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A Conversation With... Berry Aktuglu

Explore the joyful illustrations of Atelier Mave with Berry Aktuglu

Founded in 2017, Atelier Mave is the brainchild of the Milan-based Berry Aktuglu. Berry is an illustrator whose creations begin with hand drawn lines which are then transformed into different combinations of playful characters and shapes. Her quirky illustrations have no age limit - she has created designs for both, the kids and the adult market in fashion, stationary, and home design. Berry illustrates for physical objects such as various magazines and book covers, as well as for the digital world of apps and e-books.

Tell us a bit about yourself Berry, how did you come to illustrate?
Both my graduate and master's degrees are in completely different fields from what I’m doing currently. Before starting up my freelance journey, I was working in the brand management department for a cosmetics company, working closely with the in-house creative teams. I always admired how they translated creative elements to the packaging. That was when I began drawing. I have learned a lot from working on the other side of the table but I’ve always felt that I belonged in the creative world.  

Why did you choose to create Atelier Mave?
My motivation with my design studio is to make twinkles in people’s heart and I think these all start with the meaning of Mave; it means joy in Gaelic and also represents being optimistic and energetic. Mave literally illustrates me!

What would the world be without illustration?
It would be muted! I think world needs more art to spread beauty, to evoke emotions and connect with others, to nourish and heal our souls or simply tell our individual stories.

Three words that describe Atelier Mave
"Quirky, feminine, light-hearted"

What is your main inspiration? 
I take inspiration from vintage objects, clothing, retro films, childhood memories, old picture books, and the simplicity of everyday things. I like depicting mundane things of everyday life in a fun way. I also really enjoy watching people and drawing them.

Do you remember your very first illustration?
It was an animal alphabet to study different animals and moves.

We know the strength of image, pictures speak louder than words as they say. What is your feeling about this?
I totally agree! We are visually sensitive creatures. A visual can convey an emotion which would stick with us longer than words on a page; it stimulates inner emotional and mental state of the viewer and it evokes past events and emotions.

Who is the most remarkable illustrator, designer for you and why?
I love Maira Kalman's art! The colours she uses, the way she depicts a room or a food scene has always fascinated me.

What’s coming up for you? 
I am working on many exciting projects, unfortunately I can not share some of them at the moment; my friend and I are writing and illustrating our first kids book, hopefully it will be ready in the next year.  
Apart from these projects, I will be showing my new pattern collection at the Playtime Paris on 25 - 27 January! :)

Join Atelier Mave in the Créa.tif Space (Table 9)
at Playtime Paris (25-27th January)!

Atelier Mave Studio
The world needs more art to spread beauty, to evoke emotions and connect with others, to nourish and heal our souls or simply tell our individual stories - Atelier Mave