Elza Jo uses mixed media to create powerful urban heroes. Although rough and stylish, her work is counterbalanced by a sensitive and feminine perspective. Her feeling and intuition for casting, location and styling always ensure for some sharp storytelling. 

I like to pick my models from my own surroundings, and try to look for iconic people with interesting minds.

Where do you come from?

I'm from Amsterdam, born and raised.

When did you know, you wanted to become a professional creative?

From very early on, I was in denial at first, but couldn't escape.

How do you work?

I love building a story on a subject that's already there, a person, a subgroup, a style. After that I add extra layers to this base. Sometimes even literally by painting, drawing or adding other stuff on top of the photographic material.

Looking back in history, each era produces a certain style. What defines our era?

Heroes, we have interesting musicians and other style icons to look up to.

Heroes define our era, we have interesting musicians and other style icons to look up to.

Could you elaborate on today's heroes some more? I really like that idea!

Yeah! Me too, haha, well, I like that everything was very monumental and iconic when I grew up, I sense that this is something I'm looking for in my work again. And I also get the idea that this is something more people are craving for at the moment. That might be why I like to pick my models from my own surroundings, and try to look for iconic people with interesting minds.