Tell us about yourself…how you got your start.. Etc
Eliska Podzimkova, 21, is a New York-based illustrator who adds her charming illustrations to various photos of New York. She lived halfway across the world in Prague, but she always dreamed of New York. Therefore, Eliska started spending her time adding playful, eye-catching illustrations to photos and videos of the city on her Instagram account. The Czech animator spent the summer of 2012 in New York studying at the New York Film Academy and fell in love with the city. She opened the AnimateNY Instagram account last year and has already amassed thousands of followers since then. Now Eliska finally got the chance to live in New York, the city of her dreams, and works on new exciting projects.
What was the original idea behind adding to photos?
I guess the original idea is still actual. As a student I always had a problem to think of something what to draw. I guess I am not the only one haha… One time my dad gave me a graphic tablet and I ended up having the same issue. I didn’t know what to draw so I just took a photo and started drawing on it. It became something new, fresh and special to me. It was actually the closest possible way how to express my childish fantasy. So I feel like the illustration added to the photo is actually piece of myself. I have always felt like a stranger in NYC so I had to put something from me to make the place closer to me. It is hard to explain.
What inspires you as an artist?
Creative people around me. Friends. Movies. Art. Different cultures. Photographs. Technology. Music. So many things, I can’t even think of everything. It is usually very spontaneous. To be more concrete, Van Gogh or Keith Haring. Most recently my very big inspiration is Chicago based artist, Paul Octavious who is a visual genius.
How do you figure out what absurd thing you want to add to a photo of NYC?
It usually comes with the photo and the place where the photo was taken. Sometimes I just go outside for a walk with my camera and take a random picture, then I come home and go through it and hopefully something comes up in my mind. Or I have something in mind and I go to a specific place for a specific shot. That rarely happens though. As you can see in my work, I love animals and I like to put weird things together. Some things have connections to my feelings and some thing is reacting to a current situation happening in our world.
Do you see yourself adding absurd things to photos of other cities?
Everyone is asking me that question. I don’t know, I don’t want to force it anyway. New York has been inspiring me the past couple months and it might change now because I moved there. I have already done pictures from Prague because I miss the city a lot. It has to have a special atmosphere and potential to me and obviously I have to experience the city by visiting it and having a great time there.