80+ hrs to generate those detailed drawings a week. But I saw how webcomics were up and coming, and people really enjoyed short, funny comics as well. So I thought I can definitely draw these comics after work, and so I started off with just drawing funny comics about myself that a lot of people can relate to, and to my surprise, it was well-received.
Did anyone mentor or encourage you to become an artist?
My parents, we’re always very supportive of anything my sister and I would want to do. So because I always loved art, comics, cartoons and wanted to work in that hemisphere, they always encouraged me and supported me to be an artist.
Are there any artists whom you admire?
Yes! Too many… but a few are Kim Jung Gi, Katsuya Terad, Fuyumi Soryo, Kohske, Cho Seok…
Where do you get your inspiration? (Examples: Do you people watch? Do you take stories from your past?)
I was an anime geek all throughout elementary to now. So I was heavily influenced by cartoons, anime, and comic books. Really sad, epic storytelling inspires me.
What music do you listen to? Any favorite musician?
I love every type of music genre, but mostly right now, I am really into Korean Rap/hip-hop and artists like Odesza, Khalid, and Adventureclub!
What does art mean to you?
Art is freedom. It means everything to me.
It is the only thing that has always lifted and inspired me to do better and be better and given me confidence. Because I am pretty shy in real life, I like to use my art to express my true weird, loud, goofy self.
We couldn’t help but notice how special your cat is. What his/her name, and when did you get him/her?
My cat’s name is Doobz, and we recently got another named Moof after our Beanz passed away last year. We got Doobz about six years ago and Moof about three months ago.
Although people see your art, not your face, you still are a human being. How do you care for your body, mental health, and skin?
As an artist, I am not doing great in upkeeping my body and mental health because I work long hours, haha. But, because I’ve struggled with acne and acne scars my entire adult life, I am very into my skin care. I am always researching new groundbreaking solutions because my skin is one of my biggest insecurities and struggles.
What is your daily skin care routine?
Right now, I am currently using a mild cleanser, a rice-based milky toner, vitamin c for mornings, with sunscreen and moisturizer. For the night, I use the same cleanser and toner, niacinamide, eye cream, a few serums, moisturizer!