#DI Emerging Creative Buhle Qabaka chats to us about music icons, popular culture, and old-school cartoons

Bold illustrations and breaking boundaries

How would you describe your aesthetic?

I would describe my creative aesthetic as abstract combined with pop art since I am an artist/creative that loves experimenting with different textures and using vivid colours to convey an emotion or bring life to my illustrations.

How does your work reflect your personality?

In various ways, my art represents my personality. As a person, I am someone who enjoys watching anime and old-school cartoons, who adores the ‘90s aesthetics and nature and adventure. I am full of love and serenity, and am influenced/inspired by everyday life and music.

You feature quite a few musicians and pop culture icons in your work, how does music influence your illustrations?

Music is part of my daily life since it is one of my sources of inspiration and a kind of healing for me. Most of my artworks are based on musicians and pop icons whose style/aesthetic I admire and who influence me as an individual. I base the entire idea on the type of emotion that it evokes and then depict it visually.

What do you hope to be remembered for?

I want to be remembered as the artist that influences/inspires the next generation of aspiring artists to pursue their ambitions regardless of their background; an artist that is not afraid to break the boundaries/norms, and a beacon of hope.

Like many young creatives, would you say you occasionally experience a sense of 'imposter syndrome'? If so, how do you focus on being inspired by others without comparing your work?

I do experience impostor syndrome occasionally, and it has a significant impact on my mental health and creativity. In my leisure time, I like to observe what other creatives in my industry are doing to improve their craft, how they have grown their creative style/aesthetic, and how I may adapt it to my own liking in order to evolve my creativity.

What can we look forward to seeing from you soon?

I plan to collaborate with local, rising artists/brands from all sectors of the art industry in order to grow as a creative and broaden my horizons.

 Credits: Buhle Qabaka