Let’s start with the cliché: What inspires you and your collections?
Haha, well I always say everything and anything, because that is truly what inspires me. Anything can suddenly pop an idea in my head that I want to draw and everything has the potential for an idea.
The Post Mean Streak Collection is our absolute favorite! How did you think of that! (Was there any “event”?)
I remember I was rather crabby one night with my fellow and I made him so many cards, it’s ridiculous! But then I made him a card that said, “Sorry for Being Crabby,” and I realized it would make a great series and then I realized how great it would be to use the abbreviation PMS and hence the range was born!
How do you think illustrations can communicate a style or a thought?
I think it depends on the illustration itself. Some are detailed to convey a story, some are abstract and convey a mood. Some are editorial and support the text and some are just information graphics that are used to visualise information.
How does a product typically go from “an idea in your head” to the finished saleable good?
Sometimes I draw FOR a product and sometimes a drawing is so loved that it is turned into a product. It can work both ways. There are lots of steps in the middle too from the sourcing a manufacturer to figuring out whether we can even sell it, but that’s the gist.
Who was the most influential personality on your career in Illustrations?
My friend Bill Wood who was the first illustrator I had ever met. I met him in Melbourne and he’s been one of my best friends ever since!
Have you ever had an ‘art block’ or times when you just couldn’t come up with anything? If yes, how did you deal with it?
I don’t remember the last time I had a creative block because I think I make way too many lists of things I need to draw. If I feel like not drawing, then I just do something else that interests me. That’s the easiest way to get your brain on active mode. I’d either do chores or cook or just finish up other work that I have pending and if all else fails, take a nice long walk.
There are a lot of individuals out there who’re now selling illustrated products and are doing pretty well, so how do you make your stuff stand out from the rest in the lot?
I actually never wanted to sell products but when we did a small run, the feedback was so good that I couldn’t stop due to the number of mails that came in hence. Then last year we opened the online store and again, I wanted to keep it open only till February (i.e., for the season) but again, we just had such a good response, that it’s now open indefinitely. I don’t really try to stand out from the rest. I kind of don’t even know what’s out there because I’m just too busy doing and making.
One of the things that we’re absolute fans of are your stamps. How did you come up with the idea of making stamps a part of your collection?
I’m a BIG letter writer. I send over 200 cards out just for Christmas and each one is hand written. Every other month, I send out a bunch of cards or postcards or long letters and it’s just something I absolutely enjoy doing. I actually made a bunch of stamps for personal use and every time I posted a photo online, I got a bunch of emails asking for them so I decided finally to start selling them. It makes me happy that people are writing letters and notes because of them!
Alright, last: So we read another interview of yours and you mentioned how you never gave up drawing as you grew up like a lot of people do. What would you like to say to those who want to pick their pencils up again but don’t know from where to begin?
There’s no real place to begin. Begin where you’re at and just draw. On whatever is around you and with whatever you have. It’s a little intimidating at first but once you start, I assure you, you’ll relapse into childhood memories of happiness and just pure joy!aliciasouza.com, or follow @aliciasouza on Instagram to make your feed a little more joyful!