Hey Sophie! First of all introduce yourself to the Bbyb crowd:
I'm Sophie! I'm a young illustrator currently residing in Leeds & working hard on the third year of my illustration degree at Leeds College of Art. I drink way too much tea and I'm obsessed with all things pink and pretty (although I only ever wear black).
When did your passion for illustration start? How did your style develop?
Ever since I was young I've had an interest in art. My grandmother was an artist/illustrator and her house was full of stacks of her paintings which was super inspiring to little me! I used to go round there and draw quite often and play with her fancy watercolours when I was about 6. My interest in more commercial illustration really kicked in in college. I had studied photography previously and I think at that point I just wanted to draw as a job!
How many designs/ sketches do you typically do before deciding on a final piece for your shop?
The amount of designs/roughs I do for my prints really depends on the print. If I'm working with screen print for example, then a lot more consideration has to be put into the colours and how they balance throughout the piece. Working in my sketchbook or digitally is a different story, I just draw things over and over until it looks right - sometimes that's ten times, sometimes it's only twice.
What are your favourite medium/s to work with?
My favourite mediums to work with at the moment are brush & ink and digitally using a tablet (the Kyle Webster photoshop brushes literally changed my life!). I like to mix it up a lot so that I don't plateau or get bored.
Do you have tips on developing an illustration style?
Everybody seems to be really concerned with developing a set 'style' and all I can say is, don't worry. Your 'style' will develop naturally based on the stuff your looking at/engaging with. If you focus too much on stylising your work then you run the risk of not learning to draw properly! For example, you can't bend anatomy if you don't understand it first. You will have a natural way of drawing that other people will be able to recognise!
What do you think hinders creativity?
For me, things that hinder creativity are being tired/hungry & cold. Even worse when it's all at once. Occasionally I can't think of anything to draw so I just put my pencil down and watch some Netflix or make plans with some friends.
What advice would you give for fellow young entrepreneurs just starting out?
The scariest part about setting up your own print shop/website/blog is actually getting started. As long as you're organised and plan the content you want to put up, what's the worst that can happen? Just be authentic and only do it if you're really excited about it.
What are your illustrative plans for Christmas?
Currently I'm actually working alongside another illustrator to create some Christmas giftware! I'll be posting updates on that to my Instagram feed soon. I'm going to be completely re-vamping my Etsy & getting my website up and running before December so keep your peepers peeled!
And for our bloggers out there..
What is your favourite lipstick colour?
My fav lipstick colour at the moment is probably MAC Media or Rebel - darker colours always seem to be my go to.
What brand of beauty could you not survive without?
In terms of make-up, I couldn't survive without MAC simply because their foundation is the only one I've found that is remotely close to my almost white skin! I also don't think I could live without Lush - the Comforter is my all time fav product of theirs.
Your hair is gorgeous! What’s your favourite shade of pink?
Is pastel pink a colour? I prefer pastels on myself but I'm not sure I could choose a favourite shade of pink to be honest!
What tips can you give to the readers for blogging whilst running your own business?
I think the key to blogging whilst running your own business is staying organised. Make 'to do' lists, go to bed early, don't stay in your pjs all day and do nothing (trust me, I know from experience!)
A HUGE thank you to Sophie for taking the time out for this interview. She's just relaunched her website and is rebranding and restocking her Etsy so I know she's been busy! Her self portrait (the first image featured on this post) is freaking awesome and I would whole heartedly say go check out her work. I'll leave her links below :)