VMA Best New Artist Nominee Carly Rae Jepsen, As Illustrated By Artist Jon Stich

Artist Jon Stich illustrated Carly Rae Jepsen for Buzzworthy’s Best New Artist “inspiration illustration” series.

Each of the 15 VMA categories carries its own prestige and distinction. But the VMA Best New Artist category is perhaps one of the night’s most anticipated categories. The Best New Artist category represents a diverse roster of some of the best and brightest new faces and names to enter the musical landscape and pop culture conversation over the past year. To celebrate the artistic influence of this year’s Best New Artist nominees on Buzzworthy, where we’re committed to celebrating pop music, pop culture, and, of course, music fans, I asked five different young artists to pay homage to the 2012 Best New Artist nominees with an “inspiration illustration,” to look at that musical artist and the impact of their art through another artist’s eyes. (Yes, we’re taking a break from animated GIFs for some real-deal art appreciation. We’re almost grown-ups!)

Each of this year’s Best New Artists have opened our minds (and, quite often, hearts) by writing a tribute to eternal youth (fun. and Janelle Monaé), writing an unforgettable (and unstoppably catchy) ode to first crushes (Carly Rae Jepsen), inciting boy band mania all over again (The Wanted and One Direction, of course), or by breathing new, poetic life into R&B (Frank Ocean). It may sound corny, but it’s true — how we as music fans experience music, videos, lyrics, and the visual images surrounding music creates a visceral, emotional bond that transcends music itself (I can’t remember the last time a song truly transported and swept me away the way Frank Ocean’s “Swim Good” did the first time I heard it). Essentially, this is an artist-on-artist series. Hopefully you’ll enjoy seeing how five visual artists connected to and interpreted each of the 2012 MTV VMA Best New Artist nominees.

Last week Brooklyn artist Jess Rotter took on 2012 VMA Best New Artist nominee Frank Ocean and “Swim Good.” Today, Oakland artist Jon Stich captures teen dream queen Carly Rae Jepsen and her unstoppable, inescapable, always adorable “Call Me Maybe” crush anthem. Here’s what he had to say:

Check out Jon Stich’s 2012 VMA Best New Artist “inspiration illustration” of Carly Rae Jepsen after the jump.

“I love the way this song truly embodies summer. It’s in the same category for me as ‘Feel Me Flow’ by Naughty by Nature, which I remember watching on MTV growing up and thinking ‘damn, I want my summer to go like this.’ I think we’ve all been in that position where we do silly things to attract our crush, (this video certainly makes me want to do more sit-ups so that I can attract my hot, car-washing neighbor), and I wanted to capture that aspect of summer with this painting. As an artist, I love illustrating America by studying celebrity, fame, wealth, poverty, the 1990s, politics, insecurity, sex, conservatism, get-rich-quick schemes, rudeness, race, boredom, religion, the internet, and the fact that there are millions of people who desperately want to go viral on YouTube.” — Jon Stich

Jon Stich’s “inspiration illustration” of 2012 Best New Artist nominee Carly Rae Jepsen. Click the image to expand.

About the artist: Jon Stich has been creating pictures since he was nine years old, when his father took him to a Red Lobster and he scrawled all over the menu. The first person to be bothered by his artwork was his seventh grade math teacher Mr. Schaffsma, who became angered by Jon’s decision to draw a detailed rendition of a gentleman enthusiastically pooping. Since then, he has somehow managed to create and sell artwork of the same quality to the masses. A 2004 graduate of the California College of Arts & Crafts, he lives and works in Oakland, Ca. Follow him on Twitter at @JonStich.

Don’t miss the 2012 MTV VMAs live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles on Thursday, Sept. 6, at 8 p.m. ET/PT.

Credits: Photo: Interscope; Illustration: Jon Stich for MTV