Today I’m sitting down with designer Melody of Finicky Designs! I will be sitting down with her again 6 months from now, to see what’s changed, and where her blogging journey has taken her. Here’s Melody’s interview!
1. Tell us about your freelance biz!
Finicky Designs is my freelance graphic design business where I get to be a creative entrepreneur and help small businesses tell their story. I love it. Seriously. LOVE. IT. My passion is for small business owners who need that creative boost, that cheerleader, and that professional voice into their visual identity- and Finicky Designs can fill all of those roles for them.
2. You’re also an in-house designer for a non-profit organization that helps children in poverty. Tell us more!
I’ve been an in-house designer for most of my design career, but working for One Child Matters, a child sponsorship and development organization, has been such a privilege! You know that feeling you get when you realize you’ve just made a difference in someone’s life? I get to experience that feeling every day, designing for our sponsors and our children all around the world.
I design most everything in the organization, but my favorite projects are the children’s stationery as well as the educational pieces for our sponsors. Being an in-house designer for a non-profit has shown me that designing is more than just a career- it’s an opportunity to change the world with every click of my mouse, whether it be for a child in poverty or for a small business just getting on their feet. There’s nothing that feels greater than that!
How has your full time work affected your freelance business?
I’ll be honest, it’s difficult coming home from a busy day at work and pour my efforts into my freelance business.Sitting behind a computer all day can be challenging, and coming home to sit behind a computer AGAIN can often feel near impossible and will affect my motivation.
But the experience I’ve gained from my full time in-house career has really equipped me with what I do as a freelancer (and vice versa). So for me, that small struggle is totally worth it. And really just diving back into my freelance work helps me regain my motivation and excitement for it.
How do you find balance between working full time, and freelancing?
That’s a great question, and one I’m still trying to figure out the answer to. When I’m at my full time in-house job, I put everything I’ve got into it. Then I come home and try to devote quality time to my husband, my pups, my body (exercise is important to get the creative juices flowing), and my home. I know I won’t be able to adequately focus on my freelance if I don’t dedicate myself to what’s most important first. Then with a deep breath and a latte, I can turn all of my attention to my freelance biz.
You have a business re-launch scheduled for January 2015, can you tell us any little details about that?
You know how little things happen in life, and all of a sudden they turn into great things? Then you look back on it and realize that you didn’t celebrate the moment it happened? My re-launch for me is just that, a celebration of how far my business has come and where my business is going in the future.
I’m inviting all of my followers and blog readers to join me in celebrating THEM! They’re why I do what I do, and love what I do. More details to come, but as for a few insider details- the day of my launch I’ll be giving away a few random freebies, I’ll be giving everyone a sneak peak at my new YouTube channel (and you’ll get to meet the designer who’s doing it with me), and at the very end of the day I’ll send out my free e-book Working With A Designer to all of my newsletter subscribers. There will also be cake, but unfortunately the sharing of that can only go as far as instagram photos.
What is your favorite thing to design?
That’s a tough one! I’d have to say my favorite is designing for a brand new small business and their image as a whole. There is nothing that pumps me up more than chatting over coffee with a passionate entrepreneur, and hearing all about their big, amazing vision for their business. I get butterflies thinking about how I get to be a part of it (yep, I’m nerdy like that)! Oh, and what’s not to like about starting a project with a sketchbook? Hours away from my computer, conceptualizing an image for a new business—yes, please!
As a designer, I absolutely love your logo- I can tell you put a lot of thought and time into it! What would you say is your signature style as a designer?
Interesting and polished design—let me explain. My style is interesting in that I’m always looking for unique ways to communicate a company’s brand. I don’t settle for the mundane or the boring, and I’d rather pursue timelessness than trendy. I love minimal, clear, concise design that easily communicates a desired message.
Wonder what the meaning of my freelance business’ name is (Finicky Designs)? That’s where the polished part comes in. I’m particular about ALL of the details that go into turning dreams into designs. I won’t settle until I think it’s perfect, and the business I’m working with is completely happy. “Finicky” is a positive thing, I promise.
What makes you stand out as a designer?
A lot of designers can be difficult to connect with and will do anything to push what they see as a “good design” regardless of a client’s intent. This is something I’ve tried to address specifically when developing my freelance (and even my in-house) career. If their message is lost because I’m trying to create a spectacular design piece, then I haven’t accomplished the goal. I’m told by client after client that I’m incredibly responsive, can capture entire visions through a simple conversation over coffee, and have the ability to clearly speak into not just “good design,” but what good design means for their business and the message that THEY are trying to communicate.
How has blogging helped your freelance business?
I love to write. Writing often helps me process and digest the design industry as a whole and helps me think creatively in a completely different form than what I’m used to—with words. I also specifically write on concerns or interests my clients as well as my fellow design friends have asked me about, providing a guide for them to reference and giving my voice a professional authority that I know speaks into my role as a freelancer.
Where do you see your blog and business in 6 months when we interview you again?
I want my blog to become a community. I love collaborating, sharing, engaging—I’ve gained a ton of knowledge these past years as a designer, and it’s far too valuable to just keep to myself.
So in 6 months, my hope is that my blog is a go-to resource for small businesses and graphic designers, and that through the information I share, we make great projects happen together. My hope is also to learn from other designers and small business owners as they engage with me through my blog. Sure, I have a lot of knowledge to share; but there’s still so much left for me to learn and I hope that my blog community feels open enough to talk right back to me!
What is your weirdest quirk?
I’m not sure if this could be considered my weirdest quirk, but it’s definitely one of my weirdest quirks: I organize the food on grocery store conveyor belts. So if the husband loads the items onto the belt, I will take thetime to reorganize it by food type, cold vs. hot, like-sized items, etc. But don’t worry; I’ve never reorganized another person’s grocery belt… yet.
Thanks so much to Melody for chatting with us about her biz! We will definitely be keeping our eye on her- this girl’s got talent, guts, and determination!
Share this interview on Twitter!