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Roland Diaz
Painting + Drawing

My work for the past seven years has been centered around conceptual and character design for a variety of clientele. My commissioned character work has a fantasy and science fiction aesthetic which caters to the wishes of the individual clients. I strive to create diverse, multifaceted characters who lean away from the traditional western European look of fantasy characters throughout the industry. I use photoshop for this work, drawing and painting digitally using custom brushes. I wrote and illustrated a children’s book called Child of the Wild Wood, the first of a series of three which details the adventures of three young girls who mirror my own three daughters. Set in an original land of ancient mystery and untamed wilderness, the book series creates a vividly illustrated world with resourceful and brave heroes who tend to deviate from the traditional role of young girls in children’s fiction. The books are done using sumi ink on paper which is then scanned and painted in photoshop. My recent work is focused on the intersection between the human figure and the natural world, wherein nature is often dominant over the encroachment of humanity. I seek to explore the destructive relationship between civilization and the world we live in. My series The Ruins imagines the aftermath of a world in which nature is dominant over humanity; the titular Ruins are not edifices created by humanity but the human figure itself. My further work intersects with current issues of climate change and isolation. The apocalyptic nature of the art is subtle, though insistent. I seek to draw the viewer into the work through the detailed nature and intricate symbolism of the pieces. This work is done through ink on paper for the most part, using sumi ink and a brush to control and refine the linework.

Roland Diaz is an illustrative artist with a focus on imaginative works which deal with the symbiotic relationship between humanity and the natural world. Born in Miami, Florida, to Puerto Rican and Cuban parents, he grew up on his family farm in the mountains of Puerto Rico before moving to New York City and spending his teenage years in Brooklyn. The dual nature of these environments influences his work to this day, as he tries to manage the slow advance of nature with the chaos of human civilization. He is a twelve-year Army veteran, with four combat tours, who decided to dedicate his life to the arts to deal with the trauma of war and loss and heal the scars both seen and unseen. He works as a freelance artist specializing in character design. His debut picture book, Child of the Wild Wood, is part of a 3-book series in which each one is based on one of his three daughters within a vivid world of fantasy and adventure. He lives in Silverdale, Washington, with his partner, their three children, their two cats, and his dog and loyal companion, Achilles.