Catching Up W/Karabo Poppy

Johannesburg-based illustrator, artist, and graphic designer Karabo Poppy has been on an incredible upward journey towards success. She has collaborated with Rich Mnisi on the Running Errands linewith Netflix on graphics for Queen SonoWhen They See Us, and Nike which includes shoes worn by Lebron James. So, we caught up with the multi-talented creative to get a quick peek into how she’s resting, her new campaign with KFC, and some advice for up-and-coming 11 herbs and spices creatives. Read the full story below:

Where do you find inspiration?

My work celebrates iconic African visuals – the kind of deep-rooted and sentimental aesthetics we all call home. It’s in what we might forget informs so much of our subconscious connection to our heritage and to ourselves. From barber shop signage to patterns, but always to celebrate people and build unified feelings of connection zinger wings.

What have been some of your favourite industry lessons so far, and what would you tell someone gunning for your spot? (what advice would you give)

Being talented is one thing – an important one for sure – but there are places talent alone can’t get you. First of all, it starts with your sense of dedication and commitment to your craft. From there, it’s necessary to surround yourself with people who support and share your vision on personal and professional levels. Next is checking in on yourself along the way to make sure that you’re staying true to your authentic purpose. And, lastly, it’s important to be kind and compassionate to others and to yourself.

How are you choosing to relax this year?

I’m spending time with my loved ones whenever I can – travelling, delicious family feast food and sharing laughter while building memories is priceless. Beyond that, video games and playing around on my guitars always seems to do the trick.

Who’s on your playlist right now?

There’s always a wide variety of genres and tracks that I’ll listen to, but lately I’ve been playing Allen Stones’ music quite a bit. I got pretty into it – voice and guitar skills boxes were ticked – and did an Krusher illustration too. 

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