In February 1983 I was born in Leppävirta, a small Finnish town with strawberry fields, lakes and pine forests. There I built huts out of branches with friends and my brother, listened to stories from tapes and drew, cut and glued paper. One summer we found Melancholy thistle flowers which we used as painting brushes.
In November 2004 I moved to Iceland. In a tiny Northern town of Dalvík I followed the year passing in the valley, mountains and the sea. I worked in a kindergarten painting and drawing with the children. There were no trees, but an open sky and the sea amazed me. I went back to Finland to continue my studies in graphic design focusing on illustration. The summers I kept spending in Reykjavík, Iceland.
Now I live in Tampere, Finland, still marvelling at all the trees growing here. The weather gives the colour to my paintings. When I paint I think of all the faraway places the wind reaches and hope to hear from them. Sometimes I also go to see those faraway places in the North, like visiting Iceland again, or finding some new ones, like Svalbard. I enjoy finding connections between nature and the ones living in it, collecting them as memories on a soft cotton paper.
Reading, knitting, walking, running, bicycling, swimming (preferably in a lake or in a sea or in a river), hiking, camping and peeking behind new corners are filling my free time. Preferably with dear friends. My last travels have been to Iceland, Svalbard, from South Norway a long ship journey to North Norway, and Georgia by The Black Sea.
I love to sleep in a tent, the best dreams are seen there.
My great-grandmother was also called Anna Emilia.
In the spring of 2015 I received the Kaiku award, an award of a remarkable breakthrough as an illustrator by The Association of Finnish Illustrators. This video was made for the award exhibition in Helsinki about my work. Video by Kari Kuukka for Kuvittajat ry.
You can find more about my illustrated days through Instagram. Thank you for visiting!