A: After getting my education at Avni Art College and later at Camera Obscura Design School in Tel Aviv, the fashion industry became my field of interest. I have been working with a number of clients for about 15 years as a full time independent illustrator and textile print artist. During the last 7 years I've been working as a print and graphic designer for Sela Fashion and Accessories. Sela is an international clothing company, with over 600 stores worldwide. They are producing innovative and unique children's and teens wear, along with other items.
Q: How long have you been creating?
A: I've been a devoted inventor since my early childhood! I have always drawn and invented stories. I think it was the beginning of what I'm doing now.
Q: How would you describe your style?
A: I tend to think my style can be described as a surreal story telling. I feel that I am a keen observer and a lot of my pictures are painted from life.
Q: Have any other artists influenced your style?
A: I admire the works of talented artists who could be considered my creative inspiration! I adore the illustrations of Rodney Mathews, Sven Nordqvist, Rebecca Dautremer and Brian Frowd.
Q: Why did you decide on Babayagada as a name for your business?
A: The name for my shop came from my nickname which originally came from the Russian folk tales but it has a more complex meaning.
Baba Yaga is an ugly old witch who lives in a deep enchanted forest in a hut on giant chicken feet. "Baba" is a demotic word which means "woman". "Agada" means "tale" in Hebrew. "Yagoda" is "berry" in Russian (some Russian folk idiomatic expression tells "baba yagodka" which means "attractive woman").
Q: What items do you carry in your shop?
A: Right now these are high quality giclee prints of my mixed media digital illustrations.
I plan to add new sections of original graphic jewelry. I'm working hard on it right now!
Q: What are your main sources of inspiration?
A: I think it's life with all it's many-sided appearances. It could be a song or book but often the emotional impact comes from something very inconspicuous, like a raindrop on a window! Jim Jarmusch once said :"The beauty of life is not in a big events, it's all in a small details". I feel the same with inspiration.
Q: Do you have a favorite item you have made?
A: My favorite items are my recent works.
Q: Any sales or promotions?
A: Yes, I'm doing a custom orders.
Q: Where would you like to go with your business?
A: I'm dreaming about animation! I keep saying to myself:" Stop dreaming! Start doing it!"
Q: What is the best reaction you have gotten from one of your pieces?
A: The best reaction I've got was from a little boy who looked at my picture and immediately started to tell me an improvised story full of details and in a very descriptive style about what he is seeing! It was impressive!Q: Name 3 things you can't live without?
Thank you so much, Lena, for this wonderful interview!
Where to see and purchase Lena's work:Her shop on Etsy