Working in an artistic field is an adventure
For those in creative industries, structuring and managing your artistic ventures can be difficult, and there are always obstacles along the way:
- Inspiration. Ideas don’t always appear on demand, and inspiration is rarely consistent within 9-to-5 hours.
- Clients. Explaining ideas to customers who aren’t so tech-savvy can slow the pace of your project.
- Designer’s-block. When you have a blank page and upcoming deadlines, designer’s block can leave you stranded on your journey.
We love talking with other artistic professionals to learn how they manage their creativity, so we chatted to graphic designer Tori Veysey. Her brand Journeyman Creative captures the adventurous pursuit of improvement that all artists can relate to.
We asked Tori what it’s like working as a graphic designer, the story behind her business, and how she organises her imaginative work.
Tell us about your brand, where did your journey begin?
Mastering Photoshop as a ten-year-old, Tori’s creativity was nurtured from a young age.
Tori explains that artistic adventures run in the family, her father was a graphic designer as well as an oil painter. Tori and her brother inherited their father’s creativity, and each used it in their own way. While her brother found a talent for web design and coding, Tori developed a love for drawing and print.
After graduating from Wintec, Tori began her own graphic design business. Working for herself was important, so Tori crafted a mascot that represented her vision for Journeyman Creative – an adventurous character called Woodrow Wilderscout.
With his nap sack and a smile, Woodrow Wilderscout embodied what ‘journeyman’ means to Tori as a graphic designer.
“Woodrow Wilderscout was a light-hearted way to combine the meanings of ‘journeyman’. He’s an artisan who is skilled in his trade and pursuing being better, but also someone who is adventurous and seeking more.”
Tori explains that not all modern graphic designers have the skills to illustrate, so having a mascot like Woodrow showcased her love of illustration in her profession and her artistic edge in the industry.
How do you keep your own style while designing your client’s image?
For designers, balancing individual flair with a client’s preferences can be difficult. Tori explains that although she has a very clear personal style, ultimately she enjoys adapting to a client’s vision when designing their logos or content.
“I believe the hallmark of a good graphic designer is when you’re unable to see similarities between projects. It shouldn’t be about the designer, it’s about the client.”
When designing something as crucial as a business’ logo, Tori has to work closely with clients to define and create their image. She adapts this process for each project, but will often use mood boards and constant communication to get a sense of the style she has to work with.
Let’s talk about inspiration. What gets you inspired? Do you ever get ‘designer’s block’?
Tori explains that after talking with a client, she always starts with sketches to get her ideas down from the very start. She’ll then do some research into what her competitors are doing to make sure she creates something different.
Tori adds there is such thing as too much research, though, as you can end up becoming too influenced by what other graphic designers are creating.
When it comes to designer’s block, Tori finds that working part-time and having a very separate life outside work means her creativity is always engaged when she gets started on a project. Sometimes taking on too many projects leads to creative overload, so Tori will take breaks to prevent this from happening.
“Often inspiration comes when I’m not even thinking about it, or when I’m sleeping. I like to chat to other graphic designers and show them what I’ve got. It’s good to have a community of other people to get feedback from and bounce ideas around with.”
One of the most difficult tasks in a creative field is putting structure into your day, especially when inspiration can strike at any time and productivity is inconsistent. Tori explains that flexibility is important, as she can never be picky about the mood she’s in at the time.
Like many other creatives, Tori is always motivated by pressure.
“There is something about pressure that pushes you to be better and function at a higher level – it can be stressful but you have to be wise.”
How do you handle customers who aren’t so tech-savvy?
Tori explains that the key to working with non-creative clients is communication. Explaining and translating everything to them in a way that they will understand is crucial, but already having the foundation of a logo and branding is a great place to develop from.
When comparing web design and logo creation, Tori finds that there’s more flexibility with what a website can look like, whereas branding takes a lot more definition and fine-tuning.
Creating her client’s vision is Tori’s specialty. Whether she’s drawing or using photography, the variety of illustrative techniques available always keeps her on her toes.
What’s the best thing about what you do?
For Tori, it’s all about feeding off the client’s energy. She explains that the best part about her job as a graphic designer is when the client is stoked with the end-result, and she’s exceeded expectations.
“The projects where I have the most fun are when the client is pumped and excited. When they have a vision they can’t materialise, but you turn their passion into something that can grow.”
Tori’s talent really shines when she takes creative leadership of an entire branding project. A recent example of this is where Tori took on the challenge of branding for Stephen and Simone Parkes, a husband-and-wife real estate team.
Going as far as custom photography, Tori went above and beyond her brief to design an entire brand for her clients. With the full creative freedom to take her project to a new level of professionalism and creativity, Tori’s work left Stephen and Simone awestruck and delighted with the final result.
Through her work in graphic design, Tori has been able to meet many people and become part of their own business’ story. Taking professionalism and creativity to a different level is what inspires Tori to continue realising her client’s ideas.