Local Heroes #20 - Collage artist Victoria Iles 

She will pick up a piece of paper from the ground if the material is interesting enough. Collecting books and old magazines from flea markets and ebay, she takes old beautiful and interesting images, and makes them into something brand new.

Published by Guest on 11/12/2014

Victoria Ulrikke Iles is a twenty-five year old creative based in Oslo, originally from Stavanger in the West Coast of Norway. She is currently in her third and final year at Westerdals Oslo School of Arts, Communication and Technology, where she studies Creative writing. Before this, she got a Bachelor's degree in Illustration at Winchester School of Art (University of Southampton). Now she is, along with her Art Direction partner Lisa, heading into the advertising business, but on the side they both illustrate. Victorias unique collage art has already gotten her the deserved international attention, and we talked to her about this awesome form of art and they way she works.

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Victoria. Photo Madeleine Nilsson (madeleinenilsson.no & instagram.com/mad_nilsson)

Why did you start making collages? I didn't start making collages properly until I rediscovered the medium at art school, when I started my degree in illustration. I'd made collages before using cut outs from glossy fashion magazines, but it was when I began to use more interesting material that they actually ended up looking quite good, and started to communicate the things that I wanted them to.

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How did you learn to make this kind of art? It was just a process of doing it over and over again until I sort of knew what I was doing. I was inspired by other collage artists, and I knew what I wanted the collages to look like, but it took some time to get to the level where I'm at now. For every good one there's at least 10 'shit' ones.

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Victoria was invited to join the International Weird Collage Show, a group of collage artists who arrange international exhibitions to promote and showcase contemporary collage art. This was without a doubt a big achievement, making it possible to exhibit alongside artists that she looks up to and admire.

"I would love to set up a Weird Show here, I just need to find a suitable gallery."

How is the collage scene in Oslo compared to other cities? I don't really know if there is much of a collage scene here in Oslo actually. I would love to set up a Weird Show here, I just need to find a suitable gallery. Maybe then collage artists in the area will come out from their hiding places, or more people will be inspired to try out the art form themselves.

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What are the pros and cons when it comes to being a freelance artist in Oslo? I'm not sure really, maybe a con is that it might not be as popular as other styles of illustration? I don't know. I think a pro is that it's easier to be noticed here because it's a small city where people are somehow all connected. I think going to Westerdals creative school has helped me build up a network of friends who have their own creative projects going on, which they then invite me into.

 "Make art for yourself, don't think too much about what anyone else thinks."

I've received commissions through people talking about my work to others, which I really appreciate. My team partner Lisa and I were recently asked to illustrate a magazine that was started by a few clever people on my course. Things like that are a lot of fun. On those type of projects you have a lot of creative freedom, because the people involved already know your work and they trust you.

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EP-design by Victoria for the punk band Gaspard What kind of other projects are you  currently working on at the moment? Lisa and I have lot of creative projects planned for the future. We are going to have a ceramic workshop after Christmas, and we've talked about making a poster for Father John Misty, because we both love his music.

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Victoria with Lisa. What would you like to communicate to other aspiring artists? I would like to say that it is very important to find and trust your own style. It's fine to be inspired by other artists to begin with, but if you just copy things that are already out there and follow trends, you won't be adding anything new or unique to the collage movement. Oh, and make art for yourself, don't think too much about what anyone else thinks. As long as you like what you're doing, there will be others who do too. And last, but not least, what would you like to be when you grow up? Happy. Peaceful. I'd like to move out into the woods, get a dog or two, drink coffee all day and enjoy the silence. Hopefully accompanied by a lovely human being, I think I'd go crazy living all on my own with no one to talk to but trees and animals.

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Thank you for your time, Victoria and for your inspiring insights in this Local Heroes #20 article. We wish you the best of luck with your art and further creative career! For more, visit Victoria’s portfolio here and like her Facebook page. You could also check out her Society 6 shop if you need inspiration for original christmas gifts. And if you are interested in the work she does with Lisa, take a look at their portfolio.

- Susanne -

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