Meet Irina Blok: The Cartoonist Inspired By COVID-19

WDM connected with artist and designer, Irina Blok to learn more about the inspiration behind her funny and relatable cartoons. 


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A post shared by Irina Blok (@creativeblok)

Irina Blok is a Silicon Valley-based designer who you may know as the creator the Android logo or for her Shark Tank episode. More recently, you might recognize her witty cartoons parodying the COVID-19 pandemic, life in lockdown, and other current affairs that she shares via her Instagram page @creativeblok.

Inspired by daily life, her cartoons are especially relatable to everyone navigating the highs and lows of remote work and attempting to return to the office. We connected with Irina to learn more about her inspirations, thoughts on the future of work, and more.

Make sure to check out her Instagram page here!


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Irina Blok (@creativeblok)

WDM: Where do you get your inspiration from?

Irina: I get my inspiration from the absurdities of everyday life. It could be pretty much everything… daily news, my daily schedule, feelings, drinking too much coffee or even from household objects. Sometimes inspiration strikes during a Zoom call, and sometimes when I am watching Netflix. There’re some days when I have lots of ideas, and some days when I have none. One of my biggest sources of ideas has been the pandemic and how it has changed every aspect of our lives.

WDM: What’s your biggest takeaway from the pandemic?

Irina: While the pandemic has been a devastating event, it gave me more time to reflect and think, and this led to my daily drawing habit. Drawing has become a great way to deal with uncertainty and fear, and provide a lighthearted outlet. Sometimes laughter is the best medicine.


View this post on Instagram


A post shared by Irina Blok (@creativeblok)

WDM: What was your favorite office to work in and why?

Irina: I’ve worked at a variety of offices throughout my career, anything from traditional cubicles to an open space plan. In the past 5 years I noticed modern offices started to feel very industrial, more like art museums or airports, lacking warmth and personality. They all also seem identical, like they’ve been designed by the same architect.

As an introvert, I find these oversize modern offices a bit intimidating. I like alternating where I work, for example when I need to focus I prefer to hide and have my own space, and for some light tasks I prefer to work in a cafe with some background noise. I don’t like to be chained to the desk, this feels uninspiring. Right now I work from home, and it helps me reach a deeper focus, although I miss people.

WDM: If you had to make a prediction about the future, what would it be?

Irina: While the future of work is uncertain, the “old normal” has been changed forever. There are many positive changes, for example not having to spend hours commuting, or working at the office 9-5. But with remote work there are some challenges on how to avoid a burnout and set better boundaries between work time and personal life.

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