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Celebrating Women-Owned Shops at Creative Market

Featuring Gresham by Local Desk Designstudio and Limoncello Recipe by PeachCreme

Creative Market March 12, 2024 · 43 min read

This Women’s History Month, Creative Market is shining a spotlight on the extraordinary women behind the designs. From bold display fonts to mesmerizing illustrations, discover the female powerhouses driving creativity across the globe. Join us on Instagram, TikTok, and our emails as we celebrate these trailblazers with unique stories to tell. Read on to be inspired by their creative journeys, the inspiration sources they draw upon, and their top challenges.

Amy Louise Baker

British artist and designer Amy Louise Baker brings a touch of Brighton’s eclectic charm to her vibrant illustrations and bespoke designs. Check out her designs at Amy Louise Baker.

I have always loved being creative but didn’t know how to make a career out of it. At college, my two biggest interests were science and art, and decided to pursue the sciences. In 2007 I graduated with a degree in Biology from York University. When I actually started looking for a job, I realised all these creative roles were what really stood out to me.

After a lot of consideration, I did a complete U-turn! Went back to school, and graduated from Kingston University with a HND in Graphic Design. During that time I remember all my friends were moving out from home, working and earning, and I was still a student, but in the end, it was worth it! I feel very lucky that I get to be creative every day.

What keeps her inspired

I love exploring the tension of the natural and unnatural, and representation versus abstraction.

I’m inspired by patterns found in nature across all scales; from the very tiny, like molecular or cellular structures, to the very big, such as galaxies and everything in between.

I am fascinated by symmetry, balance, minimalism, cosmic elements, and otherworldly landscapes, and love to explore these themes with forms stripped down to the essentials.

Her number one challenge

I have been incredibly lucky in most of the roles and companies I’ve had. They’ve mostly been smaller creative companies, with a diverse range of people, often with strong female leadership.  In the past, there has been the odd uncomfortable situation, and looking back I think I wish I’d been more vocal in calling out certain attitudes.

Learn more about her

Marika Barsrsind

Explore vibrant design essentials by Marika, featuring bold color palettes and flexible patterns. Check out her designs at Barsrsind.

I want to share a very romantic story. I worked as a system analyst and web programmer long before 2015. At that time, my future husband created music for sale on digital platforms for several years and told me that they also sell themes for websites, graphics, and other diverse templates. Since I have been saving all my life and even graduated from art school, I decided to try graphic design. As a result, my husband @audiodollar and I work as a creative team for our stock stores. That’s how my best friend and husband changed my life forever. We have been together as a creative team for 15 years!

What keeps her inspired

My creativity is fueled by the diversity of the world around me. I find inspiration in everyday things – in nature, urban architecture, and human relationships. Another significant source of inspiration for me is other artists and designers, their techniques, and their approaches to creativity. Music, literature, films, and travel also play a crucial role, adding new layers of experience and emotion to my work. Ultimately, each project for me is an opportunity to express myself and share my perception of the world through a unique perspective and style.

Her number one challenge

The primary challenge I’ve encountered as a female creator is navigating gender biases and stereotypes within the industry. There have been instances where my abilities and ideas were questioned or undervalued based on my gender rather than my skills. To tackle this, I’ve actively sought opportunities to showcase my work and expertise, emphasizing the quality of my contributions. Additionally, I’ve connected with fellow female creators to build a supportive network, fostering collaboration and sharing experiences. By staying confident, and resilient, and actively addressing gender-related challenges, I strive to contribute to breaking down barriers for women in the creative field.

Learn more about her

Oksana Berko

Step into Oksana’s watercolor illustration universe, where each piece invites you into a dreamlike exploration of color, emotion, and imagination. Check out her designs at Catch the Dream Art.

As a Ukrainian, I have been influenced by art since childhood. It is an ancient tradition here to embellish and flourish everything around you: rich embroidery on clothes, ornaments on exterior and interior designs, and beautiful gardens near every building. Magnificent florals by Ukrainian artist Kateryna Bilokur impressed me so much that I wanted to learn how to paint flowers. I also remember looking through the art books from famous museums all over the world and reading a lot about art history when I was a kid.

In a way, I always felt like it is a natural calling to create art and make something with your hands.

What keeps her inspired

I love noticing the extraordinary in ordinary things, so my creative ideas spark from observing the simple beauty of the world around us: flowers, animals, weather, and even sounds. I try to follow what’s going on in the world, see how everything develops as well as follow the latest news in design, and read trend reports.

Her number one challenge

In my opinion, being a female creator or business owner always poses challenges because you have to work under the pressure of various gender-related societal expectations towards you.

For me, being a Ukrainian female creator and a mother became explicitly challenging on February 24, 2022, when the full-scale invasion started.

No one prepares you how to handle creative business in times of literal existential crisis, while hiding in the shelters, under enemy shellings and bombings, while also taking care of your loved ones.

The focus momentarily changes towards basic needs and it takes immense effort and strength to continue working. My family and I stayed in Ukraine, so I started to plan my work in a very flexible way —setting up little achievable goals. I learned to have my watercolors and paper ‘ready-to-go’, as well as my laptop and scanner. My illustrations became brighter and more colorful as a response to fear and uncertainty and also as a symbol of hope for a brighter future. I think that my adjustments to the workflow and a warm response and support from my customers helped me to continue doing what I love the most.

Learn more about her

Kateřina Dohnalová

Kateřina Dohnalová curates the ultimate collection of resources for designers and creatives eager to make a living doing what they love. Check out her templates and planners at Designer’s Kit Co.

Our decision to move to Bali was a significant challenge but also the best decision of my life. It allowed us to spend precious time with our daughter in an inspiring and nurturing environment.

What keeps her inspired

My work is currently inspired by vivid colors. After welcoming our daughter, we decided to shift our focus and lifestyle, moving from Europe to Bali. This transition, along with Bali’s rich culture and vibrant atmosphere, has significantly influenced my design aesthetic. Now, my work is all about embracing vibrant colors and living life in full color.

Her number one challenge

As a female creative, one of my biggest obstacles has been overcoming my hesitation to exhibit myself and my work, especially in comparison to my male peers. To address this, I’ve steadily pushed myself to venture outside of my comfort zone, revealing more about myself and my work.

While I still cherish my privacy, I acknowledge the significance of communicating with my target audience and developing my personal brand.

Learn more about her

Kateryna Galunga

Ukrainian artist Kateryna Galunga brings to life women’s stories through her art, ideal for those looking to infuse their projects with soul and warmth. Check out her designs at Kate Galunga Artstore.

I am from Ukraine and I live here now. I have lived in different places within my country – beginning from Kyiv – the capital and ending with a very small village in the middle of nowhere surrounded by beautiful nature where I had a 4-year experience of slow living. This experience broadens your horizons and enriches you as a creative person. You meet people that are very different from you and you can learn from them. Living close to nature gives you the deeper meaning of cycles and makes you, for example, love rain because you want your flowers to be watered. Doing the things you’ve never done before gives you unexpected realizations about the world and yourself in it.

I’ve been back in Kyiv for a couple of months now and it brings me joy to see that people live the cultural life despite constant life threats. It brings you hope for love and beauty in this world. Today people in my country give me a role model of bravery, mutual support, and fighting for what you love. Those are great qualities for an artist, aren’t they?

What keeps her inspired

I like strong, brave, and creative people and their natural beauty. I find inspiration in nature, music, artworks, and all things that can make you feel and the things that have meaning and purpose.

Her number one challenge

It is pretty challenging to find a balance between being an artist and being a mother (or being a wife or daughter or keeping the home routine roll smoothly).

I do not know who originally put the pressure on women to be perfect in every area of life, but a lot of women myself included still do that themselves and stress out in the process to reach that point when you have everything under control.

When I create I am focused and forget about everything else in the world. The same thing happens when I am with my daughter. If one of these phases lasts too long, it is harder for me to switch back. The best thing in this situation for me is to get help when I need it and give myself a break from all the guilty whispers in my head and just let myself be.

Learn more about her

Arianna Gilligan

Weaving her passion for storytelling, Latin American heritage, and unique sensitivity into every piece, Arianna Gilligan offers a collection that spans charming illustrations to vibrant designs. Check out her designs at Drawn By Arianna.

As a Latina artist and creator, I’m the only one in my family to pursue a creative career. It’s definitely taboo in Spanish households to have a career in the arts, let alone work for yourself, but I’ve always been met with support and praise from my family. My dad was an electrician by day, but an incredible artist in his spare time. He passed away when I was young and the light that I saw in him while we would draw together has carried with me through to my work as an adult.

What keeps her inspired

My work is inspired by things I love: flowers, coffee, nostalgia, and movies!

Her number one challenge

The number one challenge I’ve faced as a female creator is imposter syndrome. I felt so different for so long that I pursued freelance graphic design & illustration.

As a creative woman, I’m plagued by insecurity due to just not seeing myself represented in the professional world.

When you see women disrespected in your industry, you start to not respect yourself and what you bring to the table. But in this time of freelancing, I’ve found a world of women whom I respect, who are making art every day, teaching art, selling assets, and taking on huge clients!

Learn more about her

Charlotte Holroyd

Charlotte’s Creative Wilderness offers a sanctuary for creatives seeking depth and sustainability in their work. Check out her designs at Creative Wilderness.

It’s taken me a long time to get here after initially training as a musician and having so many career twists and turns! I’m a highly anxious person and have always struggled with 9-5 so, since becoming self-employed, I’ve felt much better as I can craft my day to suit me.

