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Into the Mind of Clara Jonas, Designer & Illustrator

When I think about creativity, I often start wondering about the creator itself. I think about what could possibly push the artist to such an extreme where the need to create becomes necessary. We can observe it in many details: the ignorance of logical advices, the sleepless nights, the insomnia when ideas can’t leave you in peace. This is when I ask myself: is it really worth it? This rollercoaster that creativity is and the uncertainty it brings with it, is it necessary?

It may not be a normal path; creativity should not be, anyhow. It is a tough one with a lot of ups and down, but it brings you a feeling of joy so intense that we can’t simply close our eyes to it, we need to let it be. Sometimes, art allows you to connect with a like-minded person that reminds you the beauty of it all. That’s what Clara Jonas does—she brings you peace when it feels like chaos.

Clara is a talented designer/illustrator from Cornwall in the U.K. We could also say she’s a professional Instagram addict, but you are not supposed to know until you know her enough. Currently enrolled in a graphic design course in Falmouth, Clara stands out from the crowd through her illustrations inspired by brands such Deus Ex Machina or The Secret Slide Society, to only name a few. “One of my biggest inspiration is Gemma O’Brien, she works with Monster Children and does really cool stuff” mentioned Clara. “Also, the surf culture. Not the mainstream side of surfing, but I think in general, there are beautiful things happening in the surfing world, beautiful art,” she then added. Fascinated by the lifestyle surrounding surfing, Clara always tried to be close to nature and try to disconnect from society as often as she can. Enjoying the beauty of the little things, as some might say.  

Torn between taking the illustration course or the graphic design one, she decided to see bigger and grow her range of skills by picking the second option. She has now almost finished her first year, with only two years left to do. “I just want to get the most out of it then go travelling and surfing,” she laughed about. Of course, this feeling is something we all constantly feel and try to bury, so it isn’t surprising that her art, inspired from surfing, makes her want to leave. On the side, she also works on few freelance projects and tries to develop her own range of prints that she could add to her Etsy Shop. “I would like to push the freelance a bit more. I’ve been doing a few logo designs for some of my friends, but I want to finish a mini collection of prints and lettering. It’s really hard to relax and do your own project when you think you could do something for a client instead and get paid,” she then added. Not only inspired by the illustration world, Clara would like to try something new and explore what filmmaking as to offer. Hoping to work in collaboration with one of her friends and do some really funky lettering graphic to combine with his films, she has one goal: to be the closer she can from the sea.

“It’s so easy to not do something because you’re scared of trying it. I am really guilty of that,” she suddenly confessed. Creativity is one of two things: a curse or a daily joy. It brings you such a delightful life when it kicks in, but when it doesn’t, your life suddenly seems so sad. So useless. Clara, though, has something unique that only a few have: excitement. Talking with her is like talking to a child mentioning they will have ice cream for dessert, their happiness is just impossible to ignore. She’s craving for creativity and wants to live passionately, no matter at what cost. Even though she gets scared sometimes, as we all do, she keeps going towards her dream.

During her youth, you could always find her in her parent’s solarium, enjoying the lights coming in with the plants surrounding her. Now living on her own, she had to find her own little paradise where she could find inspiration at. “I mainly create my handwritten stuff in my room. I make sure that the windows are open, that the light is going around, I get some music going and I lock the door so people leave me alone,” Clara laughed about. Sometimes you need to be antisocial to create isn’t? She then continued, “My room always ends up with paper all over the floor, I make such a mess! I like the process though, it means that I am on a roll. Then, I will start scanning and go in a cafe to finish it all digitally.” Being in the right state of mind also plays a huge role in Clara’s art and this is for that exact reason she can’t create if it’s sunny outside, as she automatically wants to go out.

Her mind may dwell into a dream of warm locations on most days, but Clara would love to work in a design studio in Europe in the future. Hoping to travel a lot with her job and discover as many design studios as possible, she’s focusing her art on the offbeat surf culture that exists, where creativity and the sea becomes one. We can say whatever we want, but if there’s one thing I am sure of, it’s that Clara is one of a kind. She gets so excited with future projects and can’t sleep at night. She’s curious about the world and people in it. She’s spending most of her days at school, daydreaming of what she could create next. Her art isn’t du deja vue, it’s something fresh that stays in our mind & this is for that exact reason you should not look away too fast. She’s talented and we’re excited to see what life will bring to that lovely English girl.

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