In November 2013, Creative Women’s Circle released the second book in the Conversations with Creative Women series. The book is currently available in both paperback and digital format.
Independently published and printed in Melbourne on beautiful uncoated, environmentally friend paper, the series offers tips, shares advice, and gives us insight into the world of inspiring creative women.
Following the success of the first Conversations with Creative Women in 2011, Tess McCabe presents the stories of another 16 creative Australian women, and the varied paths that have led them to their current achievements.
Each woman featured talks about her career path, offers tips, shares advice, and gives us insights into the passion that fuels creative women.
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(Photo by Martina Gemmola)
Megan Morton is a stylist first and foremost, her work having appeared in countless campaigns and in magazines around the world. But her business acumen and willingness to share her acquired knowlege sees her influence and interact with people in many other ways. An author, ideas generator and serial instagrammer, megan has an infectious enthusiasm for interior spaces and the little details. She shares her thoughts on maintaining a balance between fulfilling career and committed mum.
Alischa Herrmann discovered a love of letterpress printing while working as a corporate graphic designer, and after investing in an antique cast iron letterpress and undergoing an unofficial apprenticeship, established Bespoke Letterpress. Now one of Australia’s (and the world’s) leading letterpress design & print studios, Bespoke employs a small team across two studios to lovingly design, print and distrubute invitations, stationery and gift wares to retailers across the globe. Alischa talks about her commitment to exquisite print craftsmanship, the challenges of moving cities and starting a family while running a small businesses..
Emily Wright is the founder and designer of Nancybird, one of Australia’s most successful independent and sustainably-minded hand bag and accessories businesses. Starting out, Emily produced all product by hand, but recognised the need to outsource for growth and now employs a team of designers and craftspeople in Melbourne and overseas to produce her popular range. She talks about the organic growth of her business and how she funnels inspiration into the shape of a collection.
Shelley Simpson created the mud australia dinnerware range in the 1990s in response to her environment: the cosmopolitan and vibrant East meets West food culture of Sydney. Almost 20 years on, the brand has three dedicated stores and many retailers around the world. Talking through her journey she touches on the many moments and collaborative partnerships that have been integral to the product’s growth and success and the questions she asked of her supporters that changed her product for the better.
Anna Spiro is a Brisbane-based interior designer with a passion for vibrant colour, textiles, antiques and creating inspiring spaces full of individual charm. Her unmistakable design style has garnered her renowned interior design practice and shop, Black & Spiro and her internationally acclaimed blog, Absolutely Beautiful Things, a loyal following. Anna shares with us how as a designer and shop owner with a young family she ensures all plates in the air keep spinning.
Dawn Tan is an artist, illustrator, teacher and self-confessed foodie. Her colourful watercolours, giant plush sculptures, and homewares often feature her favourite foods and food packaging, and her adoring fan base love her quirky products and endearing approach to the world. As a teacher she equips budding artists young and old with ways to express themselves through art and has collaborated with may of Australia’s most popular independent publications, bloggers and retailers. Dawn shares her inspirations and challenges as a work-hard play-hard creative with an interminable drive.
Madeleine Sargent develops and makes a joyful range of children’s products and home wares under the label Made by Mosey. Having studied both Photography and Interior Design and working as a visual merchandiser and retailer, her broad range of creative skills combine to ensure her design aesthetic and approach to making is loved by a loyal group of customers. Influenced by traditional crafting techniques and patterns through to contemporary movements in design and colour forecasting. Working around the schedules of two young children, Madeleine shares her winding (and sometimes rocky) path to independent design success.
Shirley Barrett hit the ground running when her feature film Love Serenade won the coveted Caméra d’Or (Best First Feature) at the Cannes Film Festival in 1996. Since that time Shirley has directed many a favourite Australian television series, including Love My Way, Offspring and Heartbreak High, and written and directed other films such as South of Solitary. Shirley discusses the challenges of the Australian film industry, how to lead a team of creatives and muses about when to take an opportunity despite the pull of family life.
Olga Bennett‘s photography has been published in numerous creative publications such as Frankie, Inside Out, Uppercase, and Design Quarterly amongst others. She enjoys photographing designers, musicians and artists to create images that faithfully represent their work and creative vision. Working almost exclusively with natural light, Olga photographs using film (not digital!) and strives to capture her subjects as they are. Olga shares the benhind-the-scenes of life as a professional photographer, tips for establishing a personal style and how she gained such an impressive client list.
Christine Cholewa travelled to Adelaide from Toronto, Canada to pursue in the Design Associate Program at JamFactory Contemporary Craft and Design Glass Studio and never left! Working primarily in glass, her practice includes production work, exhibition work and public commissions. As well as detailing the production methods of handmade glass products, Christine explains the benefits of collaboration and shares what she believes is essential to pursing a full time career as an artist.
Georgia Hobart is a brand lover, creative thinker and marketing lass turned footwear maven. Armed with a degree in Business Marketing, Georgia’s career spanned event design and production, creative direction, marketing communications and brand management before embarking on a quest to fill a gap in her wardrobe for beautifully designed classic footwear. Thus, Hobes was born. Wearing all the hats Georgia shares her advice and lessons learned about effective brand management for micro-businesses.
Michelle Mackintosh is a freelance book designer, specialising in cultural, cook book and craft titles for national and international publishers. Also a talented illustrator, she has illustrated six books written by her husband and she has two stationery ranges published by Hardie Grant books. Michelle has been nominated for and won numerous design awards including best cover design for Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight in German. Michelle details her process for designing a new title from design brief to collaborating with the author and editor, and explains why travel is her biggest influence.
Natasha Dumais is designer and entrepreneur. Her branding and communications consultancy Magnetic Design has grown to deliver high-calibre creative strategies for many renowned brands. But on becoming a mother of three, Natasha identified a need in the market for nursery furniture with a focus on safety, sustainability and design and after more than a few design and development hurdles launched Ubabub (pronounced über-bub) to international acclaim. Natasha offers her thoughts on managing full time creative work and family schedules, working closely with a romantic partner in business and tackling the international market with a tricky product.
In 2006 friends and former colleagues Chloe Quigley, Kat Macleod and Simone Elder founded Ortolan, an internationally recognised and award-winning graphic design studio focused on branding, publication and web design for the fashion, arts and architecture industries. Pooling their complementary skills they have maintained a client base of intelligent, imaginative and nice companies who value exceptional work and in addition manage individual side projects such as Chloe’s blog Michi Girl and Kat’s illustration and exhibition work. They discuss the value and importance of partnership agreements, and how to handle tricky client relationships.