Lukas Weidinger doesn’t plan his drawings. He just starts at one point and see how it develops. To describe his works on a surface level is to underplay the visual complexity of the work. The majority of his drawings consist of black rotring pen on blank off-white paper, but when you see them, the delight is in the detail. On first glances, the viewer is treated to a mass of lines. On further inspection however, these confident yet carefully placed marks make up an intricate compositional map detailing an illustrative microcosm densely packed with personality and narrative.
While shading and a depth of perception is forsaken, Lukas’ flat illustrations are absorbed with style which in turn, enhances the atmosphere within the drawings. He’s been drawing in this style for a while and for some reason which he isn’t quite sure of, the illustrations tend to result in a restaurant scene. It may be due to his previous waiting experiences in high end restaurants but nonetheless, he lets the scene unfold intuitively before him, allowing the pen to lead the way.
Having grown up in Vienna, Lukas recalls a childhood amidst classic comic books, magazines and The Simpsons. As a teenager he became more immersed in the underground comics scene: “This kind of subculture interested me,” he tells us. In time, he started devising his own stories, printing low quality zines “in adolescent times with adolescent content.” DIY punk culture, album artworks, posters and music videos infiltrated his aesthetic, and with a hint of comedy thrown in the mix, Lukas developed the original illustrative style that we can appreciate today.
He studied graphic design and illustration in Vienna and Leipzig respectively, which added to his canon of references. Since graduating back in 2017, he’s worked on a myriad of projects from editorial to tattoo designs, storyboards and one off originals. Additionally he publishes comic books and experiments with silk screen and Risograph mediums at Riso Club Leipzig. Being open to all kinds of art forms allows the illustrator to learn as much as possible across visual communication and it’s been an important aspect in developing his style to date.
“There is always new perspectives to discover and be surprised about,” he adds, “and I am lucky to know a lot of good people who make some magic happen out of nothing.” There’s an escapist act of drawing that Lukas relishes in. Like so many illustrators in the industry, the medium is therapeutic and captures a sense of imagination otherwise unexpressed. Lukas’ practice is more explorative than conceptual. As he puts it: “First do stuff and think about it later, if it was a good idea.” Alternatively, if the idea proves to be not so successful “there is always Tipp-ex and the world keeps on spinning.”
He writes this from the streets of Marseille where the illustrator is currently residing. Having “escaped from Germany a while ago,” he finds himself drifting around the southern city, exploring different places which will no doubt make their way into his illustrations at some point in some form. Just like how the high class gastronomical rituals gradually fed into his sprawling line works to form the opulent scenarios to be admired below, Lukas allows his illustrations to flow freely in the hopes that “beautiful mistakes happen.” He finally goes on to say, “sometimes that makes the drawings even more interesting.”
GalleryLukas Weidinger, 2020
About the Author
Jyni joined It’s Nice That as an editorial assistant in August 2018 after graduating from The Glasgow School of Art’s Communication Design degree. In March 2019 she became a staff writer and in June 2021, she was made associate editor.