Lena Panaita started drawing before she was walking. Born in Southern Russia she received a classical art education that included an Art School, Art College, and the Academy of Arts, slowly moving from fine art to illustration. Her free spirit was always looking for adventures, taking her from being an illustrator to successfully running her own advertising agency with 20 employees. However, she realised that her passion was in storytelling, both as a writer and illustrator.
She left Russia to pursue her higher education in New Zealand and fell in love with the beautiful country and people. She is now a proud kiwi. She graduated with honours from AUT University in Auckland receiving Master of Philosophy in Art & Design.
For the last 10 years she was fortunate to work with amazing people in the NZ advertising industry. These clients included Adidas Global, AIG Global, Tourism New Zealand, Nissan, ANZ bank, Facebook Australia and many others.
Lena now lives and works in Auckland New Zealand, splitting her time between going to the beach, creating her new graphic novel and freelancing for the print and film industry.