We first fell in love with Marylou when she expressed how she discovered her style at Glug in Birmingham—well worth a watch! Read on to hear what Marylou looks out for in a portfolio, her biggest lessons she’s learnt along the way and some awesome collaborations she’s been working on 💖
What was your plan for graduating and what actually happened?
I didn’t have any plans—which was pretty scary. All I knew was that I wanted to move back to London (I used to live there when I was a child and always dreamt of going back). I didn’t know what I wanted to do, where and how. So I decided to just go for it and try as many different internships, freelance and part time designer jobs I could until I figured out it was illustration I wanted to do 🙂 I also knew I wanted to go Freelance as soon as I could, but I didn’t rush it and worked full time in an agency for 2 years. That time was necessary for me to develop my style and find the courage to make the big jump.
“I didn’t know what I wanted to do, where and how. So I decided to just go for it and try as many different internships, freelance and part time designer jobs I could until I figured out it was illustration I wanted to do :)”
What do you look for in a great portfolio? I think the main thing is finding the personality behind the work. It’s really important for me to get a sense of who the person is when I’m looking at someone’s work. And it helps give your work some character and consistency—you can be doing different things in different ways but if your style and personality shines through every time, I think it makes it much stronger.
Tell us about any collaborations you have been working on. I’ve been working on some cool projects lately —I did a series of stickers for Snapchat (coming out this week!), some work for Eventbrite and I’ve got a couple of upcoming new project with Facebook and Pandora that should be really fun 🙂
What has been some of the biggest lessons you’ve learnt along the way?
1- Don’t take things too seriously—if something isn’t going right, it’s ok—give yourself a moment to sulk but then jump right back on it.
2- Have fun when you’re working.
3- If you don’t get a job, it probably wasn’t meant to be. I’ve had loads of jobs I applied to thinking it was the perfect fit and I now realise what a mistake it would have been if I had actually gotten it.
4- Always work on how to improve yourself.
5- Don’t settle—if you don’t like what you are doing, where you are doing it or how, react and find a new plan. We work in an amazingly cool creative industry so it would be a shame not to enjoy it.
“Don’t settle—if you don’t like what you are doing, where you are doing it or how, react and find a new plan. We work in an amazingly cool creative industry so it would be a shame not to enjoy it.”
Whats the big goal in the next five years? I’d like to take the time to work on some personal projects. I’m currently working remotely and travelling through South East Asia, I’d love to finish the travel with an exhibition showcasing the personal work I’ve done there. Other big goals would be to work on bigger scale projects, working on different mediums and work on some new products and collaborations 🙂
How important is networking to you?
I’m not the best at networking tbh—I find it hard to have the courage to speak to people I don’t know at events and exhibitions. But it is important and even though it takes me out of my comfortzone, I always try and approach new people and keep contact with anyone (client, agencies, individuals) I’ve been in touch with.
2017 for you in a sentence. Full of new experiences and incredibly fun 🙂