Cally Dale | Austin Artist

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Photographed by: Katie Jameson | Interview of: Cally Burgett

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How did you get started?

My first year in college was like it is for most undergrads. Taking every class under the sun in attempt to find what the heck I was going to do with my life. In the last few months of my final semester, I decided to give a deep-rooted interest of mine a shot – which also meant I’d be needing to transfer universities. I found a school not too far from where I grew up and was accepted into the interior design and architecture program there – I was elated! 

I’ve always known this type of career path was an option, but I didn’t have an example of it in my life – so visualizing it as a possible reality, was a bit difficult for me. You see, I grew up on a wheat farm in a tiny Eastern Washington town where my closet neighbor was a few miles away. There were no design professionals in my little town. Luckily, I had two parents who encouraged the heck out of my creative abilities, and because of them my confidence and love for design flourished.

I felt right at home in the interior design and architecture program at my new school. So much so, that I worked harder in school than I ever had before. I loved every second I spent in our design studio – collaborating with classmates, figuring out how to make a concept sing, how to bring that vision to life through structure and design, etc. I knew I’d found my calling.  I was so committed to finding a job in this arena after school – but come graduation, I had zero offers.

My outlook was forced to broaden a bit. I ended up taking a sales job with a beloved family owned and operated winery in my hometown. A few months into training, I offered my help in putting together a sales presentation. My bosses liked it so much, they started passing more and more design related projects my way. Before I knew it, my sales role had transformed into a full-fledged graphic design position.

Today, I’m still blessed with that same job. It has allowed me to work remotely and be apart of projects that I might never have had the opportunity to be a part of, so early in my career had I chosen to pursue a design firm. I’ve to gotten to create brands, packaging, marketing materials and printed goods for this company. It’s truly been the best experience, and I credit much of where I’m at today, in my own company, to the opportunities I’ve had with that hometown winery.

What influences you? / Where do you get your inspiration?

Much of my inspiration for design comes from time spent out in the world. Spending time in nature, watching people bustle around busy downtown streets, a quiet sunset over the lake, catching up with friends at the local coffee house – I notice patterns, things that ignite joy for others, and for myself. 

In my work, I’m constantly trying to evoke feelings that make peoples soul and spirit sing, because I feel the power of design is best exercised this way. Think about when you walk into an incredibly designed restaurant, or coffee shop, etc. – that feeling of excitement you get, as if you’ve just arrived into an entirely new vibe or culture. That’s what I’m after for branding and package design.

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How do you balance your personal time + work? / How do you create separation?

What makes me feel the most alive, outside of design work, is being outside. Whether that’s taking a hike around Austin’s greenbelt or simply climbing on top of my roof to view the world from a new perspective. To me, being outdoors and taking note of the way the leaves illuminate when sunshine passes through, the natural patterns, colors and organic shapes, etc. --is the most calming, self-affirming activity I do to calm my jumbled brain.

Creative entrepreneurs are likely juggling all sectors of running their business(es) themselves, while trying to create something of value so they can make a living, and on top of all that, have a life that fuels said creativity. It’s easy for things to get tangled in a hurry. However, it’s important to stay scheduled because that’s how the business world works. There’s no way around it – unless you’re a fan of chatting it up with the IRS. I think artists (ahem, me included) have difficulties stopping a creative flow to do something structured and business-y because if feels off subject and foreign. But just like with anything – it always feels this way at first. 

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What keeps you motivated?/ Why do you love doing this?

What keeps me motivated – and this may sound a bit cliche – is knowing my work is doing something for someone else. Whether that’s helping a client put their best foot forward, or that feeling I spoke of earlier—the one that ignites your very soul and spirit as soon as you see it. Knowing that I'm able to recreate a feeling that I love dearly, for someone else is just beyond anything I could ever hope to give.

Where do you see yourself in 2-5 years? / What’s next for your brand?

My goal in the next 2-5 years is to become independent. Meaning, to reach a point where my intake of branding and package design clients becomes enough to fuel this endeavor, on my own. To be in the position where I’ll have the liberty to break away from the structure of my side-hustle, and tackle it full time. 