My dream was to buy a campervan and after 2-3 years of running my business I could finally afford one and now I balance my business with regular adventures away in my campervan. I think as creatives we often struggle to fit into the conventional mold and I always wondered why I found it so hard compared to everyone else. I then realized I could make my own rules and craft a life that is right for me and since then life has much more flow and ease.

What keeps her inspired

I love working away in my campervan when I can and find wild landscapes that feed my creative soul! It’s a nice break from sitting in front of the screen.

Nature and getting out into the wilderness massively inspire my work. I find my best ideas come to me outside and my mind feels clear and in the flow when I’m outside sketching. I’m also very inspired by visiting creative, independent areas and art galleries and seeing lots of other talented creatives sharing their inspiring craft.

Her number one challenge

Finding a different more ‘in tune’ way of promoting and running a business. I think a lot of the business rules have been male-dominated so being creative, flowing, and heart-centered often feels at odds with the harsher, more hustle-driven business world. Getting away in nature, and doing things that make me feel quietly brave to be myself (like wild swimming, climbing mountains, and getting away in my campervan) have all given me the confidence to tread my own path.

Being creative, flowing, and heart-centered often feels at odds with the harsher, more hustle-driven business world.

When I first got into the industry it felt very ego-driven and mostly managed by males. You had to prove yourself more I found. Since starting my own business, I’ve naturally attracted more like-minded people and feel I can finally be myself and let my creativity run free!

Learn more about her

Keila Hötzel and Mariela Dommarco

Best friends Mariela and Keila collaborate to create modern, chic graphics and templates “for dreamers, makers, and believers”. Check out their designs at The Responsible Creatives.

Mariela and I (Keila) met in college, in the early 2000’s. Around 2005, we founded our first design studio in Buenos Aires, Argentina. We focused on revealing solutions to graphic design challenges.

A lot has happened since 2005. We are not only grown-up women now, but live and work internationally. I moved to southern Germany in 2010 and gained experience working in bigger design agencies as chief designer. In Buenos Aires, Mariela has kept freelancing and working for great projects and names like Musée du Louvre, Nike EMEA, and the Van Gogh Starry Night Exhibition. 

Our friendship stood the test of time and distance. It is a key part of our collaboration, based on mutual respect and curiosity for each other. With us, you will find a safe place where you can accomplish your vision, explore limitless possibilities, and go the extra mile. We solve (design) problems. We give life to visual communication. Together. For your brand.

What keeps them inspired

I, Keila, grew up among design classics, like the Lounge Chair from Charles & Ray Eames, artistic photographs and paintings from my grandfather, memories from Brazil, postcards from Europe, and early access to design programs. In the 80’s that was a pie in the sky!

Honest, natural materials like wood escorted Mariela since birth. The family business is a nonstop connection to nature. A sustainable way of life, with portions of countryside to spark ideas. Living outside the big city, for her the days were endless, calm, and loaded with sunlight. 

We find inspiration in nature: she delivers great color palettes and provides a safe place to disconnect. Some of our favorite sources of inspiration are the city, with its endless impulses, spending time with our families, provocative movies like the ones from Sofia Coppola, Wes Anderson, David Lynch, Michel Gondry, Luca Guadagnino, books and magazines or places like Pinterest and Creative Market.

Their number one challenge

Fortunately, our families were supportive enough to give us all the freedom young women can hope for. This means we could study Graphic Design (Mariela) whereas I studied Interior Design.

The number one challenge being a female creator is getting paid like our male colleagues. Even though we are living in the XXI Century, the gender gap is real.

You need to stay strong and stand for your value.

We create sustainable brand identities, that reflect their true story, ensuring a harmonious package is delivered on time, every time. That’s a big bonus and a solid foundation when it comes to negotiating. 

Learn more about them

Maryam Kamal

Maryam Kamal’s ReveryWorks is a treasure trove of meticulously textured, artisanal fonts designed to inspire. Check out her designs at ReveryWorks.

I’m from a very small town in Oman, the Middle East. Working from home is practically unheard of and is perceived as unproductive and frivolous. When I first started out as an artist, I received a lot of negative feedback from friends and family. They were not very supportive of the idea.

They weren’t able to imagine how you could possibly make a living online, from home, let alone drawing letters!

I was very lucky to have parents who were able to sponsor my BA degree in Interior Architecture in Malaysia. I was the only person in my town to have traveled overseas for education so, naturally, the surrounding community had other beliefs about how I should be putting my degree to use rather than “stay at home”.

However with time, everyone around me slowly learned to accept and respect what I do for a living, it all worked out wonderfully! I wouldn’t want to have it any other way. I would also like to express my gratitude to the Creative Market team for helping me kick-start my career. Having that additional income every month has helped stabilize my career as an artist.

