Life in plastic, it’s fantastic: Sisi Kim’s playful 3D illustrations are far from disposable

Loving how plastic looks – but not its impact on the environment – the Seoul-based 3D illustrator sees her climate conscious practice as a way of immortalising the material in a less wasteful way.

Date
11 August 2022

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Most creatives have a few reasons as to why they chose their preferred medium. For Sisi Kim, it’s a love of all things plastic looking. Gravitating to 3D illustration for its ability to best represent the key characteristics of the material – “lightness, playfulness and colour” – Sisi’s work may be bold and bright, but it certainly isn’t disposable. Inspired by lighthearted subject matter, like internet memes, childhood toys and 90s pop art, Sisi also interacts with more serious issues, like the impending climate crisis.

In A Messy Day – a brilliantly hectic, apocalyptic piece – Sisi compares the frustration of discarded chewing gum and climate change. “As seemingly trivial as gum sticking to our feet, climate change seems ignorable and irritating, but it keeps influencing our lives and is becoming something increasingly hard to be resolved,” the illustrator explains. In another recent project, Too Cute to Just Be Plastic, Sisi depicted 100 plastic objects in her charming style, immortalising the items and challenging our tendency to throw things away. While Sisi’s may be one of the funnest portfolios we’ve come across recently, it also packs a powerful punch with an undercurrent of social commentary.

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Sisi Kim: Childhood Nostalgia (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2021)

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Sisi Kim: Egg, Flower, Rock, and Dice (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2021)

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Sisi Kim: A Poster for Jeonju International Film Festival, 100Films 100Posters (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2022)

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Sisi Kim: Bored bear (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2021)

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Sisi Kim: Heart Breaker (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2022)

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Sisi Kim: Heart Breaker (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2022)

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Sisi Kim: Earth Day (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2022)

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Sisi Kim: Album cover for “I don’t care” (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2022)

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Sisi Kim: A Page <Too cute to be just plastics> (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2021)

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Sisi Kim: Book Cover <Too cute to be just plastics> (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2021)

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Sisi Kim: A Messy Day (Copyright © Sisi Kim, 2021)

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About the Author

Olivia Hingley

Olivia joined the It’s Nice That team as an editorial assistant in November 2021 and soon became staff writer. A graduate of the University of Edinburgh with a degree in English literature and history, she’s particularly interested in photography, publications and type design.

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