For Cecilia Carlstedt illustration has been the main mean of self-expression since childhood.
She has studied in Stockholm and London College of Communication, where she acquired a degree in graphic design and image making. In the following ten years she has been working as a freelance illustrator in London, Stockholm and New York.
Carlstedt is excited by combining traditional media, like pencil, ink and screen printing, with modern techniques, such as Photoshop. She is inspired when she sees something that triggers the nerve to create: an unusual colour combination, an interesting face, a book, a magazine editorial, walking through an art gallery and even surfing the internet. Various influential artists are another source of inspiration, for instance Elisabeth Peyton, Gerhard Richter and photographer Vivian Sassan.
Carlstedt’s phenomenon lies in skilfully and delicately combining traditional arts and crafts with modern techniques, academic art history with local tradition, and commercial art with her own unique understanding of the world. She has an extraordinary skill to value the material: the texture of paper, fluidity of colour, preciseness of brush stroke and its relation to uncovered surfaces. Her works are intelligent in the most colourful sense, contained rather than striking. They are abstract and refined, delicate and deeply poetic. Her technical proficiency combined with intrinsic modesty and eruditeness allow to draw parallels not only with the golden era of fashion illustration but also with the general European drawing tradition.
Her clients include Lancome, Swarovski, LMVH, Tiffany, Jimmy Choo, J. Lindeberg, Salvatore Ferragamo, Estee Lauder, H&M, Vogue Nippon, W Magazine and Flaunt magazine.