28 January 2021

Sharing the Sunshine - Up Close with Ilse Weisfelt

Ilse Weisfelt is a freelance illustrator, muralist and screen printer living and working in Rotterdam. Since studying for a Bachelor of Illustration at AKV | St. Joost' s-Hertogenbosch, she has worked for clients such as Monocle Magazine, The Daily Telegraph and Bakken & Baeck. Her work is joyful, colourful and lots of fun and we couldn't wait to share it with you.

Where do you call home?

"Mostly it's my own apartment in Rotterdam, where I live with my cat and with very sweet neighbours. But I also feel very at home when I'm camping, sleeping in a tent somewhere. Or when I'm at my mum's. Her dog makes the place the best home."

Can you give a top tip for visitors to your home town, a hidden gem or favourite shop?

"Rent a bike, that way you can go everywhere super easily, and explore my two favourite areas: Het Park (The Park), where you can have a nice stroll and a drink in the sun at Parqiet. You can also cycle to 'Weelde'. It's a bit outside of the city centre, but there's a really nice outdoor wine bar; Bar Cult, and they serve delicious food at Kumzits! If you're a fan of books, try Bosch & DeJong."

Weelde arts venue, Rotterdam.

What book are you reading at the moment?

"I'm reading'Design as Art' by Bruno Munari and 'The Overstory' by Richard Powers, a really thick novel, starring trees!"

'Overstory' Winner of the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in Fiction
What music are you listening to cheer you up?

"I'm often still listening to my En Route playlist, that I made for a recent camping trip to France: Click on the disco lights below and treat your ears."


How did lockdown affect your creativity?

"I felt blocked for a while; I think I felt a lot of pressure to create things, just like 'all the other people' on the gram. So instead of creating things I did some reflection, going through projects I did the past year/time and writing down what to do more of, and what less of." 

Did you discover any new talents or hobbies during lockdown?

"I found a very nice afro dance work-out that I really enjoyed doing in my living room.I fled to the countryside to stay with two very dear friends. I took long walks with their dog, started running again, and during these runs/walks I collected some driftwood to start creating small creatures with. It was in this shed of my friends that I realised how much I'd love to have a woodworking space and I rediscovered (once again) how much I love to cook."

What artists/designers tool could you not live without?

"My sketchbook, my fountain pen, a 0.2 mm fineliner (uniPin or Copic multiliner), and a mechanical pencil.I also really love having a cintiq, it makes Photoshopping a lot easier and more natural, but in the end, I mostly enjoy drawing on real paper, with a decent pen. Leuchtturm medium notebook with softcover is my fav for journaling/sketching, and I always bring a Midori MD Light A5 notebook, to draw silly characters in."

How would you like to be remembered?

"Good question! I think I would love to be remembered as a little ray of sunshine in the lives of my friends.There's a feel good vibe in my illustrations. I hope to spread some of the warmth/love that I have in me with my work."

Image by Ilse Weisfelt.

What's your favourite card in your Lagom collection?

"I think the 'Thinking-of-you'slug, followed really closely by the Bees. I think it's because I'm looking forward to sending that one to my bzzzt friend!"

Cats or dogs?

"That's a hard question, actually dogs, but as you read I have a cat... Anyways, I taught her to sit (for a snack), and she collects balls, so we're really good now! This is probably best of both 'worlds'."

To view Ilse's new collection VISIT