I was able to get a rare interview with the critically acclaimed up-and-coming young artist, Tania Aiston. Tania has recently revealed her "Heartopia" exhibit exclusively at her home, and is kind enough to share it with you here.
Here is a photo of the young artist at her work station.
CA: How did you develop the concept of "Heartopia"?
TA: I drew a picture of a girl with heart-shaped pants, and then I had the idea of a heart-shaped world.
CA: Do you like hearts a lot?
TA: I like them a little bit, but I like stars more.
CA: Let's discuss the drawings. Can you tell me about this one?
TA: The three sisters, Hearty, Lane, and Seara went to a photo shoot and got their picture taken.
CA: How about this one?
TA: The children are protesting outside Sunday School, so the cops are there to keep the peace.
CA: Why are they protesting?
TA: Well, the teachers gave the kids free toys so that they would tell their parents they wanted to come to Sunday school, and so the kids went home and begged their parents to go to Sunday school and they begged so much they had to say yes. But when the kids went to Sunday school, there were no toys.
CA: Tell me about this drawing. Sorry the photo didn't come out very well.
TA: That is the first picture I drew with a red writing pen. I drew all her clothes heart-shaped.
CA: So your world has a queen. Is she nice? Tell me about her.
TA: She has one kid and a husband who hates pink, but hearts can only be red and pink. He loves blue and green, so he has a big problem. The queen lets people in her castle and the princes goes to school with Hearty, my main character. The queen is nice.
CA: This is a picture of The Coeur School. Coeur is French for heart. Are you interested in France?
TA: They learn the French language in Heartopia.
CA: This one is inside Hearty's house. Tell me about her house.
TA: She has two sisters and will be having a little brother. Hearty's father is a police officer and Hearty's mother is a stay-at-home mom. Her sister is Ceara, and she likes books so she found a job that paid her $7 and hour at a bookstore. Her other sister, Lane, is ten years old and goes to Coeur school just like her and is one of Hearty's best friends. The house is seven years old. When Hearty was born, they first moved inside of it. When Hearty's oldest sister was 12, she had friends over for her birthday party. When Ceara went to the bathroom, she found a surprise in the toilet - a frog!
CA: This is part of Hearty's house too? Is her room upstairs?
TA: Her house has three floors, and she and her sister, Lane, share a bedroom on the top floor. She has a play room and a bathroom.
CA: This is the grocery store. Is it different from grocery stores that we go to?
TA: It is not different at all. They have food samples and they give out prizes every year for who is the hundredth person to walk through the door. They have all organic healthy food.
CA: What is this picture of?
TA: That's the mall. It has a two-shoe train. The ship looks like a shoe. It can only hold two people and it moves on fake water. Hearty and her best friend, Ally, went to the mall and they rode on the two-shoe train. They thought it was very fun.
CA: Cool! They have a newspaper! Do you want to say anything about the newspaper?
TA: The newspaper is called The Heartogonian. It gives the latest news because in Heartopia, they only have one TV. It is at the mall in the TV room, and people come in and turn on movies that kids might like, and there's another TV that has grown-up shows on. It's just like the movies.
CA: All of Hearty's outfits. Are you into fashion?
TA: Yes, actually, I am. When I grow up, I want to be a fashion designer, and so, in some of the latest pictures, you'll see Hearty wearing some of these things.
CA: Tell me about this one.
TA: Hearty is in a ballet recital. She is one of the main characters. She is Princess Sarona and her two friends, Ally and Emily, are standing right next to her. Her other friend, Timothy, is watching them in the audience.
CA: Is this the playground?
TA: This is the playground, but Hearty's sister, Lane, is having her birthday there.
CA: Is this a restaurant?
TA: Yes. Hearty's sister, Lane, went to a restaurant with her friend and said that Hearty could come along too.
CA: Is this the disco?
CA: Why is there a disco ball?
TA: Because they just went to a dancing place, not the disco.
CA: What is this?
TA: This is at Hearty's birthday party. It was a pool party.
CA: Just like yours. Ooh! This one is cool! I like the dark sky. Is it night time?
TA: Yes, it is night time, around Christmas, because Hearty's birthday was that day and they put Christmas lights up. She helped her dad.
CA: This is the last one in the collection. Can you tell us about it?
TA: This is Hearty's friend Ally's house. Ally has a little brother named Zack. Zack is three years old. Ally is seven years old. Ally lives with her mother and her brother cause her dad died.
CA: She looks like she has a really cool backyard.
TA: She has a swing set and a merry-go-round and a little table to play on. Ally's family is rich.
CA: I really enjoyed hearing about your world, Heartopia. You drawings are very cool and pretty. I hope that next time you have an exhibit, we can discuss it and display the drawings here. Do you work with any other media?
TA: I use paint, clay, pastels, crayons, colored pencils, and anything else I find.
CA: Thank you for your time.
TA: Thank you for letting me explain my work.