Artist Review - Kaja Kajfež Oct 25 2021

Meet the artists

A great Advocate artist to highlight this month is Kaja Kajfež! Born in the city of Varaždin, Croatia, Kaja developed her love of drawing as a small child. She went on to study at University North in Croatia and, during this time as a student, she began her freelance illustrator career. From there she was able to establish her own illustration studio and later join the Advocate team in 2019.

Focusing mainly on children’s book illustration, she never leaves out her passion for exploring character emotions. She loves developing characters and finding their world views. One of her favorite ways to explore emotion is through books and film, particularly historical documentaries!

Kaja also loves nature and will also bring that into her art as well. In much of her work you can see beautiful botanicals and the attention to detail she brings to them.

As a digital artist, Kaja is quite popular on social media and other online art platforms. In her personal work outside of publishing, she is probably better known as Iz Ptica. Under this name she has been in both group and solo exhibitions!

While she is growing in popularity around the world, she finds ways to relax in her free time:

I love to take long walks in nature and going hiking, and visiting castles of all kinds. Also, I love scrolling through old picture books, my favourite ones being “Svjet oko nas” series (World Around Us), encyclopedia  for kids, illustrated by various local artists and published in 1973. Music is important part of my live, whether I’m illustrating or relaxing, you can often see me with my headphones on. Besides online concerts, I often enjoy an audiobook, podcast or a lecture. To finish my day, there is no sweeter thing to me then to spend time cuddling with my dog, with a huge cup of tea.

Here is a look and her many accomplishments in her few years as a freelance artist:

2018. group exhibition “Knjige naših ulica”, Etnographic museum, Zagreb
2021. solo exhibition “Iz Ptica”, P4, Varaždin – photos attached (ex01 and ex02)

The Forest of Stars, Henry Holt
World of Wonders, Yoyo books
Woodcarver’s Daughter, Kar Ben publishing
The Ghost Garden, Barrington Stoke
Going Growing Gone, Oxford University Press
Srna i Mak, Mala Zvona
Idris and the Bog City, Pearson Education
The Warrior Queen, Pearson Education
Zlatna Vrata 4, Školska knjiga
Hrvatski jezik 7 i 8, Profil Klett
N is for Newt, DK
O is for Octopus, DK
U is for Urchin, DK
The Plentiful Darkness, Henry Holt

Interested in seeing more? Check out Kaja’s portfolio HERE!