Happy September! Can’t believe we’re already 2 weeks into it, feeling crisp fall air and seeing beautiful orange sunsets. I even got that first exciting chill in anticipation of Halloween the other day! Hard to believe summer went by so fast—it always does, but this year I just couldn’t fully grab onto it before it was gone.
To say I have fallen behind on blogging and posting on social media over these last few months is a huge understatement. I embrace it all as a way to share and connect—but I truly got too busy living life to keep up with it all. (Though I have to admit I haven’t minded being off the grid for a bit!)
My last post was back in early July, right before I left for ICON—which was fantastic! Not only was the conference inspiring and exciting, but I participated in the Roadshow marketplace and spent a few extra days in Portland with good friends (and experienced the Oregon Country Fair—woah!), all of which deserve their own separate posts. More to come on all of that…
Work has been very consistent and busy all summer long, and with my one-year mark of full-time freelance life just coming up next week, I’m thrilled about that. I’ve truly been able to dig my teeth into a variety of exciting projects—using a full range of my design, illustration and lettering skills much more than I was ever able to in an in-house position. I cannot wait to share some of the cool projects I’ve been working on—books, logos, calendars, paintings, & letterpressing. Will be posting a lot in the upcoming weeks, and have updated my web portfolio in the meantime.
I also am getting married in just over a month! (eek!) So I suppose that’s kept me a teeny bit busier than usual! Aside from the planning & organizing, bridal showers & bachelorette parties, dress fittings & honeymoon planning, I’ve taken on quite a few personal wedding design projects : letterpressing my save-the-dates & invitations, hand-painting table numbers, designing programs & menus cards—all which have been SO much fun and made me think much more seriously about moving in that direction with much of my work. I will be sharing some photos and process posts soon!
In the meantime, here’s a little Fall-inspired piece. I started a sugar skull series months ago, aiming to create 4 pieces, each inspired by one of the seasons. They’ll eventually all be letterpressed and for sale in my Etsy shop. Cheers to the most wonderful time of the year!
It’s been a crazy & chaotic, but wonderful start to the summer! I’ve had little time lately for updates, but have been busy illustrating editorial assignments, creating logos for small businesses, designing a slew of new book covers, writing & illustrating a super fun doodle book for tween girls—and designing + letterpressing my own wedding invitations! I couldn’t be more thrilled with the variety of opportunities that have come my way, and would have never dreamt that just 9 months into freelancing full-time I’d be so busy with work—but I’ve been very lucky. I am super excited to share some of the projects I’ve been working on as soon as I’m allowed!
In the meantime, I’ve also been preparing to head out west to Portland for the Illustration Conference, July 10-12. I’ve attended 5 of these in past years—but this is the first one as a full-time freelancer, so I expect to reap even more inspiration than ever before! I can’t wait! The line up of speakers is so awesome I can hardly contain myself—Carson Ellis, Steve Simpson, Lisa Congdon, Jon Klassen, Lilla Rogers, Paula Scher—and that’s just the start! And as if all that isn’t exciting enough, I was also accepted into the Roadshow—a portfolio review & marketplace showcasing over 60 artists to kick off opening night! I’ll have my portfolio on view as well as a bunch of letterpress prints and greeting cards for sale. Here’s a little snippet of some of the latest goodies that I’ll be taking with me.
I’m Pittsburgh-bound tomorrow for a fabulous family wedding over the 4th, then will be heading straight out to Portland! Not only will I get to soak in all the ICON excitement, I’ll also be staying with some dear friends that I don’t get to see nearly often enough. With all this joy and inspiration, I’ll be sure to have oodles of great stuff to share once I return!
Hope everyone has a fun and safe holiday weekend!
I love this quote by Helen Keller. I came across it a few years ago, in one of those books of inspiring quotes, and it really resonated with me. So, I tacked it up in my work space and it’s served as an inspiration ever since.
I have always believed that life isn’t something that happens to you, rather, it’s something that you make happen. And, though you don’t always have control over which paths present themselves to you & when, you do always have a choice of which path to follow. When your sights are always set on achieving your absolute best and constantly growing and evolving as a person, it just becomes impossible to be content with being content.
This perspective has guided me through my life in every way. It’s what made me choose art as a career, what made me change art schools 3 different times, and what made me leave everything I knew to chase a dream in the crazy & wonderful chaos that is New York City. The paths that have sprung from that leap 10 years ago have been unforeseen and unexpected—insanely difficult at times, but all leading to people and experiences in my life more amazing than I could have dreamed.
I’m incredibly lucky to have spent the last 10 years as a full-time designer in big publishing houses. I’ve learned an invaluable amount about design, art direction & creative collaboration, refined and broadened my skills, and developed a lot of really great relationships. Plus, I absolutely love making books and all the people I’ve been so lucky to work with! But, a few years ago, my heart began to tell me that wasn’t enough. That I had never let go of the desire to work for myself and more fully explore all the avenues that I can apply my skills to. And my body was beginning to tell me that I’m getting a little too old to pull all-nighters, cramming in freelance projects that I love too much to pass up.
So, I’ve made a really big decision to start a new chapter in my life by leaving the full-time corporate world to pursue my own design & illustration business full-time. I’ll of course continue to design book covers, but will also be able to devote more time and energy to growing other aspects of my career. It’s a huge decision, and I can’t help but be reminded of the New York street corner I stood on years ago, accepting a job offer that I knew would change my life. It was terrifying, but also exhilarating, to dive into unknown waters. I’ve spent years since, preparing to again jump into the unknown—and now the time has finally come. I’m very, very excited to see where this new chapter leads me & the growth it will allow, both personally and professionally.