I was the kid who always tried to hide the paint drips/smudges on the carpet from my latest masterpiece and live for my weekly art class (thanks auntie!). Combine that with being a self-proclaimed book worm (I would rather dive in a book than be social – total honesty). That started my connection of creating + storytelling. Fast forward to high school and i finally realized my passion for not just art but graphic design it was a way to connect my artist side with my nerdy meticulous nature and i could do it in a way that also satisfied my tech side (#winning).
I tell you this backstory to how I connected with graphic design to show you how my passion started early and still is strong today. Now it may seem like I had this all together…..stop! so far from the truth. I majored in Art despite my family’s advice to do something practical, “you like to argue and talk become a lawyer” oh practical advice from my dear Nana. I faltered through college as I struggled with not having the innate talent that others had, and that Imposter Syndrome kicked in heavy. I even had my college advisor tell me “you should rethink Graphic Design you just don’t have the skills to do this as a profession”. This hit me hard as I had dedicated everything to pursuing this passion, now I’m not good enough, as a perfectionist I had to fix this. I did graduate, not with honors or anything special but I pushed through.
As I struggled through retail jobs, government employment, and even grad school I could never get a job as a designer. Maybe my advisor was right i wasn’t cut out for this. But a casual conversation + my passion to help blossomed into a stationery business with a college friend. This was finally a sweet spot for me, I got to create not in a structured environment but one on one with each of my clients. While that business never really took off (for many reasons) I grew exponentially as an individual, designer and business owner.
In 2016, the partnership disbanded and I decided to take on a new venture as a one woman show and focus on branding which I had done as I worked with my stationery clients. I realized this was another opportunity to use my design skills to tell the story of my clients in a way that connected with others. Along this journey I’ve encountered more pitfalls, that pesky Imposter Syndrome still was on my shoulder but all of the hills and valley have cultivated me as a designer. I realized the importance of not just telling a story but doing so in a way that is true to you and your heart.
That heart led me right back to stationery once again in 2019, while I loved branding I realized that doing something that was really true to my heart would all me the most creativity freedom and serve a need in the market. So now I combine a bit of my branding background in my business stationery offering and then my love of stationery and fun in my event stationery. Just know there is always room to pivot, even dead ends all you to turn around and being truth to yourself allows a fulfillment like no other.
If you’re a business owner what’s your origin story? But if you’re not a business owner please share a major obstacle you’ve overcome to be who and where you are today. I can’t wait to read all your stories!
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My monthly insights on all things design + biz! with a few first dibs :-)