What keeps her inspired

My fonts focus on playing around with different textures. I love experimenting with different media, paper, and tools and seeing what I can achieve with them. For example, combining rich texture with a big fat font can showcase a whole lot of interesting details. Besides traditional media, I believe Procreate brushes have come a long way! There are some pretty cool realistic brushes out there. So sometimes inspiration starts with a particular texture or brush that I see, combine them with letter forms, and voilà!

Her number one challenge

One thing that comes to mind is achieving a work-life balance. Even though I don’t necessarily struggle with this right now I often wonder how I’d manage working from home with a future family and kids. So props to all the work-from-home moms out there, I have a lot of respect for you!

Learn more about her

Irina Kazak

In Irina’s world of watercolor and ink, each illustration is a heartfelt exploration of nature, perfect for projects that seek depth and beauty. Check out her designs at iri-illustration.

I grew up in an environment where the idea of ​​a person of art was surrounded by a lot of prejudices, about talent, «a gift from above», a «muse»… and «not everyone is worthy of this profession». I had to learn to have the freedom and right to be the artist that I can be today, just honestly performing the task that is set before me to the maximum. To be the artist, that I want to be, despite stereotypes, opinions, despite how banal or unoriginal or too cute or whatever I may seem to someone.

Be yourself as much as possible today.

What keeps her inspired

My works are inspired by the shape of ordinary objects that surround me in everyday life. Like a beautiful window that I pass by while walking through a new city or a shadow falling in a new way on my favorite pot of plants.

Her number one challenge

My biggest challenge is to make money with my creativity. I had no idea that, in addition to being able to draw, I had to master many more professions and skills: develop and sell social networks, search for and attract clients, follow trends, master time management, be able to film and edit video, animation and much more. I’m constantly learning something new.

Learn more about her

Lauren Kilbane

Embrace the beauty of imperfection with Bruised Goods’ sea-inspired fonts, graphics, and patterns, all designed to add a coastal, authentic touch to your projects. Check out her designs at Bruised Goods.

I am a proud Coast Guard wife, mom-to-be (due in March!), world traveler, and first-generation college student.

What keeps her inspired

All things coastal! I’ve lived on beaches all over the United States, from Hawaii to California to Florida. Our “About Us” reads: “Bruised Goods is a Florida-based design studio that can bring the beach to you. We create handmade, surf-inspired typefaces that are warm, welcoming, and intentionally imperfect.”

Her number one challenge

Feeling confident and fighting for recognition in a male-dominated workplace. It’s one of the main reasons I started selling on Creative Market. I could let my product speak for itself.

Learn more about her

Olga Koelsch

Norway-based artist Olga Koelsch invites us into her world of professional watercolor illustrations, where each creation is a window into the delicate balance of nature and artistry. Check out her designs at Olga Koelsch.

I’ve been in marketing for over 15 years, working for industrial companies with no connection to art. But after a long working day, I would come home and paint just for myself. 

Sometimes our life changes direction in ways we can’t imagine. I met my future husband, moved to Norway, and soon became a mother of two boys back-to-back. That was a really busy time.

Like many immigrants, I faced challenges such as learning a new language, adapting to a new culture, making connections and friends, and constantly searching for a job. In a new life, my daily painting became my constant source of stability.

I started to share my art on Instagram. The support and encouraging feedback I received helped me to keep pushing forward and I got my first clients who wanted to commission my illustrations. After the birth of my second boy, I decided to give myself a year to explore freelancing.

By then the idea of becoming a full-time artist and surface pattern designer began to take shape – I opened my shop on Creative Market. That was a turnover point where I realized that my art had commercial value and demand. I kept exploring different painting techniques and sales funnels. Nevertheless, the transparent technique became one of my favorites and eventually a signature style. 

Now I am running a Youtube channel, have my painting school, and have written a book about painting flowers.

What keeps her inspired

I live in one of the most rainy cities, where every sunny day feels like a holiday. I like to be outside and explore flowers. Bergen has awesome botanical gardens and the nature around is stunning.

When I travel, I get a lot of inspiration from tropical plants,  painting them cheers me up on cold days. I love to learn about art history, art museums, and architecture inspires me a lot. 

I usually bring back tons of pictures of each and every beautiful corner from the trip.

Her number one challenge

Shifting from an office job to being altogether your own boss, IT department, accountant, marketing manager and not to forget, creator itself, was pretty challenging and required a lot of discipline, focus, and confidence. There is still a lot to learn and to improve but I mostly enjoy the flexible schedule, which is precious when you have two small kids.

I am pretty sure, not so many people around really understand what am I doing for life and how I am being able to earn decent money with it. I had to think about how to explain my job better to make people understand what it actually means to be an artist and a pattern designer. Not so many people even think about, e.g. how flowers appear on their greeting cards.

Learn more about her

Kristina Krymova

Kristina crafts a bold collection of designs that celebrate color, and texture, as well as planning templates to make your creative life easier. Check out her designs at KristinaK3.

