Rina cartoonName: Rina Horiuchi

Your passion: The intersection of systems thinking, visual design, and social/environmental justice.

Your work/project: At Remake, I mostly wear my designer hat, so I draw stuff. But I’ve been working on social and environmental issues for a while. When I was a little girl, I wanted to be a cartoonist, so it’s fun to have that be a part of what I do now.

How you came to work in your field: My background is in user experience design, product management, and social/environmental change. Ayesha and I used to work together at a nonprofit that consults with companies on social and environmental issues. She called me one day, told me she was starting a blog about responsible shopping and asked if I wanted to help design the site. That was the beginning—actually it’s still just the beginning.

A snapshot of the future you want to see: I believe the world would be a better place if we were all systems thinkers—meaning for every decision we made, we would understand and be better at predicting not just the immediate effects, but the indirect and long-term effects of our decisions. And it would be automatic for all of us to think that way. I think many of the problems in the world today are unfortunate, unintended consequences due to our inability to understand the systems around us.

Favorite book/film/media: The Ecology of Commerce by Paul Hawken changed the way I saw the world. The Story of Stuff (the video) by Annie Leonard reinforced it. On a totally different note, Lum (Uruseiyatsura) was the Japanese comic series I was obsessed with as a child and got me drawing and cartooning.

Favorite brand: The Beatles. Oh, you said, “brand”?

Favorite memory: The warm, naive feeling of security as a child, clueless of all the world’s problems.

Favorite daydream: To fly all over the world, eat delicious, decadent food, and buy super-cool designed stuff—in a world where it’s not bad for the planet or my health or my wallet.

What you do for fun: My kid cracks me up.

How you recharge: A good conversation and lots of laughs is the best medicine for me. That and big, beautiful, leafy trees.

Your (not so) secret wish: I wish the Occupy movement had achieved a bigger revolution. I was so hopeful when it was growing. I started a cartoon to document it, but then the movement petered out, and I didn’t feel like illustrating it anymore.

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