American Illustration Profiles Interview: Kirsten Ulve
Kirsten Ulve is best known for her caricatures, brilliant graphic renditions of popular celebrities that delight readers of countless magazines and publications. Since bursting out of the pages of Entertainment Weekly over 15 years ago, Kirsten has created hundreds of bright, stylish, fun portraits of seemingly every person of note in the entertainment business. Her illustrations are cool and modern, but with a definite retro feel. And although they’re consistently creative and imaginative, they’re also very respectful of the subjects. As Kirsten says, “I never try to make fun of my subjects or make them look bad. I try to love them.”
Based in New York City, Kirsten has continued to develop and expand her style and skills. It’s a big mistake to typecast Kirsten as only a portrait artist, even though that’s the work that has gotten her so much notice and acclaim. In addition to her signature caricature illustrations, Kirsten has expanded her work into a brilliant series of conceptual, lifestyle, fashion, and children’s imagery. She’s even documented nightclub scenes for The New Yorker. Taking a look through her recent portfolio of work reveals an astonishing range of approaches and techniques to her illustration, all of them very cool and very stylish. It’s exciting to see an illustrator who has the ability to continue to grow and develop at this level.