Instagram: @noa.snir Website: www.noasnir.com
1. What's your story? Where are you from?I was born in Jerusalem, Israel in the late eighties. I moved around quite a bit as a child, so I'm from a lot of places, really. For the past three and a half years I've been living in Berlin, Germany. I've been drawing pictures since childhood but never thought this would end up being my job - which I'm very happy about.
2. Tell us about your aesthetic.I'm inspired by a lot of naive art and folk art. There are certain aspects of it which influence my work: flat perspectives, a rich and vibrant color palette, a big love for manual techniques. I enjoy silkscreen, lino-cut, traditional painting and such, much more than illustrating with the computer. Although to be fair, it's my main work-tool these days.
3. What is your favourite medium and why?That's a difficult question, but I think I'd have to go with lino-cut, even though I've only recently discovered it. It has taught me a big lesson in letting go. It has forced me to be less controlled and calculated in my work, and to embrace imperfections and happy accidents. Also, I enjoy the physical aspects of it from start to finish - the rough sketching, the cutting of the lino palette, the printing with old machines from last century...
4. What is your artistic process like?Once I have an idea in mind, I usually start with research. It can be visual research (looking for visual references) as well as textual - I am a big fan of words and they inspire me just as much as images do. I think research is an important and interesting part of an illustrator's job. I keep little inspiration-folders on my computer for every project that I make. I move on to sketching - my sketches are messy and unphotogenic usually, as they're a way for me to organize my thoughts. Then, depending on the project, I realize the artwork, be it pen-and-photoshop, ink-and-screenprint, lino-cut etc.
5. Who and/or what inspires your work?books, song-lyrics, feminism, people's faces, museums, color.
6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?I think I've been an outsider and observer from a very early age, and art gave me a good setting where I could exercise these characteristics. Making art is my way of having a continuous conversation with the world, which is otherwise hard to do for an introvert like me. It's a way to claim space, to speak my mind, to listen to how other people respond to it. It isn't an easy life, but I find a great sense of comfort in it.
7. Where did you study?I have a bachelor's degree in visual communication from Bezalel Academy in Jerusalem, and a master's degree from Berlin's University of the Arts, where I majored in illustration. It was interesting to attend art-school in two different continents and experience the differences.
8. Where do you see yourself in five years? Working in an agency?Hopefully doing more and more personal projects. I do mostly editorial work these days, and while it's great (it exposes me to topics I would've otherwise never known about, makes me read and research, look for original solutions - it really is great) I feel I am on the verge between illustration and art, and would like to have a more autonomous voice in my work.
9. What about in ten?Making books, travelling with exhibitions, having financial stability, being less anxious about life's big questions.
10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?I hope to make things that are meaningful for me and others, to leave something behind me I can be proud of and that can do some good in the world.
11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?Probably Pho Soup. I could fall asleep inside a bowl of Pho soup.
12. Favourite book?Anything by Margaret Atwood, David Foster Wallace or Tove Jansson. I'm a book-worm, it's too hard to pick just one.
13. Favourite genre of music?I have a pretty eclectic musical taste, ranging from Bonnie Prince Billy to De La Soul. So... anything, really :)
14. What are your hobbies?Reading, cooking, binge-watching true-crime documentaries, and recently also learning to play the piano.
15. If you weren't an artist, what would you be?A professor of literature or sociology, hopefully.