Always immersed in arts, culture and design, the Alternative design team is highly tuned into what’s happening in the art scene, social mediasphere and beyond. So when it came time to tap our latest collaborator for a limited-edition collection of graphic tees, we knew where to look.
“We wanted to make a statement about how much art is now influenced by the digital and social media that’s so much a part of our lives. I’ve been a longtime fan of Tekla and her colorful Instagram feed, and knew she would be such an awesome artist to collaborate with for a capsule collection,” said Alternative lead designer Tiffany Ruiz.
After meetings in both Tekla’s hometown of Stockholm, Sweden and at the Alternative design headquarters in Los Angeles, the new collection will be available for you to like, love and wear on a soft Alternative tee. In celebration of the launch, we asked our favorite Swedish social media darling a few things about her aesthetic and inspiration.
You’ve been called “the color queen.” What’s helped you hone your amazing eye for color, shapes and texture?
Well, to start, I grew up during the 80’s with all those colour and pattern influences, and maybe my mum was a big part of it, being more matchy-matchy/detail-concerned than most mothers I knew; I can still remember the last day for the school year when I was 7 years old, all dressed in the same pattern—shoes, socks, dress and headband. It was an apricot background with lilac dots, and it was like the perfect aesthetic moment.
But much has happened since that time and I’ve worked with different aesthetics in so many different ways and mediums.
Since I graduated and started to work as an interior architect in 2010, I’ve really refined my knowledge about different materials, textures, colours, and my own way of combining and composing them in various kinds of scales.
How has social media become part of your creative process?
A big part. And by social media I mean Instagram. It all started as a way of discovering how much I loved taking photos. Also felt it partly filled a need to work creatively in a more playful, direct way—on my own terms, compared with my everyday work where so many people are involved in the process and it can take months or years for ideas being realized/built. But I also enjoy it in comparison to life in general which can be so serious and hard sometimes. Plus, there are all the great aspects of Instagram being an amazing network—both professional and private, of course.
What does the future hold for social media influencers and digital artists like yourself?
No idea. The future will tell!
What’s different about seeing your images on our tees? How did you select the images to feature?
Very different. Since they are photos I’ve taken just for being photos it’s cool seeing them being transformed to something different; and in your way.
I chose the motifs because they’re things I associate with spring— snow melting, bare asphalt, bubbling colours and brightness. I love spring.
Follow Teklan on Instagram @teklan
Written by Shannon Randall
Photos by Tekla