Amy May from Amy May Pop Art
Describe your style, influences, inspiration, and what you plan to bring:
I am 100% inspired by the people and places I love. I started creating custom pop art as gifts and wedding portraits. After I opened my Etsy shop in 2016, I started creating custom portraits of my favorite people in pop culture and discovered that a lot of other people love my idols too! Now my shop is filled with everything from Beyonce, city pop art, cult TV and film stars and even the universally loved Golden Girls. I started creating city pop art to express my love for my new homes. I moved from Chicago to Durham and then to Raleigh. I am bringing all of my designs in fun, affordable gifts like prints, canvas art, coasters, magnets and more.
How did you learn your craft?:
My past life was in business development for tourist attractions. I did a ton of marketing design in my career, so I became proficient indesign software. My first pop art design ever was a portrait of me and my husband for my wedding stationary. I still keep that one framed in our living room. In 2015 I had my first of two sons and I quit the corporate world to stay home with my babies. I’m too much of a busy body to not work, so my hobby turned into an art business within a year.
Which artist at The Handmade Market are you excited to see/meet?:
I always love seeing what funny puns The Pepper Mill Shop has up their sleeve. I am new to the Raleigh scene, so I am so excited to meet a ton of makers that are new to me!
What is your favorite way to put yourself in the mood for creativity?:
I work best from 6am-9am, when I can hopefully sneak time away from my two toddler boys. I load up on coffee and throw on my favorite podcasts, currently Last Podcast on the Left and MBMBAM. I work best alone, but I love to get inspiration from people in the community, especially with my collaboration with the Carolina Theatre in downtown Durham. I create a ton of work for their Retro Film Series (shout out to Jim!). I am also an organizer for the Triangle Horror Movie Club and our activities gives me tons of inspiration
What advice would you give to an artist just starting out and/or what is the best advice you have received for your art & business?:
Give yourself at least a year to develop your business before you break into live markets. Build an inventory that hones your craft, fail often, work on your brand, and attend as many markets as you can to scope out table styles. One great piece of advice I got is to always go into a market with an open mind because they are all so different. The venue, the clientele, even the season is going to make it a new and exciting experience.
We all have those people that love you tell us what we “should” make. What’s the worst “best tip” you’ve ever gotten?:
I haven’t met a “should” that I didn’t like! I keep an open mind about what can be done for people because I think together we can create something perfect for them.
If you have sold or attended before, what’s your favorite Handmade Market memory or purchase?:
This is my first one and I am very excited!
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