A part of the #UnfilterTheWorld campaign is to raise awareness about an ( often overlooked) link between autism and creativity, and how it can be an asset for the society as a whole if we stop constantly forcing people through the same filter of “normality” and embrace the differences that make us unique.
This blogpost is by the illustrator of the People Like Us + BrewDog collab beer launch Posters, who tells about how she’s using art a way to challenge both herself and the surrounding world on emotions, prejudices and humor through comics.
Hi! My name is Signe Sønderhousen, also known online as Yondoloki.
I’m a 26 years old female artistic autist with a passion for drawing and storytelling.
All my life I have been a fan of books, animated film and many other media, as long as there was a story present. Looking back, I think stories have helped me navigate in an otherwise chaotic world, giving me guidelines and rules and different settings that could be explored in safety through the screen or pages of a book.
I quickly started dreaming about becoming a writer, since books seemed to be the way to go. It was first later I realised it was much easier for me to tell a story through images than text, and I decided to make comics.
I have a great memory when it comes to images and film. I can recall a handful of animated films’ dialogue, and play them through my head. I can pull out angles and shots from memory, or combine them mentally, making visual art easy for me.
Even though it took me a while to figure out that drawing is a viable way of living I have always drawn as far back as I remember. My art is an extention of me. A friend once told me I don’t just draw, I draw my emotions, and that is very true. Drawing to me is a way to communicate what I feel and think, since I’m not very good at talking about my feelings. It is my way of dealing with life. Honestly, if I go too long without drawing I can feel my mind fogging up and getting tangled like a ball of yarn. I NEED to draw, it’s not an option not to.
What inspires me?
I tend to make characters that impersonate or represent different sides of my self or my special interests. It can be Roleplaying characters or strips about Aikido, a Japanese martial art, I used to practice. But it can also be comic strips or drawings about everyday life, the up’s and down’s and how I experience the world.
Comics about the everyday life of my boyfriend and I – a quirky insight into autism
Both my boyfriend and I are autistic and the comics showing our common lifes are an open invitation for the readers to experience every day life, quirky situations, our way of communicating, showing affection and so on. Because that’s us – unfiltered and authentic.
The Changeling’s Sister – my recent project
I have now been working on a comic for two years, “The Changeling’s Sister”.
It’s a story about seeing that something’s not right, and how much it takes to dare to speak out, take care of yourself, mark boundaries, figure out who you are – instead of letting other people’s expectations of who you are or ought to be constrain or define you – and about taking action, even though it seems scary.
– Taking Emperor’s New Clothes – the fairytale connected to the People Like Us + BrewDog collab beer – into account, you can say that my main character contains both the insecurity and the fear of not fitting in or being right represented by the Emperor, and it contains the directness and the courage of the young boy on the shoulders of his father, who dares to challenge “the emperor in blue”.
#UnfilterTheWorld – how?
My drawings and illustrations are the filter I see the world through, but it is also my own lack of filter that makes me pick up on everything, seeing and perceiving what other’s might not.
It takes courage to unfilter yourself. But showing your unfiltered sides is the best way to encourage others to do so as well. Unfiltering is about opening up for the unknown impressions. But that’s also from where creativity, curiosity and innovation often arises. And that’s where sensoric sensitivity and the autistic “lack of filter” becomes an advantage.
That’s why I think it is a great oppotunity to be asked by People Like Us to do the People Like Us + BrewDog collab beer release Posters, you might already have seen around on different U.K BrewDog bars and online on Social Media. (It could be awesome to see a picture of you together with the poster by the way!)
I hope for my story and my illustrations to be able to inspire more people to #unfiltertheworld and for more companies not just to see creativity as a hobby, but to see the potential in autistic creativity as a tool for innovation and communication.
How do you try to #unfiltertheworld? Share it with us and the rest of the world through the #UnfilterTheWorld hashtag and tag People Like Us, BrewDog and me in your post.
Curious to see more of my art?
My art profile on deviant art: https://yondoloki.deviantart.com/
my twitter: https://twitter.com/yondoloki
Want to buy some of my art, interested in booking me for exhibitions, talks or other things? Write me an email on: firstname.lastname@example.org