Disney, Chromosphere, Dreamworks, The Line, Cartoon Network, Studio AKA... she has done it all! Animation director and illustrator Manddy Wyckens is not only an incredible promoter of female artistry, but also of the beauty in female figures. Full of grace and elegance, her character designs are the epiphany of fluidity and lightness.
Now London-based Manddy Wyckens graduated from Gobelins, attended Calarts and studied literature on the benches of French universities. A freelancer since 2014, working on various projects including feature films, TV shows and commercials, she has recently started considering different engagements. “I think there is only so much you can do as a freelancer,” she confesses in a very insightful DigitalArts interview. “At some point, you start going in circles and you need the structure to help your growth, and you need the people to help you to go in the right direction. I think I achieved all I could achieve as a freelancer and now I just need to be sort of ‘re-potted’ into a bigger pot to keep evolving and growing.”
Manddy’s approach is minimal yet bold, making her images an immersive visual journey. Her thin elegant lines create characters with both an attitude and an emotional edge. The hand-crafted drawn quality of her work is twisted in a more modern approach by her use of a compelling eye-catching color palette. “My illustrations are expressions of my state of mind, a place to blow off some steam. I’m quite happy I have this little field of experimentation all for myself” she admits in the same article. “I used to walk the line of androgyny, mixing things up and having a very fluid definition of gender, mostly because I had self-image issues. But then, I decided to invest in and ‘own’ female codes, to feel more comfortable in my body, and I think that shows in my art. My work is an expression of my conflicted relationship with womanhood. It is both a fascination and research; almost a fight.”