Tell us how you started your business / creative venture?

I grew up drawing 24/7 and knew I wanted a creative job. I studied graphic design in college and got the chance to take an illustration class. I didn’t realize illustration was even a career path someone could take. I got my first job at an animation studio and worked as a graphic designer, honing in my illustration style by wearing lots of different style hats for clients. I decided to try my hand at full-time freelance and started sharing illustrations in my own, unique style on social media. People started asking if the art was for sale (I was shocked), so I started an Etsy shop selling art prints and commissions.

How long have you been doing this? Are there any struggles you want to share?

I’ve been working in the creative industry for about eight years. I’ve worked at animation studios and design agencies, I freelance, I run an online shop, I make children’s books, I have side hustles. All this to say, I don’t like to put all my eggs in one basket so that (A) I don’t get bored (B) I have multiple income streams. Money was definitely a struggle at first and can certainly put a damper on your creative spirit when you feel like you can’t turn down ANY projects. Eventually, I learned to put my foot down and learn how to say “no thanks!” to projects that would drain me. I only share the type of work I want to be doing; that’s how you get more of those projects! People need to see the work.

What made you choose this route?

My grandmother was an artist and shared how cool being creative could be. My parents also always encouraged me to draw, sing, explore, etc. We spend so much of our lives working, so I always wanted a job I was passionate/excited about.

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

I change my favorite quotes all the time, but today’s favorite is,

“I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of stars makes me dream.”

Vincent Van Gogh

How can people learn more about you and your business?

What are some resources that have helped you succeed?

FAMILY & FRIENDS, creative co-workers and bosses, Instagram, AIGA Mentorship Program, Etsy, Shannon Associates (my illustration agency), Procreate, Adobe Creative Cloud

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.