An important part of the illustration process is imagining who it is you're drawing. For example, this is seems to be a stylized scene of an office, but if you look closely, it's more.
Before beginning the illustration, I decided the office owner would be a scientist. Not only that, but a scientist who enjoys science fiction and mid-century modern decor. I wanted all the items to read as gender fluid, meaning this could be anyone's office, regardless of gender identity.
I started exploring objects by drawing a line drawing of just a shelf, thinking what would this scientist like to decorate with? The line drawing below was the beginning of this thought process.
Plants, insects, books, a microscope are obvious signs of someone interested in the biology. The Star Destroyer globe and the Star Trek Delta insignia mug are cheeky references to science fiction. A beaker being used as a vase and a framed DNA diagram add a few more less obvious nods to an interest in science.
With the building blocks of the shelf, I illustrated the remaining items in the room and decided Captain Kirk (a pet cat) and Spock (a goldfish) would add some fun energy and a great focal point to the illustration. Some basic animation adds a little energy to the piece and gives focus to our main stars of the show.