Meet the artist 2018 version

Skärmavbild 2018-06-08 kl. 22.18.31

I sometimes forget how quickly things change. Social media platforms change, people’s work places change, and kids grow up and become young adults and a new audience. I think it’s about time I do a presentation of who I am and what I’m doing.

My studio speaks a bit for itself. It’s creative and eclectic. I get the feeling a very sensual great grandmother lives there (but I’m only 37). The house I live in is nearly 100 years old though and half of the top floor is living space for me and my husband and our two daughters who turn 4 and 6 this summer, the other half is my studio. The natural light pouring  is amazing.

Skärmavbild 2018-06-08 kl. 22.23.11

I can’t work if it’s too messy, but as you can see it’s not a very Scandinavian crispy clean design going on. My favorite manga books are stacked under my desk and I’m learning how to crochet and knit and of course you gotta keep track of mails and paperwork so there’s that pile I’ll never get rid of as well.

The keen eye will notice two iMacs and yes, I use two. I’ve finished writing one adult book and will go back and edit it, I also work on two young adult graphic novels and a children’s book and then doing a revamp of my old comic Ghostly Melody. Oh, and I do gallery shows, freelance work and commissions. I have to be organized or I wouldn’t be able to do what I do.

Skärmavbild 2018-06-08 kl. 22.24.35

Coffee. Always. Never matching socks. Always. Bare legs, almost never. Sweden is seldom warm, except this year when summer arrived about two months early. Hey global warming, you’re giving me anxiety. Am I right? Or is it just me?


Skärmavbild 2018-06-08 kl. 22.30.50Skärmavbild 2018-06-08 kl. 22.30.02

I’ve covered my walls with sketches I put up on sale, works in progress and experiments. I’ve always tried new mediums and new ways of telling my stories. People seem to recognize my work even though I switch from ink to gouache or acrylics and that’s nice. I’d hate to confuse anyone but I’d also hate not to feel free to go wherever I want artistically. Isn’t that also a big part of why being an artist is so awesome?

Also, with age comes glasses. It seems I have a thing for collecting interesting looking glasses and wearing them even though I’m not necessarily seeking attention. I love people but I also love being able to go wallflower and rest a bit from being attentive and amusing, you know what I mean?

I like expressing myself though, through my art but also sometimes how I look. I used to have blue hair but these days it’s a mousy brown natural color blended with so much natural white hairs. I quite like it because I’m practicing my “I’m OK natural too” and said without shaming people who doll up a lot. I just don’t have the time so this wasn’t an option I liked but rather the way I needed to go because I was too busy to make time keeping my old style or creating a new. I call my current style “Meh!”.

Although… I secretly dream of peachy hair. Perhaps when I get more white hairs because I can’t bleach my hair. It’s already brittle because I have trichotillomania, it’s like a cousin to OCD which means when I’m stressed (and as a freelancing mother of two there’s always some level of stress in me) I twirl my hair until it snaps off. It’s compulsive behavior and quite hard to break but I’m actually trich free since some time ago.

I talk openly about this because I want to break the stigma around trich and the likes, the things we don’t talk about that’s so common and we’d know that if we only dared to talk about it. We need to open up, as a society, so people feel it’s okay to tell their boss or partner or family and the reaction will be judge free as when we tell someone we suffer from a migraine or have a fever. So that instead of suffering in silence people can get help.

It’s just emotions people. The most natural things we have. The most important tools that help us navigate through life and feeling it. And sometimes it comes with a hairball by my feet when my sick kids kept me up two night in a row and I have a deadline. But yeah.

Right now I’m mostly focusing on pulling in the next gear work wise. I want to try new things and work differently. It’s exciting times. Time to get some sleep though, it’s midnight and I’ve been working for a couple of hours after putting the kids to bed, but before I can lay down I need to hang my laundry. Glam life. Now you know me a bit better.



Published by Anneli

Olander’s illustrations combine a lush painterly sensibility with a darkly playful take on girlish fun and the remixing of fantasy with the everyday.

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