My next featured guest is Brenda Culver, who is not only a fan of Doctor Who, but creates amazing digital creations of Peter Capaldi and his Twelfth Doctor.
Brenda: Thank you, Mackenzie!!!
Question 1) What part of the world do you come from?
Brenda: I live in the western suburbs of Chicago and was born and raised in the Chicago area. I’d love to move somewhere warm eventually.
Mackenzie: I’d love to move somewhere warmer, too! Though, to be honest, I really enjoy the city of Chicago. I find myself visiting there at least once a year. In fact, I’ll be there this upcoming August, making my debut at Wizard World Chicago!
Question 2) When did you become a fan of Doctor Who?
Brenda: This is a bit complicated. I remember watching the 4th Doctor late at night, really having no clue what it was! Then, it disappeared from American TV. My son started watching new Doctor Who probably around 2012-2013. I started watching with him and really enjoyed it. Then, the 12th Doctor came along and I became a full-fledged Whovian.
Question 3) Who is your Doctor and why?
Brenda: For some reason I really connected with the Twelfth Doctor. Why? I’m not sure. I think it was a combination of things. I remember seeing the iconic Doctor pose and thinking, “Wow, who is that?” He just WAS the Doctor to me from the start. I loved how the Doctor evolved and his character developed over those three years. Also, maybe because I’m closer in age with him than the other younger Doctors. Of course, it helped that Peter Capaldi has been an incredible ambassador for the show and still loves it to this day.
Mackenzie: I found myself also really connecting with the Twelfth Doctor right from the start (and not just because I share a birthday with him).
Brenda: That’s so cool! I love his Doctor so much.
Question 4) How exciting you and your son got to meet Peter! What was it like getting to meet him?
Brenda: Oh wow! Where do I start? That weekend was surreal! My son loves Twelve as well, so I bought the VIP package and boy, was it worth it! We were able to attend a private gathering of maybe 20 or so people and got to chat with Peter and ask questions in a very informal and relaxed atmosphere. Peter was pleasant and smiled while he told us stories of his life and career. Then, we were escorted to the main auditorium where the panel was taking place. During the Q and A, the moderator brought one other boy on stage who was cosplaying Twelve to show off his costume. Peter then spotted my son who was also cosplaying Twelve and invited him up on stage with them! What an incredible moment! The boys each had a seat on the couch and spent the rest of the Q and A sitting with Peter and the moderator. It was incredible. A selfie was taken of all 4 of them from the stage when the panel was over. The next day, Peter met my son in line and remembered his name and treated him like a friend. It’s a weekend my son will never forget. Peter Capaldi is one of the kindest people I’ve ever met. He goes above and beyond for his fans probably because he is a fan himself.
Oh! I forgot to include that he saw some of my art and signed a piece for me! It was early in my digital art work. I feel like I’ve improved over the last year, but Peter was so sweet with his comments about it.
Question 5) I absolutely adore your art piece of Peter Capaldi’s Doctor. Can you share a bit about what inspired you to create this?
Brenda: I believe the piece you were talking about is “Scan Me”. I picked that particular scene because of the emotion and power of that scene. I loved the Doctor’s pose and the lighting was so unique. It was a challenge but I did my best.
Question 6) It is always so hard to say good-bye to an actor/actress playing the Doctor. What was your favorite episode featuring your Doctor?
Brenda: There were so many episodes I loved with Twelve, but Heaven Sent will always have a special place in my heart. Peter did such an incredible job in an episode where he was solely featured. The soundtrack was beautiful and the cinematography and directing was spectacular. I remember watching it the first time and realizing what had been happening. Brilliant. Just brilliant.
Question 7) I always find it intriguing to learn about an artist’s technique. Can you share a bit about what goes into drawing a piece like this? Time frame? Skill? Software used?
I use a Wacom draw tablet. Less than 100 dollars and pretty basic. I’ve only been drawing for about 2 years so it’s still a learning curve for me. I use ArtRage software. I start by sketching out the general outline on the first layer then start filling in with a basic color to build upon. Then, there’s all the details that follow. I honestly don’t have a certain style since I’m so new, I still experiment with different techniques and try to constantly learn.
As far as time frame goes, some seem to come together quite easily, maybe a few hours or so. Others may take 10 hours or more. I never really timed myself and just work on my pieces when I can. I’m also always open to suggestions and pointers.
Question 8) What would you say is your interesting quirk?
I’m 50 years old but my husband says I’m 12. I say “thingy” a lot. I guess I just don’t want to grow up. 😀
Question 9) Is there something or someone you would love to draw that you haven’t yet?
Yes! Hugh Laurie. I need to pick a shot that shows off his blue eyes.
Question 10) What advice would you give to someone who wants a career in art?
I would say not to follow my path since I started drawing at 48 years old and work as a dental hygienist. 😀 But seriously, for years I’ve always said I can’t draw, I still have a hard time calling myself an “artist” because there is so much talent out there and I’m hard on myself. If art is something you want to pursue, then do it. Don’t wait 30 years like I did!
Question 11) How excited are you to see the Doctor being played by a woman for the first time?
To be honest, I’ve had a difficult time just accepting a new Doctor. It’s tough when you lose your Doctor. But I’m warming up to the idea and I’m hoping they stay true to the Doctor’s character.
Question 12) What can we expect from you in the future?
I will probably continue to draw the 12th Doctor for quite a while until I either expand my horizons to include the other Doctors or just follow Peter’s career and draw any new characters he may play in the future. I also would like to attempt some landscapes and I’ve drawn one of my dogs so far. My other one is feeling left out.
Question 13) How can others find out more about you and your work?
I have a Deviant Art page under the name Doctorwithaspoon as well as Tumblr. I am also on Twitter as @bmax67, and usually post my art on those sites. I would also like to say thank you to all of my supporters who are always so kind and sweet with their comments about my art. It’s much appreciated, and I’m glad other Twelve/Peter Capaldi fans appreciate my work.
Here’s a link to my DA page: https://www.deviantart.com/doctorwithaspoon/gallery/
Mackenzie: I’ll be sure to bookmark your DA page! Thank you so much for joining me today, Brenda. I wish you luck in your future, and can’t wait to see more of your art of Peter Capaldi!