There’s A LOT up and coming for my business, being that it’s in its early stages. I want to create a system for client experience so their experience is smooth and easy. I want to learn more about web development so I can offer those services in the future.  Lastly, I want to hone in on how to speak directly to, and where to find my ideal clientele.

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Photographed by: Katie Jameson | Coffee Shop: Great White, Venice Beach

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Katie visited LA last week and loved this spot so much she went there 3 times in 6 days! The windows + doors were open which created such a relaxing atmosphere and the food was simple and delicious! It was a great spot to enjoy a cup of coffee and work for a bit before walking a couple blocks to the beach!

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Photographed by: Rachel Maucieri | Coffee Shop: Cafe Disco

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I meeeeeean. You guys, this place is just too stinking cute. Tucked right into Main St. in downtown Oklahoma City, Cafe Disco’s iconic pink couch is waiting for you.

This is not just your ordinary MWL Coffee Run, because this place specializes in the small round chewy cookie we all have come to love…the macaron. That’s right, Pinterest made them famous, but Cafe Disco is keeping them alive.

Come by, choose some macs, sit on this coveted couch, and then dunk those said macarons into a cappuccino. That wasn’t a suggestion, that was an order.

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Photographed by: Katie Jameson | Coffee Shop: Woodshed Coffee + Tea, OKC

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This is our first Oklahoma City Coffee Run! How exciting! Rachel has been busy exploring and finding new places and we are finally ready to share some of those with you.

Woodshed Coffee and Tea is a delicious clean shop connected to Blue Seven and Just OK so it’s basically a one stop shop for all your retail and coffee needs. Lots of local OKC goodies here and their oat milk latte is so smooth and yummy.

Check it out if you’re in OK!

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Fibrous | Austin Artist

Photographed by: Katie Jameson | Interview of: Ellen Bruxvoort of Fibrous

How did you get started?

When I moved to Austin in 2010, I was studying for a degree in graphic design and advertising because I thought that was my creative calling. But after three years of staring at computer screens, I decided to completely uproot that plan, drop out of college, and move to Hawaii to work on an organic produce farm. The experienced changed my life in all the best ways, but when I returned to Austin I felt in desperate need of a creative outlet (perhaps one a bit more analog than graphic design). In the midst of trying to find what that might be, I remember staring at a woven pillow on my bed and feeling a spark inside me, like maybe I could learn to weave? So I found a tutorial on YouTube and never looked back.

What influences you? / Where do you get your inspiration?

This question sometimes trips me because I believe that inspiration is so subjective and omnipresent that it can sometimes be hard to articulate to others. I'm often inspired by emotions - the thoughts we all experience the same but differently - and find that my most resonant work comes through when I hold space for deep feelings. This doesn't mean that all of my work is necessarily profound or existential, but in a sense, working with fiber has become a lens through which I view the world and I process a lot of emotion (both positive and negative) by making things. I often write about those experiences when I debut the finished piece, but as with most things, the relatability is open to interpretation.

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How do you balance your personal time + work? / How do you create separation?

I used to work from home and the line between personal time and work was so blurred I could hardly see it. But since moving into a new studio this summer, I've re-discovered the luxury of "going to work" and "coming home," both of which are beyond wonderful. I think it's important to recognize what time of the day you're most productive. I am ironically not a morning person or a night owl. I'm at my prime from around 12-8pm, so I work during those hours and try to bookend it with personal time. Obviously there are always things on my to-do list and that might mean working long hours at times, but for the most part I religiously stick to 3 things for daily self care: 
1. waking up without an alarm
2. not rushing through my morning coffee 
3. stretching

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What keeps you motivated?/ Why do you love doing this?

Honestly every month that I can pay my bills, feed my cat, save money, eat well, AND be my own boss is a *huge* motivator. It's like every single day I'm honestly bewildered that this is even possible and that alone makes me want to be better at it. I love the community and how we can protect and propel each other. I love the conversations and connections this work has provided. I love the daily challenges and problem solving. I love being human and people understanding that. I love feedback and resulting improvements. I also love how this work makes me feel- how it fills me with a sense of purpose and accomplishment while simultaneously mapping a trajectory. 

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Where do you see yourself in 2-5 years? / What’s next for your brand?

I could see myself partnering with a brand to release a line of exclusive goods to be sold in stores nationwide.