MEET SIMO KARJALAINEN
am a Finnish 64 years old architect (2021). Last year I retired from daily
work. I still run my private, one-man architect studio -- and love my profession!
How pleasant it is now to have a possibility to use the skills from the
40 years of my work career.
My dream was originally to become a language or an art
teacher. After high school I got a place to start language studies at the
University of Oulu. Dream of studying arts still bothered my mind, and
I began to think again my dreams during the military service time.
I had two choices; to strive either to study arts or architecture.
Irritatingly both selection tests happened to be that year on the same
week. But, by deducing, that art drawing would be easy to continue also
in architects profession, it was easier to choose going to the architectural
studies test. Thus it was to be!
Superheroes and drawing them have always enchanted
my imagination! At first there was Phantom, then came Batman and in 1967
I found Tarzan. Tarzan books and comics have inspired me now already for
Among many other artists, it is J. Allen St John and Russ
Manning, who have inspired me the most. Russ Manning's purely drawn Tarzan
and Brothers of The Spear, together with J. Allen St. John's rougher Tarzan
and John Carter figures, have given boost to my inks throughout the years.
I'm happy to present my illustrated adaptation from Edgar Rice Burroughs'
Tarzan of The Apes; The God of Tarzan. Burroughs mentioned that Tarzan's
dead father's library consisted of all kind of books and writers, how thoroughly
and with care, Tarzan studied and treated them as his most precious treasure.
According to Burroughs, Tarzan sought God from the books for months! Its
stunning, that Burroughs wrote an entire chapter on this very topic. This
influenced on me so deeply, that I wanted to illustrate the chapter in
Although Burroughs didn't write it more specifically,
I imagine, that this home library included also many other major publications
from 19th century in addition to the dictionaries and childrens picture
books. Burroughs mentions school books, too. I have imagined daringly,
that the collection included also The Gustave Dore Illustrated Bible!
With this very special Tarzan chapter Burroughs urges
us also to wonder the miracle of life and search for God. According to
Burroughs Tarzan found God. It should be much easier to us today, shouldn't
it. From the back cover you will find more about the background of
this picture book. My humble thanks to you, Bill Hillman, for your
giving space to my Tarzan art at ERBzine.