Coloured Pencils and Pastels: Aline Zalko


Why not treat your eyes and have a look at French illustrator Aline Zalko’s distinctive drawing style? From intense colourful portraits to urban landscapes, her visual world filled with luminous threads and intertwined lines may keep you from looking away.



Aline Zalko grew up with a pencil in her hand and a sharp eye. Her reputation as an illustrator is founded upon her ability to capture her subjects both in a natural and surrealistic way. Regardless of the subject matter, she uses the same magical technique – coloured pencils and pastels.



Coloured pencils may be reminiscent of our childlike aspect, but they also allow Zalko to experiment simultaneously with colours, shapes, and forms. Through an impressive work on light and shades, the luminous intensity of her drawings reflects the infinite aesthetic potential of coloured pencils.



Less meticulous and detailed than coloured pencils, the pastel technique brings a different touch and creates a delicate balance between colours.

The wavy lines that characterise Zalko’s work seem to be constantly moving and ephemeral, yet structured.



Aline Zalko’s expressive faces and radiant portraits are pervaded by a certain nostalgia. Could it be childhood memories? A wistful longing for the old days?


Fluid and youthful, her drawings are soothing and warm, but sometimes vacillate between soft and harsh, both startling and enchanting.



“I’ve been drawing forever. I’ve always been valorised and encouraged to draw by my mother. Drawing was already part of my identity. When I was drawing at school, my friends would always look over my shoulder and ask me to give them some of my drawings. I actually think this was the only thing I was good at,” she said to noblahblah.



“When I take the bus and find a girl pretty, I think about drawing her. It’s instantaneous. “



“If I couldn’t draw, I’d feel useless.”



Her work is featured in the press, such as The New-York Times, Le Monde, and Elle, but also on book-covers. You can also find her many drawings on her Instagram account or her website.






Words: Pauline Schnoebelen


Hashtags: #AlineZalko #illustration #drawing #art #portraits #landscape #girls #women #faces #style


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