Glory to Jesus and AFU: Pixel Art by Viter Stepoviy

The artwork of a Ukrainian artist that goes by a nickname Viter Stepoviy can be recognized by its pixel art style. Most of it was made in Kharkiv under the shelling. The artist spoke to Bird in Flight about his minimalist pictures and his favourite series with Jesus.

Freelance designer from Kharkiv

— I live in Kharkiv, and I was there up till March 23, so most of my artwork was made under heavy shelling. Now I’m in a safe place in Ukraine, drawing, helping the Army with my pictures. I let anyone make NFTs out of them and sell them, with proceedings being given to the AFU or refugees. Roughly 10 people have already done so. I often receive messages from the foreigners asking to use my works, e.g., to create merch out of my drawings.

All my life I’ve been drawing, ever since I was a kid. My first pixel art was dedicated to my girlfriend. I wanted to make her a digital present so that, over time, it wouldn’t be changed or lost.

I always found pixel art fascinating, because it’s fast, comfortable, and efficient. For my gift back then, I chose Photoshop, but, I guess, even Paint can be used. Now, one such picture takes me from 1 to 3 hours to make.

I’ve already been making topical works on politics back since the Crimea got annexed. Now I also can’t stay silent, because war is an important part of Ukrainian history, and it has to be reflected in art. Not long before the full-scale invasion, I was about to print some works as postcards, but after February 24 the project has expanded a lot.

My favourite series is the one depicting Jesus. Once, I heard a small kid saying that God didn’t leave Ukraine, but rather stayed somewhere among us. And therefore, he’s also among the military during the bitter fighting. A bright image of Jesus riding a helicopter as if he’s in an American action movie popped up in my mind. It is fair to say that in my pictures he’s also preaching, because he’s not afraid to call evil evil, and good – good.

Once, I heard a small kid saying that God didn’t leave Ukraine, but rather stayed somewhere among us. A bright image of Jesus riding a helicopter popped up in my mind right away.

- 42nd already
- Mine is 43rd
Ukrainian, motherfucker, do you speak it?
The carpet set the tone of the whole room
What an unfortunate suicide
You feel that smell? All Chornobaivka smelled like that… It is the smell of victory.
Putin: There’ll be no Hague Tribunal?
Ukrainian military: There’ll be the justice of Heaven.
Joker: I’ll tell you what you get.
You won’t be able to take my present off
It’s scared!
Those communist pagans!
Peace be upon us, brothers and sisters.
Bet you thought I’d left Ukraine
No casualties
No casualties
Mariupol shows resistance
- My serve…
Mariupol shows resistance
High time you sought God…
Russian military vehicle: And when’s the parade?
Ukrainian plane: Just the one that leads to Kobzon (editor`s note: late russian singer)
100% cotton (editor`s note. Play on words is used: russian media uses а word ‘хлопок’ to refer to the blasts in Belgorod, which is translated rather as ‘a plop’; the word ‘cotton’ is also written as ‘хлопок’)
Tochka-U for the Crimean bridge

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