Tula Lotay is the nom-de-plume of comic artist Lisa Wood. I’ve been following her work on instagram now for sometime and when she announced a collector edition art book of prints I knew I had to have one. I was heart broken to have missed her limited run of Blade Runner prints so I can’t tell you how pleased I was that this was the postcard she chose to include with my book ! The art book is small, about the dimensions of a CD, but its a beautifully produced featuring a lovely selection of over 40 sketches and full colour works.
I first became aware of Tula Lotay in her capacity as the originator and organiser of the Thought Bubble Festival Leeds. (One of my favourite comic festivals which sees its 5th year this November and I’ll be in attendance- but more about that another time). Lotay is also the manager of comic store Travelling Man and an all round good egg, but more pertinently to this blog post a fantastic a comic artist in her own right.
Lotay’s work really caught my eye – it’s hardly surprising that her pop culture portraits would speak to me. But I also love her unique blend of digital and traditional technique, which leaves one wondering if the final work is pen and paper or wacom tablet in origin. I’d hazard a guess that Lotay sketches by hand and then transfers to the computer for colouring and further manipulation.
She has a keen eye for design and her work never takes on that ‘too perfect’ look that digital techniques can bring, preferring instead to emulate brush and paint, and using the digital element to play tricks like pixellated backgrounds and ‘double exposure’ style tricks that computer manipulation is perfect for.
As a lifelong comic reader growing up it could be a bit of a boys world. Things are different now, its much more common for girls to be involved in comic fandom and making, but they are still a little underrepresented in the industry. So I’m proud to see a woman like Lisa so prominent in UK comics, not only for raising awareness through one of my favourite cons, but as an influential up and coming artist herself .
Tuta Lotay is currently working on two comic book titles, Supreme Blue Rose with Warren Ellis & the ‘Bodies’ miniseries for DC Vertigo. I’ll hazard a guess that these are two of the best looking comics in print right now.
You can visit Tula Lotay’s site here Tulalotay.com , follow her on instagram here, and buy prints and art books here. All images in the post are copyright of Tula Lotay and are reproduced with kind permission. I’ll leave you with another of my favourite Blade Runner inspired images, this time of Rachel, with a rather ghostly looking Deckard behind.
Have you discovered any great new artists recently? I’d love to hear about them. Feel free to give ’em a shout out in the comments below.