When Canberra-based freelance illustrator and graphic designer Raisa Kross relocated to the capital from Russia with her husband Anton almost two years ago, she not only found a new home but also a new source of inspiration.
"I have to say, this city gave me the inspiration to do what I do now and its people showed me the greatest support to continue to pursue my passion for watercolour illustrations," she says.
Her business Raisa Kross Illustrations specialises in family portraits, but as a way of saying thank you to the city that has fostered her creativity, Kross has started drawing a series of illustrations dedicated to Canberra. In the City was lucky enough to be gifted with an exclusive illustration of her interpretation of the iconic Civic carousel especially for this issue.
"I am only at the very beginning of this project and I enjoy every moment of learning about the city, its attractions, architecture, sights, the people who made it and who live in it now," Kross says.
Kross' passion for drawing goes back as far as she can remember, but her love for watercolours came just a few years ago.
"I've been drawing all my life," she says.
"My mum still keeps all my childhood drawings since kindergarten and tells me that she knew there was something special about them, about the way I saw the subject of a picture."
As a wife of a wedding and family photographer, Kross has the opportunity to meet a lot of beautiful couples and wonderful families. Naturally a desire to share the feelings of love and happiness that she saw during the photo sessions worked its way into her art.
"An attempt to catch that fragile moment is what drives me when I create family portrait illustrations," she says.
"Family portraits are my absolute favourite thing to draw. It's an endless source of inspiration – the warm feelings to each other, the open hearts and boundless love can't leave anyone untouched."
Whether it's a Star Wars-themed family portrait or a newlywed couple holding hands, Kross says every family portrait she has ever drawn holds a special place in her heart.
"Every picture I do starts in my head and comes from somewhere inside me," she says.
"To be able to follow your dream and passion and wake up every morning knowing that something magical awaits you on your working desk is the best feeling a person can ever get."
Facebook: Raisa Kross Illustrations
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