6th January 2021
3 minute read
I read somewhere once that if a person stays in your life for more than seven years, the friendship is a true one. That that person becomes family.
I met Lina in 2012, when we were both still finding our purpose in life, having just relocated to London a few years prior. We bonded over our love of fashion; that summer was the height of the ‘jeans and a cute top’ era for going out, and I can safely say that we both perfected the J Brand denim and Rebecca Taylor silk top look.
It was fashion that brought us together, and Ottolenghi’s impossibly rich hot chocolates that warmed my heart and soul, and had me recognise that the girl sipping away next to me might be a real keeper.
Like in all good friendships, we have been witness to each others self-development and growth. I feel honoured to have had the pleasure of being a part of Lina’s artistic journey so far.
Lina is a graphic designer and trained in classical oil paint. She had successfully completed campaigns for vodka and fashion brands and Adidas to name just a few, and her illustration work has been featured in Grazia and Milk Magazine in Hong Kong.
Moving almost seamlessly between sketching portraits and abstract acrylic painting, Lina is multifaceted, inspiring and one of the people in my life whose quest I am excited to follow and even play a very small part in.
Me: How have you been feeling these last few months, with everything happening in the world? Where have you been staying, and how, if at all, has this affected your creativity?
Lina: I think I am the only person in the world that has enjoyed lockdown and has worked more than ever. I am at home in Melbourne, Australia, after a year away in Stockholm and London.
Melbourne has had one of the hardest lockdowns in the world, and I can honestly say that it has helped me stay grounded and my creativity has experienced an all time high! That feeling of getting stuck for hours in details is very cathartic.
Me: I’m really interested to hear if you feel you have been able to be more creative as the world came to a stand still? Or if in any way staying indoors with a lack of inspiration has actually hindered you from painting and drawing freely?
Lina: Like I said before being grounded and forced to stay inside has really helped my creativity, and given me hours of free time to create and push boundaries that I may not have had, if I was stuck in the fast paced life of a mindless routine. Which I think all of us can relate to.
Me: What is your all-time favourite piece of Art, if you can choose one and have one? Is this where you draw your inspiration from?
Lina: Edgar Degas’ ballerinas are my favourite works of art. The line work and colour palette inspires all my work, and always has done. His ability to create movement and atmosphere with the simplest of lines is simply beautiful. I went to see an exhibition of his at the Royal Collage of Art in London a few years ago, it was such a wonderful experience.
Me: Do you have an all-time favourite piece of work that you created, and why would you choose this as your number one piece? Does it remind you of a certain moment in time, perhaps?
Lina: I have a few illustrations that I love, that are showcased in this article, but I’m always striving to create my next favourite.
That is probably my biggest motivator, I am always trying to get better and move onwards and upwards in my work as well as my personal life. Isn’t that what subconsciously we are all doing and aiming towards?
Me: What are you working on at the moment, if this is something I may ask and you are willing to share?
Lina: At the moment I am working on a large nude acrylic painting, it’s going to be beautiful.. and actually inspired by you!
Me: What inspires you to get up in the morning?
Lina: My family, friends and my cat, and moments that make me feel alive! Also listening to good music and enjoying moments that could otherwise pass us by.
Me: Hindsight of course is a wonderful thing; If you could re-design your life, would you do anything differently?
Lina: From the lowest of lows to the highest of highs, I don’t regret anything as it has led me into where I am today and where I will be going in the future. And for that I am truly thankful every day. So no, I would not redesign or change anything- something I have only come to terms with a few years ago, though, I think.
Me: Virtually conducting this interview during a national lockdown, I can only speak from personal experience; Do you ever get FOMO?
Lina: I have done a lot in my life and with my time so far, I have travelled the globe, lived abroad, met some wonderful and interesting people, and I know that these times and that excitement will be coming back to me in the future. So, again with a lot of reflection and personal growth, I am safely able to say that the answer to that is no, I don’t get FOMO. (anymore)
Me: Is there anywhere you’d rather be right now?
Lina: I am very happy exactly where I am right now, but my happiest memories have been next to you in London walking up and down the Kings Road together, coffee in hand, gossiping and talking about everything from art and design to fashion and the men in your lives, and I know we will be doing that again very soon.
Me: What are your personal words of wisdom, being on this planet for 30something years?
Lina: Your 20s can be hard but try to embrace being yourself entirely, don’t try to fit in and don’t be afraid to stand out. You will attract the right people when you stop chasing the wrong ones. (This is something I have learned the hard way, for sure)
Be strong, and try to not to second guess yourself, life is hard already so don’t make it any harder for yourself. By the time you reach 30 your patience for people and things that bring joy to your life wears thin and you become unapologetically yourself, people can take it or leave it.
Me: And for the final question, I have to ask and know: Aiden or Big?
Lina: Mr Big always and forever! He set my unhealthy standards ever since I was a pre-teen. lol.