1. What’s your story? Where are you from?
My name is Olga. I’m a Slavic designer and illustrator born in Moscow, Russia and now living in sunny Houston, TX.
2. Tell us about your aesthetic.
I always admired impressionists. They turned the art world around, made the critics to pop their eyes out and totally won the 19th century by their ability to depict the world the way they saw it – in a constant movement. They also inspired generations of artists and provoked a bunch of new art movements to rise. I always ask myself, why are we supposed to see the grass green and the sky blue, why are some objects supposed to be smaller or bigger than the other? It’s boring! Everything that surrounds us is much more than just some familiar cliches that society stuck to things for years. So, here I am, enjoying making the sky pink and growing a desert in a teacup, trying to look at familiar patterns at a different angle through my illustrations.
3. What is your favourite medium and why?
I studied painting and drawing for many years. I was supposed to like oil, watercolor, charcoal and other good ol’ stuff more than anything. But I don’t. I prefer Illustrator and Photoshop over all classic media. Digital software gives me more freedom to express myself and I love the fact that I can reproduce my work multiple times. I do like to get back to my watercolors sometimes though. At those moments I really miss the ability to hit “Command + Z” and “Command + T”.
4. What is your artistic process like?
I do a couple of sketches in my notebook and then I jump into Illustrator where I perfect my drawings and assign a color scheme for the piece I’m creating. Then I export my file into Photoshop and start off with my favorite part of the process – texturizing. This step breathes life in to my illustrations.
5. Who and/or what inspires your work?
I very often get inspired by unexpected combinations of objects I happen to see around me. Neon signs get me really excited too.
6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?
Art is a huge part of my life. I’ve been drawing since a very young age. It did change the way I view the world. Every time I look at an object I know what colors to mix to get that exact hue. As I began to work in Illustrator I also started to automatically divide everything I look at into the simple shapes that they consist of.
7. Where did you study?
I graduated from Moscow State Academy Art Lyceum and then got my Master’s in painting at Moscow Regional State University.
8. Where do you see yourself in five years? Working in an agency?
I can see myself working at an agency. I love to do pretty much everything from illustrations to UI. An agency is a place to go to get that kind of experience.
9. What about in ten?
As ambitious as it sounds I want to be a designer at Google.
10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?
I would be quite pleased to see more people adopting a broader way of looking at things around us. I observe many not accepting the way of perceiving the world differently from the “normal” fashion we were told to look at it. If, through my art, I would be able to help people open their minds and free some room in their heads for a new life vision, it would make me happy. It’s just that life is more interesting that way, when you are not chained by common stamps.
11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?
I love Mac&Cheese, Carbonara and everything that has arugula, tomatoes and feta cheese mixed together. I also love salmon very much.
12. Favourite book?
There are many as I am a big bookworm. To name the one…let it be “The Plague” by Albert Camus.
13. Favourite genre of music?
No doubt it’s synth-pop! I’m a huge Depeche Mode fan as well.
14. What are your hobbies?
I love books. Past years I’ve been very much into philosophy and psychology. I enjoy learning languages as well. Both have a huge impact on the way I think and look at the world.
15. If you weren’t an artist, what would you be?
Could be anything. I find myself interested in different things. As I think of it now, I would probably end up being a musician or a scientist.