Somewhere last year I saw Phie's designs and thought, I want to be able to draw like that. I had been wanting to do a collaboration with someone, especially someone with a completely different style to my own that would be a challenge to put their work into acrylic. So I made a note to contact her at some point when I had five minutes to discuss my ideas. This didn't happen because I am so busy and my note pad fills up and I put things off. Then I saw Phie post her "new year no need for new me" blog post with the design I had been trying to replicate in my head but failing. A pinky swear. So I slid right into her DM's and asked if she wanted to work with me using that design. I discovered that Phie was also a Hemel girl like myself and I felt like the stars had aligned. What could be better than this. Fortunately Phie was on board and we worked together to create the Alien babe pinky swear necklace you see today.
Charlotte: So I can't really remember how we met on twitter, I just remember having your name on the top of my text pad that I have wild ideas on for ages saying 'WANT TO WORK WITH GIRL FROM HEMEL FIND OUT HER NAME AGAIN' because I love your designs so much! Can you remember?
Phie: Last year after watching the Channel 4 program on being Plus Size I created an illustration of Danie Vanier saying "you do you and I'll do me" and I wrote my very first ever blog post to go with it about how I've always compared myself to others, especially when it comes to my body. You sent me a really lovely and supportive tweet about it! Then we got talking about the Buncefield explosion later in the year. [editors note: this is how Hemel people bond]
Charlotte: How did you get into illustrating and designing?
Phie: Drawing was always my favourite thing to do as a child, It's the one thing that I loved doing all the time no matter what. So studying illustration seemed like the obvious choice. Though I will admit I never worked particularly hard throughout uni, I fell out of love with it for a while. But as soon as I left I seemed to find all my inspiration and ideas, I think not having an pressure to create and be creative really helped.
Charlotte: Who are you major influences, and where do go to be influenced?
Phie: I think television and films heavily influence my work. I think being quite an indoorsy child who wanted to stay in and draw and colour in rather than get even slightly muddy, meant that I spent a lot of time watching films. I love them, the weirder the better. Whenever I can't quite think up something to draw I always tend to draw my favourite characters from a few of my favourite films. So far I've drawn characters from Star Wars, Rocky Horror, The Royal Tenenbaums and a load more.
Charlotte: You and me have talked about feeling like a fraud and imposter syndrome quite a bit, and discovered that its quite a common feeling amongst creative people (which makes me feel better) what holds you back an what do you do when you feel like this to over come it?
Phie: Jesus this feeling is the worst isn't it! I struggle with this every single day within my place of work not just my illustration!
Charlotte: So how do you 'cope' with imposter syndrome?
Phie: Oh my god, I don't think I do! I'm still figuring it out. If anyone has any advice it'd eat it up within a second. I haven't found my cure yet but I have found something that really helps! I joined an illustration group/club of girls who are just an incredible unit of support. I think finding anyone who has even slightly similar feelings to talk to seriously helps.
Charlotte: What are your plans for the future with illustrating, what is the ~dream
Phie: I'm still not too sure what my dream is. I'm pretty much making it up as I go along and take everything day by day. I guess I'd love to be creating illustrations on a more regular basis, or creating cool products with an awesome brand. I'm not too sure what the future holds at all.
Charlotte: Who was the last person you did a pinky swear with and who would you like to do a pinky swear with?
Phie: Ahaa it was definitely with a friend whilst drunk where we promised each other that we weren't that drunk nor embarrassing... We were definitely both!
Thanks so much Phie for letting me interview you! If you would like to be interviewed in our new weekly Small Business Interview blog email me at email@example.com
You can follow Phie and buy her awesome designs on the links below and you can buy our Black Heart Creatives Phie Hackett Pinky Swear collaboration necklace here.