What is your creative work?

I am a freelance illustrator and tech youtuber. I help to create illustrations for clients. When I am not doing that I am working on my own graphic novel and teaching classes in illustration.

Tell us how you started your business / creative venture?

I’ve been doing art since I was 12, even started offering some of my sketches to my friends for like 5$. I really enjoyed just the act of drawing and creating this image from nothing, it was really fun. In college I studied film and video with a minor in entrepreneurship, and I was still doing art on the side, designing some logos for people and some character designs. I would say more recently 2019 and last year was when I started to focus on my business. I spoke at a few virtual conventions/galas, taught my first paid class on character illustration and started selling more commissions.

How long have you been doing your creative work?

I’ve been doing creative work since around 2009

What made you choose this journey?

I [have] always loved art, I always want to help people and provide good resources to help them succeed. Rather than put all my energy into a job that doesn’t facilitate my artistic growth, I can put all of that time into myself and be a lot happier.

What kind of struggles did you face in your journey?

Mainly self doubt and wondering if this was the right path for me. But every time I would work at a job or someone else’s vision I didn’t like it. I wasn’t building on my own dreams and aspirations. I wasn’t putting out what I wanted into the world. So there is that leap of faith that has to happen when you do freelance and being prepared for the ups and downs of that.

What is one advice you can give to creatives struggling right now?

Do not take any work that comes your way. Be very critical and precise on what work you accept. Yes money may be a huge factor, but do their values align with yourself? Does the client have an artist’s references you can ask for to see how they worked with other creatives, can you see yourself committing to their project. If a job is not worth it and that time is better used working on your skills, then you should decline. That would be better time spent in my opinion.

Share a quote you live by. It can be yours or something else that inspires you!

“Try to be calm, your fear of doing wrong is keeping you from doing good”- Noelle Stevenson

How can people learn more about you and your business?

What are some resources that have helped you succeed?

Skillshare is ok for a good base understanding of some very specific topics. I would recommend looking on Gumroad and buying some video breakdowns of some artist’s work you admire and studying those.

CMATL is an interview series where our team collects submissions and find Atlanta’s hidden gems of creators and creative entrepreneurs. This project powered by The Creative Folks.