My name is Kristina. I’m from Ukraine, from Kyiv. At the moment I am studying programming and also periodically create various projects and orders in this niche, but I always find time for creativity and design.

What keeps her inspired

My country has been at war for 2 years now, it’s hard and scary. Last year it motivated me and inspired me to nurture my own creativity to add a little joy and share it with other people. That’s why I decided to share my work on the Creative Market.

Her number one challenge

As a female artist, it was difficult for me to promote from scratch in the marketplace and my morale due to the war did not allow me to fully open up to my imagination. However, I am beginning to fight this and continue to create.

Learn more about her

Irina Kulkova

Irina Kulkova’s Crocus Paperi is where meticulous graphic design meets charming line illustrations, crafting a perfect blend of Nordic minimalism and elegance. Check out her designs at Crocus Paperi.

I think I’d like to share here that I’m self-taught, and I used to have a lot of doubts about it throughout my life as a designer. I had this thought that only designers with professional education could be successful, even after I had several thousand sales on Creative Market and many happy custom clients. 

To all self-taught illustrators and designers: I want to share my support and encouragement.

You don’t need a degree to validate your talent. Your passion and willingness to learn are the true markers of your potential.

What keeps her inspired

As typical as it sounds, nature in all its forms is the main source of inspiration to me. I’m lucky to live in Finland where nature is the greatest treasure. Whenever I’m in the forest or by a lake, I try to spot and take photos of cute plants, herbs, and wildflowers.

Another thing that motivates me is my clients, who are mostly female solopreneurs running their small businesses. Seeing them choosing my designs on Creative Market or working on custom projects with them makes me so proud of their energy and dedication. When I create my illustrations and templates, I always have these girls and women in mind, picture them using my artwork, and thinking how I can help them better.

Her number one challenge

My number one challenge was the fact that being a creator is actually a full-time business with all its benefits and struggles. Before I started my entrepreneur’s journey I’d known nothing about accounting, taxation, or marketing. Apparently, all of these are part of being a creator 😅

I was learning on the go: taking courses, absorbing lots of new things in such different areas of knowledge, and making mistakes. Often I got overwhelmed with the new tasks and frustrated when things didn’t go as planned. It took a couple of years to learn that I don’t have to know or do everything myself. And especially that I don’t have to do all of that perfectly. 

Overall, the biggest lesson is that being self-employed comes with a huge responsibility, and we, especially women, have to take good care of our wellbeing to be able to solve the challenges that we face on our way.

Learn more about her

Jun-Yi Lee

Jun-Yi offers a collection of impeccable graphics and illustrations that combine modern simplicity with a charming sense of naiveté. Check out her designs at Goodputty.

I grew up in Malaysia and moved to The Netherlands for love. I’ve lived here now for 10 years, and find differences in culture between Asia and Europe constantly. They can be a challenge, but they can also be an inspiration.

I am also ethnically Chinese, and I feel that there is so much opportunity to dig deeper into all these separate cultures and enrich myself both personally and creatively.

I feel that my ideas are typically Asian, but my aesthetic is more European.

What keeps her inspired

Everything I see around me. Everyday life, nature, TV, the internet. I just take everything in, and sometimes my head clicks with something I see, and I get an idea. I sometimes write it down in order to explore further, or let the idea germinate in my head.

Her number one challenge

I don’t feel resentment towards this, but the reality is that becoming a mother and staying at home to take care of my daughters full-time did put a pause on my creating. It has taken a long time for me to find myself again, get the energy and the inspiration to create, and to even find the time to do so.

Learn more about her

Manisa Lekprayoon

Thai designer Manisa Lekprayoon offers a unique range of nature-inspired illustrations, infusing each project with a distinctive flair and a touch of Southeast Asian charm. Check out her designs at Manimanisa.

I was born in Bangkok, Thailand. I grew up in a family of scientists and my mum is a retired biology professor. When I was young, I spent most of my time in biology study environments, in museums, and at a lab where my mum’s office was. I used to join a scientific drawing workshop when I was 12. All of these experiences made me familiar with many insects, specimens, animals, and plants that I am interested in. It’s an endless world for me to explore things in detail.

What keeps her inspired

Most of my inspiration comes from my passion for travel: building forms/colors/patterns, flowers, animals, and objects in daily life that are interpreted in my surrealistic way. My illustrations are based on many techniques: the combination of drawing, marker, watercolor, and digital collage with graphic compositions.

Her number one challenge

Women’s emotions are quite complicated. Most of the challenges I face come from within me. As a graphic designer and illustrator, I have to make creative decisions in every project from start to end. I struggle with indecision when I have too many ideas and feel discouraged because I am too worried about the outcome.

So I started setting deadlines for myself that allowed me to keep working continuously, little by little, focusing on what was in front of me. I believe this tiny change can help.

