Student Spotlight: Suan Murillo Lopez

Don’t bother asking Suan Murillo Lopez what she does. Ask her what she doesn’t do.
Murillo Lopez isn’t just a Riverside art student. She’s an aspiring tattoo artist as well as a poet, soccer player, and collector of house plants and vinyl records.
She says that her favorite part about art is its ability to influence others. Personally, Murillo Lopez has been influenced by Frida Kahlo.
“[Kahlo] really motivated me to, I guess, be this Hispanic artist,” she said. “I mean, she suffered so much throughout her life but she was still one of the greatest artists, in my opinion.”
Riverside art teacher Crystal Brown describes Murillo Lopez as studious, mannerable, artistic, and kind.
“She puts forth a lot of effort and she is creative,” Brown said. “And she draws well.”
Murillo Lopez says that it was Riverside art teacher Shelby Turner who encouraged her to use her expressive nature and find her medium.
“Most of my portfolio includes inking, but I usually incorporate mixed media,” she said.
Her personal favorite of the pieces she has made is of a tiger skull. She says the sun and the moon on either side of the skull represent light and darkness.
“It just incorporates life and death in its own way,” Murillo Lopez said. “It’s one of my favorite pieces because I’ve always felt like my spirit animal is a tiger, because I’ve always felt like a trapped tiger in a cage.”
Currently, Murillo Lopez has been accepted to both UNC-Greensboro and The School of Visual Arts in Manhattan.
“I’m doing a Bachelor of Fine Arts in illustration to pursue a tattooing career,” she said. “And then maybe in the future, I’ll go back and do video game design or something like that.”

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