John Stortz and his inspired animals

John Stortz is an American illustrator whose work is subtle, and technical abilities are not tired of fascinating. Born in South Carolina in 1988, he distinguished himself and graduated from the School of Visual Arts in New York and has since worked as a professional illustrator for both institutional and cultural clients. In parallel, he continues to develop his universe in personal projects with perfect technique that evoke, by far, the design of Japanese print.

Mr. Stortz, where do you live now? I spent most of the year working in a hut in the Medicine Bow Mountains in southeast Wyoming and am moving to California to live with my girlfriend.

Have you always wanted to be an illustrator? When I was a kid, I dreamed of working with animals, being a zoologist or being part of the National Geographic explorations and discovering new species in distant lands. One day I realized that my school notebooks were overrun with drawings – rather than notes – so I decided to keep going. I knew I wanted to work with my hands.

Where do you find your inspirations? My childhood brain has been nourished by a multitude of old guides, atlases, old books of mythology, or by the work of naturalists like Haeckel or Audubon. In short, I was (and I remain) completely obsessed with the myths, folklore, the old masters of the Uyiko-e, the work of cartographers, such as that of Berann … Today, I am still as fascinated by the way man tries to make sense of his existence, and how he tries to express the abstract through science or tales. It may sound a bit haughty from a guy like me who draws cats all day!

Fox Sashimi, 2013
Wild Abandon, 2013
Keep ‘Em Coming, 2013
Topography of an Elk Falling, 2013
“The myriad creatures bear yin on their back and embrace yang in their bosoms.”, 2013
Spring Fawns, 2013
Shaman, after George Catlin’s Medicine Man, 2013
Saddled Buck, 2013


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