thelma köhler - meet the illustrator
writer: emma ranne
picture: emma ranne
Thelma Köhler is a Helsinki based artist, known for her stunning illustration works. Last autumn Thelma followed her dream and set up her own company, through which she’s now able to do what she loves for a living. Besides her art works both digital and on paper, Thelma has also done some work in fashion design. A few weeks ago I sat down with this lovely lady who’s the artist of this months calendar drawing. We cozied up with some coffee and talked about art, following ones career dreams and conscious actions.
Hi thelma! Can you please shortly introduce yourself to our readers?
Hi! So my name is Thelma, I’m 22 years old and I live here in Helsinki. I’m working as an artist in the fields of visual art and uncommercial fashion in my own company.
Oh that’s super cool! Tell us more about being an entrepreneur. How did you get into it and how does it feel?
It’s very rewarding! Being an entrepreneur is not the easiest career path, but it really gives you the freedom, which is amazing and I get to do exactly what I want basically. I have both my own projects like an art exhibition that’s coming up soon and a clothing line I’m working on with Emilia Gustafsson. Furthermore there’s the custom orders regarding both paintings and illustrations and sometimes also garments.
can you Tell us more about your art: when did you get started?
Well it’s pretty much accidental as I don’t know what else I could see myself do. It’s always been a part of my life and something that comes very natural to me. Drawing is something that’s always been with me, and I realise it’s quite a luxury for me to be able to do it for a living.
Where do you source your inspiration?
Oh that’s a difficult but interesting question. Hmmm… well, thinking of my upcoming exhibition for example, the inspiration is gathered mainly from dreams. I have very visual and vivid dreams, which are authentic pictures that can’t be from anywhere else. I also get inspired by people and their interesting presences which I want to communicate through my pictures as well.
Do you have Any big artist crushes?
Oh yeah I have! Definitely Salvador Dalí. He’s always been inspirational to me with just his art, his charisma and all of that. My grandfather used to collect his lithographies, so it feels sort of like a family thing. I love the expressiveness of surrealism and it has a certain type of dark mystery which I really appreciate.
What would you do on a perfect Friday?
That really depends on my mood. Sometimes I just love to be around people and connect with friends, whereas on other nights I’d rather stay in, read a book and eat good food at home accompanied by my cat Francis.
What is your favourite quality about yourself?
Oh that’s a difficult one. Hmm I’d say either my perseverance or my intuition. They’re both things that have got me where I am now, and something that has proven to be of great value.
Which conscious actions do you wish more of us would take?
I’m a bit partial with this one since I’m vegan myself, but eating plant based is of course something I’d wish to see more people do. It has changed my life personally. I also wish that people would be more mindful of consuming our planet and others - both animals and other people.
Tell us about a childhood dream
Oh actually that’s very funny when I think about it, since it’s basically; living in a big city and to be able to create. Besides, I don’t think I’ll ever be a penguin trainer… I’ve kinda given up on that dream but that’s alright, haha!
What are your Top 3 tunes at the momen?
1. Corporation by Jack White
2. Calm Like a Bomb by Rage Against the Machine
3. the album Maxinquaye by Tricky