Design Links: A Chain of Creative Inspiration, Part 4

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Editor’s Note: This is part four in Emily Potts’ inspirational series, Design Links. Every other week, will feature three artists whose work offers fresh, fun and stimulating creative inspiration. Each artist picks the next link—someone who personally inspires him/her. Check out the third part in the series, featuring Victoria Hart, Jen Mussari, and Julianna Brion here.

Julianna Brion is inspired by …

Jon Han

I’m inspired by the sense of fearlessness I get from his work. All the different mediums, colors, textures give a sense of intense kinetic energy that not many people can create in a still image. He mixes traditional and digital media in very unexpected ways that some might expect to be jarring, but it really works. He basically takes my entire idea of what “digital illustration” is and turns it on its head.


Without any words, here, he is able to communicate intense emotion just from texture and the way the comic itself is disintegrating. This piece simply blows me away.


I love the mixed-media in this piece and how he is able to bring digital media into his work. This piece is a really great example of juxtaposing digital and traditional with very harmonious results. As someone who very often has an aversion to the look of “digital illustration”, I really love how Jon uses aspects of it to his advantage. He allows digital elements to look digital, sometimes even enhancing their artificial qualities, rather than disguising them.

Jon Han is inspired by …

Hannah K. Lee

I’m very inspired by Hannah’s work. I was first introduced to her work when I came across her zine Issues #2: Shoes Over Bills and was amazed at how beautifully she integrated lettering and illustration. Hannah’s work is bold and carries so much depth that I notice new nuances when I revisit her work.


I absolutely love this piece Hannah did for the New York Times. The strong composition, design, and mark making keeps my eye trapped in the piece. I believe the piece had to do with someone how had many different relationships and was reflecting on them.



This zine was my real introduction to Hannah’s work. It really showcases how easily Hannah mixes illustration, lettering, and design together. Also, you get a real sense of the artist’s personality and thought process through the work.

Hannah K. Lee is inspired by …

Sophia Foster-Dimino

Sophia is a cartoonist and illustrator who pushes the boundaries of form and storytelling with every project. Even the most banal editorial subjects come alive with her unique visual vocabulary, which is informed by an eclectic and ever-expanding array of interests; and her deeply personal voice, which is always honest and layered.


Sex Fantasy is a personal project of Sophia’s that really lets her personal voice sing. It’s an unusual little comic series that explores vulnerability.


This is Sophia’s cover for Cicada Magazine. It’s complex, quirky, and inviting—everything I love about her work.

Tune in two weeks from now to see who inspires Sophia Foster-Dimino!

33011Inspirability: 40 Top Designers Speak Out About What Inspires

By Matthew Pashkow

It’s hard for graphic designers to stay inspired when they’re constantly working to deadlines. Inspirability gives you a fresh look at how to keep those creative fires burning in the real world through interviews with 40 design luminaries, including Stefan Sagmeister, Paula Scher, Milton Glaser and Chip Kidd, fascinating pictures the designers have taken of themselves and their offices, and samples of their design work. Get it here.