Mikael Kangas is an illustrator, art director and graphic designer from Sweden. Mikael started studying industrial design, but later on he realized that illustration and graphic design is what he likes best. With tradeyourtalent Mikael speaks about inspiration from Greek mythology and saving the world.
What are your themes in your work?
Mikael: A lot of fashion and animals and ornaments! I started out inspired by Aubrey Beardsley and did only black and white. Somehow I wanted to update the illustrations and make them more contemporary and take use of all the tools available when working digitally and started experimenting with colors, overlays and transparencies. But even though I like the use of strong colors I try to keep down the number of different colors in one illustration so it doesn’t go overboard.
Where do you get your inspiration?
Mikael: I get my inspirations from all kinds of things in everyday life but also from the Art Nouveau books, Greek mythology, fairytales and fashion magazines.
What are your current projects about?
Mikael:Right now im working on a couple of diffent things. Instructional workout illustrions, a magazine cover and art directing photoshots for H&M!
Is it hard being an artist today?
Mikael:Well there is a tough completion since it's a more global market now but at the same time that also increases the number of clients you can reach. Even though I live in Sweden almost none of my clients are Swedish magazine or brands.
Do you have favorite artists?
Mikael: I loved stories and books illustrated by incredible Swedish illustrator Hans Arnold when I was younger and still think his images are incredible. Unfortunatly he isn't alive anymore but i do like some more ontemporary illustrators like Richard Gray, Autumn Whitehurst and David Downton.
Did you ever want to do something else besides art?
Mikael: I´ve been drawing and sketching all my life, fascinated by “how to draw” books and addicted to comic books. Later I studied industrial design, decided on illustrations. But if i didn't do that or illustrations i would probebly want to work with animals or something like that. saving the world?