[Image credit: ©Jo Crawford Photography]
Hey folks – how y’all doing today? (sorry I had to do that while I’m out here in Memphis!) I hope you’re all doing just fine this week and not too bogged down with work etc. We are now into our second week of our Big American Road trip which has been a real blast so far and I’m already quite tempted to move out here….particularly in Memphis.
Anywaaaaaaaay….I’m excited to share with you this month’s ‘Behind the Scenes’ featured designer who is none other than the fun and quirky South-African, Ché of IndieBerries! I first met Ché on the ‘Photohunt‘ event last year, which she co-runs with fellow creatives LuLu and Bobbie. It’s a fantastic fun bloggers-networking, scavenger hunt, team-building kind of affair where its all revolved around photography. I had so much fun the first time that it didn’t take me long to sign up to their next one earlier this year (still havent put those photos up on here – woops!) Anyhoo, this girl is super cool, witty, insanely creative and entrepreneurial…..and if you don’t already stalk her on IG, you’ll find she’s a complete yoga enthusiast too. But it’s the creative side I love the most, particularly her cartoons you find all over her blog and of course the greeting cards she makes out of them too. So without further adieu, let me introduce you to this girl….and you can then go check her out!!
1. Tell us a little about yourself. Have you always wanted to be a illustrator/designer?
I’m Ché from South Africa – I’ve been living in London for just over a year! I have always loved drawing and doodling and as far back as I can remember I’ve always carried around pencils and notebooks to jot down ideas and draw wild cartoons.
2. How did you come about setting up indieBerries? What is the story behind your business and the name? I started blogging when I was teaching English in South Korea 3 years ago, as a creative outlet. My most popular and eagerly shared posts are the cartoon posts I illustrate – so it seemed the next logical step to offer a product line that incorporates the illustrations that people have come to love. I picked the name indieBerries because I wanted something fun, fresh and randomly quirky!
3. What five words best describe you and your style of work? quirky, creative, funny, random, unique.
4. I absolutely love your style of work especially the cartoons you have on your blog – it’s just so insanely hilarious and quirky, I don’t ever recall NOT chuckling at them (in a good way that is!) So, what’s the main source of inspiration behind your work? Did this style of work come naturally or did you feel you needed a niche of some kind? Doodling has always been a natural thing for me – I love telling stories in this form, because (although it takes me way longer to draw one frame than to write one sentence) there is something that you can convey with images than you can’t in words. I take inspiration from the daily life happenings around me. Warren, the husband – is a great muse!
5. How would you describe your design process and/or technique used, and what part of it do you like the most? I have a very carefree approach to illustrating! I use my Wacom tablet to draw straight into photoshop and edit as I go along. My favourite part is adding colour and shading to images – because it really makes them come alive! Of course, my absolute favourite is seeing the reaction of people who I share the finished products with!
6. How long would it normally take to create your final product; from inception to completion? It depends entirely on what it is I’m working on. For a greeting card, if I get a good idea I can usually mock one up in a hour or two. For bespoke illustrated posters of couples it can be anything from three to five hours. I have a book project that I’m working on – which is literally taking me years!
7. Is there any craft/art medium that you haven’t tried but want to? If so, do tell us why? Ooooh, there are SO many craft things I would love to get more involved with – especially wearable accessories – so sewing, jewelry making – things like that! I love making things with my hands!
8. As an illustrator, would you say it’s been difficult breaking through into what is a booming and competitive creative industry? If so, what are the kind of challenges you face/d? So tough! Especially moving from South Africa to London which is a place that is already really saturated with amazing creative individuals. It’s been difficult in the beginning to build up a network here – but I feel like I’m slowly getting there!
[Image credit: ©Jo Crawford Photography]
9. What would be your ‘top three tips’ for like-minded individuals who would like to one day set up a business themselves in this creative field or want to switch career paths but are afraid to do so?
- JUST DO IT.
- SERIOUSLY, stop waiting for everything to be perfect, JUST DO IT.
- Refer to point 1.
10. What would you say is the best part part of your business? And is this a full-time 9-5 business or something you run on the side? The best part of my business is that I get to create the things I love. I live to create and I wouldn’t be “ME” without it. I love that I am building my own brand, my own company, being my own boss. It is a full time business more like 8am – 11pm (and then also in many insomniac hours).
11. Of your current range of work, what ‘piece’ or ‘collection’ would you pick out as your favourite? I love my little Love Vouchers and the “If this was the Eighties, I’d make you a mix tape” card! My wedding guestbooks are also always SO much fun for me to create because I LOVE being part of a couple’s story as they prepare for one of the most incredible days of their lives!
12. When you’re not in a design mode, what else do you enjoy doing – any other hobbies or past time favourites? I’m basically in design mode ALL the time! Otherwise I have started yoga recently and am absolutely LOVING it! I also love playing around with anything hands-on-crafty: crocheting, art journaling, gift wrapping etc. You will NOT find me in the kitchen.
13. What are your favourite bedside book/s or blog/s at the moment? I’m currently reading The Touch which Lulu (from Berrydiaries) lent me and I’m really enjoying it! She has also lent me The One Thing – a motivational type book and I’ve found it so good!
14. Name three things you just could not live without? Warren, pen + paper, Washi tape.
15. Are there any illustrators, artists, designer-makers out there that you find inspirational or you think are ones to keep an eye out for – if so, who?I love the work and style of Edward Monkton for it’s random quirkiness. I also love Emily McDowell’s typography and her take on everyday life things. Harold’s Planet is also one I look out for – just because it’s so cute!
16. And finally, what do you have in store for indieBerries this year? Are there any events we should take note of too? I would like to have my first draft of my “datebook” ready for print by the end of the year. It’s the first time I’ve tackled a project so big – so holding thumbs! I would like to have my card range stocked in a few more shops in the UK. I have also been asked to be a guest speaker at The Ruby Orchard Workshop in South Africa in October.
Wowzer – this girl! So much energy and vision. Thanks a million Ché for agreeing to let me interview and feature you on Made by Molu. I’m pretty certain you have an amazing future ahead of you and I wish you all the best for it!
And for all you lovely readers and followers, Ché is kindly offering a 20% discount off all orders you make on her Etsy shop but it is ONLY live for three days as it ends on the 3rd of July! So, what are you waiting for then??? Hop on over and grab yourselves some awesome stuff!! Add the discount code madebymolu at checkout!!
Enjoy! x x x
[All Image credit: ©indieBerries, unless otherwise indicated]