I ran across Canadian Illustrator Valéry Goulet's designs on the web, and loved her playful, lively images of animals, creatures and designs. I contacted her for an interview and she was nice enough to share her experience in design and illustration.
Podcast: Le petit monde scientifique du Doc Boucher (medical)
Artist: Charley Harper
Company you like working with: McrobbieOptamedia
Company you wish you could work with: Swatch, Canada Post, Umbra, Taschen, Starbucks, Hasbro, En Route Magazine, IKEA, The New Yorker, Harper Collins... and many many more.
Contact Information: www.valerydesignwrks.ca • Products • Etsy Store
You designs seem very playful, what is the message you try to communicate?
It really depends on the the project and the client. I think I have the capability of being able to adapt myself to any person or situation but I think the style came naturally...and communicates who I am.
How did you get to where you are today with your greeting cards?
As far back as I can remember, I had interest in illustration. I remember sitting with my mom at the table trying to copy her drawings. I wondered why I was not able to do great drawings like her. She kept telling me that it would happen by itself. I tried so hard to control my hand but she was right. It happens while we are not paying attention.
My interest in drawing professionally came while I was doing my bachelors degree. I took the "Introduction to Illustration" and had no idea that I might have potential for this. I looked at other people's work and I remember being really impressed with their drawings, thinking that I would never be able to do it myself. I still see myself at the beginning of the path.
From there, my illustration teacher, Claude A. Simard, made me realize that my work had potential. I was happy to make him smile with my work and having my illustrations hung up on the wall of THE corridor (the only one in the department which everybody had to walk by). After this course, I took a second one and I realized the way to improve myself was to be on my own and set objectives like when I was a little girl.
In your art life, what inspires you when coming up with new ideas?
My life. Everything that I see, I feel, I experience. When something intense happens to me, it will be certainly reflected in my illustrations. When I had surgery, I remember drawing characters with a scar at the same place than I had mine. My birds with teeth come from my little parrot as even if he doesn't have teeth, believe me when he is upset I can almost feel some.
What was the best experience you've had when trying to market/selling your designs?
Each new opportunity is the best for me but my 2009 calendar was certainly a little dream I realized. I always wanted to create a piece containing a wide selection of papers.
What was the worst experience you've had when trying to market/selling your designs?
When I started, I underestimated my capabilities, so my rate was really low . It was a bad way to start, but time makes you learn things...something called wisdom?
What's a tip you can offer other artists?
They have to believe in what they are doing and just think that everything is possible. You just have to aim things you want to achieve.
If money were no object, what is the next step you'd take to live your artistic dreams?
I would probably have my own office and work with other illustrators, designers, makeup artists, architects and come up with crazy lines of products. Also, I think I would travel more while working as traveling is so fun and inspiring.
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