Emily Arant has been drawing characters since she could hold a pencil and crayon. Throughout the years, her business as an animator and artist has become so successful that she was able to pay for an entire year and semester at a private university. But due to her Christian convictions on traditional marriage, she has become the target of an intense campaign of hate.
“I’ve always been sort of an entrepreneur,” Emily said in an interview with The Daily Citizen. “Even when I was little and I wasn’t on the Internet, I’d be selling pieces of artwork on the side of the street for like a nickel. I was always creating stuff for other people and trying to make money from it.”
At one point, she saved up enough money to purchase a small $80 tablet in order to take her art to the next level.
“I basically learned that you can animate digitally so that was immediately what I wanted to do,” Emily said. “I was too young to get a YouTube account, so my mom allowed my older sister to create an account (under the username LupisVulpes) and we shared it. But it was only mine. Basically, I started making just simple animations. I didn’t even care if they look bad or not, I just loved doing it.”
In middle school, Emily even wrote her own script for a short-animated show called Audience, which she actually animated and produced in high school and uploaded to YouTube. The reaction was overwhelmingly positive, and she gained thousands of new subscribers and currently sits at about 218,000 followers.
“God really blessed it and after that my channel exploded,” Emily explained.
One commenter wrote, “Years later, I still love to re-watch this single episode! I’m still sad about it ending/being canceled, but that still doesn’t stop me from coming back year after year to enjoy it.”
The show became so popular, that fans of the show commissioned Emily to create artwork so they could own their own piece of Audience.
By any measure, for being just 22 years old, Emily has been wildly successful.
“God has really blessed my business a lot financially,” Emily said. “He’s blessed it so much that I’ve been able to pay for my whole tuition and board from last year and half of this year.”
Things have changed this summer, and it all started with a commission from someone that Emily had worked with before. This person decided to ask in her commission if Emily could also include a trans flag with the character. Emily said that she would still make it, but just didn’t feel comfortable including the flag and the person could add that later if they wanted.
“I should explain that I used to be in that crowd, and I was incredibly depressed and suicidal for like 3 years. This was partially simply because I was pursuing that, and God literally plucked me up out of that and saved my life. That was about three years ago and He’s just been giving me so much healing. I’m literally completely healed. I’ve never met anyone who has really experienced that. He got me out of that, and I didn’t feel comfortable drawing something with that message anymore,” Emily shared.
But the person still wanted her to draw it, so she did. And then, someone else came forward pressuring Emily to donate part or all of her profits to the Black Lives Matter movement, as some other artists were doing. As Emily uses her artistic skills to save up for college, and due to BLM’s support of abortion, she said no. These two people accused Emily of being homophobic, transphobic and racist.
Before she knew it, the entire audience that she spent years cultivating suddenly turned against her. Some of her former fans even made YouTube videos denouncing her over these untrue allegations.
“It’s been really hard and heartbreaking because a lot of these people used to be really close friends,” Emily said. “I’m not even kidding, like every single person who used to be my friend now hates me and I no longer have any online friends. They all hate me, and I don’t know a single one who doesn’t believe the lies being said about me.”
Though this has been incredibly tough, both emotionally and financially, Emily can feel God working through this difficult time.
“God’s been my main comfort, He’s just been really taking care of me, but it’s been hard, it’s been really hard,” she said.
As the Spirit led her, Emily did provide a video response to her audience, trying to not only explain the situation but God’s love for them.
“I just want them to find God because I know how much He loves them and how much it would transform their lives,” Emily said. “They would feel so much joy in God’s arms. I want them to succeed in life and I want them to feel and understand how much Jesus loves them and how much He sacrificed for them. I just thought that these are young people who are incredibly hurt, and they just don’t know what they’re doing.”
When asked if she’s had any advice for young adults going through a similar situation, her answer was inspiring and encouraging, “I would say don’t give in to the peer pressure. First off it won’t satisfy, but second you need to be true to who you are in Christ because that is your identity. He loves you, and if you bow down to what the Internet wants you to be it’s never going to work out and you’re going to lose who you are in the process. I would say you’ll be happiest being yourself and who God made you. He’s going to take care of you, even if everybody hates you, He’s going to take care of you.”
Photo from YouTube
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