For our “X Questions With” series, we’re speaking with talented individuals from around the world who have inspired us with their creativity and passion. If you have a story to tell or someone you’d like to see profiled, let us know in the comments or on Facebook or Twitter!
1) Please tell us a little about yourself
Name: Mila Aziza
City: Berlin, Germany
Places Travelled and Lived: As a child I lived in Egypt and Germany. I also lived in Australia and spent a lot of time in France. I’ve visited almost every European country, as well as the USA, Singapore and the Philippines.
Creative Works: See more on Instagram: https://instagram.com/milaazizaart/.
2) Your illustrations with several layers of lines circling a woman’s face really caught our eye on Instagram. How did you come to develop that particular style?
Simply by doodling while being lost in thought. That’s the first step towards almost all of my drawings. I enjoy that way of creating very much. I never sit down and actually plan a particular design. It’s a really special feeling to look at a simple scribble that sprang out of your subconscious while being in a dreamy mood and let it, with the help of your imagination and fantasy, transform into something bigger and more complex. Unfortunately that beautiful moment often gets followed by frustration when I have to face my limitations while trying to bring the whole thing onto paper or canvas. But this specific style is very simple, very minimalist and I liked how a face and a few lines add up to these beautiful images that reveal so little. I don’t want to get stuck on this style, but I will definitely do a few more similar drawings, perhaps a little mini series.
3) We see you use a variety of mediums, such as pens and coloured pencils, in your drawings – do you have a favourite medium to work with?
I use whatever medium I think is most suitable for achieving the effects I envision: from graphite, ink, ink pens, pencils and soft pastels to watercolour and acrylics. I often use several different colouring mediums in the same picture. The ones I work with most at the moment are graphite, black pencils, white and silver gel pens and, for colouring and highlighting, soft pastels. I also love dark, metallic acrylic colours (especially dark green, blue and red ).
4) Is there a particular subject matter or theme that inspires you?
I’ve always felt drawn to surrealism, fantasy, science fiction, futurism and fairy tales. There was a brief period in which I tried to draw a few more realistic pictures but I didn’t like them much. I just love drawing these whimsical, delicate, romantic things and melancholic girls with unrealistic physical proportions, big heads and dreamy faces.
5) Has anyone, or anything, in particular inspired your creativity and artistic passion?
The first thing that comes to my mind thinking about that question is how my best friend and I recorded these cassettes while playing when we were around nine through fourteen or fifteen. We made up detective stories, science fiction, fantasy and much more and we invented these amazing stories and worlds completely out of nothing while we were recording. We did this in her garden, the woods or simply in our rooms. Later we replayed the tapes and wrote everything down or typed it on the computer, which took days, sometimes weeks, as these stories were about 90 to 120 minutes long. And we created these little books, in which I always drew a few pictures. I still have a few of the tapes and when I listen to them I’m always surprised how good the stories and their characters are.
6) For how long have you been drawing? Have you received any training?
I’ve always been drawing. I started at the age when most children start drawing – between two and three, and it was always the same: A woman, consisting of a circle which was her head, a triangle which was her dress and four lines which formed her arms and legs. I seriously drew hundreds of these women and the only difference between them were the colours and patterns I filled their triangle dresses with. So it all started with girls/women and they are still my favourite thing to draw. Obviously their looks evolved a lot. I later got inspired by anime television series, manga and Disney films and slowly I came to develop my own style. I never received any professional training, except art classes at school.
7) Other than drawing, what are your passions in art or life?
My loved ones, music (it inspires my imagination), writing and photography. I’m also a very passionate reader of adventure novels, especially the ones written by Jules Verne. And I love to travel – my top two places to visit this year are Tokyo and Marrakesh.
About Paperblanks®: At Paperblanks®, we believe that art should have a place in all aspects of life. That’s why we follow the artist’s way in everything we do – creating, crafting and releasing designs we believe have the power to touch people. For more about Paperblanks®, go to our website at paperblanks.com.