This next interview is one that I'm really happy to share! Tammie is someone who I found by chance on-line as I was searching for more information about potentially licensing my art. Tammie has a fantastic blog and is very generous with resources, information, inspiration and sharing her artistic journey with her readers. Tammie may not know this yet but, Tammie is one of the inspirations that gave me the courage to jump in and signed up for classes, learn programs like Adobe Illustrator and ventured into creating an art licensing portfolio. Thank you Tammie for your inspiration and I hope to meet you in person one day - perhaps at Surtex!!!
Your name: tammie bennett
Your website: http://tammiecbennett.com
What part of the world do you live in: NJ, USA
How long have you been designing and illustrating: i have been designing and illustrating for almost 3 years now.
Tell the readers a bit about what your creative life consists of? i am an artist, illustrator and designer. i paint, create mixed media pieces and create digital art. i create editorial illustrations for magazines, surface pattern designs for things like fabric and journals, and illustrations for greeting cards.
What is your favourite part of your art-form? getting lost in the process. i love it when i have a few uninterrupted hours to just put my head down, put on music and create, create, create.
What is the most challenging part of your work? finding time! i have more ideas than i could possibly work on in this lifetime. and the more i work, the more ideas i have!
What was the last thing that you created that you absolutely loved? i just did a sketch in my sketchbook last night that made me lose my breath. i'm turning it into a secret project though, so i can't show you yet. i texted my husband on his way home from work to tell him to hurry and come home so he could see what i just drew!
When did you begin to realize that you had a talent or a wanting to design and illustrate? the moment i found out that the field of surface design existed, i wanted to do it. i signed up for an illustrator class with alma loveland and i signed up for the art and business of surface pattern design with rachael taylor. i entered a tigerprint competition a month or two after learning adobe illustrator and i won a runner-up prize, so that was a great confidence booster for me and made me realize this dream of mine is possible.
Do you have formal training? i have taken several amazing online classes, but i've never taken a class in any sort of formal university or school atmosphere.
Is this your full-time gig/business? it will be starting this september, alongside being a mom to three humans and two fur babies, a wife, and a coach at my children's school.
Did you transition from a traditional 9 to 5 job or did you jump right in? i am lucky enough to be working from home now in a business with my husband, so it won't be a huge transition.
Was there any one person in your life who inspired your creativity? actually, there aren't really many people in my life who do creative work. that's why it has been so important for me to join online artist communities. that happy happy art collective (http://happyhappycollective.com) has been a huge inspiration and support and i'm thankful for that!
What is your favourite thing in your studio/office space? oh, man... this is hard. i love my studio soooo much (when it's clean). the whole of it works together to create a wonderful place for me to create. i have to credit my husband for helping me pick out the paint for the walls. i described what color i wanted and he nailed it!
Do you have a creative process that you go through before you sit down to create? nope. but i'm working on starting one. i tend to just jump right in because i have very limited time to work.
What is one piece of advice that you have to share with those who want to pursue a life that they design? it's okay to feel afraid, but do it anyway. keep believing and keep working! even when (and especially when) you get a little knocked down by a rejection or a setback.
Now for the fun stuff!!
If you could design your most perfect studio/office space anywhere in the world, where would that be? What would your view look like? Who would be with you? wow. this is a good exercise for me to do right now, thank you. it would be on the coast (not too picky about which one. i've never been on a coast i didn't like!) i'll have a cool ocean breeze blowing through my wispy white curtains on my gigantic windows. my studio would be full of light and sounds of the ocean. i will look out on a quiet beach as i'm sketching on the balcony. my kids will have their own workspaces in my studio and will have learned how to work quietly alongside me. my husband will be working in his own office and we can all have lunch together.
Chocolate or Coffee? Or both!! chocolate all the way.
Pen and paper or digital? pen and paper. although i do love my stylus and wacom tablet an awful lot!
What colour/font do you find you use most often when you create? i can't get enough of a muted teal and hot pink. i also use futura waaaay too often.
How many Pinterest boards do you currently have? How many are private?!! (I know you have one or two :) i actually don't use pinterest that much. i go through phases. i have 37, 4 of which are secret. shhh, don't tell.
What's one tool that you can't live without? my sketchbook. i've sketched every single day for 670 days without missing once.
What’s the last book you read? i'm reading the big leap by gay hendricks right now and it's amazing.
Your favourite magazine to peruse? i love uppercase and fast company. two totally different magazines, i know... but that pretty much fits with how i operate.
Where do you get your inspiration from? my kids, their art, my runs on trails, vintage children's books, candy shops.
Any last words…..thank you so much for inviting me into your space!
I hope you enjoyed this interview in the series and encourage you to subscribe to receive posts like this and my favourite freebie/downloadable to-date, in you email once a week!