TODAY WE ARE TALKING WITH ILLUSTRATOR LOTTE JACOBS.
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What do you define yourself as?

You could best define me as an Illustrator. I also like taking photos (especially with an analogue camera) so I might want to continue with that in the future as well.

How do you get the right workflow?

Ah what a nice question to start the interview with! Well, first of all I would like to say that I work best in the evening or at night. I can usually find peace and that's the time when I have the most inspiration.When everyone is sleeping and I can put on my lights and music. I think the night has a certain beauty that I can hardly detect in the afternoon. It is a mix of melancholy and romance. Delicious. In the evening I really have time for myself and you can see this in my work. It is very close to me. Some people read in bed and I draw or write just before bedtime. It helps me clear my mind. I turn on my nice lights (they give a warm / red light) and then I am in the mood to create. I often set up a French radio channel or a Spotify playlist. And oh yes, a red wine in advance also goes!  At that moment I am completely off the radar and I enjoy everything. After an hour or two I am usually ready and I go to sleep. 

What are you currently working on and what are you developing more and more?

Nowadays I am selling my designs. I go to the workshop of the art academy and then I'm going to screen print my designs on shirts, and tote bags things like that! It's a lot of fun because I always get help from my friends. All three of us have a lot of fun screen printing and creating our designs so I always find this very pleasant. I would also really like it if I could set up my own company with shirts, sweaters and bags. I currently have five new assignments that I am busy with. I also really like that people want to wear my designs and that it gives them joy. That gives me motivation to create even more. I am also currently writing a bit more and I'm also writing a column.

I wonder what inspires you and how you come up with your ideas?

I am inspired by the people around me. They give me new ideas. I often get inspired by events. It doesn't matter if they are big or small. When I experience fun things or less fun things.  Rain always makes me a little melancholic. And a long hot shower also helps me to gain new insights. I also love to sing along with the Artic monkeys to get some new inspiration.

What is the purpose of your artwork? 

With my work I mainly want to make people happy and let them simply just enjoy. I study Visual Communication at the art academy of Maastricht so I also think it's very important that people understand my work. It must be clearly legible. I still find this difficult. I sometimes find it too important to make it look aesthetically beautiful which makes me forget that my work also sometimes has to have meaning.

What is your family background and does this have a connection with the work you make?

My background is actually really nice. I have lovely parents who I often don't understand (and they don't understand me either) but they are there for me. My brother is much more technical than me. He was always super smart and super good at math. Not me. my mother encourages me, but sometimes I miss a little enthusiasm. Furthermore, they are both not creative so I am not sure who I got that from. Just like my curls. I don't have that from any of my family members either hahaha.

Does your personality return to your work?

Yes, you will see my personality back for a bit in my work. I am a very chaotic person and that is my artwork too. No clean lines or finished details. I think perfection is important but in other ways. I also prefer working analogue.

Do you also have favorite works by certain artists?

One of my favorite Illustrator is Kirsten Sims. She makes beautiful illustrations with the help of acrylic and watercolor. Especially her night scenery illustrations are very beautiful! I am a little bit jealous of her talent. Other well-known works are of course the sunflowers of Van Gogh. And I also love the kiss of the Austrian artist Gustav Klimt. I've never seen that in real life. I also went to the Bonnefantemuseum last year to see David Lynch's performance, which I found very impressive. It is not at all known, but it is super sick!

How important is it for you to share your art / work with other people?

As I get older I find it much more important to share my art with others because I want to earn my money with it. If I keep it to myself then nobody will see it. At the beginning and now I still find it difficult to share because my work can be personal. I find it difficult to be vulnerable. In the end I think that I will always keep working for myself and I am not sure if there is a career in store for me. I just know that I really like doing it for now and that's enough for me. If you want to follow my art, you can do this on instagram: https://www.instagram.com/lot_and_chaos/ (@ Lot_And_chaos) , you can also follow my personal Instagram if you'd like that ,because my whole life is actually a work of art. https://www.instagram.com/lottelente/ (@lottelente)

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TODAY WE ARE TALKING WITH ILLUSTRATOR / GRAPHIC DESIGNER LUKA GEURTS. 
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 Do you define yourself as an illustrator or graphic designer?

