It’s time for another Designer Spotlight! We love learning more about the artists who create the fantastic designs in the Silhouette Design Store, and this week’s artist is no exception. Suzanne Cannon is a calligrapher and designer who creates fonts, 3D paper craft designs, and so much more. Let’s meet her now!
Tell us about yourself!
I’m Suzanne, and I’m a calligrapher, bookbinder, and designer in the craft industry! I’ve been a letter lover since I was very young and evolved from there! I live on the west coast of Canada with my husband and a really naughty kitty.
How long have you been a Silhouette user?
I have been a Silhouette lover since the moment I cut my first design in 2013! The Cameo is my heart. I started with the Cameo 2 and am currently working with the Cameo 3.
How would you describe yourself as an artist or crafter? What’s your creative style?
Since I come from a formal lettering background, I think of myself as an artist, using classic watercolours and artists’ papers, but I have embraced and LOVE crafting! I’m not sure I have a creative style…. I began with simple and elegant and have evolved into loving to create cute stuff! I just love the challenge of creating a 3D structure.
Tell us about your graphic design career. How did you get your start?
I began as a calligrapher doing original artwork and then transitioned to artwork for print. When my children were small, I lacked time (surprise!) to sit for extended periods of time to practice and complete a piece. Calligraphers are always exposed to bookbinding, and I found that creating book structures fit my time constraints much better over those years!
During that time, I began to teach quite a bit. I also started a rubber stamp line, which led to crafting life. I have been lucky enough to create stamps, dies, embossing powders, and stencils (as well as digital cutting files and fonts) produced by craft companies.
When did you start designing files for the Silhouette Design Store?
I began designing for Silhouette within months of getting my Cameo in 2013. It was tough for a long time as my design ideas far outstripped my abilities with Adobe Illustrator! It was so hard I almost packed it in. But perseverance pays off. And somewhere, something clicked!
What is the design you’re proudest of?
I’m most proud of my designs that were the hardest to create! It’s so satisfying to see the digital designs cut and photographed and used. I have been super proud to have my artwork on a magazine cover and have projects displayed at conferences. They’re definitely “Wow!” moments!
Where do you find creative inspiration?
I find inspiration in nature, architecture, creative packaging, and wonderful photography and love to put my own “spin” on it. It seldom looks anything like the thing that inspired it!
How do you overcome creative blocks?
Creative blocks don’t last too long. I’ve been known to get excited about the shape of a chair in the background while watching a tv show! Relax, and inspiration will come. I think having your eyes wide open becomes a way of life and helps the creativity flow.
What’s your favorite thing about what you do?
The favourite thing about what I do is working my own hours! I used to get a second wind at night and be up till 2 am. Over the years, I’ve found more balance and keep more normal hours. But if I want to go off snowshoeing on a bluebird day, then I can!
But my really big happy place is the satisfaction of completing a design that is aesthetically appealing! And being happy with it even if it’s not a bestseller. 😉
What advice do you have for artists and makers who are just starting out?
My advice for artists and makers who are starting out is to decide what you want to do. Are you satisfied creating for yourself and friends, or do you have greater ambitions? If you start getting a following on social media, that probably means you should have greater ambitions! Observe your artistic heroes and take note. Don’t copy them, but make your own path and create what makes your heart sing!
Thank you so much for sharing your work with us, Suzanne! If you want to find more of Suzanne’s work, you can find her online on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and at her website, quietfiredesign.ca.