Evangelia Haliassou is a finalist student of Visual Communication-Illustration at Loughborough University graduating this summer. A BA (Hons) undergraduate degree has allowed Eva to discover her interests and develop her artistic and technical skills, alongside theoretical and critical thinking.
“During my studies, I have developed a portfolio which demonstrates my clear interest in publishing, characterization and moving image. My life-long passion for stories, books and film fueled my interest in visual narrative. I constantly try to generate new ways of delivering messages to my target audience and use constructive imagination to develop new ideas. I have always been fascinated by Illustration’s ability to attract, inform, educate, entertain and trigger the senses. I try to develop appropriate approaches towards different topics, whether lighthearted, dark, sensitive or surreal and practice on refining my delivery skills to the viewer.
My work has a strong focus on character design, since characters are evoking of emotion and fantastic mediums through which message is conveyed. My experimentation with character design meant that expression, movement and personality became important areas of focus for me. I draw inspiration from a variety of areas, and the animal world is an important one. Using unique animal characteristics, allows me to develop characters which are more diverse, engaging and interesting as well as use symbolism and metaphors. Anthropomorphism is another key area in which I am interested in and often incorporate in my work. It has allowed me to deliver messages in indirect ways which is sometimes very useful. I find that it is always easier for viewers to approach a sensitive topic when a fantastical character is involved as it creates a necessary emotional distance with the topic, while at the same time provides entertainment.”
“I take inspiration from creatives such as Edwina White, whose quirky original characters often help me generate ideas for the creation of my little creatures. Olaf Hajek who uses sophisticated and highly expressive colour as well as striking symbolism is another important source of inspiration for me. In addition, Su Blackwell’s three-dimensional paper sculptures are what encouraged me to translate my collage work into 3D. My life long passion for film and animation has turned me into a bit of a geek and I constantly research the ‘behind the scenes’ work of my favourite pieces. I am inspired by Jon Klassen’s concept design work for animated features such as Coraline (2009) and began exploring this direction in my work.
My style is constantly developing and I am working on techniques of merging hand-crafted and digital elements. Although I mainly work on flat illustrations, I also entertain possibilities of three-dimensional form in characterization and animation. Nowadays my preferred medium is paper, since it allows me to employ delicate decoration and texture. With appropriate projection of lighting, three-dimensional forms, shadows and details become enhanced. Furthermore, I enjoy using digital and multimedia techniques to manipulate my images in order to achieve interesting effects and compositions.”
“Currently I am working on a seven week visualization project of Roberto Benigni’s ‘La Vita e Bella’ which will involve more paper crafting madness and animation. In the future I would like to continue my studies on a graduate level to further develop as an illustrator, as well as obtain more professional and entrepreneurial skills. Eventually, I envision myself working in the Publishing and Animation industries. I am excited about the numerous modern possibilities for artistic expression and application in the professional world and I am looking forward to being surrounded by interesting people who share similar interests and enjoy exchanging ideas. If you have any questions, requests for collaboration or just wish to offer some feedback on my work, do not hesitate to drop me a message.”