By Roslyn Russell Today I welcome Steph Ransom as the featured member on the CWC blog. Steph is a talented illustrator, graphic designer and teacher. While visiting the website for her business Fathom & Co. I quickly realised that many of her designs are featured on well known places and products. Which ones? Read the interview, then pop over to her website and find out!
What do you create? I run a small graphic design firm, Fathom & Co. We specialise largely in print design but are moving rapidly towards more digital projects. I also illustrate and take on commissions for this separately to my design work. Because I love illustration it's my natural inclination to include this in a lot of my design work – whether it is a small part of the look and feel of the project or a larger aspect of the project – so it does all end up meshed together. I also teach part time at Shillington College so I like to think that I help to create passionate and hard working creatives.
Have you done training in your creative field or has it come about informally? I did a degree in Graphic Design at Monash University (with a an Illustration major in my final year). It was a fantastic experience. I had lots of fun, met some really excellent people and got a really solid grounding for a Graphic Design career. I've been lucky enough to work with and for some incredible designers who taught me heaps, pushed me along and basically continued my informal design education. Over the years I've done print workshops, post grad study in multi-media and more recently a short course in building websites. I really enjoy being in an environment where I am learning formally. It gives me a good opportunity to take a fresh look at where I'm at and get some perspective and inspiration.
What are your main creative inspirations? Books, magazines, blogs, galleries, films – the usual! At the moment I've been watching the TV series The Tudors. It's visually rich, intricate, beautiful... and saucy! Music really helps when I'm working. More recently I've become quite partial to podcast interviews from ABC RN or local – interesting people doing all sorts of incredible things. It's hard not to be inspired.
How do you balance your creative projects with the administration aspect of creative work? As with any creative person it's difficult wearing both hats at the same time. Weirdly, I do happen to quite like the administration side of things. There's something very satisfyingly straightforward about it. Maybe I find it a relief or a chance to turn my brain off. I'm quite comfortable talking turkey, managing projects and briefing other people who help me out. The difficult part is doing this and then switching my head back in to creative mode. Finding that quiet space to create.
What do you do when you experience a creative block? I look in books, draw, scribble, have a cup of tea, read the newspaper, procrastinate, do something else, have a change of scenery, whinge!
What future goals do you have for your creative pursuits? I'd like to learn to sew - but I think it would be speed sewing! I'd like to do my own range of illustrative prints. I'd also like to learn more about building websites - I'm digging the geeky stuff. Time. Time would be nice!
Thanks so much Steph for sharing your creativity with us today! If you'd like to know more about Steph and her work at Fathom & Co. you can read more on her website.
Roslyn Russell is a sewist, blogger and teacher. Her blog, Sew Delicious, is where she showcases her latest projects, designs and sewing tutorials. Roslyn also enjoys cake baking and decorating, exploring Melbourne cafes and restaurants, and hunting through op-shops for vintage sewing and kitchen treasures.