ACCOMPLISHED ILLUSTRATOR’S TAKE ON THE ISSUE OF CLIMATE CHANGE: INTERVIEW WITH MIRA NAMETH

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1.  Tell us about yourself and how you got started in the field of illustration. 

I am half Swedish and half American but I grew up in Sweden. Drawing was something I had been doing since I was a child and continued doing through my years at University for various magazines and events. Later on, I sometimes did illustrative work for the advertising agencies I worked for. In 2005, I was introduced to my agents, Kajsa and Kiki of Pepperookies so I worked in advertising for over a decade, whilst also taking on illustration commissions.

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2.  Give us some insight into what we expect to see from you during your upcoming exhibition in Mykonos? What inspired you for this particular show ?

First of all, " I'm excited about exhibiting in Mykonos as it has a really interesting and growing art scene. The pieces depict climate changes, which in my mind, is the most important issue of our time (joint first place with human rights)."

The pieces depict the beauty of our icy landscapes and their significance, with a glimpse of a possibly dystopian future. The work could, at first glance, appear abstract but actually shows ice masses, sea, and cracked pieces of ice. I've also done pieces of Mykonos itself, as shorelines may never be the same again because of climate change, forever changing the look of islands. The pieces work as to show a cause and the effect: the polar caps breaking apart very far away, the subsequent cooling and rising of the seas, and the effect on shorelines on the place where the viewer is standing - the island of Mykonos. 

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3.  As a whole, how would you best describe your style of illustration ? 

Detailed, with contracts of sharp and soft, light and dark. Sometimes somewhere in between abstract and concrete.

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4.  What informs and shapes your taste and style ? 

Nature, photography, film and the new excellent television series. Antique illustrations also impress me with their detail.

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5. You have worked for many major clients including Vogue, American Express, Absolut Vodka, Coca-Cola and Harrods, which collaboration was the most challenging? Why? Which was the most successful in your eyes? Why ? 

" I think there are varying challenges with each projects - just different problems to solve. What springs to mind is the 36-hour haul to finish the illustrations for Vogue. It was more a physical challenge. " Most successful, I would say Liz Earle. Very good working process, and afterwards, it won a Red Dot Award.

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6. What are some of your top tips to success when it comes to the world of illustration today ?  

The best tips are probably: get an agent, be open to different opportunities, and work hard!

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7. What style of music do you mostly listen to when you work ? 

I've always been partial to a sad tune, so I listen to a bit of Arcade Fire, Band of Horses, Dylan, Springsteen, Morrissey, Devotchka, Pixies, Swedish artist, Stina Nordenstam. Love Brian Retzell's stunning work for the Hannibal Season 2 finale. Love that series in general, it's very inspirational! Everything about it is exquisite – the script, cinematography, sound design and acting.

MIRA NAMETH
REDD PR

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