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Rising Stars 2013: Julia Anastasopoulos

Tell us a bit about your background in art/illustration? I’ve been drawing pictures for as long as I can remember. My mom is an art teacher and always encouraged me and my sisters to make things and express ourselves creatively. I was always inspired by picture books and illustrators like Quentin Blake, Saul Steinberg and Raymond Peynet. After I finished studying Theatre and Performance at UCT, I began to explore illustration and design a bit more seriously, leading to an exhibition at Whatiftheworld, and an offer to draw a mural at the Book Lounge. It was through that mural that things really took off. Any particularly exciting projects you are working on at the moment? I recently finished illustrating a children's book called Bonsai and Geronimo. I created illustrations and artworks for ‘Presents in the Post’ and was also part of an exhibition at Salon 91. I currently have another children's book in development. What's next for you? At the moment I'm building up a catalogue of illustrated merchandise under my design label, ‘k n o l c’. Things like designer canvas bags, shadowboxes, and bespoke wallpaper are just some of the products that will be on offer. In the near future I hope to open my own shop and studio. What would your dream commission be? To illustrate and write my own children's book or travel around the world making cityscape-inspired murals for public spaces. Career highlight so far? Being selected to create artworks for the MiCity Bus stations at the Civic Centre and Thibault Square in Cape Town. These projects gave me the opportunity to realise my usually very small and intricate illustration work on a much larger scale. To view Julia’s illustrations and find out more about her work, visit Text Raphaella Frame-Tolmie