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Nature and animals have always been fascinating to Mirka Hokkanen. Since she was born in Helsinki, Finland, in 1979, and could walk, she has played in the woods and explored the variety of wildlife that existed around her. After high school, she moved to Illinois to study abroad, receiving her BFA in 2002. From there she continued her studies at the University of Dallas, in TX, and graduated with an MA in 2004 and MFA in 2006.
Mirka comes from a line of tinkerers, artists and hand crafters. She’s never known any other way of living, always having the need to make something with her hands, wether it is with a needle, crochet hook, hammer, weaving loom, pencils, paintbrushes or burin and brayer. Since graduation Mirka has worked as a full-time printmaker exhibiting work both nationally and internationally, participating in the local culture and teaching a variety of classes. Her husbands active duty military status, whisks them away to a new adventure every few years, keeping her on her toes and always being inspired by new surroundings.
In addition to time spent in the studio, Mirka enjoys exploring the outdoors with her children as well as reading to them, from books borrowed from the library. Seeing imagination at work in their minds is a constant source of inspiration for Mirka’s illustrations and writing. Not a day goes by that someone is not telling some sort of story to another in the house.
Mirka loves weaving a thread of humor in her work when ever she can. She uses pencils and watercolors as her main media, with digital illustration being a close second. She has been a printmaker for almost 20 years, and hopes to one day illustrate a book in linocuts or wood engravings.