1. What’s your name and title/business name? Where are you located, city, state, country location?
I’m Hazel Karkaria and I’m a graphic designer and letterer. I run a graphic design studio called By Two Design, with my friend Somesh and I’m based out of Ahmedabad, India.
2. What’s your educational and professional background, i.e., college, professional school, high school, apprenticeship, etc.?
I studied visual communication at the Srishti School of Art, Design and Technology in Bangalore, India. After design school I moved back home and worked as a full time freelance graphic designer. We couldn’t wait to have our own studio, so in 2013 we set up By Two Design and specialised in illustration.
I’ve been fascinated with type since design school and when I saw Jessica Hische’s work in Communication Arts some years back, I fell in love with the world of lettering. A year ago I started lettering seriously, practicing in any and all spare time, starting with brush lettering and evolving with different tools and techniques. I also conduct lettering workshops.
3. Preferred tool(s) and medium?
I’m all for analog and completely obsessed with stationery . I love my brush pens, pencils, tracing paper and I love going through the process of using all my tools, but a lot of my work has been digital since I got the iPad Pro and Apple pencil. I still resort to pencil and paper for all initial sketches though.
4. Where or how do you “recharge your creative battery,” i.e., books, blogs, music, art, exercise, meditation, prayer, hobbies, interests, etc.?
I can be a bit obsessed with work or with being productive and have this annoying habit of persisting even when I should disconnect or recharge. It probably sounds strange, but I like long commutes – it’s my chance to do nothing and look around (and it really is fascinating when you take time out to watch the world go by). At other times, it’s been going for a run, listening to the Design Matters podcasts, writing and collecting stories or gardening.
5. Tell us something about you that might surprise or delight us.
Apart from working full time as a designer, I rescue urban wildlife and there are always some injured or orphaned critters in my studio with me while I work.
David Attenborough is my absolute hero; a master storyteller with the best kind of visual communication. He basically combines both my worlds perfectly and at some point I’m going to make a (30” x 40”) hand lettered poster as a tribute to him.