1. What’s your story? Where are you from?
I’m Zeynep, a 27 years old art director/illustrator based in Istanbul – Turkey. I was attracted to patterns, colors and textures since I was a kid. I also have experimented with different mediums (oil painting, chalk pastels, analog photography and woodcarving) in my 20s. I feel very satisfied with my profession and enjoy how it challenges me to find new visual solutions. I always look for inspiration and new possibilities/opportunities to extend my horizon.
2. Tell us about your aesthetic.
I experiment with colors and accentuate them with geometric shapes and bold outlines. My main priority is to simply and neatly present a subject so that it’s recognized in the most compact way possible.
3. What is your favorite medium and why?
I love working digitally in which the medium is more tolerant of mistakes; you can reverse any unwanted changes and rescale your work in a heartbeat. That allows me to experiment and create various alternatives before finalizing the artwork. I must say Adobe Illustrator & Photoshop are my best friends.
4. What is your artistic process like?
In my daily life, I try to make the most of the moment; meeting new people, exposing myself to foreign cultures and being open for adventures. I always jot down some keywords, take photos and leave myself voice-recordings of what has inspired me or made me think/laugh. Later on, I use them to make digital sketches and proceed to coloring.
5. Who and/or what inspires your work?
I find inspiration in my family, friends, books, movies, documentaries, tv-series and in my travels. In addition, regularly browsing design communities on Behance, Dribbble, Instagram and Tumblr inspires and motivates me to better myself every day.
6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?
Mingling with art and design has given me solitude, inner peace and joy in my life. It is a
mind refreshing pursuit to escape the tragedies in the news. I cannot think of a better tool to reflect my findings and joy to other people.
7. Where did you study?
I completed high school at Robert College in Istanbul, which embraces the American education system. During my time there, I discovered a lot about myself and decided to pursue a creative career. I studied Visual Communication and Design at Sabanci University and participated in the Erasmus program at NABA (Milan, Italy).
8. Where do you see yourself in five years? Working in an agency?
For the past 6 years, I have worked as an art director/illustrator in global advertisement agencies (Tribal DDB, McCann and Molte) collaborated with international clients. In the next five years, I see myself working as a creative executive in an internationally respected company.
9. What about in ten?
With the developing technology and newly blossoming industries, I think the next ten years will be a golden decade for designers of all kinds. I dream of playing a part in developing game-changing products within global companies in ten years’ time.
10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?
By sharing my work, I am expecting to communicate with people from all around the world and receive feedback and appreciation. I believe I will find individuals with similar passions and concerns as I have and it will grow to be a community, creating new opportunities for like-minded people along the way.
11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favorite food?
Without hesitation, I can say that it’s Peking Duck Pancakes. Always puts a smile on my face!
12. Favorite book?
“The Catcher in the Rye” by J.D.Salinger. It was on the curriculum of our literature class in high school and it has made its mark on me.
13. Favorite genre of music?
Lately, I have been listening to lounge / smooth jazz, it is very comforting and entertaining to an occupied mind.
14. What are your hobbies?
Whenever I get a chance, I invest in travelling. I find it very refreshing to leave the comfort zone and exploring new things, people and places. Also, I like to experience some sense of freedom by going out in the nature; trekking, camping and skiing.
15. If you weren’t an artist, what would you be?
In another life, I would have liked to study Culinary Arts & Professional Cookery and strive to become a Michelin starred chef.