Instagram: @bjorn_oberg
Website: www.bjornoberg.com

1. What’s your story? Where are you from?

I grew up in the northernmost region of Sweden in a small village of about 15 people, very far from the nearest town. It was basically woods and mountains in every direction. So naturally, I spent a lot of time by myself during my childhood and I guess my love of drawing and creating stuff is a result of that. Basically, I didn’t have much else to do.

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2. Tell us about your aesthetic.

I’d say it’s quite playful as far as colors and textures are concerned but I also like to think I’m focusing a lot on the craftsmanship behind it, as far as composition, shapes, linework, etc. goes.

3. What is your favourite medium and why?

I’ve found that the digital medium suits me best – I often like to try different things and rework stuff as I go along and working in a digital environment just lets you do that more efficiently.

4. What is your artistic process like?

Even though I work mainly in the digital medium I always start out with pen and paper – I have a sketchbook where I take notes, explore ideas and so on. I usually also put a lot of time and work into things like composition and shapes as well as symbolism, metaphors, and meaning. Since I work a lot with editorial illustration a big part of the process is coming up with an Idea that both me and the client feels strongly about.

Once I’m satisfied with the general idea and composition I just take a photograph of the sketch and continue working on it on my Cintiq until I have a more refined sketch. When I’m happy with that it’s time to continue on in Adobe Illustrator where I draw all the basic shapes and make the final design and color decisions. Last but not least I always use Photoshop for the finishing touches such as shading, textures, etc.

5. Who and/or what inspires your work?

A lot of things really, but mostly, of course, cultural expressions of various kinds – literature, art, illustration, design, music and so on.

6. What role does art play in your life? How does it change the way you view the world?

It plays a big role in my life – I get a lot of inspiration from looking at art of course but it can also transform the way you think about certain aspects of the world around you. I think art is one of the most important aspects of what it is to be human, as cliché as that may sound.

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7. Where did you study?

I studied graphic design, communication and industrial design at Mid Sweden University in Sundsvall – a mid-size town in the north of Sweden. I’ve also studied some preparatory art courses there as well as in Gothenburg, Sweden.

8. Where do you see yourself in five years?

Hopefully, I’ll still be able to make a living of what I love – perhaps with even more artistic freedom

9. What about in ten?

I would say that maybe by then I have the possibility of focusing more on personal work as well as exploring/ experimenting more with other/ different mediums.

10. What do you hope to achieve with your art?

I want it to invoke feelings, emotions and thought in people.

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11. Now, tell us a little more about you as a person: what is your favourite food?

In Sweden, we have something called ”Smörgåstårta” or ”Sandwich cake” in English – it’s basically three or four layers of bread with different savory fillings in between and a lot of stuff on top (shrimps, smoked salmon, vegetables, cheese, you name it) – it’s a dish that comes in a million different variations really and we mostly eat it on holidays in Sweden. Nevertheless, if I’d only get to pick one dish to bring to a desert island, this would be it.

12. Favourite book?

I’m a really big fan of Sci-fi and fantasy and it’s really hard to pick just one. But I’d say ”the Passage” by Justin Cronin is one of the books in recent years that’s made the most impression on me.

13. Favourite genre of music?

Black metal.

14. What are your hobbies?

I like cooking, reading, collecting vinyls, concerts… I’m also into the whole craft beer scene, oh! And target shooting! I love that.

15. If you weren’t an artist, what would you be?

Umm… probably depressed.

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