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Arielle Katarina has called New York, New Jersey and Georgia home. But she insists Florida has her heart.

“I've been down here for 12 years and have fallen in love with the environment, the weather, and the tropical vibes.”

In return, she’s given her art to Florida, and particularly the Tampa Bay area. Katarina has painted a number of celebrated murals throughout the bay area, but you might be familiar with her most popular work from cracking open a cold one.

If you’ve ever admired the intricate, one-of-a-kind beer labels at Tampa’s Hidden Springs Ale Works, you’ve admired a Katarina original. She’s been the brewery’s label illustrator since they started canning their local suds.

She’s also the artist behind the Lightning’s Fan Appreciation Mystery Puck for the final game of the season Wednesday night. In her local artist spotlight, Katarina dives into the puck design, her far-reaching illustrations and the perks of Tampa Bay living.

You have a very recognizable style—where do you find most of your influence?

I like to create designs that are vibrant, fun, and a little rough around the edges. A lot of my flowy patterns were originally inspired by Peter Max and Heinz Edelmann (think Beatles, Yellow Submarine). As I was developing my style another influence was Ralph Steadman (illustrator for Hunter S. Thompson) - I loved his energetic ink splatters and bizarre linework. My work is sort of a modern mix of the two combined with tropical leaves and animals.

I’m a big fan of your work on one of my favorite local beverages. How did your connection with Hidden Springs Brewery come into play?

Ah, that's awesome, thank you! When I first moved up to Tampa I got really into craft beer, and at the time some of the local breweries were just starting to get into canning and bottling their beers and needed labels. A friend had recommended me to the folks at Hidden Springs to do beer label artwork, and I created my first bottle label for them. It was a hit and I've created labels for over 100 different beers for them since.

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How did you come up with the design for the puck?

I wanted to create a puck design that celebrates the energy of Tampa Bay and its fans. Tampa is a vibrant and lively city teeming with art, culture, cuisine, nightlife and nature! You can dine in a modern restaurant one minute and hang out nearby an alligator in the next. I wanted to combine this energy and exuberance with the passion felt by Lightning Fans condensed into one spirited puck. I love using lots of color, and I hope the joy felt in the design of this puck brings a smile to the faces of fans as much as a goal does.

What’s your favorite part of living in the Tampa Bay area?

Its unique culture! There's so few places in the country where you can live close to the beach, have cool art, music, and cuisine around, while also being surrounded by palm trees, nature, and amazing weather.  It's both historic and cutting edge. Tampa Bay is truly a special place.

What first inspired you to get into art and design?

I've been drawing for as long as I can remember. I was always interested in creating art from a super young age, and I think some of my earliest inspirations were the illustrations in kids books, especially ones with lots of animals and nature. I would draw in my sketchbook at school, outside, on vacation - everywhere! As I got older I thought it would be cool to develop my passion for art into a career.

When you’re not creating, what are you doing?

I love nature, and try to get outside as much as I can. I love the beach, snorkeling, fossil hunting, catching rocket launches, and growing tropical fruit. I recently got into birding and have been having fun doing that too!

Where can people find your work?

I post the most on Instagram where my handle is @akatarina. People can also find me on Facebook at Arielle Katarina Illustration or my website