First published July 18, 2023
We’re baaaack, and we’re delighted to share Rasato Ma’s journey this afternoon. Rasato reached out to us a couple of months ago and we were truly bowled over by his work, which feels at once vulnerable and intimate, and explores the relationship between humans and the world they inhabit. Rasato is a London-based illustrator and graphic designer from Shanghai with many admirers, including Creative Boom and Fuse… and now us! In this chat, Rasato talks about his experience at Arts University Bournemouth, his desire to explore Europe (and the importance of taking time out), and how the sunshine, or lack thereof, impacts on his creativity. We hope the sun is shining where you are. Enjoy.
Rasato, what’s your creative occupation?
I am an illustrator and graphic designer, but I don’t think I should limit myself. In my experience, the birth and continual development of creativity always comes with accidents and surprises, which obviously can’t be predicted. I find myself enjoying capturing the hazy and present details of life through photography, and gaining energy from satisfying my taste buds with cooking – I also consider these things part of my creative occupation.
Where have you been?
I spent one year studying and living in Bournemouth for my master’s. Looking back, it was a lovely experience, even though I complained about the city being boring at the time! I never thought that it would be the most precious time; making new friends, exploring the possibilities of illustration, and trying to get along better with myself. It was all worth it, on reflection.
In my experience, the birth and continual development of creativity always comes with accidents and surprises. RASATO ON THE UNPREDICATABLE NATURE OF CREATIVE WORK
Where are you now?
I live and work in London, a modern city like Shanghai; bustling, progressive, and crowded. I’ve had access to the most fresh and beautiful things here – exhibitions, festivals, and independent boutiques. I sometimes lose myself and get stuck so it is crucial for me to be here, doing what I believe in and being the kind of person I want to be.
Where are you going?
I am going to Paris! I know that is not what you meant by the question, but it is definitely the truest thought in my mind right now. I could have said something more ambitious, to look cool, but I don’t want to. I feel regret having not travelled to any European countries during my postgraduate degree. Instead, I devoted myself to projects, research and experiments. I was jealous of some of my classmates who travelled. I think now is the time to give myself a long vacation, to relax and reenergise. Besides, I have learnt that maintaining balance is important. It is not easy, but you have to make a choice when you reach a certain point.
Finally, what’s occupying your thoughts today?
Today the weather is spectacular. The sun is shining through the window onto the bed in my room. Before I came to the UK, I was told the weather is ruthless and makes people feel depressed, especially in winter. I realise now what an emotional thing it is to have sunny days! Besides that, I am thinking about my daily creations and whether or not to work out after dinner. I hope summer arrives soon; to feel the beating heat in the air and to discover a more comfortable way to create.