Interview with Ria of Craftsposure
Grace Gulley: When people ask what you do, what do you tell them?
Ria June: That's do hard because I'm one of those people who can never be happy to do only one thing. I freelance as a graphic designer and digital marketing consultant and I also have the awesome job of building up the Craftsposure community on the side.
GG: I can totally relate. It's hard when there are so many things to be interested in. And I don't think it's bad in our modern day to pursue multiple interests! Was there one outlandish interest as a kid you very adamantly felt you were going to make a career out of? Lady President, astronaut, baker... for instance.
RJ: Haha, even as a kid I would have so many different ideas of what I wanted to do. Each week I would rotate between being a teacher and a rockstar. But it never would have worked. I loved art as a kid and still do, so I knew that I always wanted to do something in the art and design field.
GG: That's incredible to have that conviction as a kid. Kudos! (And P.S., you are a rockstar!) So back to grown up you, where do you source your inspiration?
RJ: It sounds kind of lame, but my biggest inspiration is other people especially the awesome makers in the CS community. I love stumbling upon a new artist or creative and falling in love with their work. I've met so many talented people and I love surrounding myself with them. It helps me strive to be a better creative and try new things.
GG: Not lame at all. I know that feeling from CYL. You've built such a lovely, inspiring community. On the CS community, what were the moments leading up to its inception?
RJ: It started out as IG community. At first it was just a place to put up my fave items from Etsy and help other people find handmade products on IG. But I knew I was onto something when I started to engage with the makers themselves. There was so much passion! I realized CS was about the makers and not the shoppers. And from there I began crafting a space to help makers connect and grow their biz.
GG: You have really built something special! CYL doesn't have the expansive audience you do, so I can only imagine the amount of time you must invest. Truly something beautiful and passionate! I'm sure at this point you are also a wellspring of advice. What one piece of advice would you offer to someone on the cusp of deciding whether to start a creative business?
RJ: Thank you! You will get there too! It's not about the numbers, but the way you engage with your community. My advice is 'done, better than perfect'. When it comes to business I was always too focused on the details and getting every little thing perfect. I would continuously stress myself out with a huge to-do list. The result was I got nothing done! My mentor taught me that launching a creative business at 70% was totally OK. Just do it NOW, get real time feedback and add more features over time.
GG: That's incredible advice. As a Virgo who errs on the side of perfectionism (read: procrastination) I should staple that advice to my wall! What's your creative process like?
RJ: I'm a huge tech geek. My most used tool is my computer and I love learning how to 'crack the code' so to speak. I taught myself how to design on the computer when I was 14 and in the past few years I've been learning to build and more importantly, grow websites. Recently I've been trying to return back to basics and it feels so good to pick up a pencil and paper. I've been getting obsessed with hand lettering and I've slowly been accumulating more traditional like ink and acrylics.
GG: Very, very cool! As much as I love digital, there is something that feels so good about using your hands. Your hand lettering is looking great by the way! So are there are any current projects you are working on that you are excited and can share with us?
RJ: Thank you! Yes, I've actually started another IG account to showcase my hand lettering as daily doses of business inspiration. I want to build up a community of women in any kind of business (not just limited to handmade). You can follow at @shetribe. I've also got a lot of little things planned for the CS community but a lot of it is on the hush hush at the moment. But certainly over the next few months it's going to be an exciting time!
GG: Everything you've already done is magic. And I'm excited for all the future holds for you and the CS community! Also totally can get behind SheTribe. Go females! Okay I could keep going on and on, but I'll restrain myself. Last question, what song best describes your work ethic?
RJ: I have to think about that one! Haha! I'm so blank but for some reason I had 'Happy' by Pharrell Williams in my head the whole time I was doing this interview. Haha.
GG: Hey I think that's sorta perfect! Everything you are doing makes you happy. As it should be. Couldn't be more appropriate.
To learn more about Ria visit here!