Tuesday, 18 June 2013

My intriquing interview with Graphic Artist: Ida Jansson

It has been months since the last guest graced the shed of solicitation.

Maybe it was because they had nothing to sit on but a milk crate.
Maybe it was because the annoying interruptions from the back of the shed gang or maybe it was because the shed is looking a little drab lately.

I figure it is a combination of all reasons, so I changed things up a bit.

I replaced the milk crates with two nice Lazy Boy rockers, where I got them I will not say.

I have banned the back of the shed gang from all guest interviews until further notice. Though I do not think they are going to listen.

I have decorated the shed with lovely curtains and some art work designed by a most talented Digital Artist and Graphic Designer, Ida Jansson.

I have invited the talent and all around sweet and very friendly Ida to sit with me, admire her work and tell us all about her fabulous self.


  Welcome, Ida,  have a seat, would you like something to drink?

Yes please, maybe hot chocolate? 

Certainly, here you go. Be careful though, it is very hot and I do want you to damage those gifted hands! 

 Thank you for coming, Ida, please tell those people listening at the door who do not think I know they are listening at the door, what is it that you do?

I`m a Digital Artist and Graphic Designer, working in my own company, Amygdala Design. The company specialize in design of book covers, but also offers other services such as book trailers and promo images.

May ask what got you first interested in designing book covers?

I have had photo manipulation and digital painting as a hobby for 3 years, and have been sharing some of my work on places such as DeviantArt. In October 2012 I was contacted by author Ellie Garratt, asking if I would be interested in designing her covers for her two short story collections “Passing Time” and “Taking Time”. Of course I said yes, and after that the ball started rolling! Now I am making book covers full time.

I am listening carefully to Ida when I hear a knocking noise on the window, I look to my left and see Jack with his face to the window, pointing to his Lazy Boy rockers and letting loose a string of muffled curses.  I immediately shut the curtains closed and return to Ida. 

Sorry about that Ida. Now, where were we? Oh yes.  How long have you been interested in art and design?

I actually have a bachelor degree in Biomedical Science, so 3 years ago, my original plan was to work in a hospital. But then I discovered digital art, and ended up spending all my free time on that. I feel so lucky that I get to have my favourite hobby as my job now!

What is the most interesting thing about your career?

I love the fact that I get to work with books and authors on a daily basis. I love to read, and I am really impressed by all the wonderful authors out there. Working with both aspiring and established authors is so inspiring, and I love that I can play a small part in their careers as writers.

I smile at this lovely woman's humble attitude. In fact, as I am sure many authors agree, cover design is far from a small part, it is a major part. After all, in my opinion, a book could contain within it the most perfect masterpiece of our time, but if the cover is bland and it does  not catch anyone's eye, then this masterpiece will probably be wasted. 

   Have you met anyone famous? (If you have not who would you like to meet?)

Not really, the chance of bumping into an international celebrity here in Norway is really slim. I would love to meet some of the big authors like J.K Rowling. I would also love to meet Misha Collins ;)

If you were not a  designer  what other path do you believe you would have chosen?

I guess I would be working as a Biomedical Scientist, maybe in medical research. I also have a secret dream of writing a book someday, maybe a dystopian novel.

What is the favorite part of your career? What is the least favorite?

I love the process of making a book cover! I especially like the part when I start to see how the end result will be like J What I don`t like is dealing with budgets, taxes and payments. If I could I would definitely hire someone to do that for me.

What is your current project and what inspired you to do it?

I always have multiple projects going on at the same time. For example, this week I am making 5 book covers for 3 different authors, banners, promo images and several trailers. I really enjoy the variety in my work.

 Name five fun facts about yourself please.

 - I have a 7 year old dog (Flat Coated Retriever) who sleeps in bed between me and my significant other every night.

- I have danced ballet for 10 years.

- My favorite TV-Show right now is The Big Bang Theory.

- I am 25% Swedish.

- I always listen to music when I design book covers.

If you can live in any part of the world where would it be?

I think I would actually choose Norway. It`s a very safe, wealthy and beautiful country. But I would love to explore the US some time as well, especially New York. I also love Paris!

  Tell me a little something about the creative process of your work.

When making a new book cover, I always read the authors description of the story one or two days before I start designing. That way I can have it in the back of my mind while I do other things, and I often get an idea of how I want to do the cover before I start. Since I work with stock images as a base, I often build upon or change the ideas when I browse for stocks and see what is available. Then I try putting different stocks together to see what works. Sometimes I only use a few stocks, other times I can use elements from 7-10 different images on the cover. Then I put everything together using Photoshop, followed by tweaking of colors, contrast etc. Finally I add digital painting to make the elements work together, and to make the cover stand out. The typography is also an important part of the cover, and I often use a long time experimenting before I get the look that I want.

  Thank you for coming and telling me and my impromptu audience about yourself and your exciting career, is there anything else you like to add?

Thank you for having me, and I welcome everyone to have a look at my website!

Website: http://www.amygdaladesign.net/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/pages/Amygdala-Art/302917036483121

Twitter: https://twitter.com/AmygdalaArt

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/user/show/14349847-ida-jansson



Here are the lovely art works that I hang in the shed:


Plus my author alter ego, had the pleasure in working with Ida Jansson using her services again and again. Here is a sample of the work she did:
Fabulous isn't she?


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