I’m Ali Gulec, illustrator and co-owner of Ikiiki Design Studio based in Istanbul. I design T-shirt prints for a living, which is a fun job to do but sometimes fast fashion industry can put too many pressures on you. When I feel exhausted, I give a break and do what pleases me most and create pieces for my project “The Message”. I use digital and traditional collage, painting, photography and sometimes all of them in one piece.
Although I illustrate many subjects with a little touch of humor, skulls are my most known and appreciated ones. I believe people like my skulls because the contradictions such as life and death are much more obvious and visible in these pieces. Also, I have observed through the years that, people are excited to see something resembling death doesn’t need to be scary and can be appealing for any person, even for my grandma :). I have seen my Skulls artwork tattooed on so many people from teenagers to seniors, from doctors to musicians and it’s really amazing how they interpret my works adding their personalities.
I made this collage from a selection of doodles I drew while I was talking on the phone over the past 5 years.