Name: Christina Leist
Places Travelled & Place lived:
Born and raised in Germany, travelled throughout Europe, Asia, North America and a tiny bit of Africa
Loves: Mountains (majestic and small), being in nature, yoga, horses, learning, being creative, language, adventure
Education: B.A. in Communications Design, University of Applied Sciences in Wiesbaden, Germany
Occupation: I am a Graphic Designer who also writes and illustrates for children. Several children’s books with my work have been published so far – some of which have been nominated for book awards.
Creative Works: http://www.christinaleist.com
What would one find in the pages of your Paperblanks journal?
My journals are often a random mix of idea-scribbles for characters, home improvement schemes, a little math here and there, drafts for stories, diary entries, shopping notes and sketches of places I’ve travelled to.
Do you have any specific themes that you continually refer back to in your work?
I have such a playful, child-like side to me and doubt I will ever fully become a grown-up! My work therefore stems from a playful approach. I like to explore unusual material and techniques.
When using my journals, I like to limit myself to using black ink only. Not being able to erase invites accidents to happen, which carry the beauty of the unconscious. Lines that might have been erased as a mistake, often end-up becoming the main elements of an unusual illustration piece.
Who first inspired you to make it an essential part of your life?
My father has been an amazing artist all his life in many ways. As a talented painter, sculptor, graphic artist and videographer, he has always encouraged me to follow my passion. My mother helped me practice my imagination from an early age by playing fantasy games and telling me stories.
How did you find Paperblanks?
I discovered the very lovely Paperblanks journals years ago in Germany. The first design I had was a French Ornate Vert.
Later, when I moved to Vancouver, I discovered these beautiful journals were designed in my new neighbourhood! Thrilled to discover this, I actually ended up working for a period at Hartley & Marks, the publishers of Paperblanks, as a Graphic Designer.
What sets Paperblanks apart from other journals you’ve used?
Paperblanks’ beautiful covers act as a good theatre prop to get me into a certain mood. When I see the cover of the Morris Birds journal, for example, I get into a hammock mode (complete with craving a Pineapple-Coconut-Banana-Shake!), as it reminds me of my last trip to Thailand.
Do you have any advice for other creative people?
Always learn new things. It will widen your horizon. Go for an adventure by exploring something that is truly new to you – like tiling or making bread or doing handstands.