This article will throw spotlight on the work of a German artistic illustrator, who is already extremely famous in the field and one of the reasons for that might be the fact that he has managed to always reinvent himself and has adopted an extremely original style and working process. First of all, we will mention from the very beginning, if you were wondering how the illustrations displayed in this collection were done: none of them is digital! Olaf Hajek prefers to work as a painter for all his illustrations (some of which are quite close to the fine art aesthetics, actually) and his medium is acrylic on cardboard, paper or wood.
He was born in the north of Germany, and studied Graphic Design but he realized that this area was not quite his cup of tea, especially as he was disinclined to work in front of a computer and felt much fonder of the painting process in itself. Therefore, he became a freelance illustrator and it turned out to be a great career switch!
Over the years he has been commissioned illustrations by such clients as Bloomberg Inc., Financial Times, The New Yorker, Playboy, Rolling Stone, Wall street Journal, Bacardi and the list could go on… One of his admitted secrets is that he never ceases to get new inspiration from all kind of sources: from books and magazines to native art, nature (he is particularly fond of floral elements, for instance) and, of course, painting.
In terms inspiration from painting, one can easily trace a strong influence from Frida Kahlo, Arcimboldo, or Botticelli, for example, but of course there are many others. The special feature of his artistic illustrations is their syncretism: unexpected combinations of elements coming from different areas and even from different cultures bring about very fresh, striking images. If you need to find out more about him, and some tips from this successful freelancer, you should definitely check out his interview for Gestalen TV and the one published on Sprayblog.
In any case, his work will be a tremendous source of inspiration for you, so have a look at the great collection displayed here!