Archives for category: Interviews

Sweet Maria from Denne side op (this side up) has sent me this award and challenge (thank you Maria) and I have translated it to English for you readers:

Why did you start blogging? First of all I love the concept of sharing ideas. I am a firm believer in “energy-flow”, and to allow your ideas to be passed on is a way to avoid “idea-clutter”. -Don´t know if that makes any sense?

 Which blogs do you read? Many but every day I check out: Julia Lahme a Danish blogger who writes about different issues in her life as being a mother and a carreerwoman, and she shares many nice finds. Brinja is also a favourite, she takes beautiful pictures and shares her creative ideas, I wrote about her here. Minimega is also great, she is a graphic designer from Denmark and has a really good eye for new cute things. Missemai is very girly and cute they also have a cute webshop. And La Graphic Design blog for paperlovers.

Favourite make-up brand? Shisheido I love the colours and their style.

Favourite clothing brand?  Replay, Sonia Rykiel, Fornarina and Tsumori Chisato -they are all playful, colorful and optimistic.

Your must-have make-up product? Great Lash Mascara by Maybelline is a classic I have used it for years and Touche Éclat from YSL -it is expensive but worth it!

Your favourite colour? Oh, do I have to choose? Raspberry, Mint, Chalk White, Powder Pink, Neon and everything with glitter…

Perfume? Paul Smith perfume Women and Oscar de la Renta Instrusion are both light and understated.

Favourite movie? Belle de Jour  from 1967  starring Catherine Deneuve the style, the story and the men: the classic good guy / bad boy story which I think most women can relate to…

Which country would you like to visit and why? Japan is my number one for its architecture, gardens, Kawaii and art.

What are you looking forward to the most in the nearest future? Summer! We have had a really cold winter and I can´t wait to go swimming in salty waters.

I am passing this award and challenge on to Brinja and Mette Helena from Retro Villa °☆ ‧°‧°☆∴° ☆

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© Charuca  Kokeshi & Little Bird, 2008

I am a little starstruck by this opportunity to ask Charuca Vargas, my favourite Kawaii artist, questions about cute. She was my first introduction to my fascination with Kawaii and of course I have so much to ask her about. To those who have never heard of this great kawaii artist and illustrator, here is a short introduction:

© Charuca  Legion: We are your Friends

Spanish illustrator Charcuca Vargas is the mother of these cute characters and this amazing vector universe. She has created characters such as “Kawaii” and “Gothic” and later “Baby” and “Toxic”. Her impressive portfolio includes collaborations with Sanrio and graphic artist Catalina Etsrada and a book publication about famous Kawaii artists.

© Charuca  I Love Kawaii 2008

Here is my interview with Charuca:

First I would like to ask you about the facts such as formal education, current project / exhibition?

My education in the world of graphic and character design has been largely self-taught. Most of my learning has been experienced in the world of design and illustration until I found my own language. At the moment I dedicate 100% of my time developing the Charuca Universe. I have a studio/lab in Barcelona, where we shape the Charuquil Universe. We do character design and product application. Recently we are also shaping the Charuca’s magazine No. 1… with comics and lots of surprises!!!

Foto of my book “I love Kawaii” by Charuca from 2010

© Charuca 2007-2008

I would like to know if you can remember when and how you were introduced to Kawaii and what it ment to you at the time?

I have always felt the Kawaii inside me. I grew up in a small town where there is not much influence of the Japanese culture. The only references were some cartoons like “Little Memole” and some merchandising from Sanrio…Furthermore, I enjoyed drawing big-headed characters, my big love were dolls and stationery. I was constantly drawing characters. Thanks to the Internet, I could peek into a world where I felt very identified, but the seed was already there.

© Charuca Love Kawaii

Do you think of the Kawaii movement as a new artform which in the future will have its own place in art history?

Yes I think there is a Kawaii movement, it is already here, which includes major artists from many countries. I think that leaving an imprint on art history will be a function of artists like Takashi Murakami, who are taking the Kawaii to another level, bringing their work to MOMA and Louvre museums.

© Charuca Sugar Avenue

© Charuca  Mini Toys 2010

© Charuca  Paper Toy 2010

I have met people who think of kawaii art as a kind of superficial way of viewing the world. Personally I think everyone needs something to smile about, but can you understand the scepticism of these art critics?

I can understand that not all people get to feel what the Kawaii can awaken in some persons. I do not think Kawaii is a more superficial art form than others. Art is art from the time that it touches your sensitivity, and Kawaii awakes internal feelings. I do not think that positive images are more frivolous and superficial than negative ones. Joy and sadness came from the same depth of the soul.

© Charuca  Kawaii Porn 2008

If you could design anything and budget wasn´t an issue what would you like to create?

I would work in Charuca products and designs without worry for a moment of cost. I would use all qualities I wanted, I would create wonderful accessories and would open Charuca shops, online and physical stores as well. I would do the same as now but as big as possible.

© Charuca

I would like to know how you work (do you have to have coffee, music on, or do you have a ritual you have to do in order to be able to create)?

At the beginning, I worked alone in a room of my apartment that I enabled as an studio. A year ago I moved to a studio in the center of Barcelona. It’s really spacious and luminous where creativity flows easily. In addition, also a year ago I stopped working alone, I have an assistant, Miriam Alvarez, who understands me perfectly and who had helped me to bring beyond Charuca World. Every day we come to the studio, I play music (always music, I can not work in silence) and we spent the day playing with the characters. All I need to work is to feel happy and relaxed. I take good care of the working environment in the study…

© Charuca I Love Gothic 2010

Is there someone or something you think the world should know about (an artist, musik, designer, book, food, a favourite place; anything, )

I think it is important to travel, experience other cultures, other countries. Walk out to the world and do things, each one what stimulates oneself. All Kawaii lovers should visit Japan, which is the cradle of this aesthetic trend.

© Catalina Estrada & Charuca – Forever Love 2010

You show a great sense of humour in your figures, for instance the “sugar kills” figure. What do you wish to communicate with this type of message?

My main message is “Do not take life too seriously”. We live immersed in a stressful culture that can make us worried or sad. Some people work in places they hate to earn money to buy things they do not need … My work wants to help people to stop worrying and start enjoying the beautiful things of life . Time passes, laugh, have fun, do what you like to do and do not take anything too seriously. It’s not worth it!

© Charuca – Toxic Fruits

Do you do scetches by hand or mainly on the computer? (I would love to show some scetches of your work)

Yes… we never draw directly on the screen. Pencil and paper allow a fluency and a connection to the subconscious that it is hard to get drawing directly on the screen. Our process always begins with paper and pencil.

© Charuca Baby

© Charuca Baby

© Charuca  BBZ Baby Zigoto 2008

Is there a project or a designer you dream of working with?

There are many dreamt projects, but I would rather not talk about them because I am bit superstitious and I think it is better not telling dreams…if you do, they will not become true 😉

Charuca

www.charuca.net

www.charuca.eu

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Charuca/44476864516

Thank you Charuca for letting me use your beautiful inspiring illustrations and for the interview  😀

Owl Poster by Krisitne Mandsberg

I have fallen completely in love with Kristine Mandsberg´s graphic universe, I hope you find it as inspiring as I do:D

Kristine Mandsberg is a Danish designer, based in Copenhagen. She graduated from the Royal College of Art in London, 2008, specialising in printed textile. Kristine is working in the crossover between art and design, 2D and 3D, exploring how materials, textiles and illustration combined can produce interesting visual outcomes, displayed through several different medias. Most of her work is linked to a narrative, and is often a startingpoint, when new work is taking its’ form. She has since her graduation, received grants from The Danish Arts Foundation, and exhibited her work in both solo and group exhibitions.

 

 

Croco Illustration by Kristine Mandsberg

Kristine is also freelancing for several companies, and has among other things developed a textile collection for IKEA, and is designing artworks for fashion (ao Soft Gallery). Other areas, she has explored, is as set-designer for the opera “The First Commandment”, and working with costumes and other project based set-design projects, which is an area that interests her a lot.

Drops Collage by Kristine Mandsberg

Krstine about her inspirations: “I can get inspired by pretty much everything which surrounds me. However my inspiration depends very much on the project that I do. For my own work the idea often comes from some sort of narrative, which I want to visualize through a certain media. The project is therefore linked to words or a headline, which describes an idea or a thought. Where as the stuff that I do for clients often has its’ starting point in a visual idea, which is then developed into something unique.”

Still from video animation “Structure” by Kristine Mandsberg

Kristines dream project: “There are lots and lots of project that I want to do, and people that I would like to work with. If I should define my dream project it would be to do some kind of huge scale installation or theatre project. It should be a project where I could work with all the different things that I like to combine, such as animation, video, illustration, textile, materials, costumes, props, space and body, linked to a narrative that would give the viewers some kind of experience visually and emotionally.”

The Freaky King and Queen by Kristine Mandsberg

People who inspire Kristine:

Filmmaker: Tim Burton (I love his visual style, a mix between reality and fiction)

Photographer: Tim Walker (and the set designer Shona Heath, which he often works with)

Japanese Fashion designer: Tsumori Chisato (her prints is amazing, colourfull and humoristic) Note: Kawaiicph will blog about her on Thursday!

Danish artist: Cathrine Raben Davidsen

You should all know: A collaborative animation by Blu and David Ellis

Birds and Feathers textile print by Kristine Mandsberg

Printed textile by Kristine Mandsberg

Thank you Kristine for letting med use your lovely pictures. If you want to buy posters and graphics by the artist they can be purchased at Butikcmyk in Copenhagen.

I have to show these beautiful almost fairytale-like creations from WAHNSINN of Cph. They are handmade by designer Rikke Hansen and available at Fien Copenhagen in Oehlenschlægersgade. The materials are leather with a lacquer coating on the front side:

Grey necklace from WAHNSINN of Cph at Fien Copenhagen

 

Designer of WAHNSINN (wahnsinn means insane in German) Rikke Hansen makes investment items which follow her own inspirations such as art, film and music rather than trends. Her style is simple in mostly white, black  and grey colors. She prefers to work with natural materials and has a new clothing collection and website ready for April.

Black necklace from WAHNSINN of Cph

Black earrings from WAHNSINN

Mint earrings from WAHNSINN

Rikke is, among other artists, inspired by 70 ´s funk musik,  Antony and the Johnsons and David Lynch. I asked her who she thinks we should know or keep an eye on:

Vilsbøl de Arce & Dennis Lyngsø and of course the shop Fien Copenhagen where you can buy Rikke´s items.