Guest Speaker: Katherine Quinn

This morning EIT’s very own Katherine Quinn popped in to share her story as an illustrator and well established entrepreneur. Katherine runs the supply store for our art and design course, but her secret is that she has a flare for watercolour illustration!

Katherine explained that an important aspect to her success in selling her work is having an active online presence. Using Instagram to share her images has brought in a larger fan base due to the hash-tagging system embedded into this app. When Katherine created a post about #whales, her popularity grew as the whale was trending on the internet at the time. Using the appropriate words and tags can increase the interaction with your followers and get them interested in your work.

Appropriate staging using product mock-up’s can also draw attention to your work by enabling a viewer to see possibilities of how the imagery can look on specific products. Photoshop templates for cutlery and clothing can either be bought from sites such as Creative Market or found for free on various websites.

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As well as using Instagram as a portfolio and platform for followers, Katherine has created her own website using Wix. It is here where Katherine displays some of her collections, which lead people to her Spoon Flour and Red Bubble profiles.

Spoon Flour and Red Bubble are online sites which artists and designers can sign up to and sell their work. The website will do all the shipping and applying of your design to specific items like tote bags, clothing, mugs and so on. It is a great way to earn some money whilst not having to worry about engaging in all the business of making and shipping goods.

Katherine likes to adapt her hand-drawn watercolour illustrations with digital touch ups in Photoshop. In Ps, coloured backgrounds are added and sometimes, individual characters are pieced together into a composition, then distributed into a pattern. These patterns can then be sold as fabrics on Spoon Flour. Her specialties are drawing cute human characters, foliage and animals.

A handy tip that was suggested was to the class for our website; save your images at 72dpi. Make them of a good quality yet not too good that if people try to steal your image, they will not have much success in trying to reuse it or rip it off. Keep an HD image for yourself too. Using a watermark is also another safeguard that can be applied.

It was really refreshing to listen to Katherine speak about her illustrative process and internet presence. Her illustrations are very beautiful and hold an animated, indie quality to them.

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