Elin Klefbom: “I love being surrounded by people who are driven and have ideas”

Elin Klefbom is a graphic designer and art director from the beautiful woods of Värmland, who wishes that she in five years time have learned a little more about how to handle life, but also that she will have met Beyoncé. Radar had a talk with this multitalented kickass girl.

Hello Elin, nice to meet you! Tell us about you.
I am Elin, a graphic designer and art director from Värmland. This spring I graduated from Beckmans Collage of Design and is now working at a new communication agency called Affairs, and also at their sister company Young Art that works with young artists and designers. Except for that I also work with the music collective RMH, and of course some other smaller things.. There is always something going on!

If you were an IKEA-product, which one would you be?
I have actually worked at IKEA more than two years when I graduated high school, haha! I still know way too many product names… Do I get away with that answer IVAR, even if it is a whole line?

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You are from a small town in Värmland! How has that influenced you?
The fact that I come from a small mill town has become a more central and important part of my identity the older I get. When I am going home I just quickly adapt to the whole concept – I always bring my sheath knife and go fishing with my brother. I have started a hunting examination now as well, not really because I actually want to go hunting and shoot at animals, but rather because we need more girls among all the men within the hunting society. It is also very fun and interesting to learn these things, that differ a lot from what I normally do.

What are you the most proud about?
That I have managed to end up in a context where I meet so many interesting people. I am pretty much always surrounded by people who are driven, and have ideas, which often leads to both fun as well as good things! At the moment I am really trying to take the time to particiapte in all the fun projects I want to be a part of. 

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Where did your interest for design start?
When I was 15 I was working at a café in the forrest each weekend, where they had stuffed animals and walls of wooden boards. I bought my first camera from the money I earned. Me and my friends used to arrange super serious photoshoots and go away with our mopeds. I found a school in Stockholm, Beckmans, and I set the goal to get in there already back then. I am not really working with photography that same way today, but I think it all started with that interest.

Please tell us about your project ”Same Effort No Glory”!
This past spring I created a supporter club for female athletes as my exam project at Beckmans, called Same Effort No Glory (same-effort-no-glory.com). I have grown up in an athletic family and have always liked the visual world around sports. So when I was going to start working on my final project I wanted to build upon this interest, but also lift the differences in attitude that exists between male and female athletes – because they sure are crazy.

When I came up with the line ”Same effort, No glory”, it felt as if I had found the central meaning of the project. It described what I wanted to communicate. I contacted the photographer Clara Söderberg who I had been following on Instagram for a while, and asked her if she wanted to take some pictures to support the design I had made for the project. We looked for models at all places except for the model agencies. For example we found two basketball playing twins at Fryshuset. I got help from so many talented people along the way, and I recieved a lot of positive feedback from everybody I asked to help me with the project, which was a good sign. The project also recieved a lot of attention after it was launched, and I have recieved orders from outside of Sweden as well. People often tell me that I should take the project further, but we will see what happens…

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examensarbete (same_effert_no_glory) foto - clara_söderberg

What is the most challenging project you have been working with?
I would probably say the exam project I just told you about, since I was responsible for EVERYTHING. During 10 weeks I had to learn about everything from clothing production, arranging a shoot with models and a photographer, as well as opening a pop-up shop. The project was also going to be a physical proof of my knowledge and what I am capable of, as well as a result of everything I have been tought. Of course no one explicitly said that, but that was how I felt about it. It really was a reward when it all ended up so well.

What are you up to now?
Last week I released a colletion I have made together with the shop Aplace, Telia and the non-profit organisation Friends. It is a part of Telia’s campaign called #HataHat (Hate Hate). It has been a very fun project to work with, and it became bigger than I thought from the beginning. The collection will now be sold at Aplace, and it is me together with two other illustrators that have been a part of creating the collection. Besides that I am finishing my work for RMH Blocparty that took place last weekend. I am also about to start a new project where I will help my friend who is making grillz with some visuals – so excited about this project!

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What are you doing in five years time?
I hope that five more years of experience of how life works also will make it a little easier to handle… I would love to have met Beyonce as well.

See more from Elin at her portfolio here.