Anastasia Bengoechea – Getting through life with humour
Illustrator, cartoonist and graphic humorist
The #LÖVYOURSELF Project is born out of a necessity to create a safe place to have an open and honest conversation about what it’s like to be a woman in todays world.
LÖV wants to offer a safe haven you can turn to if you are feeling lonely, if you are looking for answers or in need of support.
We hope that listening to other woman around the world going through similar issues, allows us to take away something positive from their experiences.
Maybe it can encourage you to speak up about your issues or find the support you need. Our dream is to use love and empowerment to help you feel even just a little bit less alone.
Hello my name is Anastasia Bengoechea and I’m an illustrator, cartoonist and graphic humorist.
I’m from Barcelona.
What was a difficult moment in you life ? and how did you get over it ?
Right now this interview meets me at a very difficult time, even though I’m laughing, because I always laugh, but last week my father passed away. Just now.I don’t think I have fully understood
and a way I found a bit that has helped me cope is by working.Even if it sound a bit foolish, having to work and keeping my mind busy is important a lot of times. And obviously the support of my family and friends, they are always with me and given we a lot of help.
In my case, I’m a very cheerful person and extremely positive who tries to rationalise everything I try to think that everything is relative,that nothing really is that important even though it might seem untrue, death might not be as importante as we think.
Share with us a transformative moment for you in your life
The big change in my life was occupational. I always new that I had something to offer. That there was something inside eme that needed to get out but I did’t know how. I always had jobs that I hated, in an office…they always ended up kicked me out of the job …( laughs) because I was doing a bad job andI wasn’t comfortable and I didn´t want to be there. And then one day when I was living in London and I got kicked out of my job again I started writing about it. In form of poetry first, maybe little sentences. When I state dot identify with what I was putting on paper my life started to change. And the people start ed to react to it in a positive way. So I think it is really important to find out what you like and what your passionate about. Even if it sounds atopic, it is totally true.
If there is nothing out there you like, you invent it.
Because If not….,y life has changed completely from when I worked in an office and was so unhappy in comparison to now where I feel like I have a mission in life.
That this is what I’m supposed to do it it is very clear to me.
What is it you want to convey ?
I try to have the minimum amount of ego possible, because you know there are a lot of people in the art world who think themselves to be very important( laughs)… and no one is important.
When you disappear and die the world will keep on turning and „ ciao!“
But I feel art is a channel of transmitting something. In my case , as I said earlier I have always had a great sense of humor, I have always made people laugh, and had a particular way of looking at things and I think that is very important to be able to offer to the world and it come out through me. Like a channel.
There are too many people out there taking life to seriously who think that this is serious, this world and that’s a lie. One should laugh about it all and that’s it. Today you are here and tomorrow you might not be. It’s better to enjoy the journey. But there are so many people who don’t understand this… my mission is to get them to understand. And I think that is a more important mission than that of Obama ( laughs out loud)…What means being a woman to you ?
I think the definition of woman, is a description that always comes from an external source.
Constantly they are telling you. Being a woman is this or that. This is not feminine, this is This is masculine. But it’s just that someone at some point who started to determine what was and was not feminine.
And who ever decided that in a sociocultural way has been demonstrated to be wrong.
Every body is thousands nuances of grey and you just can’t put people in boxes. Like this is man and this is woman,this is not how it works.
And adding a stigma : the woman is fragile for example. The woman is fragile? Excuse me !?! No, this is just wrong, like Hello ? Who invented this nonsense ? Everything is wrong.
Now it seem like we are entering a new phase win which we slowly in some privileged parts o the world in which these things are being questioned. And we are seeing that things are quit different. That there are many ways of being. That the genitalia are not important, the important thing is the mind and how you are.
I think they scratch that question of the Document of the National Identity where you have to identify with a sex. Male of female. Why do you care ? if I’m a man or a woman. That’s it.
why is it important to love yourself ?
Sometimes when you say… it seem like it’s frowned upon to say I love myself. If you say it out loud, I love myself people may call you out as being egocentric and not accepted.But I honestly don’t believe that because I am a living example of a person who loves herself.
I though about it and I think that in my case, it much stem from my parents having great difficulty conceiving me.
My mother really wanted to get pregnant but it wasn’t happening.It took many years for her to become pregnant with me. Than when they had me, the loved me so much and I have always felt like a very loved person by my parents and my surroundings.
I also think I had some good quality as a kid I was very funny, talked very fast and I was a pretty good kid, quiet and happy. And I guess that contributed to my parents loving me even more.
And I think that that is very very very important when it comes to things like self esteem. That is is one of the factor why you can love yourself.
Because when they are constantly reaffirming you how good you are, how smart you are this builds your self esteem.
But I have to say on the other side I did have a little problem. When I grew out of my families environment and somebody would tell me I was doing something wrong I would get very hurt.
Because I though I was perfect and that caused some problems.
If you haven’t had the luck to have been loved as much… I don’t know. You should think about surrounding yourself with people who do and give you that kind of support.
That’s what relationships are all bout. To have some one telling you you are doing a great job and helps you with it.
What would you tell your 14 year old self ?
When your fourteen years old your mind is just so out of form. I really don’t know what I would tell my 14 year old self (laughs out loud). I have always been a very hoary person, really truly happy person but the teenage years really been the toughest.
Especially some years, I had fun but there is this period where your not girl not jet a woman and even your body and face are deformed because they are being formed and it’s just really horrible.
And I would tell myself that everything will get much better.That’s what I would tell me.
I especially remember a time in which I didn’t really had developed my personality yet and I didn’t feel confident in anything Not talking , what I was saying I wasn’t really sure if I made any sense but I wanted people to like me.
All the importance seemed to be on to be „ being liked“ by other people and searching for ones own personality.And those years were honestly pretty tiresome.
Some people phantasies about being seventeen or eighteen years old I can’t agree. I am in a much better place now. At our age your a formed person and if somebody tells you anything ( snaps fingers) you can just be like „ What are you saying ?!“ and you can’t be bothered and that is amazing.
That’s the best thing about becoming a grown up I think.
Than you know who you are and that really doesn’t have a price.The self confidence.
On this question I won’t give such a long speech because I know very well wat the answer is:
What I most LÖV about myself is humor.