Cape Town-based digital artist Xia Carstens, aka Xee Summer, is known for her bright, bold and beautiful works!

We are super excited about our upcoming collaboration with this creative spirit, and went to find out more about Xee behind the colourful art, her greatest inspiration and influences!

Xee completed a Bachelors in Graphic Design and for the last few years has been living her dream of creating, and inspiring lives and homes through an abundance of colour!  ‘I love the freedom of expression and the escape from reality that goes along with being creative!’

The opportunity to escape into another world and play in a safe space for a couple of hours every day is therapeutic, and she would not exchange it for anything. Xee is a firm believer that everyone is creative and everyone has the capability of tapping into it - it just takes courage to step out of our comfort zones, she says.

Her works are mostly digital vector work. ‘I LOVE drawing and painting and working with my hands but those who know me, know that I am super OCD about cleanliness, and I find that it’s so easy to work digitally as I am able to keep everything (including myself!) clean in the process!’

Those who already follow her on Instagram, would have picked up on Xee’s love for the ’60s/‘70s but with a modern, childlike playfulness and her natural love of colour, with many of her works featuring vivid pinks and sunny yellows.

‘Colour for me is what makes or breaks something. Playing with colour after I have designed or illustrated something is to me the best and my favourite part of the process. There are several colours I feel work so well together and they make me feel in a certain way. Colour most certainly evokes emotion and sets the tone of something.’

What is your morning ritual?

Wake up way too early and usually before for everyone, so will make myself a cup of coffee. Get back into bed and chill with myself and my cat, Frank Zappa, for an hour while I can hear the world waking up around me. I love the silence and the time I have to myself.

Your fave local coffee spot:

Rosetta on Bree Street - YUM in every sense of the word!

Inspires me:

Anything and everything. Conversations, people, new ideas, being challenged artistically, colours, scents, the mountains, walks, clouds, sounds. We have endless inspiration all around us and most of us choose not to see it. We are super lucky to be here and experience all of this.

Biggest influences:

My dad who I lost in 2017. People, both younger and older, the classics who will never really age.

Art Trends / Artists:

Sooooo many these days. It is so refreshing and inspiring to see what people are doing and creating. People really are incredible if you surround yourself with the right ones.

Style Icon: Uhmm, I don't really have one to be honest. I love fashion and good taste so I follow many people across the world, purely for having a good aesthetic :)

Go-to recipe:

Roasted broccoli and cauli with Dukkah and topped with fresh avo.

Currently reading:

Oh flip, I have a bunch of things waiting for me and staring at me, but I don't make enough time for books to be honest. I draw when I'm not working.

On weekends you can usually find Xee…

with friends or on the mountains running or in Summer on the beach.