hello sandwich's ebony bizys

There is no-one else in the world like Ebony Bizys. And she is amazing for that fact alone. But then there is her work as deputy art director for Vogue Living, her art exhibitions, her Hello Sandwich blog and, most recently, her Hello Sandwich Tokyo Guide. Ebony is full of surprises - she created a beautiful illustration for Saskia Havekes' Grandiflora book. And her "garage" sales are something to behold - I collected amazing packages of lace and ribbon, all carefully designed and printed. Ebony is an artist in the broadest sense of the world. Since recently leaving the hallowed halls of Vogue Living, Ebony is living in Tokyo and starring in TV commercials! Told you she was irrepressible.

Which five words best describe you?
Creative. Cheeky. Sensitive. Energetic. Fun.

What was your first career/job and what path have you taken since?

Straight after school I began working on reception at Vogue. At the time I was also studying my Bachelor of Fine arts at COFA so I would go to uni in the morning dressed as a – well let’s say ‘experimental’ art school style person and then transform into a corporate woman to work at the Vogue offices in the afternoon. Back then I was working only one or two afternoons a week and from there I moved into different departments within the company. Before I knew it, I had a full-time job. I started on Vogue Living as Editorial Coordinator, progressed to Senior Designer and was later promoted to Deputy Art Director. A few months ago, however, I resigned from my role with the magazine and took the plunge to follow my dream and move to Tokyo where I now live. It was one of the hardest decisions I have had to make as working with Vogue Living was so nourishing for me but I am thrilled to live here in Tokyo! I have also continued to study for my Masters in Fine Art at COFA (which I am due to complete this year - phew!) and have persevered with my Japanese language study.

What’s the best lesson you’ve learnt along the way?

A ‘can-do’ attitude goes a long way!

What’s your proudest career achievement?

Designing, proofing, art checking and sending off an entire issue of Vogue Living to the printers while my Art Director was on leave from the office for two months. It was a wonderful opportunity to see the entire issue from start to finish and I really enjoyed testing myself under the pressure. That particular issue of Vogue Living is the edition I am personally most proud of.

What’s been your best decision? To trust the feeling deep, deep down in my heart and follow my dreams by moving to Japan.

Who inspires you? I am inspired by all creative people following their dreams (especially those who are self-employed). To mention a few: Mette from Ungt blod, Elisabeth Dunker from Fine Little Day, Anna Plunkett from Romance Was Born, Hiki-chan from Jollygoo and the amount she manages to squeeze into a day, Pip Lincolne from Meet me at Mikes and Japanese artist Mogu Takahashi for the very same reason (do these people get more than 24 hours in a day? I think so!).

What are you passionate about? Being creative, staying inspired and energised by the arts. Anyone who knows me will say that an any one point in time I have at least five side projects going. Ha ha! At the moment I am constructing a giant paper city for ‘We Craft This City’ exhibition at Object Gallery in October, working on launching my own website and putting together another little Hello Sandwich zine. I am also currently excited about expanding the Hello Sandwich online presence to include both audio and video content! Eeeep! Stay tuned!

Which person, living or dead, would you most like to meet? Japanese contemporary artist Hiroshi Sugito. I would love to convince him that I should be his artist’s assistant and live happily ever after.

What dream do you still want to fulfill? I would love to grow the Hello Sandwich brand, be fluent in Japanese and be energised daily by working in a creative job. And I desperately want to have a Hello Sandwich TV Craft Show!

What are you reading? A bunch of research books for my thesis including The age of Micropop: The new generation of Japanese Artists, Popular Culture - Globalization and Japan, and a pile of imported interiors magazine for design inspiration.

images courtesy of ebony bizys