Damir was born in Sisak, Croatia in 1966. The story of his rise to artistic fame is a remarkable and rapid one. While he showed some artistic promise as a child it was not until 2001 that he was convinced by his wife that he had any real artistic talent at all. He enrolled in a drawing course in the same year in Zagreb and was so successful that he was accepted at the Angel Academy of Art in Florence in the following year. This was a massive turning point in his life, a decision that was to take him from a businessman to a full-time professional artist.
Success and fame were to follow rapidly. Over the last few years he has won a string of awards and honourable mentions in many competitions (listed below) and is now a celebrity in his home country of Croatia. He often makes radio and TV appearances and obtains fees of an incredible Eur 150,000 for his life size portrait commissions.
His method of painting and drawing is quite remarkable for modern times. His charcoal nudes are painted from real life and take at least 4 weeks to complete. The model is present through the entire process and no photographic reference is used. His training in Florence has given him a fabulous grounding as a fine artist, using the old techniques and the very finest materials. His charcoals are drawn on extremely rare hand-made Florentine cotton paper using the very finest French charcoal.
Says Ray Loud, Managing Director of Buckingham Fine Art Publishers Ltd, ‘ The first time I saw one of Damir’s images was as a small jpeg file attached to an e mail. Although the file was small and not of a high resolution I can honestly say that I gasped at the pure beauty, softness and brilliance of the work. It literally took my breath away. Now I have seen the originals and been given the opportunity of reproducing these images, I can only say how privileged we feel to have come to know Damir and his family. I have little doubt that his fame in Croatia is soon to be extended to many parts of the globe’.
They have included “First Place” 2004 ARC Scholarship Competition, “Purchase Award” 2004 ARC Scholarship Competition and “Honorable Mention in Drawing Category” 2005 ARC Salon Competition.