Alta Live: Illustrator Victor Juhasz

An award-winning creator, combat artist, and former courtroom illustrator, Juhasz takes us through his storied career

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The winner of multiple awards and accolades, Juhasz has illustrated everything from political satire to children’s book characters to combat soldiers in Afghanistan. He regularly contributes to Alta Journal, creating the images paired with each issue’s fiction story. “I have a split personality as an illustrator. You’re supposed to really go in one genre, illustrators are supposed to be known for doing one thing. And I wanted to do a lot of things. I wanted to draw realistically, but I also wanted to do very slapstick-y, funny, gag illustrations with punchlines,” Juhasz said. “I had these two worlds, and I was able to kind of drift into each one occasionally.”

Spotswood and Juhasz paged through several of Juhasz’s creations, from Rolling Stone covers depicting national politics to his sometimes deeply personal designs for Alta’s fiction. His expansive portfolio includes sketches created in minutes in courtrooms and hospitals, as well as full color, multi-draft pages of vibrant artwork. “My favorite part of any assignment is the sketch work. Because that’s where the real fun is happening for me. It’s the idea process, it’s composing.”

More recently, Juhasz has taken trips with the Society of Illustrators to Rikers Correctional Center, where he and other artists teach art and create portraits of incarcerated people. “These are human beings who never got any respect,” Juhasz said. “And here somebody’s drawing them, which is like an acknowledgement of humanity, regardless of what they’ve done. And they appreciate it, and that’s as much of an impact as I can have.”

Check out these links to some of the topics Juhasz and Spotswood drew on.

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