Instagram: @zsuzsannaIlijin


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

Hi, I am Zsuzsanna, I work as an Illustrator. I was moving since I was born: I am originally from Serbia/Hungary to Germany where I grew up. After my studies I moved to Amsterdam and learned dutch and stayed seven years in the Netherlands. Then I was teaching at an Artschool in Chongqing, a big megacity in China. Now I am based in Berlin and I love it. I think I am done moving, but who knows…


2. Tell us about your aesthetic.

Playful, happy, energetic, colorful, graphic, sometimes abstract, detailed.

3. What is your favourite medium and why?

Screenprinting as a printing technique. Black ink – even if most of my work is very colorful, but I draw a lot with ink. I love illustrator, it feels like my second hand.

4. What is your artistic process like?

sketching, thinking, researching, a lot of try and error, hard work. The end the result looks more happy than the process. My sketches look quiet rough. If you would compare it to music, my sketches are like words and the final artwork is like a song.

5. Who and/or what inspires your work?

smart people, the universe, shapes, color, structures from nature, chaos, the city,
inspirational conversations and many the creative minds around me.

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

I love it. It is a true passion. I always wanted to do something creative, since I was small. It is the best job in the world to draw and get paid for it. As a kid I could not even imagine that it could be a profession.


7. Where did you study?

I studied Communication Design at the Academy of Art and Design in Stuttgart, Germany with lots of nice and talented people. Stuttgart is a very boring city – it’s a perfect place to study, there is no distraction. So we worked a lot, had lots of fun together and stayed

8. Where do you see yourself in five years? Working in an agency?

Same as now, working as a freelance illustrator, just on way bigger projects probably, way more books, textiles prints, animated illustrations. I also like to collaborate with other creatives. doing my own projects, teaching, travel, make friends. Drive my bike. Maybe have an assistant?

9. What about in ten?

Ten years sounds very abstract. I am more concerned about climate change then my own career. I will be fine, but I am not sure if our planet will be.

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

To translate stories into a visual language. To make content interesting and valuable through powerful images.


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

Kimchi & Korean BBQ. Japanese pancakes – Okonomiyaki. Chinese Hot Pot.
But I am also into french kitchen, cheese and pastries… Life is too short to eat bad food.

12. Favourite book?

this year: A wild Swan by Chris Cunnigham illustrated by Yuko Shimizu.

13. Favourite genre of music?

Something in between Hiphop, Jazz, Funk, Soul, Afro, beats-techno and Bossa Nova.
I know that is not one genre, but it depends so much on my mood. When I work I listen to podcasts from all over the world – my favorite is This American Life with Ira Glass.

14. What are your hobbies?

Dancing Ballett & Jazz-Ballett. Sewing clothes, but I have too little time for it and I am not so good in it. Reading – if that is a hobby? Exploring the world with my little daughter and my love.

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

Something adventurous like an Astronaut, Pilot or a Cop. Maybe the opposite of sitting behind the desk all day.