Despite substantial change, a woman’s voice is still ignored in many spaces – but that is gradually changing. This group of talented illustrators use their work to provide a perspective to topics such as women’s rights, loss, depression and storytelling.
Eisenberg’s work is a collection of vibrant colours paired with fierce females dominating outer space. Pizza, skateboards, stretch marks and space ships help depict a world of independent women doing whatever the hell they want. Eisenberg’s work is fictional but still aspirational. It’s exciting and empowering to see women being their own superheroes!
At the other end of the spectrum is Sally Nixon. Her work illustrates in such incredible detail daily life, some of it quite touchingly realistic. Nixon’s work, on top of being mega-detailed, also has a vintage and a somewhat nostalgic feel to it. The level of detail makes her illustration both approachable and accessible to such a wide spectrum of people. From a crumpled toothpaste tube to the grommets on a pair of trainers, people can look at Nixon’s work and see themselves and their own lives on paper.
Libby VanderPloeg describes herself as a storyteller. Through her illustrations she creates work with a message and strong sense of intent but through a soft and clear style. He portfolio consists of work that provides encouragement to vote, supporting the rights of women and beautiful maps. VanderPloeg’s work is both aesthetic and informative and her use of colour and simplistic forms allows her more serious messages to shine through while also being a truly beautiful composition.
Aoife McDermott’s style is all about fun, and girl power. With a fabulous colour palette Barbarella Bunny creates illutrations that celebrate women’s diversity and independence with hints of pop culture and sexuality. The women in her work are fierce and sassy, a fantastic combination! Barbarella Bunny also advocates strongly for women’s rights but especially for those of her fellow Irish women. Ireland has some of the most strict laws around abortion in the continent and Barbarella Bunny has used her work and popularity to help spread awareness and support for the #repealthe8th movement, while creating fabulous art that celebrates women.
After the loss of her father and a terrible break up all within a short period of time, Mari Andrew turned to art to help her through her grief. She began creating a piece of work each day and posting it on to her Instagram feed. What started out as simply a coping mechanism revealed itself to be a love, and a previously undiscovered passion. Andrew continues to sketch and has since published a book of her illustrations. Her work combines simple imagery and handwritten text to create illustrations that are honest and vulnerable; she allows herself to be exposed and which is so brave and admirable.
Words by Michelle Heath