Today I want to talk about one of my mentor’s, Bonnie Christine, and her incredible Surface Design Immersion Course. What’s that you might be saying? Well in short…
“The Surface Design Immersion Course is a beloved 8 week online training program for those who want to learn Adobe Illustrator, the art of surface pattern design, how to become a licensing artist and create a sustainable business as a creative entrepreneur. “ There is so much more to it than that and I’m going to encourage you to head over to Bonnie’s website HERE to read the specifics.
What I mostly want to share with you here today is my experience in learning from Bonnie over the past seven years. Bonnie has an amazing ability to connect with her students and it’s that connection, along with the relationships that I’ve made in her communities and other communities I’m a part of that has really encouraged me to keep pushing forward, to be better in my career, to reach my goals and continue to set new ones. Watching Bonnie grow and succeed in her own career, from just a small blog to a 7 figure business owner, has pushed me to work hard at what I love to do and has given me the confidence to know that I can achieve any goal I set my mind to. I don’t know if I would have this wonderful creative career had it not been for her caring and consistent guidance and inspiration over the years.
I was recently thinking about a day in my final year of art school (a 4 year degree costing over $30,000 by the way). My school was very conceptual and one of the first things that I discovered while there was that being myself, liking things like pretty art and stationery stores, was not okay and I quickly learned to shove that part of myself down and hide it away. On this day, I was meeting with one of my my teachers and showing her my uninspired grad project. At one point she looked over and saw something I had pinned off to the side. It was a miniature book that I was making for my family as a gift illustrating the Twelve Days of Christmas. I showed it to her and told her that this is actually what I love doing. She turned her nose up and sneered. Needless to say, I got the message over and over again from the teachers who were supposed to be helping me learn and grow into the best version of myself that who I was, was wrong.
I spent the next eight years floundering around, trying to figure out how I fit into the art world. I tried a lot of things but nothing seemed to fit. Then one day I stumbled across a post from one of my favourite bloggers at the time, Bonnie Christine. She was teaching her very first course all about something called… Surface Pattern Design. "What the heck is that?" I asked myself. Of course I immediately signed up. The information she shared was eye-opening. I had never considered the fact that creating artwork for things like fabric, cards and gift wrap was actually a thing people did for a living. They certainly never taught us anything about that in art school. After the course I found myself more energized and inspired about creating than I ever had been and within a month I had learned Adobe Illustrator, created my first fabric collection and won Bonnie’s Surface Pattern Design Challenge. Most important of all I had a newfound confidence in myself and my abilities. I continued to take as many classes as I could on commercial art, online marketing and business from many incredible teachers. I put in a lot of late nights and eventually I started getting noticed. Eventually I landed my first licensing job, which just so happened to be illustrating the Twelve Days of Christmas for the wonderful Bespoke Letterpress. That work also went on to be licensed as a set of soaps in Anthropologie last Christmas.
Looking back on this, what strikes me the most is the huge, life altering difference a good teacher and a caring and empowering community can make. This is why I’ve continued to follow, support and learn from Bonnie over the years and why I’m sharing my story with you.
You can make money doing what you love and Bonnie will show you how to do it.
A Special BONUS!
I’m so excited to be affiliating for Bonnie again this year and I have a special bonus for everyone who signs up through my affiliate link HERE! I’m in the dreaming/planning phase of creating my very own course! I’m going to be sharing all about drawing one of my favourite subjects… People! I recently asked over on Instagram what you might like to learn from me and one of the overwhelming responses was “how to draw people” and I totally get it. There are so many ways to draw people but, no matter your style, there are just some basic structural things that need to be there in order to make things make sense. As humans we love seeing images of ourselves and having the ability to comfortably include people into your work opens you up to so many opportunities, not only in terms of getting more creative work but also the ability to connect with your audience on a deeper level. I’ve been dreaming for some time now about creating my own course and I feel like this is the year! I’ve taken a lot of classes over the years and, to me, nothing is better than the interactive and community experience of a live course so that is my vision. I’m excited to share my approach to drawing and incorporating people into my own work with you!
While the course will be available for anyone to purchase when I do launch it, I’m excited to offer it for FREE as a special BONUS to everyone who signs up for Bonnie’s Immersion Course through my affiliate link. I am a strong believer in investing in yourself, your growth and your education but I also realize that Immersion is a big investment and so I’m hoping to help offset some of that with the addition of my course as well. As I said, I’m still in the early planning stages but I’m hoping to launch the course in the late Spring/early summer. Bonnie will be sending me a list of all students who purchase through my link after the course begins and I will reach out to you after that and keep you updated. I hope you'll join me on this adventure!
You can sign up through my link right HERE.
Intro to Gesture Drawing
Did I mention I'm also teaching a bonus module as a part of the Surface Design Immersion course?
It's true! I'll be teaching you all about gesture drawing. You'll learn how to capture the basic structure of your subject through the use of line, shape and speed. Gesture drawing gives life and energy to your art and can help you develop a natural, signature style. With practice it can become second nature to draw almost anything!
If you haven’t signed up yet for Bonnie’s FREE mini course Creating a Career in Surface Design, it’s not too late, aaannndd it’s amazing so go do it!
Finally, if you’ve made it all the way to the end, thank you! As always, please reach out to me if you have any questions. I’d love to hear from you and I’m happy to help you figure out if Immersion is a good fit.
All the best,