This week in our At Home With series, we caught up with Australian Designer and Digital Content Creator, Jasmine Dowling. We talk about her journey in the creative industry and where she finds her inspiration.
Tell us about you. How have you got to where you are today?
“I have been working for myself in my creative business for almost 10 years now, and sharing my work and life online for 12. I was studying my Bachelor of Design at the time and like many people who started in the early days of social media, I would just share anything and everything without thinking anything would happen beyond making a new internet friend. At the time I was teaching myself hand lettering and sharing that online. Within about a year quite a lot of that work had gone viral so I was selling artworks and commissioning lettering for some of the biggest brands. With such virality came a lot of copyright issues, which led to me fighting legally for my rights and also losing connection with my work and seeking new ways to express my creativity.
I had always loved styling and photographing for my social media and blog so during that time I was picking up the camera a lot more and discovering my own style. From there I found a really nice balance of mixing my design and illustrative work with styling and photography (and now videography). In whatever medium, I am trying to evolve and make sure I stay true to my point of view.”
Have you always been naturally creative, and how have you learnt your skills?
“I feel like I have always had to be creative, because, from a young age, I was picky and knew what I wanted. Either it didn’t exist, or, I didn’t have access to it, so I always took it upon myself to create it. When I get an idea in my mind, there is no stopping me until it is exactly the way I envisioned it. Outside of studying a Bachelor of Design, I like to learn skills by doing. I am terrible at taking instruction and much prefer to do, then troubleshoot along the way. Never underestimate the power of YouTube and google. I also find learning this way means that you’re able to discover how to apply your eye to a new medium without too much input of how things ‘should’ be done.”
Talk us through your creative process and where you get your inspiration from?
“Honestly for inspiration, I try to be as present and always observing as much as I can. Taking photos of colour combinations and textures or how dead flowers peep through the bin liner - little moments like that allow me to stay in the flow creatively.
On client work I am more likely looking for inspiration in the product. The colours, shape, textures, movement and the story. From there I always like to brainstorm and draw horrible sketches to try to get all of my ideas down on paper before editing into a more concise vision digitally where I work in more of the logistics and creative direction. While creating I also like to think about whether multiple mediums can work together and how that can enhance the images/videos. Lately I have been really enjoying photographing, printing then re-working the image physically through layering, cutting, painting before re-shooting the final image.”
What type of projects do you enjoy working on most and why?
“I will always have a soft spot for beauty projects, specifically make up or fragrance related. Fragrance is always such a fun challenge because you’re trying to capture a scent through imagery alone and relies on storytelling a lot. If the project also allows me to take control of the creative direction then that is the holy grail.
What makes you feel good or boosts your confidence when you need it most?
"It may seem cliche but flowers. It could be a walk near a garden or going to the flower markets and coming back to organise them into vases. It feels slightly meditative but creative at the same time and always lifts me.”
Having your own brand can be all consuming. How you do you manage online negativity and stress, and how do you best switch off and unwind?
“To be honest I wish I had a better answer for this, unfortunately it isn’t something I have completely mastered yet. Since social media is a big part of my work, I try to make sure I am using it as consciously as I can which means jumping on to share and interact with my audience but otherwise not consume. Trying to limit how much I consume of people’s opinions of me, my work or just my life and also reducing how much I consume other’s content to avoid comparison.
Working for myself, by myself and out of a home studio you can easily get wrapped up in your own world so when I feel very consumed and in that space I try just get out, see people, see life (not to quote the smiths haha) I am best at switching off when I am with the people I love most, being with my partner, friends or family is the one space where I truly don’t feel the urge to pick up my phone or think about work.”
What do you like about Dora Larsen, and which are your favourite shapes?
“When I discovered Dora Larsen it felt like it was one of the only brands that spoke to my style, it didn’t feel like it was selling me someone else’s version of sexy. It felt feminine but it didn’t take itself too seriously. One thing I really love about the pieces is how they experiment with colour, transparency and textures. In terms of shapes I love all of the non-underwire, bralette styles paired back with a high waisted brief.”
Jasmine wears the Coralee Clean Tulle Bralette in a UK10.
Find Jasmine here.
Shop her edit here.