On Making Big Career Moves and Illustration: Rhianna Chan

this fall, our theme is: flourish.

flourish (n.): to grow or develop in a healthy or vigorous way, especially as the result of a particularly favorable environment.

When we make work under our best conditions, we do more than survive—we thrive.

And what grow toward (or say no) to has a lot do with it. Whether you’re a small business owner, independent artist or side hustling creative, your career pathway will take resilience and strategic decision-making. Where do you choose to go? What makes something a yes? Which environments are best for your growth?

Those answers are nuanced, and for the most part they vary. So, as we prepare for craftHER Market Fall ‘19, we’re interviewing some of this market’s featured makers to learn more about their businesses and the ways they create favorable environments for their work. Read on for a peek into their process.


Rhianna Chan Illustrator & Designer

Rhianna Chan Illustrator & Designer

about today’s featured maker: rhianna chan the illustrator

I’m Rhianna! I’m an illustrator and graphic designer based in Austin, Texas. I taught myself how to draw and hand letter as forms of therapy. As a result, I create work that encourages people to be kind (to themselves and to others), go after what they want, and have a positive outlook on life. I strive to make products that are bright, colorful, and most of all - fun. After all, life’s short. You should buy something fun!


How would you describe who you are and what you do?

I’m Rhianna! I’m an illustrator and graphic designer based in Austin, Texas. I taught myself how to draw and hand letter as forms of therapy. As a result, I create work that encourages people to be kind (to themselves and to others), go after what they want, and have a positive outlook on life. I strive to make products that are bright, colorful, and most of all—fun. After all, life’s short. You should buy something fun.

What are some of the biggest growth moments you’ve experienced as a creative and/or business owner over the last year? What can others learn from your experience?

Some of the biggest growth moments I’ve experienced this year have been: creating work for Vans, doing a cover and interior illustrations for a book, and having my artwork licensed by Urban Outfitters. Weirdly enough all of these opportunities came to me because of Instagram. If there’s one thing I can tell my fellow artists it’s that you can make social media work for you and not the other way around. Don’t create work just to have something to post on your grid; be thoughtful about what work you put out there and how it reflects your ‘why’ as an artist.

How do you hold yourself accountable to the goals you set? How do you bounce back when something doesn’t go as planned?

I work really well when there’s a deadline. I’ve also trained myself to know that I can’t start another task until I finish the one at hand. But sometimes things don’t go as planned, and I try not to beat myself up or stress about it. I simply shuffle my schedule to make sure the important tasks get done by the time they need to be done and let the little things wait until later.

Any final thoughts you want to share with the craftHER community on supporting local businesses?

That quote that goes something like ‘every time you support a small business an actual person does a happy dance’ is so true. You are literally helping somebody follow their dreams and follow their creative passion.


Would you like to meet Rhianna in-person? Come out to craftHER Market Fall ‘19 on October 12 and 13, 2019 at Fair Market and stop by her booth. Click here to learn more.

Jane Claire HerveyComment