Meet Nicole- the ultimate creative rockstar and our very first calligrapher for Darling Of The Month. Nicole's hand lettering is to die for, her drive to live life to the fullest is admirable and her fun yet hard working spirit is contagious. And it doesn't stop there darlings...
Q: Give us your best "15 second elevator pitch" on who you are!
A: Hello there! My name's Nicole Miyuki Santo and I'm a graphic designer, lettering artist and explorer at heart. I teach Watercolor Brush Lettering workshops, which has become my dream job I didn't know I even know existed, and at the end of the day, I'm just a girl like you both living this creative life and loving every second of it!
Q: Where did you learn lettering?
A: I would say I first learned "lettering" by just doing. After I graduated from college and had a full-time graphic design job, I was missing using my hands to create. I decided to start a tumblr and combine my love for quotes and watercolor to create a doodle every day for about a year - or at least attempt to :). I called in Grounded on the Daily - you can see it here - and it's crazy to even look back at those designs and how much my style has changed since then! After that I did take a few pointed-nib calligraphy classes, but quickly found I didn't really like it and went back to designing with my brush!
Q: What are some of your favorite supplies you can’t live without?
A: The items that travel with me all the time :)
brush: Princeton Art & Brush Co 2/0
watercolors: Artist's Loft
pen: Copic Sketch Pen
Q: How do you find ways to stay inspired creatively in your industry?
A: I find my creativity by surrounding myself around other creatives. I've been a part of several small businesses since I graduated who have shown me a) what it's really like behind the scenes to do things on your own and b) given me the confidence that I can do it and prepared me for this moment of my life. It blows my mind how many great, kick ass entrepreneurs there are even in LA alone and that is what inspires me.
Q: You're attending a party/event. What small details do you seem to notice first?
A: The paper goods and event signage first, but after working in-house with Bash, Please (an amazing wedding planning team) I notice so many other things as well!
Q: Best advice you've received and why it stuck with you for so long?
A: To be flexible. I was fortunate to travel throughout the Mediterranean in college on the summer Semester at Sea program and I remember the ship advisors continuously telling us "to be flexible." This definitely applies to traveling, but that simple saying stuck with me throughout life. Life isn't going to go exactly how you planned and yes it is important to set goals to achieve but it is also important to be okay with change. Especially during our 20s, we are going through SO much change and it's key to be flexible and go with the flow of the season of life you're in.
Q: What is your number one tip to anyone who has just started selling their craft online? A: Own what you do and put yourself out there. Allow people the space to even know that you have this creative business or craft that you are selling. I grew up playing soccer all my life and it wasn't until after I graduated and started a tumblr that others and even myself included, realized that I had this creative ability inside of me. If you hide it because you're afraid of being judged etc, then no one may even know that your talent exists. Go for it!
Q: What is one goal you want to accomplish before you're 30?
A: A smaller tangible goal is to that I really want/need to learn how to sew :) and a bigger goal is that I want to make sure on my 30th birthday, I look back on my "20s" and know that I went for it. I did things, explored, stretched my boundaries and reached for the highest stars. I'm 26 now and its crazy how fast time goes, so I want to make sure in 4 years I can look back and 110% say that I freaking lived my life.
Q: Ribbon or glitter? Coffee or tea? Soul Cycle or Pure Barre? Yoga Pants or Running Shorts? Donut or Froyo?
A: ribbon | tea all the way | soul cycle AND barre AND yoga :) I really do all 3 and mix my workouts up | yoga pants | BOTH forsure especially Sidecar Doughnuts
If you have any interest in brush lettering or growing artistically, it's your LUCKY day! Nicole is offering our followers 10% off any of her LA workshops through the end of February.
Use the code: DARLINGS10
Buy tickets here: http://www.nicolemiyuki.com/shop/