C.S.: I’ve been doing all kinds of design work since 2008 (marketing materials, illustrations and logo design). A couple years ago, I got the itch to learn screen-printing. My husband, who is also a graphic designer, taught me a little bit about the process and I was able to pick it up pretty quickly. It soon became a fun and exciting craft for me. My processes starts with an illustration on paper, moves to digital, then to a negative on a transparency, transferred to a silk screen using emulsion, and finally ink is drawn across the screen to yield a printed image.
Soon after learning how to screen-print, I began selling my work. I started out with T-shirts then found a niche for making tea towels and pillows. My designs are also sold as art prints and stationery. I was really nervous at first to put my work “out there,” but then I found that people actually like it! It’s a really neat feeling to be out in public and see someone wearing one of my shirts, or see my art on someone’s wall.
I started selling my work online, and then at trade shows. My products can also be found at Wonderfully Made in Hermantown (facebook.com/wonderfullymadegoods) and on some adorable onesies at Little Neetchers in West Duluth (facebook.com/littleneetchers).
Most of my work is inspired by living in Duluth and by Lake Superior. I’m finding that people who live around here are really proud of this charming city and the beautiful lake, and I enjoy creating work that reflects that kind of pride.
This year, I’d love to learn even more printing techniques and do more trade shows and craft fairs. My first fair was in September when I was a vendor at the Chester Park Fall Festival. It’s really valuable for me to be able to meet and talk to people who purchase my work, and even get comments and suggestions in person. I had such a great time at this event that I hope to do many more this year (as production time allows).
Which brings me to my challenge (and my inspiration). As a stay at home mom of two (ages 1 and 3), time doesn’t always allow me to get these creative goals done, or make my personal deadlines. Which I have learned to be okay with. There are times when my oldest has helped me with my screen printing, or she has drawn pictures with me as I’m illustrating. It’s really sweet to be able to bring her into my work life (which happens to be fun for her), and to have her see me in that kind of a role.
I still continue to do graphic design work for various clients in Minnesota. My freelance work is mostly marketing materials, and some commissioned illustrations. A local event that I really enjoy designing promotional materials for is the Duluth Junk Hunt, probably because the target market is people like me, as I’m a bit of a junk hunter myself.
I am always working to improve, and I like to keep life interesting by always trying new creative things and working on various projects with different mediums. Whether its painting, drawing, screen-printing, jewelry making, or just making a fun dinner for the family; I feel the most fulfilled when I’m creating something.
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