Tammy Joubert‘s journey nearly took a very different turn. ‘If I wasn’t a designer and illustrator, I’d be a lawyer,’ she says. ‘I love a challenge, solving problems and thinking of unconventional solutions.’ With a strong analytical bent and a fierce talent for drawing and creating, at just 23, Tammy is a force to be reckoned with. After studying at AAA School of Advertising, she ventured into the world of graphic design where she works on branding and identities.
But our love affair with Tammy’s work is all about her illustration, a series of minimalist silhouettes that explore people’s fragile relationships with their own bodies – all in an elegantly subdued palette that makes her prints rather covetable. ‘My job is not just bound to drawing pictures,’ she explains. ‘It’s about research, analysing and understanding human behaviour.’
A year later, we caught up with the 2016 Next Generation star to find out what she’s been up to.
Which three words or phrases most accurately describe the past year for you?
Collaborative, cold (I had two winters this year) and uncomfortable (which is actually rather comfortable).
What have been some of the highlights – career-related and otherwise – over the past 12 months?
I travelled outside South Africa for the first time, spending some time in Prague and Berlin. A change of scenery was a good thing, as I have started thinking differently about my design process and its application. Career-related highlights: I still get asked to illustrate things for money.
And what have some of the biggest challenges been?
To create a symmetrical balance of work and play has been quite tough. Ideally, these should be intertwined, but that’s not always possible. Not for now, at least.
How has your creative work, approach or outlook changed since we last spoke to you?
I have matured my thought process a lot more. I am a lot more focused on doing work that I enjoy, rather than do work that might get me ‘somewhere, someday’. I’ve realised that everything I do right now will get me to where I need to be. I think my work is a bit more playful than it used to be and contains stronger graphic elements.
What are you busy with at the moment?
At the moment, I’m working on a series of paintings, but I can’t say too much about this yet. I have started working with a few musicians and doing an album cover or two. I think there is a great opportunity for people with different creative backgrounds to work together and create something interesting. Cape Town needs to get out of its comfort zone a bit.
And lastly, where do you hope to be or what do you hope to have achieved another year from now?
In a year, I hope to have had at least one exhibition. I’m collaborating with some friends to start a conceptual design studio of sorts, which I hope to have launched by then.
Visit tammyjoubert.tumblr.com to see more.