Iwan Nazif was born and raised in Bukittinggi, West Sumatra. After finished high school, Iwan studied Architecture at Institut Teknologi Nasional Bandung. During his college years, Iwan started participating in various comic drawing competitions, including at the national level where he won the first prize. After graduating, Iwan chose to pursue his interests in comic drawing instead of architecture. He joined several animation companies while drawing illustrations for many national children magazine.
Iwan later decided to focus his career as a free-lance illustrator. He spent time for some period in Malaysia to hone his skills with the aim for his artworks to gain international recognition. Iwan got his first international contract as the comic artist from Dark Horse Comics for KULT comic series. This was followed by Mass Effect 2 and 3, also published by Dark Horse Comics. Iwan eventually received a contract to illustrate Dreamworks’ How To Train Your Dragon comic series published by Titan Comics, which comic series had reached volume 8 to date.