Elīna Brasliņa is an illustrator and artist from Latvia. She studied printmaking at the Art Academy of Latvia, and discovered her love of book illustration in her third year there. She has worked on close to thirty titles, most of them children’s books by Latvian authors. She made her international debut by illustrating Kate Wakeling's collection of poems, Moon Juice (published by The Emma Press). She now works with both Latvian and international publishers, and books with her illustrations have been published in sixty countries, and translated into forty languages – most of these are editions of Lawrence Schimel’s board books “Bedtime, Not Playtime” and “Early One Morning”.
She is also a production designer at the Latvian animation studio “Atom Art”, and did all the artwork for their 2019 film Jacob, Mimmi and the Talking Dogs, and is currently working on another feature length animation, this time about children living in the Venezuelan jungle. She also does book covers, posters, makes Feminist art in her spare time, and every week she draws portraits of mothers and children for @my_first_year_too – an Instagram account dedicated to stories about parenting.
Elīna enjoys playing around with styles and techniques, and even when she works digitally, she almost always incorporates scanned textures to give her work a more hand-drawn feeling. She tries to challenge herself with every project she takes on, and one day hopes to write and illustrate a story of her own.
She lives in Riga with her husband, her daughter and their dog Bonnie.
Praise for Moon Juice
Moon Juice, from the Emma Press, illustrated with spiky charm by Elīna Brasliņa, won the 2017 CLiPPA, ranges from dreamy celestial meditation to comet-streaking speed
Did you know…
Before she became an artist, Elīna really wanted to be a translator, and not just any kind of translator – she wanted to jump right into the deep end with fiction, because she loved reading so much. She had studied French for twelve years at school, and then another four at university, so it seemed like a likely career choice. But her dad is an artist and teacher, and her mum is an art historian, and she’d always enjoyed drawing. She still takes on the odd translation job though – it’s kind of a hobby!
Elīna says: "People are surprised to hear that I love weird and scary stories – it’s true! A well-written piece of horror fiction is probably my favourite thing to read. This might have begun when my mom gave me a collection of stories by Edgar Allan Poe when I was fourteen. I tore right through it, and have been fascinated with the genre ever since."
When she has a moment of spare time (which currently isn't very often), Elīna likes finding fun ways to mend clothes. For example, she might paint something over a stubborn stain, patch a hole with colourful bits of fabric, or stitching fun little designs.