Chibia Ulinwa, also known as @inkus_dingus on Instagram, is a lettering artist based in Portland, OR. With a passion for bursts of color and uplifting others, Chibia creates energetic, vibrant and positive pieces to educate and amplify.
I took the opportunity to send over a few questions to Chibia, for her speak on her insights and experiences as a creative.
WoT: Name 1 or 2 creatives that inspire you. What about their work breathes inspiration into you?
CU: Ah geez! There’s so many! But definitely Mora Vieytes because her work is on a different level. It’s so energetic, cute and so much fun! And of course @alexaillustrates. This gal not only makes pieces that are culturally relevant to today, but she’s so goofy and I love that about her!
Give a short and sweet piece of advice or knowledge that you wish you had when you first started your creative journey
Feel free to be your quirky self! It’s gonna shine through everything you do.
What was the most recent low point in your creative career? How did you overcome it?
I got that imposter syndrome BAAAAAD! I often grapple with the idea of feeling like I don’t deserve to be in this creative field with so many incredible artists who absolutely know exactly what they’re doing and why they’re doing it (Or so it seems). But I also realize that imposter syndrome is something I’m working on in all areas of my life as a musician, teacher, and friend and this helped me realize that it’s all just in my head lol. People recognize and appreciate what I do so if they believe in me, I should believe in me too!
What do you do to stay creatively motivated?
Honestly, I get fired up seeing other creatives’ content. When I see a real dope piece, I get inspired to create something that hopefully will leave that same impact on others. I also have multiple creative outlets that come into play in my process. It’s kinda a domino effect.
Do you have a signature style? Can you speak to how you got to realize it as your own?
I think I do, but I’m not very good at pinpointing what it is 🙈 I love to explore a lot of things and challenge myself too. But even so, I think that my style still shines through. Maybe it’s my love of texture, color, and composition. I’ll figure out what it is eventually lol
Who is your dream client?
Goodness I’m not sure. Maybe Adidas? Or anybody really. I’m just so thankful for all the clients that I’ve had so far who entrusted me with their vision.
Is there a single piece or collection in your portfolio that you’re particularly proud of?
I think it’s a tie between “Hella in my Feelings” and “Sensitive Club”. I really love the way those turned out!
What areas of your work and personal development do you want to explore further?
I want to continue to explore illustration. I dabble in it a bit, but I want to see if I can start making them a bit more extravagant.
Do you have a favorite font, or type of font? What do you love about it?
I don’t know the name per se, but any grungy brush script brings me joy. There’s just something about the texture and streaks that’s #chef’skiss
What's next for you in your career?
That’s a tough one! I’m currently a music educator and it’s been incredibly amazing being able to inspire the younger generation through orchestra. But I also would love to sustain myself through lettering as well. Wherever it takes me, I’ll follow!