The Next Vol. 5: Steef Offerhaus: a provocative digital illustrator

March 18, 2021
Written By:
Written By:
March 18, 2021

If you Google Steef Offerhaus, the results will vary from politically incorrect posters to children’s colouring book or a cartoon of a couple celebrating their 60th anniversary. That is how versatile the Dutch digital illustration artist is – and there is a reason behind it. Born in 1994, in a small village in the Netherlands, he grew up in the province Fryslân. When he was a teenager, he moved to Zutphen with his family, where he got in contact with hip hop music and graffiti for the first time.

In an interview for INONICA magazine, he describes the life his friend showed as a “drug-fueled lifestyle, in which graffiti and hip-hop took centre stage”.

Those fields would become his main references for his illustrations.

Source: Steef Offerhaus

Once school was finished, he moved to Utrecht to study illustration but he ended up dropping out of school and moving to Rotterdam to make a living.

Well, life as an artist is not an easy road, so Steef found himself as a shoe salesman while battling depression.

He found his way out of it through art, by doing only the things he wanted to do.

Most of his work aims to trigger awe and make people feel uncomfortable.

Source: Steef Offerhaus

Goal achieved. His illustrations are triggering, inspiring and thought-provoking. And most time NSFW.

Source: Steef Offerhaus

However, Offerhaus’ work is not only about digital illustration.

In 2020, with the pandemic, Offerhaus has collaborated on the project ‘Drawings to stay inside for’, an activity book made by young illustrators, designers and artists for primary school children.

The book has free illustrations available for download so people can entertain their kids.

Source: Drawings to Stay Inside For

He also gave the couple Harrie and Etta Turksema, that celebrated their 60th anniversary last October, a comic that portrays their marriage.

In a different type of illustration, he created the image for a hand-knitted sweater with Britney Spears’ face in it – yes, the famous photo from the pop icon right after she shaved her head and broke a paparazzi’s car window with an umbrella.

Also, he made a collection of custom skateboards decks in a series called Jesus Cries.

Source: Steef Offerhaus

His work has been recognized by musicians. As a hip hop fan, he has also illustrated art cover for musicians such as Steen, for his single “Allergisch”, released last year, and for Santiago Savag3 and Grizzle’s song “In The Cut”.

For my work might not be understood or appreciated by the high brow art world. My drawings speak to a young, open-minded and slightly rebellious audience that isn’t afraid of a little dark humour or controversy. These are the people who are very active on social media, and very often creatively active as well. So it is through Instagram I get in touch with people for my work, and oftentimes also strike up friendships outside social media”, he told INONICA magazine.

Check out his works on his official website and on his Instagram account

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