Session 9: Ingela P. Arrhenius


Hello there Ingela! We’d like to know how did illustration/design became a part of who you are, what started your passion?

I have always enjoyed drawing and creating. In my childhood home we had a big closet filled with pencils, clay and all sorts, which is one of the reasons I drew lots as a child. So I guess it has been a part of me ever since.
A series of posters Ingela drew for Flygbussarna, a Swedish airport coach company

We see that your style of illustration is very much inspired by the 50’s and 60’s, can you share with us why?

Yes it is, I’ve always loved the style of the 50´s and 60´s. I love the colors, the compositions, the ceramics, the patterns, the books – everything from that era. And I always have. When I look a the work I did at art school 20 years ago it looks the same. I guess I got inspired from where I grew up where we had a lot of nice design furniture from that time. And many books with drawings from the 50´s.
LR_Ingela memory A
LR_Ingela memory B
Memory card game set with illustrations by Ingela.

Tiger poster

We’d like to know how has living and growing up in Sweden influence you and the way you illustrate? Do you prefer the country side or the city, and why?

I think that you are influenced by Scandinavian simplicity if you grow up here. When I look at a contemporary illustration or design, I can always tell, before seeing the name, if it’s Scandinavian or not. I can´t define exactly what it is, but there’s something in the lines and simplicity that defines it. I love both the country side and the city, I need both.
Owl matryoshka dolls
nesting WIP
Ingela’s matryoshka dolls – work in progress VS final product

If we had the chance to tour in your creative brain, what do you think we can find or see inside Ingela’s head?

You would see a lot of colors, unleashed ideas, lack of time-frustration and joy of creation.

tree mug

You seem to have a habit of collecting things and little trinkets. What are some of your favorite objects from your studio/home?

A big plate by Mari Simmulson, a little plate by Stig Lindberg, a wooden rooster (I have no idea who designed it. And a big Sixties orange candle holder we had in my childhood home.
Mari S-plate
plate by Mari Simmulson
Collection bits by Ingela

Do you have a favourite area/spots in your studio/home? Can we have a look at them?

In my studio, I like my work table and the wall with shelves in front of it, stuffed with books and things. In my home, I like my arm chair in the kitchen.
Ingela at her work table

We really love the animal characters you have created, and we know you have a cute pet dog yourself, called Primus! He looks almost like a little lamb! We’ve never seen this type of dog here in Singapore before, May we ask what breed is Primus? And can you share with us more about Primus?

He is a mix between Lagotto and Spanish Waterdog. His nice sides are that he is SO cute, he likes to cuddle and he sings along when we play harmonica. The bad side is that he he is SO scared of fire works which makes him a nervous wreck a couple of months around New Years Eve.

Primus the dog!
dog primus
Mini Primus and Primus! Mini Primus is a crocheted animal by Virkverket

What is your favorite Ingela creation/project/product, and tell us why is it your favorite?

I loved working with Biotherm last year. I did a limited edition-collection for them and packages. That was great fun since it was spread around the world. I like my Salvador and Pablo salt and pepper cellars (they are under production and will be back soon). I like them because I think it was a brilliant idea for an art museum shop product (if I may say so myself :). And my other products for OMM, Lagom, LaMarelleEditions. And my children´books….
biotherm box
Salvador and Pablo salt and pepper cellars

Apart from illustrating, do you have any other hobbies?

I like running. I am not fast but I like long distance races, like 20 K.
Ingela’s city print artwork series – Berlin

Lastly, is there anything that you can say to advise or encourage all new/aspiring illustrators out there?

Do personal projects, that is where you find your style.


Ingela P. Arrhenius X the little dröm store

A series of animal brooches designed by Swedish illustrator Ingela P. Arrhenius for the little dröm store. 3 different animals available: Owl, Fox and Lion.

Available at our physical store and online store.


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