FRESH Finds: Illustrator Katherine Shapiro

I’m half Japanese, half Jewish, born in Tokyo and raised for the most part in London. Although it can sometimes be difficult to get across to others (how to answer the question "where are you from?" satisfactorily is something I still haven't worked out) I am incredibly grateful to be of a mixed background, it gives me a different way of seeing things to many others and is so fundamental to my experience of life. This is something I've supplemented with travel, which is such a great gift too! I currently live in Madrid, although I'm actually in India until April being completely blown away by this incredible country (and the food!!! Oh my god).

Artistically I am completely self-taught (or self-learnt, rather?). I've always loved drawing, as well as other forms of creating things, and it gives me that elusive sense of purpose that can be so hard to find. I believe that creation is an act of love, and so for me art is a way to express what I find beautiful and important, and to be able to share that with other people too. I paint using watercolours and ink- not only do they fit easily in a backpack, but I get way too stuck into details for anything that I can rub out and change, so I prefer mediums that don't let me spend hours obsessing over one tiny thing. I am inspired by pretty much everything around me- by the way light hits a building at a certain time of day, the curl of a vine and the way leaves fall, by passages in books I am reading or lyrics to songs and daydreams. The difficult thing is to get everything on paper, although I'm definitely getting better at carving out my time to work undisturbed, which I realised is something that keeps me grounded and feeling vaguely sane, or as sane as it's possible for me to feel anyway.

Website: https://www.katherineshapiro.com/

Instagram: @shappyk

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