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Illustrations by Kateryna Shelevytksa

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06 August 2018
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Conciseness along with eloquence – such are the illustrations of a young Transcarpathian artist, contestant of “Silver Easel” Kateryna Shelevytska. The girl told us about working with well-known Ukrainian groups, interesting people on social networks, her dreams and plans for the future.

Kateryna Shelvytska says that she’s dreamt to tie her life with creativity since her childhood. But she became interested in illustrations in the second year of her study at the Transcarpathian Academy of Arts. "I’ve been always fond of the simple forms and pure colours. These are my main tools. At the moment, the main theme I am developing is the image of women in the culture of the world. I’m focusing on the main thing – things I care about: mood, emotions, ideas. Therefore, I often confidently get rid of unnecessary details and boldly change the shapes.”

Kateryna is guided by the expression “appetite comes with the eating.” More precisely - inspiration comes. Therefore, she says: “I create inspiration myself. I read a lot, travel, watch high-quality films and I always observe people, cities, nature. I'm also inspired by the works of other artists: from the classics is João Miro, Paul Gauguin, Henri Matisse, Pablo Picasso. Among the contemporaries – Italian illustrators Lorenzo Matotti, Bruno Marie and Ukrainian Serhii Maidukov, Yevheniia Haidamak. But inspiration should be sought not only around you. My inner state often pushes me to work. If you sit back and wait, you can never start.”

Katia usually spends about a day to create an illustration: an idea appears first and then the work begins – sketches and the embodiment of the plan on the computer. "The most difficult and, at the same time, the most interesting is when everything is already painted and it is possible to endlessly play with colours,” illustrator admits. “The process of selecting colours takes a lot of time, sometimes even more than anything else.”

Now among Kateryna Shelevytska’ s works, there are dozens of illustrations, which make up the whole series. Perhaps, the most interesting is a series of posters of Ukrainian music bands. It was her diploma work at the academy, which gave rise to the interesting new experience.

The artist recalls: “All my favourite bands were depicted there: Onuka, Panivalkova, Pur:Pur, Yuko, DakhDaughters and DakhaBrakha. My first poster was published by Yuko – they liked it and I made another one.  Then DakhaBrakha published a poster. And then they offered to create a banner for their tour in America. It was so cool! The same situation with DakhDaughters – I created a poster for their concert at Gogolfest. Thus, I worked with my favourite Ukrainian music bands, can you imagine? These are incredibly cool and easy-going people.”

In addition, this year Kateryna has already created several illustrations and decorations for the records Tik Tu and Zapaska. Now, this is just a creative project, however, these groups have also posted illustrations in their profiles. “I want to continue working with musicians because they are very creative people and I’m fond of music. Therefore, I will be glad to receive new offers,” the girl said.

By the way, Katia even started “Cult Girl Challenge” in the social networks: within 10 days, all interested people shared their own illustrations on "The image of a girl in mass culture" – they demonstrated representatives of different eras, professions, cultures. 300 people joined the challenge for 4 days. “I certainly did not expect this… I expected 20-30 participants. The most interesting thing is that a lot of foreigners joined, there was even a girl from Bali,” Kateryna surprisingly told.

A young artist has no intentions to stop, in fact, she has a lot of ideas – I hope it will be enough time. Soon she intends to arrange a new challenge on her Instagram page, to perform a series of Croatian landscapes, and to work on the embodiment of new female images. Moreover, she is dreaming of writing and illustrating her own book.

Text: Kseniia Shokina

Photos provided by Kateryna Shelevytska

© Art & Culture Foundation Brovdi Art

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