Hans Christian Øren

What good thing can I do today?

Christina and I launched 'Oh Yeah Studio' in 2007, because we wanted to experiment more.

This studio was like a playground for us. We didn't have any clients, we just made things like posters and covers, illustrations... For 2 years, it's been kind of a fictive studio, we made things that we wanted to make but we didn't have any clients. And suddenly, people started to notice our work, interview us, asking to use our pictures...

We set up as a business and started getting some clients, but we had to wait 3 years before earning enough to make a decent living. When you don't have any savings, 3 years without a full revenue is a long time... And being independent is very hard, because you have to do everything by yourself so it’s much more work than just being an employee.

It's a lot more work, but on the other hand you also have a lot more freedom, it makes you a happier designer.

One of the reasons it makes me happier is because I can pick the projects I'll work on. It's important for me to make sure that I’m working on a project that gets along with what I’m thinking/fighting for.

"This is now" is the project I'm the most proud of. The idea was to organize an exhibition with some designers I looked up to. I contacted 15 of them and everyone answered yes! It was a great success and I think I'll organize a new one this year. I think I loved it because it was a collaborative project that gathered people and made them happy.

It’s important I think to do something positive not only for yourself but also for other people... As artists, we can do things like that, we can help, we have the tools, we have the responsibility. So I try to be involved whenever I can, doing projects against child slavery in India, whaling, helping after the Tsunami in Japan...

Sometimes I think about Abraham Lincoln. Everyday when he woke up he wondered "What good thing can I do today?", and when he went to bed "What good thing have I done today?". I try to do it and ask myself those questions, but it’s definitely hard.

Hans Christian Øren

Artist and illustrator in Norway.

This is Now

Oh Yeah Studio invited 15 of the world leading designers, illustrators and motion artists in an exhibition. Those artists have all a great impact on today's visual scene. The exhibition was named “THIS IS NOW” to indicate the relevance they represent in our current time. The piece bellow was created for this exhibition by Hans Christian Øren.


Help us spread the word

PS: We think Hans Christian deserves it. Don't you?

More stories