I am so excited to feature Evelyn, from Evelyn Henson, for today’s In Her Seat feature! I first found Evelyn on Etsy while looking for cocktail glasses, and I came across this print! I am so glad I did because I ordered 4 prints right then and wasted no time emailing her about being apart of this series!
I am so glad that she said yes because she is the absolute sweetest! Not only does she sell the most adorable, colorful prints that I want to fill my home with, she has a society6 shop with her amazing designs. I am lusting after these pillows!
If you already know Evelyn, I hope you have gotten your hands on a print (or three!) of hers! If not, you must head over to her website to fall in love with it all!
Either way, grab a cup of coffee, and take a minuet in Evelyn’s seat…
- Tell us a bit about yourself: I am from and am currently living in Columbus, Georgia! I just graduated from Furman University in Greenville, SC in May with a B.A. in Art History and Communication Studies. I’ve always had a passion for all things creative. While at school, painting became my way of de-stressing after studying, tests, etc. It started with homemade cards and simple quote canvases, but then slowly transformed into flower bouquets and perfume illustrations. I now paint a wide variety of things, all of which you can purchase in my Etsy shop!
- Do you have a day job? Hmm I guess you could say it’s a full time job. The amount of work I put in per day is equal to that of a full time job, and art is my main priority at the moment. When I graduated from college, I moved back home and was looking for jobs for a while, but, after a lot of sent resumes with no responses, I took a break from all that and have unofficially begun pursuing art. Just seeing where it takes me I suppose!
- Tell us about your company: I created my Etsy shop to share my mantra that painting is a celebration of life! After being encouraged by my friends to sell my art, I started my Etsy shop a week after graduating from college. In July, I officially launched www.evelynhenson.com, as well as a line of designs on Society6. My goal is to bring color and celebration to your home, job, friendships, and the other niches of your life. I strive to represent colorful and happy everyday moments through my work. Though my work is about finding this celebration in art, I believe my mantra extends to all realms of life: celebration is everywhere!
- How did you come up with idea for your company? My friends encouraged me to sell my art on Etsy, and it grew from there. I knew I would be selling art and print designs, so I tried to work my brand ideas around my colorful and happy painting style. To brainstorm my shop’s ultimate purpose, I put pen to paper (the beginning of all great ideas!) and mapped out the philosophy and mission behind my art and designs. Following my mantra that painting is a celebration of life, I designed my shop with the intention of sharing the color and celebration I find in art.
- When starting your company, what did you find the most helpful? As an Etsy seller, the most helpful tool in the beginning was the “Etsy Success” newsletter that I subscribed to. It showed me different ways to stand out as a seller, and how to best utilize Etsy as a selling platform. I’ve also read Jess Lively’s e-book, “What I Wish I Knew,” and am currently reading Creative Inc., both of which are filled with useful advice and inspiration. While these resources have been extremely useful and I highly recommend them, I’ve found that support from my family and friends has been my most invaluable resource.
- How do you spend your day? I typically wake up a little before 8:00 AM. Once I get breakfast and a cup of coffee, I pack up orders and respond to emails and Etsy messages. Depending on the day, I might post something onto my blog. I’ll then make a list of the custom/commissioned paintings I need to complete, and a list of additional ideas specifically for my shop. I try to tackle as many as I can throughout the day. I usually run or walk in the middle of the day for a boost of energy and inspiration! I try to put my paints away around 6:00 PM, but often find myself getting caught up in a project and painting much later.
- What is the best advice you have received/what is the best advice you can give to someone who wants to start their own company? One of the best pieces of advice I’ve ever received has been from a Seventeen Magazine article, written by Maya Angelou and published about 7 or 8 years ago. As cheesy as it may be, I’ve had it framed all these years because I really loved the message (and still do). My favorite line reads, “Try to find something you like about yourself that you already are—not that you wish to be. Whatever it is, find it and put it around your neck like a necklace, like a string of pearls. That will make you shine!” In an industry where it’s so easy to compare yourself to others, I think it’s important to stay true to yourself. Wearing your true values and goals close to your heart is what will ultimately make your business shine.
- Do you have any employees? It’s currently just me in my shop! My mom helps me mail items, but everything is made and designed by me.
- What are your goals for your company? My ultimate goal is to create art that brings color and celebration to the modern girl. I want to consistently create art that brings others the same happiness it brings me.
- What has been the most rewarding part of owning your own company? The most rewarding part is being able to share my
art with others. There’s nothing more exciting than someone purchasing or showing interest in one of my paintings!
- What has been your biggest obstacle in owning your own company? Well, I’ve never liked math, so dealing with numbers has been my biggest obstacle. I really don’t like putting a price on my work or recording income/expenses. When I first started, I didn’t even document my finances or save receipts. I didn’t think about that fact that I should financially manage it. So catching up on that and trying to figure out the best way to record and organize expenses and what not has been a major obstacle. I’m learning!
- How do you stay focused/motivated during the day? If I find my mind wandering or hitting a creative wall, I usually go for a run or take my dogs for a walk. It generally helps me refocus, and I often come up with new ideas.
- What are three things on your desk or do you always have with you? The three things always on my desk are my Erin Condren planner, a sketchbook for ideas, and gold glitter washi tape.