The most powerful thing about illustration is that you can create the world as you would like to see it. You can rewrite history, provide representation where previously there was none, exaggerate and fantasticalise the mundane and stretch reality to the boundaries of your imagination.
I enjoy creating things that show how weird and beautiful the world is. My work is often surreal and filled with colour, sparkles and off-kilter iconography. I love depicting Black women as innately beautiful because I feel like the world doesn’t do it enough. I take inspiration from the nostalgia of my 90s childhood, everything from old sticker books to streetwear, anime and virtual aesthetics. It’s quite hard to pin down my style as I hop from branding to illustration to photo collages, but there’s certainly a defined, colourful thread that runs through all my creative work.
Grace Enemaku is an award-winning, Nigerian-Irish multidisciplinary designer and illustrator from Dublin, who creates branding and illustration for the unconventional. She is the founder of DesignOpp, an IDI initiative to champion diversity for People of Colour in the Irish design and creative industry.
Her first children’s book I Believe In You by Deborah Somorin was published by Gill Books last year. She won a 100 Archive Award in 2020 for her Dublin Vinyl record packaging and has exhibited with Hen’s Teeth, Music, Memory and the Night and Where Are The Black Designers. Select clients include Arnotts, Guinness, Cadburys, Facebook, The Science Gallery and Gill Books.