For this article in the international artist series, we turn to Lithuania, featuring six artists who create fantastic work, from illustration to graphic design and more! I asked each artist how their country and culture inspired their work, and they delivered fantastic answers. Enjoy!
Justina, or "Julei," is a digital artist based in Vilnius, Lithuania. Her work features beautiful compositions made up of clean shapes, vivid colors, and unique imagery. Check out a small selection of her work below, or see more in her portfolio.
The Music City
I have been traveling for some time after I graduated, but still I always come back to Lithuania because it’s my home. I love the nature, forests, and the old town of Vilnius City where I live and work.
Go to Lithuania
I had a chance to take part in the Go to Lithuania project which is all about Lithuania and its cultural events. Go to Lithuania was started as an independent project by Zazu Studio, where I work at the moment.
Discoveries Vol. 1
I think that the visual culture in Lithuania is evolving every year. We have a growing number of events and conferences related to art, design, music, games, and so much more. So it’s a good sign that art is getting more important and connecting people.
Jonas is a concept artist and illustrator based in Vilnius, Lithuania. His work features incredible digital paintings fueled by his passion to create worlds and concept art for games. Check out a small selection of his work below, or see more in his portfolio.
Toxicated Sins - Character Art
Lithuania is a small, but interesting country to live in. We have all four seasons so we are never tired of the heat or cold. Nature and forests are the biggest treasure of Lithuania. They are such a beauty that you need to see and feel it for yourself because words cannot simply describe it.
Toxicated Sins - Concept Art
Compared to other regions, Lithuania is very young in terms of the traditional and digital art industries. Lithuania suffered from various wars so most of the art here is related to difficult times, hard jobs, and sad stories. Maybe that's why some of my work reflects those dark themes. Other than that I love nature and animals, so I try to combine these things and convert them into creatures and characters.
The art community is very small, but everybody is kind and helpful to each other. There are some great artists who gave me awesome feedback and boosted my drawing skills a lot. Thanks to globalization there is an opportunity to stay at home and reach any location within seconds around the globe. But the competition is very high today and we need to compete with amazing talents around the world, so we must help each other as much as possible to keep our heads above the water.
Jovita is a freelance illustrator based in Vilnius, Lithuania. Her work is an adorable mash of vibrant colors paired with a clean, comic style. Check out a small selection of her work below, or see more in her portfolio.
IKONA No.5 Psychologist
I love the nature here. In the city, we have a lot of parks and trees on every corner. I like the people here too. We are very tolerant of others, and although we almost always look angry, we actually are pretty nice.
IKONA No.5 Children
When I think about it initially, the culture that influenced my works the most would be Japan. When I was young, I fell in love with anime. From then on, I was obsessed with it and started do draw things similar to it. When I got older, however, I learned about fashion illustrations and it gave me freedom in drawings. And now, some feelings and themes I take are from my country's folklore.
The art community is great here. We try to help each other. In some groups we comment on each other works, share our own, and get some great critique from others.
Ged is an illustrator and animation director based in Vilnius, Lithuania. His work features a wonderful marriage of European folk art with modern visuals. Check out a small selection of his work below, or see more in his portfolio.
Lithuania is small. That means I can reach any spot and any person in a maximum of a half day's travel. It's a green country with a vivid expression of all four seasons. It's quiet, so I can concentrate on my goals.
The cultural heritage of my nation makes for a big influence on my work. Forms, themes, and stories all shape my way of creative thinking. Lithuanian fairy tales are quite dark and harsh. They made a big impact on me when I was a child. I would define our region as an "introvert forest wizard."
Running Lights: Characters
If someone does something good in this community, you'll definitely know them. For me, being an animation director means that I can easily find a talent and work with them intimately. At the moment I think we are stepping into the golden years of the Lithuanian art community. In recent years, more Lithuanian names have been popping out and becoming known world-wide.
Aurėja is a freelance artist and graphic designer based in Kaunas, Lithuania. Her work features a unique selection of branding materials, illustrations, and photography. Check out a small selection of her work below, or see more in her portfolio.
Branding & Packaging for Madame
I love the cultural heritage of Lithuania and its reliably peaceful nature.
Visual Identity for Kaunas First Music School
I usually seek inspiration in the surroundings and nature of Lithuania, which are very rich and unique. Because I live close to a forest and park, I often go for a walk to explore and refresh my mind. The wavy Baltic sea and the white dunes located in one of the most beautiful places in Lithuania, Nida, also influences me and gives me calmness.
I love exploring old architectural buildings and churches, which give me indescribable inner strength and emotional flight to create something unusual. Also, I love music. While creating a project for a music school I was listening to classical music most of the time, both international and some from my region. One of the Lithuanian artists that influences my work is M.K. Čiurlionis's paintings and music.
Catalogue "WANTED OO7"
Cinema Festival Design
The Lithuanian art community is famous because of M.K. Čiurlionis, who was one of the most nationally renowned composers and painters in Lithuania, and whose works were exhibited abroad. There are also a large number of museums like the Lithuanian Art Museum, and the Palanga Amber Museum where various amber pieces are displayed. And in terms of modern art, there is the Vilnius Guggenheim Hermitage Museum, presenting exhibitions of new media art, a film archive, and Fluxus art.
Gediminas is a freelance illustrator based in Vilnius, Lithuania. His work features fantastical illustrations for children's books, music albums, and so much more. Check out a small selection of his work below, or see more in his portfolio.
I love the colors of autumn and spring in Lithuania. I love the woods and clouds. My family is here and I was born here.
Children's Book Illustrations
Lithuania is rising after the destruction of the Soviet Union. So I am looking for a bright light in the colors of my work. The idea of trying to get up after every fall and never giving up.
Oil & Water Album Cover
Here in Lithuania there is a small digital art community. Most of the first digital artists are hiding in their own little worlds. Other artists are scattered in different areas of the world. But the new generation is coming and we will see what will happen next.
Many thanks to the artists who took time to answer my questions and share a bit about themselves and how their country and/or culture has affected their work. You can check out more of their work in the links below: