Graphic Artist // Philadelphia, PA // SS17 Lining Artwork
Veggani teamed up with Natalie to create a beautiful southwestern themed, water color illustration for our Spring/Summer 2017 Collection. This artwork is printed on our 100% recycled lining, created primarily from post-consumer plastic bottles and has a surprisingly silky hand feel. We hope Natalie’s lining artwork has you dreaming of desert road trips and summer escapes!
Who motivated you to become a graphic artist?
My mother was very supportive of me being an artist, and I get a lot of my work ethic from her - I was an indoor kid for sure and always loved drawing and reading; art always stuck with me, but it's nice that my mom saw the importance of getting me into classes and programs that helped me develop my skill.
What would you say is your personal style or favorite type of work to do?
My style is largely driven by my preferred media, which are watercolor, gouache and pencil. I like the immediacy of these materials, I think they help me not to make overly finished work.
Did you get any good business advice when you were first starting out?
When I would talk to peers who were also artists, illustrators or some other flavor of freelancer, themes of persistence and self-accountability came up a lot. You gotta prepare yourself for uneven work schedules, money, and your own fits and starts in productivity.
Do you have any women who have inspired you? Or other artists?
I love Lisa Hanawalt's illustration work, and Bianca Xunise. They both have strong voices that are expressed well through their respective styles and storytelling, and though I don't get into narratives in my own work, it's something I've always been attracted to in illustration.
What do you do when you need inspiration or when you get into a creative rut?
The urgency and pressure of a deadline really help jog inspiration when I'm doing work for a client; I usually just doodle endlessly, or take a break until I'm inspired for personal work. Sometimes it helps me to just write "make something" on a to-do list. I also draw a lot of food, which is usually on my mind, so it's not like I have to dig super deep to draw snacks.
What are your favorite spots in Philadelphia?
I don't have a studio, so I end up working in cafes a lot when I'm sketching, designing or admin-y stuff; I like to work at Steep and Grind or the La Colombe in Fishtown, or Benna's in South Philly. Now that's it's spring I'm really looking forward to spending some afternoons biking the Schuylkill River Trail, or hanging out at Penn Treaty Park.
Do you have a mantra or saying that resonates with you?
There was a thing going around about Octavia Butler's notebooks that was going around, where she had these concrete statements ("My books will be read by millions of people, I will help poor black youngsters go to college, I will get the best healthcare for my mother and myself") followed by ("So be it! See to it!"). The "So be it, See to it!" resonates with me as someone who places a lot of importance on action, and will leave some things to the universe, but not my work.