| 5 for 5 | with screech owl design
enjoy learning more about its talented founder + creative director, jacqueline schmidt.
leave a comment below to be entered in a drawing to win a surprise assortment of 4 note cards.
artist + designer jacqueline schmidt seamlessly blends the urban and natural worlds
in all she creates. this ability was first shaped by childhood migrations between
new york city, where she was born and raised, and her catskills summer home.
later in life, after receiving a b.a. in visual arts and modern dance and an m.a. in creative
arts therapy, jacqueline felt inspired to share her unique artistic sense with wider audiences.
this took form in 2008, when she founded screech owl design, a stationery and lifestyle
product company. her work with screech owl as well as with independent clients has made
jacqueline a recognized expert in multiple types of design such as textiles, interiors, web,
graphic, toys and many others.
was there one moment when you knew something special
was happening – that your art was to become your career?
every holiday, my family and friends would ask me to knit them hats, scarves and mittens.
although, a few holiday seasons ago, i decided to gift everyone handmade stationery instead.
i was really surprised by the positive feedback and decided to pitch the stationery to a few
stores. within a week, they were all sold out and i was back in my studio churning out more.
within the month, i had begun the process of acquiring a tax identification number and
creating a viable business model.
what inspires your work?
the inspiration for my work is definitely derived from nature and animals. i am endlessly
fascinated by the earth and natural life forms. i grew up in new york city and spent the
summers at my cottage in upstate new york. i would spend hours outdoors in endless delight
and have since traveled the world on a quest to learn more about nature and different landscapes.
would you share a bit about your creative process?
i tend to see the image first and then put it down onto paper as opposed to discovering the
image as i go along. i usually don't sit at my drafting table, until an idea is fully formed.
i work with a variety of materials, but airbrush inks, watercolors, markers and
fine mechanical pencils are my staples.
describe your workspace.
lots of light! as for my desk, it is always tidy and i am very meticulous about having
clean surfaces to work on. around me, there is an abundance of ephemera that i have found
on nature walks and personal notes and photographs that inspire me nearby.
as an aspiring independent artist, was there any advice you received or
any lessons learned that you’d like to pass on to other hopefuls?
i saw a great sign once driving through new jersey. it read, "free beer tomorrow."
i laughed so hard when i read it. it's so true. if you live like there is a tomorrow,
then you can slack on what you can accomplish today. if you throw your hat over the fence,
you will always find a way to get it, let it go or transform it. take a risk. follow your heart.
you'll always wonder about the things you didn't do, not the things that you actually did.
thank you so much, jacqueline! it's been such a great pleasure.
readers, remember to leave a comment below, and you'll be entered
into a drawing to win a surprise assortment of 4 screech owl design cards.
the winner will be announced on friday, april 5 at 2pm cst.