Actually both, I try to mix an illustrative style with typography so that I don't have to define myself as a certain thing.
Graphic & illustrating are close together for me and that is another reason why I don't want to fall into a certain category. Yet I prefer to see myself illustrating as a hobby because I can really put my passion into it.

 

What is your work about?

That really differs per day, week, month. I do not have a specific topic that I am working on. I am in a phase where I want to experiment as much as possible, not only in style but also in attaching meaning to a work. In my younger years I attached very little value to meaning in my work. I was very precise about the fact that I wanted to make everything look as realistic as possible, there was no question of meaning. That has changed in the meantime, first of all I try to attach meaning to my work and try to make everything as unrealistic as possible because this is much more interesting for me at the moment. What used to be an image of so-called "perfection" is now something I approach in a completely different way.

Are you currently working on a specific work?

I am now very busy with making combinations of texts that are about  feelings and thoughts in combination with illustrations. Not all pieces of text are meant to be poetic, I try to make my own visual language through the mix of the 2 elements above.

 

Do you think you have developed your own style?

No, not yet, but as I indicate in the question above , I am increasingly experimenting and considering what I want to show and what not.
The visual language of mixing illustrations with typography is not yet consistent enough to call it a style, at least that is what I think myself.

 

 A total different topic for now.
Do you think being a woman influences your work as an illustrator?

I'm not constantly busy with that thought on my mind if I am being honest. But if you look at my work you can sure see that I draw a lot of women. I also draw men, but just a lot less. I always want to be able to see something of myself in my own work, and since I am a woman myself, I can use illustrations to show my uncertainties and feelings from that perspective.
So I draw my own experiences and struggles as a mirror image of myself because I am a woman, but if men also recognize themselves in this image, I think that's great.

 You illustrate about very personal topics such as depression but also about things like body positivity. Do you do this to break taboo about the topics?

I must have the idea that I can raise matters that are taboo to talk about in a decent way without getting a heavy burden and people dropping out.
I would like to break through perfection to make people more tolerant.

In a sense, that is very feminist, certainly from the point of view of a woman.
 Do you also see yourself as a feminist?

 

Yes, to a certain extent.
When it comes to equality between men and women, I certainly don't think it's a dirty word.
But I myself think that I don't exude 'feminism' in my work. I find it important but do not emphasize this in my work.

 

 I see that you mainly work digitally, does this have a reason?

 

I find digital programs super nice to work with because I can experiment so much with their color palettes. The appearance of digital working is also much more appealing  for me, so it mainly has to do with personal preference.

 Do certain color palettes also have certain feelings / thoughts for you?

Experimenting with color can certainly indicate a certain vibe.
When I was not feeling well, I mainly wanted to make colorful work because I wanted to show the outside world that everything was fine. I was afraid to make works that had a "dark" vibe to avoid confrontations with myself.
So I used my illustrations as a mask. Now that I am doing well, I want to make works with dark colors that could possibly help other people who go through the same problems as "former" me.

 

Do you find it important to make work that is aesthetic?

Not just aesthetic. It is nice for myself and the viewer if it is aesthetic to look at but that is not priority number 1. I still want to send a message and that is what I will expand more and more in the future.
I am always looking for new experiments and looking at how I can give substance to an "aesthetic" picture.
 I also think that art is very subjective and that everyone can give their own interpretation of my work.

 

Finally, I want to ask you what your own favorite work(s) is/are and why?
 

I have multiple favorite works because I have also incorporated multiple styles into my illustrations. But if I really have to choose, then I choose the most recent work / series that I am working on. It is what I have talked about before, really creating my own visual language through typography and illustrative work and thereby attaching a deeper meaning to it.

 

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