Karan Singh’s work strikes a perfect balance between bright colours and peaceful pastels, strong patterns and plain backgrounds. His illustrations lend themselves easily to animation, and with dynamic patterns that almost tend towards optical illusion, even his still artworks sometimes seem to move. Karan’s recent projects include illustrating the front cover for Bernadine Evaristo’s 2019 Booker-Prize winning novel Girl, Woman, Other, creating art for the Adobe Illustrator 2020 splash and developing delightfully elegant animations for Louis Vuitton.
How would you describe your artistic style?
Visually, I think of it as a combination of pop and op art. I’ve always been drawn to minimalism and geometry but it took a while to work out how best to channel them. Then, a while ago, I went through a period where I completely stripped my designs back and found that I actually enjoy working with fewer things. It really helped me to hone my ideas, because it meant that everything on the page had to be there for a reason. Choosing colours also became a bit like solving a puzzle, because the wrong colour in the wrong place could break the illusion. However, I like to think of style as organic rather than fixed, and having the ability to evolve along with you as you explore new things.
We love the animations of your images on your website. How do you see the relationship between your static illustrations and animations?
Thanks! Starting out with animation was an example of this exploration and evolution I just mentioned. I began to animate my illustrations out of curiosity, but with the style I’d developed, it also just felt like a natural next step – the patterns lent themselves to being animated in really simple ways but it added a new personality and character. It snowballed pretty quickly and I found myself pushing my animations further and learning more complicated things. I think I’ve come full circle again though, because I’m gravitating back towards simplicity.
I would LOVE to work on a music video or the intro titles for film.