Welcome to Nadia Vanilla


I’m inspired by the inner worlds of the people around me. I approach my art with curiosity and fascination with what makes my characters tick. What are they thinking about when faced with these incredibly intimate situations? What circumstances lead them to be in these positions to begin with? Considering this, I often leave faces in shadows, eyes obscured. Body language can convey so much, and I love the challenge of exploring the messages in our gestures.

Lately, I’ve been working with a variety of fascinating media to explore my themes. I’ve been working with soft pastels, pen and ink, and even a 3D Printing pen! When I choose to use color, it always has a specific purpose – red, to reflect power, sexuality, and volatility; blue to indicate peace, ease, and stability.

I spent a year of my college experience in studio art classes, although I quickly switched my focus to anthropology. I wanted to know more about how people work within cultures, how relationships around the world are forged and maintained, and how individuals’ specific cultural experiences shape how they, in turn, view their world. Though I stopped taking formal studio classes, I have been a student ever since, working to improve my craft and finding ways to express ideas and add beauty to the world. After I graduated from college and moved to Arizona, I took a few years off to regroup and settle into my new life in Phoenix. During that time, I explored a few different creative outlets – jewelry making, short story writing, etc., but I inevitably came back to my creative home, drawing, because of its potential for thoughtful discussion and reflection.

My goal is to make people stop and think about the people in their world. Everyone has layers, and it’s so easy to take people at face value. We could take the messages that we’re fed by the media about subjects like intimacy and emotions, or we could look a little deeper.

I choose to look a little deeper.