Artist Profile: Dan Holst Soelberg

Dan Holst Soelberg 1I am pleased to announce that Mr. Soelberg will be contributing to the fourth issue of The Quilliad. He’s working on a new piece for us, which is quite exciting. His work fits perfectly into the spooky theme for this issue, and it’s always lovely being able to work with an artist you’ve met and chatted with. I met Dan at a Toronto Indie Arts Market event a few months back while tabling for The Quilliad, and we bonded over the use of the same pens for inking (a serious thing to consider when you do illustrations–the wrong pen can ruin everything). He was friendly, and I could see that he is quite talented–while we chatted, he casually worked away at a new piece, and I already knew that I’d be contacting him about an illustration for The Quilliad.

Dan Holst Soelberg 2

Dan describes the concept behind his work far better than I could, stating on his website’s About page that he “find(s) great joy in making books that both celebrate and poke fun at humanity’s disturbing predilections and preoccupation with fear.” Dan’s work is certainly creepy (which suits us just fine), but it has a lightheartedness to it as well. And there’s no denying that his ink-work is wonderful. The appeal of this combination of whimsy and horror is not lost on the bookstores of Ontario; Dan’s work is featured in The Beguiling and The Labyrinth in Toronto and Big B Comics in Hamilton. Dan acknowledges his influences–you can find a portrait of Edward Gorey on his site–but he’s found his own niche.

The images above are from his book Dwellers of Lurching Swill, and within its pages each is accompanied by a quirky couplet describing the subject (and their plight). I don’t know yet what Dan will create for The Quilliad, but I look forward to finding out. In the meantime, you can find him at, as well as on a number of social media sites.

While you’re at it, take a moment to check out our Kickstarter for our upcoming Halloween issue (the issue to which Dan is contributing), and if you are a writer or artist yourself, our submission call. Both will be open until September 30th.

-Sarah Varnam,
editor-in-chief of The Quilliad


One thought on “Artist Profile: Dan Holst Soelberg

  1. Pingback: Blogless solitude | Dan Holst Soelberg

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