Wrappr: Have you always wanted to be an artist?
Nikita: I’ve always been into drawing and art from a really young age. I became quite obsessed with it especially during lockdown and was drawing almost all the time but had no intentions of exploring it as a career.
W: Tell us a bit about your background, and how you got to where you are now
N: I’m born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya. I’m currently studying at Strathmore University to get my Bachelor’s degree in Business and IT. Growing up, I wanted to try everything. I played tennis, swam, did ballet and gymnastics, attempted football (which I didn’t like as much haha) and so many other things. But art has always been a part of my life. And actually got the idea to start posting my artwork online from my mom!
W: What type of work do you do for your clients?
N: I usually do custom commission work and graphic design for individual clients. And, more lately, I've been working on packaging designs as well as social media branding and graphics.
W: Which of those do you enjoy most right now?
N: I enjoy doing social media graphics the most right now. I get a lot of creative freedom when doing this one company’s different posts while also getting a ton of new knowledge in this industry.
W: What type of work do you do for your own enjoyment?
N: I'm a big fan of fashion and travel illustrations, and I like to do quick sketches in my spare time. I enjoy illustrating a beautiful place or a designer's work in my own style. Fashion is important in my daily life because I believe that when someone enjoys what they are wearing, they feel more confidence. As for travelling, I aspire to visit new locations and get new experiences.
W: What work of yours would you like to be remembered for? Or is it something you are working on?
W: This is a difficult one, haha. I've been trying to develop a distinct and personal art style because it'd be really cool if someone just randomly saw my work anywhere and went, "That's Nikita's artwork!" Also, I wouldn't want to be remembered for a single piece of work, but rather for how my artwork made people feel.
W: What is your creative process?
N: As a freelancer, I have to be in charge of my schedule but funnily enough, I’m not. I’m still learning day by day and it varies depending on the type of work I’m doing. I start with some rough sketches, then as I’m going on with the illustration, I see what works with the piece and add some tiny details till I like the end product.
W: What are you planning to create next?
N: I’m planning to start creating stickers and GIFs as well as filters. I’m currently taking time to watch some YouTube videos as well as some classes that are helping me practice and improve on these skills.
W: What is your biggest indulgence?
N: blue-berry and chocolate muffins :)
W: Where do you find inspiration?
N: I find my inspiration from my surroundings. My artwork is filled with my culture, love and nature because that's what I grew up with. People of diverse ethnicities and cultures can be found going about their daily lives in Nairobi, doing various things. My friends and family are also major sources of inspiration for me; they motivate me to try new things, challenge myself, and keep going.
W: How do you feel about being involved with Wrappr?
N: Thrilled! Working with a brand with strong goals and principles is a pleasure. It's exciting just knowing that I'm being given the opportunity to be a part of something incredible. Wrappr is fantastic because I know it is concerned about the environment, small businesses, and artists while still providing us with beautiful items.
W: What are your thoughts on the climate crisis, zero-waste products, things you’re doing to be environmentally friendly, etc.
N: Climate crisis is getting more and more obvious everyday. We need to protect and preserve the earth and luckily, this topic is receiving a lot more attention. I believe that everyone is aware of the decisions they make when it comes to zero-waste products, and that supporting sustainable alternatives should be one of them.
I aim to keep educating myself about the climate crisis, how I can improve my habits and start living in a more environmentally friendly way. I believe that if we commit to changing some of our everyday practices, we’ll start doing things that will lead to a much-needed change.
When I can, I try to minimize single-use plastic and carry my own reusable shopping bags instead of getting new ones every time. I also try to take public transportation, though it has been a bit difficult since Covid began. To prevent wasting paper, I've just started repurposing old paper to make new paintings.