Oper Schloss Hallwyl 2018, La Cenerentola, Programmheft, Spielkarten
Oper Schloss Hallwyl 2018, La Cenerentola, Programmheft

La Cenerentola as a Board Game

In the summer of 2018, Gioachino Rossini's opera "La Cenerentola" was performed at Hallwyl Castle.

For the program booklet the production team was looking for ways to support the description of action by visual means. For this they asked Edi Ettlin. The resulting work could be considered a cross between infographics and comic.

Ettlin presents the plot of the Cinderella Opera as a game across seven pages. He introduces the characters and their vocal registers by means of playing cards. Colorful figures then follow a game plan. They disguise themselves and sing their arias in the form of drawn keywords in speech bubbles. Short sentences explain the plot.

Excerpt double page

(in German)

School on a Mountain

For 75 years, the higher technical school Bürgenstock has been the educational center of the association of Swiss carpenters and furniture manufacturers.

For the third time Edi Ettlin - himself an alumnus of the school - illustrated the annual program. The double page spreads opening each chapter portray graduates in their learning environment.

The Mysterious Book

In the fall of 2017, a new edition of the book "Das geheimnisvolle Buch, Aus dem Rucksack von Andrì" (The Mysterious Book, From the Backpack of Andrì) came to Swiss bookstores. The story was the first children's book of the well-known Swiss storyteller, author and musician Linard Bardill. Baeschlin publishing house published the book in an updated version newly illustrated by Edi Ettlin.


The book tells the story of the cattle herdsman Andrì and his dog Tarru, who – like every fall – make their way from the alpine pasture to the city. On the way, Andrì finds an enigmatic book that slowly reveals its secrets.

Page from the fall 2017 preview of the publishing house (in German)

Das geheimnissvolle Buch
Fire Department, drawing
Fire Department Stans, book, drawing, fire steamboat

Firefighters responding

For a book about the Fire Department of Stans, Switzerland, Edi Ettlin drew emergency responses that have taken place in recent years.

By means of drawing, infographics and text, these pictures tell stories of how the emergencies happened and what the firefighters had to take care of.

Portrait of a Student

The current annual report of the University of Lucerne features students, portrayed by seven illustrators who are all alumni of the the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts.


When I committed to the exciting project, I got to portray law student Dario Picecchi. After interviewing him, I translated his key statements into pictures. At the suggestion of the University, I painted the piece in acrylic paint.


Porträt, Universität Luzern, Jahresbericht 2016

A Walnut in New York

The New York State Museum regu-

larly organizes the exhibit series

“Focus on Nature”, featuring natural

history illustrations from around the

world. The latest exhibition ran

from December 3 through April 9 at

the Roger Tory Peterson Institute in

Jamestown, New York.

Among others, the jury selected a

work by me showing a walnut tree

seedling. The picture tells the story

of a walnut seedling’s first growth

stages as it starts the journey to

become a mighty tree.

In my studio, I experimented with

growing walnuts for some time, which

served as a basis for the drawing.

Seedling from a walnut, Juglans regia, schematic drawing
Nussbaum-Sämling, Juglans regia, Habituszeichnung, FON XIV
Focus on Nature XIV, Ausstellungskatalog, Doppelseite Edi Ettlin, Juglans regia

Nidwaldner Kalender 2016

The Nidwaldner Kalender 2016

(Almanac of Nidwalden) continues

the tradition of the calendar story.

In "Heimspiel" (Home Match) written

by author Agi Arnold the urbanite

Lisa returns unexpectedly to the site

of an alpine summer of her youth.

There she goes through a emotional

rollercoaster ride.


The Illustration of the story was

carried in linocut technique. In the

pictures, people, places, and text

get superimposed and allow insights

and outlooks. The illustration is

closely related to the text and unites

with the typography.

400 years convent of St. Clara in Stans, book illustration way of life
400 years convent of St. Clara in Stans, Book

Convent History

In the fall of 2015, a book com-

memorating the 400th anniversary

of the convent of St. Clara in

Stans was published. On 240

pages, a team of authors tell the

history of the sister community

from different angles.

Edi Ettlin designed the cover

drawing and seven illustrations

highlighting the main topics.

Swiss Championship

The poster for the Kendo Swiss Championship 2015 in Lucerne shows two kendokas executing the so-called men strike. The goal was to find the moment that defines the whole sequence of movements.


Observations, photos, videos, and consultations with experts helped define typical and technically cor-rect postures. Quick but precise brushstrokes represent the dynam-ics of the motion sequence and give an idea of what is about to happen in the next instant.

Poster of Kendo Swiss Championship 2015
«Fische kennen keine Grenzen» Ausstellung, 125 Jahre Fischereikonkordat Vierwaldstättersee
«Fische kennen keine Grenzen» Neolithische Seeufersiedler mit Einbaum und Zugnetz beim Fischen im Winter vor Kehrsiten. Bürgenstock, Rigi

Fishing in the Neolithic

For 125 years, the five cantons around Lake Lucerne have been regulating fishing jointly. In late August 2015, the anniversary was commemorated around Lake Lucerne with a new book and an exhibition on a boat.

«Fische kennen keine Grenzen» Buch, 125 Jahre Fischereikonkordat Vierwaldstättersee. Seeufersiedlerin befestigt Reusen vor Kehrsiten.

The book is titled "Fische kennen keine Grenzen" (fish don’t know any boundaries). Among other topics author Josef Muggli covers the Stone Age traces of fishing on Lake Lucerne. Illustrations by Edi Ettlin show how Neolithic settlers used the lake as a food source both in summer and in winter.

Plakat Freilichttheater Freilichtspiele Luzern Tribschen

The Airship

A flying ship was what the graphic designer envisioned for the poster of the open-air theater Lucerne. It should bring to mind pioneering achievements in engineering and tourism during the Belle Époque. Simultaneously, the drawing was supposed to express a playful ease.


Executed as a digital hand drawing the airship represents hundreds of years of technological history. Bold and yet bulky the airship rises above the lake. Just one strong gust of wind, however, would be enough to topple the utopian vehicle.


Of Bees and Mites

For several years, the Varroa mite (Varroa destructor) has plagued the European honeybee (Apis mellifera).


The chart explains the fragile bal-ance between host and parasite under several influencing factors. The picture was created as an assignment while studying Illus-tration Nonfiction at the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts.

Nidwaldner Kalender 2014

Inspired by an event, the student Johanna begins to ex-plore the work of artist Annemarie von Matt. While coming of age, the girl gets compelled to the biography of the once misunderstood artist.


With the story, written by Romano Cuonz, the Nidwaldner Kalender (Almanac of Nidwalden) reprises the tradition of the calendar story. The illustrations combine scenes from Johanna's life with works of von Matt, which go through
the mind of the student.