Instagram: @anakova_


1. What’s your story? Where are you from?

I’m originally from Voronezh, Russia, currently based in Berlin. Before Berlin I lived in Chicago, where I worked mostly in the startup world, and before that in Beijing, where I worked mostly on destroying my liver, while also getting my design start via making a logo for a boyfriend’s bar.


2. Tell us about your aesthetic.

Abstract vector compositions of geometric shapes and outlines without much texture (although I’d like to experiment more with texture), color accents, sometimes gradients. It varies based on the project — if it’s science, business related, or personal. In personal work I seriously nerd out over noir vibes, so moody-looking people, sinister shadows, and sensual lines. I try to not let the ghoulishness spill over into the science stuff, but it happens. I’m regularly asked to “make it less depressing please” by clients.

3. What is your favourite medium and why?

Adobe Illustrator. Once you’re over the hump of creating linework (which might be slower than Photoshop), it’s super easy to experiment with alternative versions, different color palettes and details. Plus the Illustrator crisp can’t be beat.

4. What is your artistic process like?

Rough sketches in pen by hand, detailed sketch in photoshop, trace clean sketch in Illustrator, experiment with final color and details in Illustrator.

5. Who and/or what inspires your work?

Scientists (aka actual wizards of humanity), friends and family, small details of the city, something I’m reading. Stylistically the Russian avant garde, symbolist painters, art deco, Japanese graphic design.

6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?

I’m interested in art as a visual language that can create shortcuts for communicating information or emotion. There’s also the therapeutic aspect of creative work, which I feel lucky to benefit from as an anxious person.


7. Where did you study?

Davidson College, North Carolina. I studied Political Science and Chinese.

8. Where do you see yourself in five years?

I’d like to make more sequential work, experiment with different storytelling formats, try working very large-scale, and I’d like to write a graphic novel.

9. What about in ten?

Crypto-billionaire pirate, retired on a zero-carbon super yacht.

10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?

Make science propaganda. Keep using it to try to make abstract ideas make sense and appeal to a wider audience. Also hopefully capture a small part of what I’ve observed and experienced in life through some other work with more narrative and emotional content.


11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?

cheese, pickles, mustard, garlic mashed potatoes, spicy noodle soups, reuben sandwiches, fried dumplings, döner, thanksgiving food, waffle house, chipotle, cake.

12. Favourite book?

Master & Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov/

13. Favourite genre of music?

Synth pop, electro pop, disco, techno, blues.

14. What are your hobbies?

Reading, cooking dinner with friends, dancing, thinking about becoming a person who works out regularly one day.

15. If you weren’t an artist, what would you be?

Professor or librarian.