Sakke Yrjölä Illustration


Sakke Yrjölä is a Finnish illustrator, fish artist and fish enthusiast. He’s completing the venture of documenting and illustrating the Scandinavian fish species.The focus is now on species found in the North sea, Norwegian sea and Arctic ocean. He has previously done guidebooks about “The Fishes of Finland” and “Fish preparation”.



Born 13-10-1972, Helsinki, FinlandFinnish illustrator, graphic designer, text book writer/editor.
Education: Master of Arts (1997, Univ. of Arts & Design Helsinki)



• Suomen kalat 2015 Otava/Nemo (The Fishes of Finland-book) New edition 2021, +100 illustrations
• Kalalajien tunnistusopas 2016 Otava/Nemo (Species identification guide -fieldguide) New edition 2024
• Kalankäsittelyn opas 2020 Otava/Nemo ( Fish gutting guidebook) Text, editing, explosion-, skeletaland instructive illustrations)

fish art

Sakke Yrjölä has embarked on a new project illustrating Scandinavian fish species. The goal is to create informative illustrations for scientific and educational purposes. These illustrations are utilized in various educational settings, from printed publications to new media platforms. Yrjölä’s approach is empirical; he collaborates with local experts and fishermen to hunt for species. Multiple expeditions are organized along the coasts of Nordic countries to capture and document as many species as possible on-site. This meticulous process of specimen hunting and on-the-spot documentation is crucial for producing accurate identification illustrations. Traditional techniques and materials are essential for Yrjölä’s artwork, with the originals being watercolor paintings on pure cotton papers.

The first stage of the project aims to cover approximately 80–100 saltwater species. After five expeditions, 52 documented species, variations, and sexes have been recorded. The project will be presented in book format, and the original paintings will also be exhibited in zoological institutions and aquariums.

All of Sakke Yrjölä’s fish art products are crafted using Nordic materials in the Helsinki area. They are designed to educate and highlight the visual diversity of Nordic fish species.

Check out the latest updates on Sakke’s Facebook page:


Survey and species documenting trips in Scandinavia completed so far: Varangerfjorden, Kongsfjord, Båtsfjord, Odda, Eidfjorden, Sotra, Øygarden, Drammen,Romsdalsfjorden, Ålesund, Kvæfjorden, Hamarøy, Vestfjorden, Drøbak, Langesund, Kristiansand, Lillesand, Mandal, Lysefjorden, Stavanger, Bergen, Knarvik, Østerfjorden, Sørfjorden.