What is your creative work?

I am a product designer and illustrator specializing in designs that make people smile!

Tell us how you started your business / creative venture?

I graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a degree in Industrial Design, but I have always had a passion for illustration. While attending college, I realized through co-op jobs in the toy and baby product industries that I really enjoyed work that blends product design and illustration. After working full-time for a few companies designing toys, gifts, and baby products, I finally made the jump to full-time freelancer in 2018. Alongside designing products for my clients, I also have my own line of prints, pins, stickers, and other gifts under the name Sylvia Draws.

How long have you been doing your creative work?

Over 10 years professionally, but I have been drawing ever since I could hold a pencil!

What made you choose this journey?

While I did enjoy working full-time for companies, I always dreamed of going freelance so I could have more flexibility to work on a variety of projects as well as devote more time to my own brand.

What kind of struggles did you face in your journey?

Self-doubt and imposter syndrome are the source of many of my struggles. When self-doubt creeps into my brain, I find it hard to create good work. When I feel this happening, I try to take a break and go for a walk or a hike to re-energize my brain and kick those doubts to the curb!

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

Keep creating and keep going! If you find yourself stuck or not having fun, take a breather. Go for a walk or do something you enjoy to take your mind off of the problem at hand, it is then that you will often think of the solution!

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

“If you work really hard and you’re kind, amazing things will happen.” Conan O’Brien

Are there any products you recommend that helped you better your craft?

I recently got an IPad Pro with Procreate which has been an excellent investment in my business. The ability to sketch anywhere and everywhere is a game-changer, especially with my 6-month-old son around!

How can people learn more about you and your business?

What are some resources that have helped you succeed?

The most valuable resource I have had in my creative journey is people. Most if not all of my freelance work comes either directly or indirectly from either people I worked within the past. Building this network has been the source of my success! Treat people kindly and do good work, and success will follow!

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.