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#IMakeApps: A Swedish neon light artist makes the world of football more tolerant

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Editor’s note: To celebrate the hard work, creativity and entrepreneurial spirit of app makers around the world, we’re featuring founders, product managers, designers and developers from around the world. We’ll showcase their passions and also hear about what they do when they step away from their computers. Meet our next app maker, Josefin Eklund, a Swedish neon light artist and Creative Director of Forza Football, a football app that brings fans closer to the game with live football scores, player stats, and video highlights. Check out more #IMakeApps stories on

#IMakeApps | Josefin Eklund | Neon light artist | Forza Football | Sweden

When did you get into technology?

It was never my plan, but  I’ve learned a lot working with technology. Before I could never believe how much you can affect people via an app.

What is your role at Forza Football?

I work as Creative Director, meaning that my team and I decide how the app should look, what tone it should have, what kind of projects to take on in the app (Forza Football does a lot of polls around homophobia, racism and equality within football, for example). We’ve recently changed the entire visual look of Forza Football, which will be updated in the app very soon. This was one of my first projects I took on, together with a designer and the success has been huge. Recently we found out that the redesign has won one of the biggest design awards in the world.

What has been your experience with Google Play?

Google Play has enabled us to reach users we would have otherwise never been able to reach. As a distribution platform it has helped Forza Football to grow and understand the importance of translating and adapting the app to different users.

How did you become a neon light artist?

I’ve always been fascinated by lights, disco lights and the reflections and shadows they create. I didn’t know neon light art excited me until 2016, when I found a book about a great neon light artist in the art section in the library. I started reading about neon, visiting neon manufacturers, collecting lights and collecting images. When visiting a neon light company here in Sweden, they asked me if I’d be interested in designing a collection for them. That was something I had never dared to dream of! So I went to their glassblower in Kreuzberg, Berlin, for one summer and that’s where I made my first neon light collection. I made my own first exhibition and an insane amount of people came by. Since then, I’ve continued to make neon every day.

Tell us about the process to make neon light installations.

The process is complex and takes time since it's pure handcraft with lots of experience needed. I make the designs by hand, trying out different shapes and colors. When I’ve decided which ones to go for, I start working with neon glass blowers and order the glass tubes from them. When I receive the tubes, I order cables, transformators, clips, brackets, screws and plexiglass. I get help cutting the plexiglass and then add the brackets (the ones you use to attach the glass tubes on something).

How did your passion for neon lights impact your work at Forza Football?

My work with neon helps me to always be in a creative state of mind and to constantly look for new, wild ideas for Forza Football. Also, I think Forza Football has this impact on my neon work too. I can use my gained experiences from them both and use on each other. 

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