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Hello!

I am an illustrator & small business owner from Bergen, Norway. Besides running my own shop & studio and making stuff happen at Bryggen, I work as an illustrator for organizations, publishing houses, stage shows and magazines.

Illustration have always been my passion, and even if I have a long list of studies within the field of visual art and design, my career is a result of the combination of studies in school, personal studies, the people I've worked with, and the love of the trade.

So if you really want to see what experience I have, not just a list of schools and customers, have a look at my work projects. And of course my side projects Trolldomsakademiet, Jul på Bryggen and Piratfestivalen

Clients

  • Character Publishing, illustrations, book design: "Goodnight Stories For Science Kids". 2017- present
  • Skald Publishing, illustrations, book design: Godnattboka, Eventyrboka, Trøysteboka, Monsterboka, Fantasiboka, Champagnepiker. 2007-2017
  • Pandora Film, illustrator and co-host of "Hagetid" at TV2. 2016-2017
  • Festspillene in Bergen, illustrations, animations and props for stage 2012/13
  • Bergens Tidende, weekly illustrations 2006 - 2009
  • NRK3, animation 2008 - still running
  • GAN Aschehoug, illustrations for schoolbooks  2013
  • MoldeJazz, illustrations for stage  2014
  • Barn i Byen, monthly illustrations 2011 - 2015
  • Fjord1/Cox, monthly illustrations 2011 - 2014
  • NRK/NorgeRundt/Nasjonal Vedkveld, illustrations for tv-program 2013
  • Samlaget, illustrations for schoolbooks 2011
  • UIB/Initera, illustrations for two issues 2012/13
  • Bergen Næringsråd/Samspill, illustrations for two issues 2011/12
  • Kamille Mor & Barn, editorial illustration 2013
  • Maison Mat & Vin, illustrations for two issues 2013/14
  • ...And many other single commissions for publications and magazines, private commissions, and designs made for my shop at Bryggen.

Education

  • Kunsthøyskolen in Bergen, BA Visual Communication, Motion Graphics 2006–2009
  • Norsk Lærerakademi, Spesialpedagogikk 2005
  • Apprentice bookbinder at Wyvern Bindery, London 2003
  • Central St Martins College of Art & Design, Illustration/Printmaking 2002/2003
  • Surrey Insitute of Art & Design, Foundation Course, Fine Art 2001/2002

Awards

  • Silver in Årets Vakreste Bøker/Grafill 2010 for the illustrations for “Eventyrboka”
  • Nynorsk Barne og Ungdomslitteraturpris for the illustrations for “Godnattboka”
  • Bought in by Norsk Kulturråd: Godnattboka & Eventyrboka

Talks

  • Raptus Comic Festival - Panel Discussion: Children's books. A talk about what defines a children's book, and what we think a children's book should be. Panel with illustrators Sara Richard (My Little Pony) and Dave Windett.  2016
  • Raptus Comic Festival - "The evolution of a spread": A talk about working in InDesign with illustations and book design, with examples from sketches to final product 2016
  • HAKU School of Art 2014
  • Design Jam - KODE Art Museums 2012
  • Girls’ Conference - Fana Kulturhus 2011
  • Design Jam - KODE Art Museums 2010

Books

  • Fantasiboka, Skald Work in progress, release Aug 2016
  • Monsterboka, Skald 2013
  • Series of school books, GAN Aschehoug 2012
  • Sagnet om Trollveggen, FF 2012
  • Champagnepiker, Skald 2012
  • Eventyrboka, Skald 2009
  • Trøysteboka, Skald 2011
  • Series of school books, Samlaget 2008
  • Godnattboka, Skald 2007

Good collaboration derives from good, enthusiastic people and good beer.

Press

Here is a list of articles about me and my work, and collaborations I have participated in:

Bergens Tidende Sept 2014 about my shop and local businesses at Bryggen in Bergen.
Bergensavisen Aug 2014 about being published in China
Me and Siri Breistein about biking
Bergens Tidende 2011 about our new design collective at Bryggen in Bergen

Q & A

What do I have to study to become an illustrator?

I went to several different art schools and classes, and I'm still doing courses to develop what I do. I don't think there is one magical straight line to anyone's education, and I don't know that many artists that actually do what their papers say they are trained in. I have a BA in motion graphics, but I only do that as a side project now. I run a shop and a business with five employees, that was definitely not something I learned in school. I did printmaking, bookbinding, motion graphics and graphic design, and the illustration part is something I shaped from all this, in addition to hours and hours of study outside of school.

How do you get jobs?

Usually I get an email from a publishing house, magazine, journalist or similar, that like what I do and would like to talk more about a project they have in mind. Then they have usually found my work online or seen other things I've done.

How did you get your first commercial commission or paid illustration work?

I had done lots of smaller commissions for people that wanted to buy illustrations from me, and I kept taking part in collaborative exhibitions and having stalls at markets to expose my work. After one solo exhibition at Cafe Opera in Bergen I got a phone call from someone in Bergens Tidende asking of I wanted to try out to illustrate for them. After working for Bergens Tidende for a few months a publishing house contacted me about making a children's book.

Would you advice for or against working for free when you start out your illustration career?

I would very much advice against it. First, it's rude to ask any someone to do any profession for free. Unless it's for your mum, a collaborative project, or something you have your heart set on. If you are an apprentice this is a little different, but then it's in a set time frame, and in connection with school, and you wouldn't be paid anyway. If less artists took on free jobs after they finished school, doing work they normally would be paid for, we woulnd't be in this mess. And I think it's disrespectful to ask anyone to work for exposure. Exposure does not pay my rent or my dinner, and if a client asks you to do this it means they probably will continue to ask you or others to work for exposure again. Anyone who contacts me asking me to work for exposure will soon find out that this is something I feel very strongly about. If you don't respect your own profession, chances are no one else will either. In most cases the client is not aware that the artist has to go through email after email telling them what a wonderful exposure opportunity this unpaid job is, and might actually also believe that they are helping the artist.

Being said, in between I take illustrative jobs that isn't paid, because it's volunteer causes and I would like to help out. In most of these cases no one in the organization is paid. Or it's just a really fun and nerdy job where I can get some nice illustrations done while still helping out. But if clients with major budgets asks you to work for free, please let them in a polite way know that this is not ok. If you need exposure, I would much rather pull off awesome self initiated work and fling it out through the appropriate channels.

Do you do this full time? Is this your main income?

Yep!

Are you being funded or have scholarships?

Nope! I got one scholarship I applied for after I had worked full time as an illustrator for a few years. It was 30 000 kr, helping me pay rent on my studio for a while. Now it's my shop and commissioned work that pays my rent.

Any advice to students that wants to be illustrators?

If you have an obsessive passion to work with illustration, you'll be fine. I don't think you can just like the profession. I couldn't have done this if I didn't embrace it all, being self employed it's not just the drawing part. It's late night deadlines, excel spread sheets, invoices, emails, paperwork, contracts, tax, standing your ground, being flexible, and maybe changing your path along the way. If this sounds like a good challenge, you'll be just fine. And of course, excel at your work.