Learn more about her

Susan Mar

Whimsy meets design, blending in playful graphics created by Susan Mar to spark joy in every project. Check out her designs at A Second of Whimsy.

Let me give you a glimpse into the past that has shaped my creative journey.

I can vividly recall a night when I was tucked into a tiny bed beside my little sister, gazing at the stars outside our window, and praying with all my might that my little brother would somehow come back to us. Losing him during our childhood is a piece of my story that has had a more profound impact than I initially admitted. It took me some time to realize that sharing these tough moments isn’t attention seeking, much less a bad thing; it’s a way to help others feel seen and less alone in their own struggles.

Growing up in a place with limited resources, in a third-world country, my sister and I spent a ton of time playing indoors. Showers without running water, that feeling of smallness—I know those struggles. But you know what’s interesting? Those challenging times sparked something creative within me.

I can still picture those days on our bedroom floor, experimenting with watered-down school glue, toilet paper, and the cardboard from cereal boxes—looking back at the toilet paper, I’m like, “Sorry, Mom!” (*giggles). I’d craft textured cardboard, which I’d use to make little surprise boxes for my girlfriends’ birthdays. I still remember how excited they used to get when their birthday was around the corner, knowing they would receive one of my mystery boxes (*giggles).

By the time I turned about 13, a few things became clear to me: life is short, good things can arise from tough times, and creating things for others not only brings them joy but also fills me with happiness. These beliefs continue to be my guiding stars.

Reflecting on the past, there was a phase when revisiting that night of prayers made me feel nothing but sadness. But not anymore. I look at how far I’ve come, almost like a fairy godmother, turning past experiences into a knack for creating things that make others happier and spotting the hidden gems in people just waiting to be unleashed. It might sound a bit cheesy, but it’s my truth.

And you know what’s really cool? Thanks to all those highs and lows, I can now help others ‘spark the extraordinary within themselves.’ Life is a journey and mine has been quite the ride.

What keeps her inspired

When I first moved to Pennsylvania, my camera became a magical key unlocking a whole new world. It wasn’t gold I discovered, but a talent for ‘finding the extraordinary within.’

In the mundane, I began noticing the extraordinary—the gentle dance of curtains in my bedroom, the deep shadows of Fall, the calm among trees with a distant river’s murmur, and that moment when the sun paints the water with its golden touch. These little moments became my creative fuel. Classic stories like “Anne Of Green Gables” and the whimsical magic of “Alice in Wonderland” also ignite my creative spark.

Every idea that surfaces is this wild urge to bring it to life. There’s an invisible push that makes me want to create. For me, ‘making’ isn’t just about personal happiness—it’s about spreading joy to others too. It’s a journey of turning those little thought bubbles into something you can touch and feel.

Now, all this inspiration has evolved into a mission—I want to help those who think there’s nothing special about them discover their hidden extraordinary. So, yeah, it’s this mix of everything and nothing that keeps echoing through my journey—an adventure fueled by chasing the extraordinary in life’s simple moments.

Her number one challenge

As a female creator and Latina from an undeveloped country, the primary hurdle has been navigating the path to create and embrace my dreams—believing in the possibility of the impossible and not shying away from revealing my true self.

Sharing any form of art feels like exposing a part of your soul, and finding comfort in that vulnerability is its own challenge. To tackle these hurdles, I’ve embarked on a journey of learning self-worth, facing vulnerability, and addressing complex trauma. It’s an ongoing, empowering process for me. Despite the inevitable pain, it unexpectedly transformed into a wellspring of inspiration. It’s truly remarkable how life offers us silver linings if we are willing to recognize them.

Learn more about her

Friederike Melzian

From the heart of Germany, Local Desk Designstudio curates a boutique collection of typefaces and design elements that blend traditional craftsmanship with modern aesthetics. Check out her designs at Local Desk Designstudio.

All my life I was drawn to beautiful things and creating something. I did my Bachelor of Art in Berlin in Communication Design and worked in studios across the globe after that. Now I run my own design studio from a little town in Germany (there are only 80 people here).

I love the contrast of living in such a remote area and my screen feeling like a portal to the whole world.

Every day I am thankful that I get to live here with my husband and son, our dog, cat, chicken, and sheep while selling my fonts to creatives and designers all over the world. It’s amazing. I find balance in the long hours in front of the computer in my ceramic studio where I create with my hands.

What keeps her inspired

My biggest inspiration is nature. I very much resonate with the colors, textures, shapes, and forms that nature creates and I pour a lot of that into my work. I am also very much inspired by contrasts and by the work of other creators, designers, and artists, new perspectives and angles to see things. I like a surprise as it inspires new ideas for me. Inspiration is everywhere around us and I try soaking it all up, to let it run through me, and to then create something that feels like me.

