We have had some wonderful creative businesses enrol on our online course and come along to our Pinterest Workshops. We have so enjoyed connecting with them online and in person and thought it would be great to share our creative chats with you here on our blog!
We have reached out to these artists and makers to share their small business story with us. Details of their creative process, where they find inspiration and the highs and lows of running their own business.
Our 4th Creative Chat is with illustrator, Emma Waylett:
Do you have a favourite creation, one that you’re most proud of?
I am a designer and creator at heart, so I’m happiest when creating new designs and being inspired by the things around me. My favourite creation to date and the one I’m most proud of are my ink bloom moons; I hand paint the moon as it appeared in the sky on any chosen date. Each one is unique as I use a technique called ‘blooming’ with ink and water. I get so excited creating such special pieces of art for customers, each with a slightly different personalisation and colour combination. They are just gorgeous, everyone falls in love with them.
What’s in your creation toolbox?
My toolbox is super simple. There’s handmade paper, ink and a paintbrush. That’s all I need, wherever I am 🙂
Tell us about what you enjoy about running your business and find easy?
I absolutely love having my own business, it’s my passion and channel for creativity. It’s not easy at all, especially with 2 young children in tow but what it does give me is ultimate flexibility to be at home with my children and go to every event, after school activities, holidays, drop-offs, pick-ups and beach fun throughout the summer (we live in Bournemouth so we spend most sunny days with sandy toes).
I guess the easiest part for me is chatting and interacting with customers – I always find my Lovely Ink followers are the loveliest bunch of humans!
What don’t you enjoy and find difficult, what are the obstacles?
To be honest, the thing I struggle with is being organised and prioritising anything that isn’t immediate orders. Sometimes I feel like I work in the business rather than running the business, like it’s all I can do to just stay on top of getting orders out sometimes. The planning side of marketing just rarely gets done so I pretty much have to rely on organic traffic coming through the website or directly from my Instagram posts and stories. I guess you could say I’m a fly by the seat o’ my pants kinda gal… or a maybe just a busy mum running a business! I also get serious imposter syndrome at times! Social media can be a real rollercoaster ride but all of that aside I love it all and it’s all part of the journey and learning!
Who is your perfect/ideal customer and what do they value from you?
My ideal customers are people who appreciate the love and effort that goes in to creating and painting my art and valuing the fact that the piece of art they’re buying is a one-off or small batch. When you buy from me, you know you’re getting a gorgeous piece of art that’s been created from a corner of my home inspired by heart. My aim is to deliver you a little piece of happiness, and to make you smile whenever you look upon it.
Can you tell us about your creative process?
My brain is like my computer – a gazillion tabs open! Haha. I’m not very methodical in my design process. I may have been inspired by something while out and about – at a museum or on a walk and write in on my iPhone notes to later sit down and bring it to life or I’ll just sit at my desk and work on something based on how I’m feeling. Quite often I’ll just sit with a stack of blank pages and some bottles of ink and my trusty brush…I just let them do the work.
Do you work on your own and where from?
I work from my kitchen table which is now pretty much just an ink spattered antique pine desk! There’s no room for anything else so we eat our family dinners around the breakfast bar! I do work alone, but I’ve been known to rope in my husband, mum and brother to help wrap orders at busy times like Christmas!
Where does your design inspiration come from?
I draw inspiration from my home, my family, my feelings, the natural world around me (I’m lucky to live by the beach and the forest so there’s plenty of natural elements to inspire me). I try to get out to art galleries or museums but don’t manage this as often as I like, I find Pinterest can give me interior and colour scheme inspiration and photo layout ideas when I’m house bound or trying to go to sleep!
Do you have any work in progress you’re excited about and you like to share with us?
I’ve got a new collection being launched with a light and sunmery vibe. Some lovely new brush letter quotes and something Sunny. I’m super excited about my new Happy Squares – which are a development on my affirmation cards. These new little square cards are centred around choosing happiness, self care and a kind heart. A perfect little pick me up for every day. I’m hoping these will be out in the next 2-3 weeks.
Passions and interests?
I’m a sucker for great branding and design of course but these things aside I love being outdoors and we’ve got a couple of kayaks so being out on the water is amazing. I’m also a massive foodie, so give me some gorgeous food and good wine and I’ll be as happy as a pig in sh*t. I’m a sucker for books, old and new and reading has always been important to me. I love getting lost in a good book. One thing I’m really interested in is psychology and the human brain – I find it so fascinating and if I could go back to uni I would definitely study this!
What was the biggest take away from doing our Pinterest course?
I love using Pinterest personally but for some unknown reason I had never invested the time in using it for my own business?! Having studied the course, it’s given me a new lease of life and motivation for investing time each week in to growing the business. Also, it’s great to be able to reuse the creative visuals that I normally invest time in for Instagram and (hopefully) get results for this from Pinterest as time goes on.
Would you like to learn more about how to use Pinterest to grow your creative business? Check out the following: