Artist Series: Katarina Lajcakova

Artist Series: Katarina Lajcakova

Hello, my name is Katarina, and I am an artist and illustrator with a passion for art, nature, and adventure. I am the creative force behind the Wildmedesigns project, where I share my passions for art and nature with the world.

Since childhood, I have been captivated by the art of drawing. Holding a pencil in my hand from as early as three years old, I found solace and joy in creating my own imaginative world. However, during my childhood and teenage years, I had little interest in nature or outdoor activities.

A pivotal moment in my life occurred when I fell ill in my early twenties, facing numerous diagnoses and the prospect of a lifetime dependent on medication. Rejecting this fate, I made a conscious decision to embrace a different path. It was my unwavering determination, positive mindset, strong belief, and deep connection with nature that ultimately saved me and shaped the person I am today. Nature became my sanctuary, a wellspring of healing and renewal. I couldn't imagine a day without immersing myself in its beauty, starting with easy recovery walks in a nearby forest and soon leading me to embrace outdoor adventures such as running, biking, climbing, hiking, backcountry skiing... These experiences became an integral part of who I am, guiding my future endeavors.

Embarking on nature adventures opened up a whole new world to me. Apart from forging lifelong friendships, discovering breathtaking locations, and creating unforgettable memories, I unearthed a newfound strength within myself – endurance. Even when fatigue threatened to overwhelm me on lengthy hikes, ski tours, or bike trips, a brief pause and a recharge of energy allowed me to surpass my own expectations. This principle extends beyond outdoor pursuits and permeates every aspect of my life: never give up, take a momentary rest, and then keep on. 

Every moment spent adventuring in nature holds immense value to me. The most profound experiences occur when I immerse myself in the mountains, far removed from civilization, and live the simple, raw moments in connection with the elements. I am particularly drawn to challenging, multi-day hikes through mountain landscapes and exploring uncharted terrain on backcountry ski trips.

Becoming a mother did not dampen my spirit of adventure; rather, I carried my children with me wherever feasible, even scaling high mountain peaks together. They, too, relish the joys of nature, as it provides the ultimate playground for their imagination. Witnessing their enjoyment fuels my desire to pass down my love and passion for nature and adventure. 

As it comes to creating art I took a long break from it since my teen years. I yearned to initially study arts and make my living with it, but then somebody told me it is not so good to be an artist, that having some stable job is just more secure and handy. And I almost ended up studying law :) Yet, my creative soul refused to be stifled, leading me to pursue a Master's degree in Product Design, a field that harmoniously melds creativity and technical thinking. I carved out a career in the outdoor industry as an apparel and product designer, refusing to abandon my passions for outdoors even in my workfield.

However, after several years and two parental leaves, I felt a void within me. A part of my identity longed for full creative expression. I returned to drawing, gravitating toward a style that resonated with my true self: line art, predominantly black and white. With main themes as nature, mountains, adventures. Initially, my artwork served as a personal outlet, adorning the walls of our home or gifted to friends and family. Drawing became my therapy, enabling a deep connection with myself. Each time I held a pen or pencil in my hand and let my imagination flow, I was struck by an undeniable truth: this is who I am.

Gaining courage, I decided to share my art with the world, launching an Instagram account in early 2020. From that moment, I dedicated every available minute to drawing. I honed my skills, refining my style, and gradually overcoming the impostor syndrome that plagued many artists. When I could not go into the mountains, I was drawing them and I felt connected to them. I infused my art with my love for nature and adventure, often illustrating the life I lived or the life I aspired to experience.

From an impassioned amateur, I evolved into an artist who attracted an increasing number of clients. Throughout my artistic journey, I have embarked on remarkable collaborations with diverse brands and individuals, both large and small. Reflecting on this transformative path, I feel a sense of humility and pride. The burnt-out, insecure girl has blossomed into a self-assured artist. Although I remain humble and consider myself still at the beginning of my journey, I relish every step along the way. This journey encompasses growth, learning, making mistakes, and embracing action despite fears. Life has taught me that there are no failures, only valuable lessons. And that I would rather jump into the unknown and follow the calling of my soul, than one day look back and regret the things I did not have the courage to do. Through art, I have reawakened a part of myself that I believed was lost long ago. I refer to it as "my wild me," which inspired the name WILD-ME-DESIGNS.

The main message of my band designs for ROADiD is “To inspire people to leave their couches and go explore the wilderness.” INSPIRE - EXPLORE- WILDERNESS. As I believe that in nature we can all find some peace and wisdom and escape from the stress of everyday life. Living for the raw present moment makes us slow down and be more mindful. 

I have created two designs, NIGHT ADVENTURE and DAY ADVENTURE. 

NIGHT ADVENTURE captures the essence of stillness, allowing oneself to become a tiny part of the vast wilderness. It embodies the experience of camping beneath the stars, forging a profound connection with nature. Simply pack your tent and camping gear, and embark on this extraordinary adventure. Sleep under the starry sky, listen to the whispers of the forest, and witness the night unfold. Embrace the power of the present moment.

DAY ADVENTURE embodies the exhilaration of freedom and exploration, as one embarks on a mountain adventure. Feel the wind caress your skin, breathe in the fresh air, bask in the radiant sun, and even embrace the rain-filled clouds. These are the elements of nature that invigorate and remind us of what it means to be alive. While immersed in a nature adventure, one feels as free as a bird. Is there a more enchanting place to be than in the embrace of nature?

I always find the greatest joy in collaborating with like-minded clients, working on projects that align with my values. The collaboration with ROADiD was no exception. I deeply appreciate their trust in granting me the creative freedom to select the theme and express it in my own unique way. It is an honor to witness my art being worn by countless individuals, aiding them in their pursuit of safer and more fulfilling adventures.