Meet the Artist: Iris Kwon

Meet the Artist: Iris Kwon

Meet the artist behind our latest Artist Edition lens cloth, Iris Kwon of Child Appetite.

Iris Kwon is the imaginative designer and illustrator behind Child Appetite. “Child Appetite” derives from a Korean phrase - 초딩 입맛 (cho-ding ib-mat) - which can be roughly translated to “Elementary Tastebuds.” It’s an essential flavor, driven by our craving for certain foods that we enjoyed as kids and never fully grew out of. This term embodies the essence of Iris' work and the core feeling that she draws from in her creative process. Her aim is to ultimately help create an atmosphere that brings out those lost childhood moments and produces a spark that will help us all restore this wonder.

What was your inspiration for this artwork?
Since the outbreak of the pandemic in 2020, there has been a great deal of chaos and unpredictable moments in the world around me. Even the weather patterns in LA have been abnormal, with more rain and cloudy days than usual. And most people would agree to the fact that weather changes our mood. That's why I am drawn to the idea of capturing the upcoming Super Bloom, which we will be able to see around Los Angeles around this time of the year. The thought of our plants and flowers thriving amidst the challenges of the past year is a powerful symbol of positivity and hope that can uplift our spirits.

Your work aims to bring out those lost childhood moments. Tell us about this.
Growing up, I was constantly on the move, hopping from one country to another as a Korean kid. Each time, I had to adapt to a new culture and way of life, which wasn’t always easy. I found myself holding on to my past memories more tightly, because everything around me seemed so fleeting and temporary.
As I got older, I realized that I had a deep desire to capture and preserve those lost memories in a tangible way. That’s why I started working on Child Appetite, my personal brand where I use my illustrations to recreate moments from the past. Through my art, I’m able to revisit those memories and give them a new life.

What are some of your earliest memories with art as a child?
I remember, my mom turned the garage into my playroom, so that I can literally draw and paint all over the wall and floor, because I always was holding crayons everywhere I go.

What is your process of creating new work?
I usually start with looking at my dream journal. I realized, a lot of the time, all the deep memories from your past get reflected in your dream unconsciously. Almost like a diary. I use the phrase or clusters of the world to create the theme of the illustration.

Tips for working through creative blocks?
I don’t rely solely on my imagination or my dreams to create new things, because I do get stuck. So, to keep my creativity flowing, I feed myself to different types of media, like random poetry, 80’s films,and documentaries. I also love chatting with people that are not from creative fields, because the way they think really opens up different perspectives on things.

How has your Korean background influenced your art?
Even though I spent 80% of my life so far in a different country, that 20% that I spent in Korea, heavily influenced the way I think and the way I create art. There’s so much unique and interesting culture in Korea that continues to inspire me as I get older.

Favorite Covry frame?
Hamal Silver