Hello and welcome to Aniko Atilla's Defifee Blog. I'm writing about graphic design, typography, old books and figurative drawing.








Collected winter blue tones.



Another watercolor illustration

watercolor illustration

This is an illustration I made for my brother and his partner.



Cat and mouse

cat and mouse

Illustration made with marker and water colors for a baby card.



Genç Mustafa

genc mustafa

I stumbled upon the Turkish graphic novel “Genç Mustafa”, “The young Mustafa” written by Yalın Alpay and illustrated by Bariş Keşoğlu. The book is about Atatürk’s time as young soldier at the Ottoman military college in Istanbul in 1900. Atatürk’s personality cult may seem strange and exaggerated to all non-Turks. I often think it is nothing more than a facade that people only follow by habit, they don’t really care what’s behind. But Atatürk’s political achievements cannot be denied and his then modern western ideas are still valid today.

The book depicts Mustafa’s early life from five different points of view. I liked this approach and the books statement, that there is no general truth about what happened in the past. Even at an early age he was interested in philosophy and he knew that the Ottoman Empire could not survive. With some likeminded friends he founded a kind of secret society that planned the abolishment of the sultanate. Apart from the political backgrounds there are some interesting details about the life in the old Istanbul, the education of the elite class at that time and Atatürk’s contact with religion and alcohol.

„Genç Mustafa“ is only published in Turkish. Although I had to look up many military/politics/history related words it was quite easy to read because of the illustrations. I wonder if the book is received well by the young Turks who are mostly interested in consumption.

Some more information on the book on www.gencmustafa.com with some press articles.

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Lucid Dreaming


Sometimes I experience lucid dreams, when I suddenly realize that I’m dreaming. But this happens mostly during nightmares. You can learn to control your lucid dream to a certain degree with some training and frequent reality checks and then you can do fun things like flying or it may help solve reocurring nightmares. Lucid dreams are an interesting experience. However most information on lucid dreaming has a kind of esoteric touch.

Anyway last night I had a nightmare and I became lucid when the situation became very threatening. So I decided for the first time ever to control my dream and I told the menacing people around that they were just a part of my dream and not real. But they just seemed to get more angry and weren’t impressed at all. So that I used my common way out of nightmares: I told myself to wake up. That’s probably wrong and I’m really disappointed now. I guess I should have asked a questions instead of just telling people that they’re not real.

Some time ago I watched the movie Inception, that is playing with this conscious/unconscious dreaming theme. I thought the movie was ok, but there was a weird movie called Dreamscape long before Inception. It’s about a guy, played by Dennis Quaid (I was a big Dennis Quaid fan when I was small) who enters other people’s dreams to help them. Find out more about this movie and shirtless men of sci-fi in general on www.orgonebox.org



About learning how to draw


Two years ago I started drawing. Like many other poeple I had given up drawing at the age of 11 or 12 because my drawing skills didn’t live up to my high expectations. Although I had always enjoyed drawing.
Then followed a very long time when I thought drawing was totally useless. Then I started to play around with Photoshop and Inkscape. I thought the future is digital, so I could just skip the whole paper, pencil and colors step.

Now I know this was wrong. I’m sure that I don’t even need to be able to draw 100% realistically. During the last two years I improved my drawing skills because I went to this life drawing course. I started to remember some kind of shortenings or symbols that help drawing the human body. For example even if you cant see the little dent below the neck or how the bones at the elbows meet, if u draw it, it helps making the drawing look realistic. And I was sure that if I know how the body is built, I must be able to draw it well.

Anyway I started to read “Drawing on the right side of the brain” by Betty Edwards. So far I have completed some excercises and I’m pretty shocked, that if you don’t know what you are drawing, you can copy it much better. Which is quite the opposite of what I have been doing these last 2 years. She also wrote about a different state of conscience you enter when you draw. I’m not yet sure I have experienced this. I just hope that my confusion about how to draw is gone when i finish the book.




Weissenhof estate in Stuttgart

The students of Digital Media are not sitting in front of their macbooks the whole day. Sometimes we get to see interesting art and design in real life.

Last year we took a trip to the Weissenhaus estate in Stuttgart. This settlement was built from 1927 on by architects like Le Corbusier, Ludwig Mies van der Rohe and Walter Gropius, of the movement called Neues Bauen. Their style and the innovative use of steal, glass and concrete was totally new at the time and must have shocked some people. Just like the Bauhaus and the later HFG Ulm, Neues Bauen wanted to eradicate everything that was homey, cozy and backward-looking.

corbusier haus

corbusier haus

Mies van der Rohe Haus
mart stam haus



Color synesthesia


This is an example of my personal color synesthesia. I associate vowels with colors.Probably it’s the sound of the vowel that makes the color for me. So that words are colored by their vowels. However the above color chart only works for me in German. English vowels sound totally different…and that’s confusing when I look at them.For example the German vowel “A” which is pronounced like the “u” in “hungry” sounds totally red. But the English “A” sounds more blueish and lighter.




Bei dir regnet’s nicht rein

bei regnets nicht rein