The magically modular illustrations of Julia Schwarz

Kois: "This work tries to capture the beauty of koi carp. I made marbled paper and used these analog structures."

Julia Schwarz is a freelance illustrator based in Berlin who works for editorial clients including The New York Times, Wired Magazine and Vogue Japan, as well as advertising clients and cultural institutions. She describes her illustration style as "colourful, planar, and modular".

She explains her process thus: "I combine digital elements with textures, influenced by analogue printing techniques, to get content-related and visually exciting contrasts. By playing with the familiarity of these analogue textures and their haptics, I introduce a distinct liveliness into my digitally drawn images."

Her subjects range from technology and psychology to feminism and business. "I also love to draw situations with a silly sort of humour," she adds. But whatever her topic, her use of colour is refreshingly original, and overall, the expressive vitality of her approach is quite thrilling.

Snake: "Playing around with colour gradients."

Snake: "Playing around with colour gradients."

Ice cream: "I love ice cream, especially my favorite ice cream creations, Pinnochio and Mickey Mouse. They got a little creepy while melting."

Ice cream: "I love ice cream, especially my favorite ice cream creations, Pinnochio and Mickey Mouse. They got a little creepy while melting."

Effective Altruism for Vogue Japan. "What is Effective Altruism all about, and how can we use this approach to more various areas of our everyday lives?"

Effective Altruism for Vogue Japan. "What is Effective Altruism all about, and how can we use this approach to more various areas of our everyday lives?"

Temperaments for The New York Times. "I did this illustration for an article in the Smarter Living section, with the title: 'Could Ancient Greek Philosophy Help You Work Smarter and Better?'. The article describes the idea of thinking in terms of broad personality types and how they may help you get things done."

Temperaments for The New York Times. "I did this illustration for an article in the Smarter Living section, with the title: 'Could Ancient Greek Philosophy Help You Work Smarter and Better?'. The article describes the idea of thinking in terms of broad personality types and how they may help you get things done."

Bubble: "This is an independent work. As a child, I was really into making soap bubbles."

Bubble: "This is an independent work. As a child, I was really into making soap bubbles."

Eternity: "My reaction to the toilet paper crisis this year. I wanted to show the bizarre aspects of hoarding. It was sad and funny at the same time."

Eternity: "My reaction to the toilet paper crisis this year. I wanted to show the bizarre aspects of hoarding. It was sad and funny at the same time."

Magazine Makers for Wired: "This illustration is for the article 'When Government Fails, Makers Come to the Rescue' by Clive Thompson about a network of tinkerers who come in handy when lives are on the line during corona times."

Magazine Makers for Wired: "This illustration is for the article 'When Government Fails, Makers Come to the Rescue' by Clive Thompson about a network of tinkerers who come in handy when lives are on the line during corona times."