“This was my world I was creating and no one can tell me how my world works.”
Perhaps one of the most recognizable NFT artists, Mark Constantine Inducil has taken the tradition of world-creating into the crypto art space. Although his 3d installations are carefully staged and illuminated, there is a clear narrative that stems from a deeply authentic, organic, and personal place. With the thoughtful use of symbols, vivid colors, and soft textures, Mark achieves what Darren Aronofsky calls “showing where a person’s mind goes.” As we follow along this intimate candy-colored ride, we are compelled to question life, death, loss, and the human condition.
It could be that somewhere between the visual appeal of Mark’s perfectly crafted fantastical creations and the emotional toll he clearly embeds into his work we recognize that bittersweet spot we all live in.
Tell us a bit about yourself and what led you to become an artist.
I was born and raised in the Philippines and I moved to Australia in 2005. I’ve been in the creative industry for around 20 years working as a graphic designer, motion designer and I even did some cinematography work for a short time.
I’ve always been interested in art, even as a kid. For me, it started with comic books. The first time I saw one and flipped through the pages, looking at the artwork, I wanted to learn how to draw. After that, it was just a matter of following what I found curious and learning as much as I could about it.
Do you remember an early experience when a piece of art really affected you? Does any of that experience influence you today?
I don’t know how but I have a very vague memory of seeing Gustave Dore’s artwork when I was very young and I remember feeling a sense of despair that I couldn’t quite articulate to myself as a child and that sense of despair always seems to feel fresh every time I look at his work even now. I guess that feeling is very familiar to me and it resonated with me when I was young and I see it in almost all of my personal work.
What in your personal history has influenced your work the most?
My priorities really shifted after I went through a tough few years that forced me to really question where I was going in my life. I had a real issue with self-esteem and confidence and it took me a long time to realize that I had something to offer outside of being employed, but I decided to quit my job to try and find my voice in art. I had to work on myself and through that I realized a lot of things and those became the inspiration behind my work.
How did you come up with your specific style?
It was just a natural process. I didn’t really think much of it as far as how I wanted things to look but rather I followed what I felt was a personal choice. I didn’t think too much about whether it’ll fit a popular criteria because this was my world I was creating and no one can tell me how my world works.
What artist or artists have had the greatest influence on your work?
It might seem unusual but a lot of my initial influences came from the film industry, directors like Darren Aronofsky, Gaspar Noé, Stanley Kubrick and it’s not just on how their films look but their approach and philosophy on storytelling.
Among digital artists, when I was just starting, I was influenced by Joey Camacho with his elegant, cinematic, minimalism, Stuz0r with his dark and surrealistic landscapes and Beeple simply for how crazy he is in his work ethic. When I saw their work, I was in awe and felt so inspired that it pushed me toward creating digital art.
How has technology changed how you create?
I don’t know where I would be as a digital artist if not for technology. Everything I do revolves around technology — for better or for worse. It’s amazing how much we can do these days and with the rise of A.I. generated art. It’s very exciting and a bit overwhelming.
I did have a funny moment when my 3rd-party 3d renderer crashed for the 5th time in under an hour; I found myself wishing I was a traditional artist and thought how it must be nice not to be dependent on technology.
What do you think makes your work unique? How intentional are these choices when you’re creating?
When I settle on a story for a piece, it takes me a long time to create and harmonize all the elements that I want to include in the picture. Sometimes the process is very linear and straightforward but there are times when something unplanned leads to something totally different and I have no problem abandoning my initial idea to pursue something that feels more interesting. However, I do compose things very carefully once everything has been fleshed out and I’m certain about what I want to convey.
Why did you first start experimenting with NFTs and what was the experience like for you?
Someone suggested to me when I was posting my daily artwork on Instagram that I should sell my art as NFTs. I was very skeptical at first but it was a life-changing moment. It was a great experience and making a living through my art is a dream come true.
Who is one of your favorite NFT artists and why do you think they stand out?
That’s a difficult question so I’ll try and mention a few of them. I like DeeKay, Oelhan and Tony Babel for their quirky animations. I’m drawn to the abstract works of Tjo and I really enjoy the works of traditional artists Dolce Paganne, Boris Pelcer and Randy Ortiz. I was lucky to have the opportunity to collect art pieces from most of them.
If you could only work with one subject for the rest of your life, what would it be?
I guess it’ll be about death, our mortality and the struggle of a person trying to rise above themselves. I think most of my work is about this.
What do you hope your art accomplishes?
I hope it inspires other artists to create something that comes from themselves without any worry of what other people might think and I hope that people find some kind of strange comfort in my work. As long as people feel some sort of emotion in my work — I’ll be happy.
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Interview edited for length and clarity.