Her number one challenge

The number one challenge I have faced as a female creator actually did lie within myself. I had to overcome self-doubt and a fear of what others might think about my work. Thinking back to my studies in communication design, I had a professor tell me that type design is so very hard – too hard for me in fact – and that he doesn’t think that it would be possible for me to draw a font as my bachelor thesis.

I still regret listening to him. It took years after that for me to finally feel brave and safe enough to get started with type design.

I don’t know if that is something that female creators experience more than male ones, but it was my number one challenge.

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Priyanka Menon

In Meno Melo Studio’s world, Priyanka Menon’s passion for digital arts and storytelling converges, offering designs that are both universally-appealing and deeply personal. Check out her designs at Meno Melo.

I am from Mumbai, India, a bustling metropolis teeming with life and diversity at every turn. Growing up amidst the hustle and bustle of this vibrant city, I’ve been endlessly inspired by its variety of sights and sounds, from the colorful festivity of cultures to the dynamic rhythm of street life.

Despite my deep-rooted love for Mumbai, I find myself yearning for a deeper connection with nature away from the urban sprawl, the limited scope of natural landscapes within the city leaves me craving more. The familiar sights of a handful of bird species and the repetitive blooms of Gulmohar and Champa trees fail to satisfy my longing for the rich diversity of wildlife and flora.

To satiate this yearning, I embark on journeys to destinations where nature reigns supreme. Immersing myself in the serene beauty of untouched landscapes, I find myself rejuvenated by the sight of diverse ecosystems and the symphony of sounds that accompany them. These travels offer me the opportunity to witness the many forms of life that inhabit our planet, from towering mountains to lush forests, and from exotic flora to elusive wildlife.

With each new experience, I absorb a wealth of inspiration that finds its way into my artwork.

Whether it’s the vibrant hues of a tropical paradise or the rugged beauty of a mountainous landscape, my travels infuse my creations with a sense of wonder and diversity. Through my art, I seek to share the stories of the places I’ve visited, the people I’ve met, and the beauty of the natural world that continues to captivate me.

What keeps her inspired

While my focus remains rooted in the organic beauty of nature, I also seek inspiration from my Indian heritage and the diverse array of global art styles. Botanical art, with its infinite variety and captivating allure, serves as my enduring muse. From the graceful intricacies of leaf patterns to the ephemeral elegance of petal arrangements, and the rich vibrant colours of fruits, every element holds a narrative waiting to be illuminated on the canvas of my designs.

With every pattern bundle I create, I aim to transport the viewer on a visual journey that transcends time and space, evoking emotions, memories, and a profound appreciation for the beauty that surrounds us. Through a harmonious fusion of nature, culture, and artistic expression, I try to create patterns that not only delight the eye but also nourish the soul.

Her number one challenge

As a female creator, the primary challenge I’ve encountered revolves around perceptions of the seriousness and importance of my work, particularly as an independent artist working from home.

While the creative space itself is relatively balanced in terms of gender representation, external biases often undermine the significance of my profession. Unlike some of my male counterparts, I’ve noticed a tendency for others to trivialise my role, viewing it as a mere hobby rather than a legitimate career. Initially, this attitude impacted my confidence and self-esteem, as I grappled with feelings of invalidation and frustration.

Rather than attempting to change the entrenched mindsets of others, I chose to focus on empowering myself and affirming the value of my work.

One key strategy I’ve employed is surrounding myself with supportive individuals who understand and respect the dedication I bring to my craft. By prioritizing my professional commitments and establishing clear boundaries, I’ve demonstrated the seriousness with which I approach my artistry. Over time, this assertiveness has led to a shift in perception among those in my social and familial circles. As they witness my unwavering dedication and the tangible impact of my work, they’ve come to recognize its importance and validity.

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Zoë Scott

Australian designer Zoe Scott’s The Design Order Store offers sophisticated design templates for the modern entrepreneur, blending functionality with elegant aesthetics. Check out her designs at The Design Order.

I am a Northern Beaches girl who has been very lucky to grow up on the sunny shores of Sydney in Australia. Here we enjoy the sun, the water, and spending a tonne of time out and about nature.

What keeps her inspired

Always a creative at heart, I get inspired by all sorts of different things as I journey through life. I have been a designer all my life and have always enjoyed living a creative life. Whether that means making faces out of vegetables for my kids’ dinner, indulging in making pottery, embroidery, or painting, I love it all and the peace and value it brings to my life.

Her number one challenge

I’m not sure there has been a number one challenge but there are definitely a few that stand out! 

  1. Juggling work and family and figuring out how to make it all work.
  2. Helping people value the work that I do and realize it is how I make a LIVING so therefore can’t always work for favours.
  3. Charging the same price men do for the same quality of work.

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Abby Swain

From the serene shores of Falmouth, Maine, Abby Swain infuses every design with a personal touch, specializing in elegant typography and minimalist aesthetics for the discerning creative. Check out her designs at Abby Swain | Design.

