Illustrator Interviews: Stina Persson

Stina Persson Fashion Illustration | Hermes

I’m always interested in learning more about the creative people that I admire. It’s been a long time since I’ve done an interview series on my blog. The last one was Creative Mix which ran from 2013 – 2014, where I interviewed 10 creative women who had tons of different job titles. Interestingly, so did I. Before that was Blogspiration, way back in 2011, where I interviewed five women about their blogs and how they got started. Interestingly, that’s when my goal was to be a full-time blogger.

My primary creative goal of 2016 is to get my illustration and surface pattern design projects out into the world. In keeping with tradition, let’s start interviewing some illustrators and pattern designers! First up is Stockholm, Sweden based illustrator Stina Persson. I’ve loved Stina’s beautiful watercolor women for some time now and I love seeing the progression of her style since she got started. I’m so excited to feature her work today and get to know her a little bit better.

Stina Persson | Illustration

Hi Stina! How did you get started in your illustration career? Did you go to art school?

At 21 I moved to Italy and started art school there, and later fashion design in Florence at Polimoda. Later I moved to New York and went to Pratt Institute and got my degree in Illustration. After graduation I painted large scale paintings and waited tables. It wasn’t until the Twin Towers fell that I dared to fully commit myself to illustration. I met my lovely agents and slowly got more and more work. I am still with the same agency, Koko Art Agency, which by now is family.

I think that I first saw (and loved) your work in NYLON Magazine. What was your first paid illustration job? How did you feel when you were working on it?

NYLON was pretty early on actually! I worked with them for a while, which was great, except that they never paid.


My first big job was for Lillet Aperitif. So many phone booths (yes, it was a long time ago) in New York had those ads on their sides. Working on this first job I was nervous of course. And I re-painted and re-drew so many times. But the client was great.
Stina Persson | Fashion Illustrator and Fine Artist | Le Kid

What’s your creative process like when you’re working on a client brief versus working on a personal project?

I try to approach both with curiosity and hard work aiming to create something beautiful. I put as much heart into all my work, being commercial or personal, it is just that the commercial jobs end up having a lot more edits and revisions and become further away from my heart in the very end at times. But not always as I’ve gotten better at keeping the work truer to me.

Stina Persson Artist and Illustrator
Stina Persson | Elephant | Concrete Jungle

What is the best advice you have for new illustrators who are looking for work?

Don’t look at other illustrators when trying to find your style. Look to art, music, nature etc. There is so much to get inspired by. And don’t worry about finding a style or look. If you keep drawing and painting it will emerge.

What are you working on now?

Two really big and exiting collaborations that I unfortunately cannot talk about just yet, and a new animal for the art print gallery Wonderwall where I sell my work. I created an elephant for them which has been flying off the shelves. There are only six prints left out of 469.
Stina Persson | Icon on Wonderwall

And there you have it, folks. The first interview in my Illustrator Interviews series. Who are your favorite illustrators that you’d like to know more about? Send me an email with a link to their work and I’ll see what I can do! xoxo


Thank you so much for supporting my art and sharing my work.

Sign up here for my art newsletter The Creative Brief to learn about new work and see what inspires me.

Buy my original paintings, fine art prints, apparel, and home goods in my online shop.

Sign up here to have new blog posts delivered straight to your inbox.