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Projects by Ella Nitters

When I was five years old I saw an insect that had been eaten by ants and of which nothing remained except the shell. Through the holes in its anatomy one could see the sky. Every time I wish to attain purity I look at the sky through flesh.”

Salvador Dali (Spanish painter, 1904–1989)

Esser Masterclass - Hand Surgery

Illustrations and coursebook for masterclasses in hand surgery, organised by Esser Masterclass.

Client: Esser Masterclass, department of Plastic, Reconstructive and Hand Surgery, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam.

© 2017 - 2021

Esser Masterclass - Reconstructive

Illustrations and coursebook for masterclasses in facial reconstructive surgery.

Client: Esser Masterclass, department of Plastic, Reconstructive and Hand Surgery, Erasmus MC, Rotterdam.

© 2021

Hip Replacement Surgery

Anterior Supine Intermuscular approach (ASI) .

Acetabular exposure
Hip joint (os coxae & femur)

Client: Master Thesis MSI/Dr. Stephan Vehmeijer


Some steps of a PLIF surgery (Posterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion) for a brochure.

Client: Orthogèse
Technique: Adobe Photoshop
© 2017

Adrenal Adenoma Enucleation

Laparoscopic procedure to remove an adrenal adenoma through enucleation.

Client: Dr. Hao Yan, Xuanwu Hospital, Beijing
Technique: Pencil, Adobe Photoshop
© 2016


Various illustrations of the human skeleton:

Lumbar vertebra
Os coxae & proximal end of femur (hip joint)
Skeleton of the Human Torso

Client: MSI Maastricht
Technique: Graphite pencil, watercolour
© 2013

Human Specimen Dissection

Illustration of a dissection of an arm with focus on the Triangular Fibrocartilage Complex.

Client: MSI Maastricht
Technique: Watercolour
© 2016


Line drawing of human torso & abdomen.

Client: MSI Maastricht
Technique: Adobe Illustrator
© 2016

Microsurgery of a Rat

Technique: carbon dust, graphite pencil & digital colouring

Award: World Illustration Award 2018, Research category, New Talent Winner

Isolated Gut

Illustrations of a surgical procedure on a rat.

Client: MSI Maastricht
Technique: Fineliner & Adobe Illustrator
© 2016

And if you should have a passion for such things, perhaps you would be impeded by disgust and if this would not hinder you, perhaps the fear to pass the night in company of such quartered and mutilated corpses that are horrifying to see; and if this does not hinder you, perhaps you would miss the capacity to draw properly which is necessary for such figuration.”

Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519), from "Proemio della Anatomia"