Interview with Shira Barzilay
By now you may be familiar with our fabulous Christmas gift sets. Well here’s a little bit more about the artist behind the stunning box designs. We’re very excited to be partnering with artist Shira Barzilay aka KOKETIT. She’s become known for her signature style: linear yet hyper-feminised which pays tribute to the female form.
We’re very excited to announce that Shira will be taking over the MONPURE Instagram account as of next week! Expect lots of colourful artworks and plenty of creative inspiration. Plus, tune in to our special Instagram Live session with Shira on Monday December 7th at 8pm GMT over at @monpurelondon where we chat more to this very talented lady.
We recently caught up with Shira to chat more about the collaboration and her career thus far…
What made you decide to partner with MONPURE?
Haircare is very important to me. So when I discovered MONPURE – and how it puts a huge emphasis on hair and scalpcare in a totally organic way – it was pretty much a case of “Where do I sign up?” To top it off, they are a sustainable brand so I know I can use their products with a clear conscience.
What does "hair" mean to you?
My hair has been a struggle my entire life. As a former curly girl, my hair was always out of control and had a life of its own. The term ‘good hair day’ was something I wished for in my daily life! I started getting regular blow dries and my wish to have manageable hair came true - yet all that heat styling over the years caused my hair to severely become thin. I was desperately searching for treatment to cure my hair loss.
Do you feel our emotional link to hair isn't spoken about as much as it should be?
I know that for me, hair equals confidence. When I'm loving my hair I feel good about myself. I think that a lot of people are emotionally linked in that sense. We treat it as though it's gold and cry when it's cut too short! We forget that hair usually grows back. I find it so endearing.
What other artists/creatives inspire you?
Right now I'm loving the work of Helga Stenzel. Most of the artwork I am exposed to is through Instagram. I'm also a huge devotee of Albert Madaula and Kit Agar.
How did you develop your linear style?
I have been drawing Koketit ever since I can remember. It was a constant subject in my life, and all throughout my professional career as a fashion illustrator. I had naturally progressed from having a more figurative take on a Koketit face, to a more abstract one. I began eliminating elements of the drawing until I was left with just the line and saw that the truth laid bare. Everything else seemed un-necessary. It was an eilminative process of finding my voice. The lines expressed me best than anything else I tried to embellish.
When creating, do you have a preconceived notion of what the end result is going to be, or do you just let your pen/brush take you where it wants?
I never think about what I'm going to create. I just allow it to come intuitively. There is no thought process involved.
As an artist, what do you find are the most respectively challenging and rewarding aspects of your work?
There are so many rewarding aspects of my work. So many. First of all - the work itself is rewarding – particularly the process of learning and creating and discovering. It's really about the journey. I continue to be amazed at how wonderful I feel after every drawing session. It's almost like a rush of adrenalin. I am lucky enough to have an audience to share my passions with - and that’s hugely rewarding to get to experience my art through other's eyes and perspectives and hear about their inspirations. It's such an honour to be able to move people emotionally. That is what I care about most as an artist. If people just nod and say ‘oh that's pretty’ - it's worthless. I also think that marketing my art can be quite challenging. I love doing things organically and it can feel a bit forced when I’m supposed to promote myself.
What have been the highlights of your career thus far?
There have been so many that it's hard to choose. Every episode of my life has been defined by the different directions that I took as a creative – and each had their own highlights. I went from being a young fashion design student to a working fashion illustrator, to a blogger, a temporary tattoo designer – which all led me to this point in time as a full-time artist and owner of my own brand, KOKETIT.
And last but not least, what's your favourite product in the MONPURE range?
My favourite product is the Follicle Boost Hair Density Serum. It smells amazing and I can feel the extra volume it gives my hair.
Discover the beautiful KOKETIT (AKA Shira Barzilay) designs on our Christmas gift sets here.