I draw inspiration from things I hear, observe and feel everyday, translating them into visuals. I would say that soft toys are rather intimate objects for we all attach unique memories to them.  By collecting and stitching the soft toys together, I am stitching all these little stories together to tell my version of the story.

so absurd and silly that it is amusing

Looking back at my body of works, I found that they share this slightly absurd yet playful quality (definition of ludicrous) which is what makes my works entertaining. At first glance, this bag seems like a very cute and child-friendly bag, but upon a second look, you will realise like the existence of the pig man, the super puff and that the bears share the same eyeball. Just like my illustrations, they appear friendly but upon a second look you will realise some strange details.

The bag too doubles up as a pin the tail game, a game I used to play at birthday parties when I was younger. What makes this game so shareable and universal is that it requires no formal translation. The joy of the game can be translated to any language and culture, which is what I feel illustration has the power to do. Illustration is a universal language. Pin the tail is a game of play, where winning is only of marginal importance. Seeing the player stumble around trying to get the tail at the right position is where the fun of the game lies. Entertaining, at times exciting, the result is the most ludicrous. This organic process is similar to my creative process where I don’t work with an end product in mind but immerse myself in the process of working enjoying it. Lastly, this game requires the participation of people. It is only enjoyable and fun when you involve people in the game, like how I work, I find people very interesting and enjoy interacting with them and and having their input in my works.


pig man
super puff


Author: JIA ZHEN


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