Ella studied at the Vilnius School of Economics, but later did a graphic design course via the online college Sessions.edu. That’s how she discovered Adobe Illustrator, and armed with a Wacom tablet she began building up her portfolio while studying the world of illustration, and all the magazines, fashion firms and brands she might be able to work for.
After reading a brief, Ella lets the idea cook in her head for a few days. Slowly a composition, colours and working style will come to her. She’ll go through her thoughts with the client, take on board the feedback and begin drawing using Illustrator. Sometimes, she’ll work on a sketch first, scan it and trace it using the vector application.
Feminine, elegant, modern, detailed, intricate, loose and light, Ella’s style is usually based around line work, though sometimes she’ll use brushes in Photoshop to drop in some vibrant colours. There are lots of organic and intertwining elements in her work to draw the viewer in. She also creates surface designs - seamless patterns and prints.
Question: What drew you to illustration/design? Ella: I've always drawn and scribbled on newspaper corners, receipts or napkins. Question: Do you have any formal design training? Ella: Not as such. I have studied economics and 12 years later I studied graphic design. I fell in love with Illustrator – after intial first 2 weeks of hating it, before I figured how the pen tool works – and illustration seemed like a natural way to go next. Question: Where are you originally from? Ella: I was born in Vilnius, Lithuania. I have lived in Stockholm, London, Glasgow and now in Zurich. Question: Where do you live now & what drew you there? Ella: Less than 2 years ago, me and my family moved to Zurich. It was my husband's new job which took us here. Question: Who or What is your biggest inspiration? Ella: I am inspired by nature, art, fashion and beautiful people. Question: How do you get your ideas? Ella: Obviously brief is good start. Sometimes I leaf through fashion magazines or various source books; they could be art or photography, sometimes even children's books. Question: Do you keep a scrapbook? Ella: No, but I have a small box where I put things I want to keep. I bookmark blogs/websites I want to come back to, as well. Question: What are your interests outside of illustration? Ella: Relax and having fun with my kids. Ideally, I would love to travel more or eat out. But with two small kids we are still holding back a bit. I like reading cooking blogs or books, I love reading about food. Reading in general. I like making things with my hands; I have tried to decoupage old chair with my dad’s stamp collection; sometimes I knit or sew.
Question: Tell us about a favourite project you’ve recently completed. Ella: I did illustrations for a fashion and food issue for spring campaign called "Wonderland" for the Swiss department store Globus. There was lots of work and revisions; we worked very hard before, during and after Christmas. But I am very pleased with the results. And it was great to walk into shop and grab a magazine with my work in it. Question: Who are your design heroes? Ella: At the moment I am into Scandinavian design. I like Klaus Haapaniemi and Swedish design group Front. Question: If you were not an illustrator, what would you be? Ella: Maybe fashion or interior designer. Question: Who are your musical heroes? Ella: Billie Holiday, Sting, Bebel Gilberto, Anouk. Question: Have you any hidden talents? Ella: I am a good cook and a baker. Question: What is the funniest thing you have ever done? Ella: Learning to ride a bike at the ripe age of 33. It was very funny, hilarious. I still cannot do it though. Question: If you could live anywhere, where would you go? Ella: I am pretty happy where I am. I like the weather. It's cold in the winter and hot in the summer. You have everything here for all seasons; lakes and beaches; skiing and mountains. It feels safe, clean, things are working. I really like it. Question: Do you have any pets? Ella: Zeus the Cat – Norwegian Forest male. He is huge, gentle, cuddly, affectionate beast of a cat and he loves my desk chair, we fight for it a few times a day. Question: If you could travel back in time which period would you visit & why? Ella: I would love to be in France in 1770 at the opulent and eccentric court at Versailles. Mainly for the costumes and those amazing hairdos and all that drama surrounding Marie-Antoinette. Fabulous!
Triumph, Nivea, Globus (Switzerland), BBH London, Iris London, Blue dog London, Ogilvy Advertising, NYLON (Japan), La Perla (Italy)Favourites
: Zurich Kunsthaus
: Uniball Signo pens
: Italian and Asian
: Fresh mint and ginger ice tea
: Too many to name. At the moment I like Finnish Design Shop
: This one is very funny. Start from beginning. trailingwife