Anette Heiberg

Designer Spotlight: Anette Heiberg

Hello, please introduce yourself:

Hello! I'm Anette. I'm a surface pattern designer, illustrator and children's book author living on an island in Norway. I'm specializing in design for young kids. My work is inspired by the graphic shapes of Scandinavian minimalism mixed with Japanese cuteness. With over 15 years of experience from illustration and design, my work has been commissioned by clients all over the world. I'm the author/illustrator of 5 Norwegian children's books, and in addition to my own books I have illustrated over 60 books published in several countries. At the moment I'm building my portfolio for the licensing market - where I plan to work with apparel and home décor for kids.

If you could give your 10 years younger self one key piece of advice or an insight, what would it be?

I would say: "You have a lot of questions about the illustration business right now, but in a few years YOU will be the one giving others advice about all of the topics that seems difficult to you now."

When you feel stuck or in a design rut, how do you get yourself out of it and back on track?

I look at books with illustrations and websites like Pinterest. That always inspires me. 

What are your favourite design tools?

My wacom Cintiq. No doubt the best tool I've ever invested in!

How would you describe your design process? Favourite apps and programs

I start out doing small, rough sketches - either on paper or digital in Photoshop. After I've cleaned up my sketches in Photoshop I make the final art in Illustrator. If I'm working on a pattern I draw a lot of small elements that I later play around with to see how they can fit together. In the end I experiment with different colors. 

What are some of your favourite design projects to date? 

I loved working on my book "Hunden" ("the dog") a few years ago, and I still feel really proud of it each time I open the book!

Earlier this year I did the Make it in Design Ultimate Portfolio Builder workshop, and I created a pattern collection for their Printsource competition. I had so much fun working on the brief, and I'm really happy about how my designs turned out - and to my surprise I actually ended up winning the competition! 

Who are your dream clients or what is your dream project? 

Right now I'm dreaming of going into a store and see a big collection of my work on children's apparel on display. I would also love to do a fun, quirky home décor collection for kids.

There has been an art supply sanction imposed and designers are only allowed to possess 3 items/tools, what do you choose?

My Wacom Cintiq, Adobe Photoshop and Adobe Illustrator.

Where do you find inspiration?

I find inspiration in everything from a combination of colors, to photos of children's rooms and clothes, traveling, being in nature, reading books and illustrations I see on Pinterest and Instagram.

Who would you say the greatest designer is?

I don't have one favorite designer. I like to get inspired by different designers with different styles, both well known ones and new talent.

When I'm long gone, I hope people remember me for a colorful person that followed her dreams and reached her goals. Someone who made great designs with a happy feeling, that got people to smile. 

Where you can find me: