Malin Bergstrom

Malin BergströmMalin was born in Finland and lived and grew up in Kirkkonummi. She spent her summers at a little island in the Åland archipelago called Kökar. Parts of Kökar were very isolated, accessible only by rowing boat and where there was no electricity nor running water until Malin was about 10. She remembers how the sheets felt, when they were washed in sea water. It's bitter with a cold wind and glaring sun, a bare landscape, adders, fish and sea gulls.

My dad and his family owned the little valley type region - where I lived from the age of 5-16, surrounded by thick scary woods full of weird things - owned since the early 1900s but apparently they've lived there for years before they actually owned it.

When she was 16, Malin moved to Porvoo which was several hours travel away from home to study graphic design. In Porvoo she was alone and knew nobody, but it did become the foundation of her independent self. She is still friends with many of the people she met there, including Kaisa Leka, whose comic books have been translated to several languages and who has won several prestigious awards. She also lived with her aunt in Åland during her work placement. Malin was  bullied in her younger years, so coming to a city that not only accepted her, but who thought her exciting was wonderful.

After 3 years in Porvoo she moved to Tammisaari for a year to study ceramics, and also began to write, building on something she did a lot as a child and younger teen but had abandoned as she grew older. After failing to gain a place at the University in Turku to study English literature, she spent 8 months at her parent's, writing non-stop, where she finished the first draft of her, yet unpublished, novel.

Although originally intending to study in Australia but deciding that Australian schools were too expensive, she moved to Sunderland to study, and then, after a year, to York. Once again she moved alone, had never visited the UK or even been outside Scandinavia, before. When she arrived in Sunderland she had no money, or even a place to stay.

Malin completed her degree in Contemporary Fine Art & English Literature in 2007. She stayed in York for a further four Malin Bergström Digital Portfolio 2013 Hutchyears working a number of jobs as well as at the York Museums Trust. During her years in York she continued to write with some work being published, and  her art work exhibited. She returned to Finland in 2011, and at is presently working as a marketing assistant for a shipping company, which much to her surprise she is thoroughly enjoying.

Malin is passionate about comics, both the written word and image, and the theory behind the practice. She often works free hand, not thinking too much about the result. She considers life is a constant battle to be fought, an idea that is reinforced by the Irish Gaelic meaning of the name Malin, The Little Warrior. Malin is also associated with sea gales. She sometimes sees herself as a seagull, because she is loud and obnoxious. She often goes by Mala because that's what her aunt calls her

You can find out more from her blog www.warpathsandlostlittlemaps.blogspot.com