questions for... Mandi Cromer

Mandi is the woman behind designbirdie.  She was nice enough to answer a few of our nosy questions...

Willow: Is designbirdie your full-time job?  Or your hobby?

Mandi: I'm a freelance illustrator with a background in Animation and Children's Educational software. But all my commercial and designbirdie illustration is squeezed around having two kids - who are still very mini - so lots of late nights when the house is quiet.

Willow: What inspired you to start your business?  And what inspires you now?

Mandi: I see things and think - I could try that- and I'm inspired by everyday life - patterns on clothes, teacups stacked in coffee shops, words, sayings, old writers, new phrases, spools, buttons - anything. I keep a visual diary and everything gets sketched up waiting for it's time to be used! I just decided to start designbirdie in May and have loved every second of it's very steep learning curve!

Willow: Where is your work space, and what do you need with you to begin working?

Mandi: I have a studio which is messy and I love it. I've promised myself that in January I WILL organize it.
Willow: What's your favourite snack to have while you work?

Mandi: Tea. Being Irish, we are never far away from a cup of tea. It's caused me problems before when my paint brush as accidentally landed in my teacup!

Willow: Who are your favourite artists?

Mandi: Can't beat some of the classic illustrators - Quentin Blake or Anita Jeram. I also love Cath Kidston and Emma Bridgewater for consistent designs and great business models.

Willow: What music do you listen to while you work?

Mandi: I love listening to audio books - Daphne du Maurier, Conan Doyle... it's got to be peaceful when I'm working, but never quiet.

Thanks for answering our questions Mandi!  You can find more designbirdie cutenesss at Mandi's etsy shop or website.   Also, watch this space for one of Mandi's prints appearing in an upcoming giveaway.  Woohoo!

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