News and Trends

Multitalented young Cape Town creative Stacey Knipe is behind the unique illustrated portraits of all nine of our 2019 Next Level talents.

HL Next Level 2019: Illustrator Stacey Knipe

Illustration Stacey Knipe

Stacey Knipe | House and Leisure

Each year, House and Leisure creates a special feature that is all about up-and-coming South African creative talent. We look closely at the worlds of decor and design, and ask architects, ceramicists, product designers, artists, jewellers and photographers to tell us who we should be watching out for in their areas of work. 

Recent alumni of the Next Level list include fashion designer Rich Mnisi, photographer Zander Opperman and illustrator Karabo Poppy Moletsane, among many others. In fact, if you fancy a bit of a catch-up, you can check out the entire 2018 Next Level crew here, and all the new 2019 talents here.

The research phase of the work on this feature is followed by a discussion of precisely who we want to showcase – and why. This year, the team recognised that there has been a palpable return to the handmade recently, and so we wanted everyone who was featured to be someone who makes their pieces by hand.

From a textile designer to a jeweller and a chef, all the creatives included in 2019’s House and Leisure Next Level list do just that.

Illustrator Stacey Knipe Is One Of Them

‘As a designer and illustrator, I work both digitally and by hand,’ says Knipe, whose technique has been described as ‘digital oil painting’. 

‘I’ve always loved creating with my hands. There’s something unique about it – when there’s a chance to make mistakes and embrace imperfection, which is often where the beauty lies.’ Stacey Knipe is behind the unique illustrated portraits of all nine of our 2019 Next Level talents, working with elements of their creative processes, their personalities and their photographs to produce these artistic representations. 

‘I’ve made a habit of drawing or creating something every day, even if it’s just a sketch or a study,’ she says. ‘This will usually spark an idea for something I’d like to create. ‘Then, I’ll begin again with drawing, researching and experimenting with different stylistic approaches.’

With her experience in the magazine publishing industry, Knipe says that working on this feature is a career highlight, and one of her proudest moments as an illustrator. ‘At the beginning of this project, I struggled with a lot of self doubt. But I pushed through it and am really happy with the end result.’

Watch Our Video Portrait Of Stacey Knipe Here

ALSO READ: Body Of Work: Karabo Poppy Moletsane
ALSO READ: 5 Minutes With Product and Furniture Designer Thabisa Mjo
ALSO READ: HL Next Level 2018: Photographer Zander Opperman