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Illustrator Spotlight – Gusts Linkevics

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Illustrator Spotlight – Gusts Linkevics

Sound Waves Literacy 22/5/23

Sound Waves Decodable Reader illustrator Gusts Linkevics lives and works in a small picturesque village in his home country, Latvia. Located just 15 minutes from the Baltic Sea, Gusts’ village is almost as magical as his illustrations – nestled among forests, lakes and swamps.

Gusts’ journey with illustration began in childhood. ‘I’ve liked drawing since I was in school where I attended drawing classes and participated in small competitions,’ he said. ‘I also attended animation classes – I loved animation a lot and still do.’

But in Gusts’ words, ‘Life is life.’ After graduating from school, he went on to study carpentry, then eventually entered university to study computer science. After six years working in IT, Gusts’ passion for animation was reignited – his online hobby projects got noticed and he was asked to turn them into a book. Gusts marks this achievement as the beginning of his illustration career.

Gusts describes both his illustration style and media as ever-changing. ‘In most cases my style is very detail-oriented, funny and playful. I change media all the time – ink, watercolours, gouache or even just pencils,’ he said.

Gusts’ unique style shines in Fox and the Box, which was his favourite Sound Waves Decodable Reader to work on. ‘I was very happy with Fox and the Box. It turned out very playful and warm.’

Fox and the Box was not the only Sound Waves Decodable Reader Gusts brought to life. Gusts describes his work on I am the Best as almost an animation. ‘If you turn the pages quickly, you will see the story animated,’ he said.

You can view Gusts’ intricate illustrative work in our suite of Year 1 Sound Waves Decodable Readers.

See more of Gusts’ work on his website or Instagram.

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