Artist Feature - Karolis Strautniekas
Good evening from a quiet balcony in perfect 27 degree weather in Singapore. I was trying to find an artist from my list to share with you that evoked the feeling I get whenever I come here. A perfect kind of nostalgia for those very VERY hot summer days.
Days when you can't decide whether you should just wait it out and stay in all day with the fan three inches from your face and watch yet another Catdog rerun on Nickelodean or actually go out an enjoy it because lord knows (in England anyway) it sure as hell won't last. I grew up out here so I will always have a strange love for humidity, the feel of marble under your feet and falling asleep to the whirr of an air conditioning unit.
In hind sight this was a pretty tall ask of an illustrator who has never met me and to be honest in all my art loving years no one has quite hit the nail on the head of representing what a summer in the tropics is like. If anyone would be up to the task though it would be Karolis Strautniekas.
Karolis is doing a pretty bang up job of carving out a career representing everything from feelings to crime stories. Sometimes something a little more metaphorical is the only thing that will do. And it's nice that his pieces come with a heavy punch of texture and lovely calm colours.
He's even made me love something to do with James Bond (see this smokey black and grey illustration? That was in celebration of Spectre), which I really can't get on with.
Perhaps an illustrators' job when it comes to creating a piece that inspires empathy in the onlooker isn't to create a piece that picks up directly from its accompanying article, but to boil it down so you "get it" immediately, but leaves you wanting to learn what inspired it. And Karolis is definitely very good at that. I urge you use your easter bank holiday off to have a look around his website.