What first sparked your interest in your particular art form? Did a specific style or artist inspire you to go for it or was it independent of that?

I can’t remember a time when I’ve not drawn…I started as soon as I could hold a pencil and it just never occurred to me to not make art. I draw in the way I do because of the immediacy of it, maybe that’s because I’m impatient or get bored easily…I don’t know. Painting large-scale in oils for example just wouldn’t sit with me….I’d never get anything finished!

What’s the next Steps for you as an artist?  – What excites you about the future?

I have a few shows in the pipeline. One is on the 24th Sept at The Beaucatcher Salon in Stoke Newington, London with my good friend and photographer Karla da Silva. There will be a chance to catch some live painting as well in the lead up as I will be doing some artwork directly on their walls, so feel free to pop in.

I also have another collaboration in it’s infant stages combining a clothing and accessory range with a multi-media exhibition at Flaxon Ptootch in Kentish Town alongside Beryl Brewis, a wonderful artist and force to be reckoned with. This will take place in February but I don’t want to give too much away about that just yet. We will be debuting some pieces at a Designer/Maker fair toward the end of the year…details on that to follow.

Aside from that, I am still pursuing my career in tattooing which is super exciting.As much as I love seeing other tattoo artist’s interpretations of my drawings, I can’t wait to be the one tattooing them on skin. I’ve been practicing loads.

And of course…looking forward to passing some more art Moss Piglet’s way!

So yeah, super busy but verrrry exciting.

If you could have chosen a different art form to pursue what would it have been and why?

I’ve dipped my toes in a few different mediums, at college I dabbled in sculpture and jewellery-making but 3D isn’t really my forte. I even tried my hand at acting which I enjoyed and dare I say, not bad at, but ultimately painting and drawing is how I express myself and the stuff that goes inside my head best.

I do have a musical side though and I play drums in a band (The Great Malarkey) which is sheer joy. I love it.

There are many things that help drive and inspire an artist but if one of those things were a musical soundtrack, what music would help to get the creative juices flowing?

I’m just going to give you a random list of some of the stuff I’d put on….Nick Cave, Pixies, PJ Harvey, Gogol Bordello, Dirty Three, Nina Simone, Fleetwood Mac, The Dead Weather, At the Drive In…. and so it continues

Describe the perfect day for you, combining and balancing a day of creative productivity, along with the necessary unwind?

I’d wake up (hangover free)  and it would be sunny so I can paint outside. Art can be such a solitary discipline so it’s nice when someone else is in the studio to chat to and bounce ideas around with. I’d have to do something else in the afternoon, maybe go for a walk or watch a film, as I tend to work in spurts and then come back to it in the evening with renewed vigour and a glass of white wine!

If you could own any painting in the world, which one would it be and why?

I’m lucky enough to already own a piece by one of my artistic heroes, Guy Denning.

Francis Bacon ‘Three Studies for Figures at the Base of a Crucifixion (the original one, not the 1988 version) is my favourite painting. It gives me shivers.

Bio

Born in Northern Ireland and living in London, Joni Belaruski can either be found making art or making music.

Using figurative form of both humans and animals to devilishly blend the disjunction between her own reality and fantasy to devastating effect, the artist fuses darkness with light to create signature striking original artworks like no other.

A former Fine Art student of the University of Ulster in Belfast, Belaruski first found her way to London as she transferred to London Metropolitan in 2010.

A touring drummer with punk folk favourites ‘The Great Malarkey’, Belaruski has extensively toured as a musician and exhibited as an artist as her following continues to grow in the UK and abroad.

‘I believe in beauty, faces as a window of expression and I draw with both dream and nightmare, splattered with the rawness and imperfection of what I see’

www.jonibelaruski.com