I began drawing at age 3 and never looked back! My parents knew how to keep us entertained: a wooden table with two buckets of crayons, one for me and one for my older sister. We would spend hours drawing. Photo here, I’m on the left 🙂

My grandparents also really encouraged me throughout the years, gifting me art supplies, art classes, and my very first MacBook.

What keeps her inspired

My work draws inspiration from my coastal home state: Maine. Growing up surrounded by the rugged beauty of New England’s shores in Kennebunk has deeply influenced my creative spirit. I strive to capture the essence of this maritime heritage in my designs.

Before diving into the nitty-gritty of typeface or creative development, I like to take a step back and immerse myself in research. There’s something captivating about exploring the past that sparks my creativity and guides the direction of my work, whether I’m creating a typeface for my Creative Market shop or working on a client’s brand identity.

On a more personal note, my husband’s passion for sailing has become a shared source of inspiration for us. We love setting sail and exploring the local waters, soaking in the sights of the unique typography adorning boat sails and the weathered wooden signs lining the coast. These encounters with Maine’s coastal charm fuel my imagination.

Her number one challenge

The design and marketing sphere has traditionally been heavily male-dominated, and I consider myself fortunate to have female mentors within the industry who have paved the way with their exemplary leadership. Their guidance has been invaluable, as they’ve not only extended invitations to key industry events but also facilitated numerous collaborative design projects over the years. Moreover, they’ve equipped me with essential resources and knowledge on advocating for myself in this competitive field. Their support has played a pivotal role in nurturing my confidence as a female creator.

I’ve observed that women tend to approach collaboration with less ego, leading to truly transformative outcomes. There’s a palpable sense of magic when we come together to work on projects.

I’ve also been inspired by the resilience displayed by many of my female and nonbinary colleagues — witnessing them establish their own studios to manifest their visions has been both empowering and motivating. It underscores the importance of creating spaces where diverse voices can thrive and shape the future of design.

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Tatiana Schuka

Tanya brings her greatest passion for illustration and design to life in every project, offering a heartfelt collection of designs that speak to the beauty of everyday moments. Check out her designs at TanyaSchuka.

What keeps her inspired

I come from a small rural town surrounded by mountains and coniferous forests. Therefore, nature is the main theme of my creativity. In my childhood, I had a lot of animals: rabbits, cats, dogs, and chickens. Birds are the main characters in many of my prints and illustrations. I am also a mother and mostly draw for children.

Her number one challenge

Sometimes it can be difficult to stay competitive in a creative environment.  After all, you have to show your creativity all the time, but I don’t always have time for that. I think this is a problem for many women artists who want to stay in demand in their profession while spending time with their families. Creative Market gives an opportunity to do what we love and not be dependent on deadlines.

This situation is also complicated by illustrations created by neural networks. It is difficult for buyers to find good quality work in a stream of pictures created by artificial intelligence. I think artists who are devoted to their work, those who want to broadcast their thoughts and feelings through creativity, are now very vulnerable to artificial intelligence and need support. 

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Ruth Wright-Palmer

Ruth’s unique eye for modern minimalism results in an elevated collection of templates and mockups for femalepreneurs. Check out her designs at GLDN Studio.

My cultural background and life story are woven into the very fabric of my work. Growing up as a minority, I’ve always been acutely aware of the richness and complexity of navigating multiple identities. This has instilled in me a profound respect for diversity and the power of storytelling. My creations are not just products; they are narratives of resilience, hope, and the beauty of converging worlds. They reflect a journey of embracing one’s roots while forging new paths—an ode to the past, present, and future of those who dare to dream differently.

What keeps her inspired

My work is deeply inspired by my passion for the environment and a strong humanitarian drive. I find beauty in purposeful simplicity, which is why my designs are minimal yet profoundly meaningful. At the core, it’s about creating beautiful things that serve a good purpose—whether it’s supporting and empowering women or advocating for environmental sustainability. Each creative project is a reflection of my belief that aesthetics and ethics can coexist harmoniously, inspiring a more thoughtful and intentional way of living.

Her number one challenge

As a female creator, especially coming from a minority background, the most significant challenge has been navigating spaces not traditionally open or accessible to people like me.

There’s an added layer of pressure not only to succeed but to pave the way for representation in these areas.

Tackling this has involved embracing the hurdles as part of my journey, using them to fuel my determination rather than deter it. I’ve focused on building a supportive community, seeking out mentors and like-minded creatives with similar struggles, and using my platform to voice the challenges and triumphs that come with breaking barriers. Each milestone achieved is not just a personal victory but a step forward for all women striving to make their mark.

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Hailing from different walks of life and backgrounds, these independent artists inspire us with their creative points of view and courage to pursue their dreams against every odd. Stay tuned to our Instagram and TikTok accounts, emails, and blog throughout the month of March to read their inspiring stories.

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