This is ONE Esports’ first article in an exclusive interview series with Rachta Lin. Read about how she found her artistic style here.

Updated on May 27, 11:27 a.m. (GMT+8): Improved relevancy.

This outstanding self-taught artist has drawn comic book covers for DC Comics, MTG cards, and traveled the world to create countless of commissions.

But just a decade ago, Rachta Lin was sitting in a corporate office in Singapore, acting as an art director for a multinational company.

Shotaro Kaneda from Akira anime and rapper Doja Cat in ONE Esports featured image for article "10 anime references in rap music that only true otakus will understand"
Credit: ONE Esports
10 anime references in rap music that only true otakus will understand

Art has always been her passion, but instead of heading a team, she knew that her true calling was to create art that she loved, art from the heart.

In an exclusive interview with ONE Esports, Rachta shared the risks she took to pursue her lifelong dream, the challenges she encountered, and how she constantly pushes herself to become a better artist.

The process of becoming a self-taught artist was filled with uncertainty

Final Fantasy 7 Aerith and Yu-Gi-Oh fan art by self-taught artist Rachta Lin
Credit: Rachta Lin, ONE Esports

Rachta pursued art while still holding onto her full-time job as an art director, but had increasingly found it difficult to juggle both. She felt tired after work and could not get in valuable practice, which is why she eventually decided to call it quits.

While improving her craft, she took up design jobs that brought in some income.

“I really wanted to get a mentor because people kept telling me it’s important. Unfortunately, I couldn’t get one, so I had to do most of everything by myself,” she recalled.

May and Cody completing a task in It Takes Two
Credit: Electronic Arts, ONE Esports
3 games like It Takes Two that will test your patience, sanity, and friendship

Since she could not find a mentor, she considered joining an art school, but was financially limited since she had already left full-time employment. As a result, Rachta looked up art tutorials online and put together her own study plan.

“You have to be very disciplined. You have to know your weakness, which can be very hard if you do it alone,” she advises. “It’s better to have someone else who can look at you more objectively.”

Gintoki Sakata using his wooden sword Bokuto in feature image for article "Why is Gintama a must-watch for anime fans"
Credit: Bandai Namco Pictures
Why is Gintama a must-watch for anime fans

She also did her best to integrate practice with her growing business. While preparing to draw prints for a convention, for example, she would push herself, attempting new subject matters and adding new elements that she hadn’t tried before.

“If I only draw with I’m comfortable with, I wouldn’t improve,” she said.

Earlier in her art career, she chose to pursue digital art because she felt that it was important to be able to skill up in the industry. However, overtime, she discovered that she liked traditional art a lot more, and returned to her roots — copic markers and pens.

Genshin Impact fan art of Keqing and Xiao by Singapore-based artist Rachta Lin
Credit: Rachta Lin, ONE Esports

Through self-study and experimenting, Rachta has also found a process that not only works for her, but also allows her to express herself through her art. Instead of chasing trends, she likes to “come from a personality and storytelling standpoint” when drawing characters.

“I like to know what this character is about, what kind of person he or she is, then after that, the pose will come,” she explained. “Let’s say this person is very outgoing, his body lang is going to be totally different from somebody who is a little bit introverted and quiet.”

List of all Genshin Impact character guides: Required materials, lore

“This char is flirty for example, then it’s going to be very different from someone who is reserved. That’s how I determine the pose, most of the time, is mainly who that character is.”

Follow Rachta Lin on Instagram and look out for her debut manga, The Wonderverse Saga.

READ MORE: From kawaii to senpai — Alodia perfectly captures Mikasa’s different sides