Malaysian artist Yee Chong draws the most adorable little digital creatures and brings them to life by inserting them into our real world. The artist designs fantastical critters that resemble real animals, the mischievous fox being the fluffy protagonist and other animals making an occasional cameo, but he manages to make them even cuter by putting them in everyday scenarios and giving them a variety of lifelike facial expressions that will definitely make you go "aww." The furries look so real you'd actually want to adopt them for snuggles! And if not, speaking on behalf of humanity—please, turn them into an animated movie!
Since our last post, the artist has continued coming up with cute and funny real-life situations these creatures find themselves in and since they are perfect for brightening your day, we couldn't keep them from you!
Why can't you just be normal.
"Because of the no-pet policy in my apartment, I can only have an imaginary pet. Also, it started as an exercise to paint realistically, but people ended up liking it," Yee Chong told Bored Panda about how his imaginary digital world came about.
The artist puts his characters in realistic everyday situations, which creates an illusion that these furry friends actually live with him. There is one permanent character in Chong's illustrations which is arguably the cutest and can easily be named as his pet—the little fox. From making it eat veggies to styling it with a hairdryer, from interrupting work by resting on the keyboard to showing all kinds of attitudes—all interactive scenarios resemble life with an animal all pet owners can relate to.
We got curious about how the fox came to life. "The design of the fox is based on Silver, the mascot for my art which was created 10 years ago. I've decided to make him smaller and cuter to suit the taste of broader audiences," Chong explained.
When someone you trust finally touches you, and you realize you've been starved for physical affection all your life.
Chong said he's inspired by the work of his favorite artist Ovopack. Most of his illustrations come from imagining what having a fox as a pet would be like, but he also uses silly animal memes found on the internet as references, which adds a humorous touch to the artwork. The biggest credit for the adorable result goes to the artist's talent and the unique style he developed over the years.
"I'd say it's somewhere between realistic and cartoony." Chong described his style. "I've experimented with multiple styles over the years (cell shading, painterly, watercolor, etc.) and ended up with my current style as it represents my art vision/goal the most."
Each image takes Chong around 2 hours to create depending on complexity. The process includes coming up with an idea, photo shooting, sketching on top of a photo, and painting in Photoshop.
Banana fox. Do not eat!
After quitting his job of almost a decade as a graphic designer, Chong is now working as a freelance illustrator, which, despite being artistically rewarding, has its challenges: "The most challenging thing for me as an artist is to balance out personal life and commission work so I don't get burned out."
According to Chong, time management, having a schedule for each day, and trying to stick to it are key elements to maintaining that balance.
Happy Birthday to m...STOP THAT IS NOT SNOW!
Yee Chong currently has 154k followers on Instagram who are in love with the artwork. It's not surprising at all: the feed is cuteness overload, which is very comforting for anyone who wants to escape reality for a short while.
"'OMG SO CUTE' is probably the no.1 comment I've received on IG and I am thankful for that."
The artist says that the feedback and support he gets from his audience keeps him motivated: "Receiving comments/email/message on how my artwork brightens someone's day motivates me to keep drawing."
Don't talk to me before I've had my coffee!
Me every morning before coffee.
We asked Chong for advice he could give to aspiring artists who would like to make it in the industry.
"Coming up with an art style shouldn't be a top priority but instead, focus on the fundamental. When you know the rules, you'll know how to bend them and your style will come naturally."
Oh lawd he comin.
Proper way to hold a furry potato.
I love my Teddy!
"Ohay, didn't see ya there!"
May I have more popcorn please?"
I don't remember ordering an eggplant maki.