Saoirse Mullan is an Illustrator, Web and Graphic Designer based in Belfast.
We got the pleasure of interviewing them asking about their creative journey and what their goals and inspiration has been.
What does your company name do?
Saoirse Mullan is an Illustrator, Web and Graphic designer. She’s also an Interaction Design student at Belfast School of Art heading into final year of her undergraduate degree in September.
Can you tell us a bit about yourself and what inspired you to set up your company?
I’m Saoirse, an Illustrator and Graphic Designer with a little bit of Web Design based in Belfast. I grew up in a small town (Limavady) and genuinely love all things design. I’ve been pretty passionate about art for most of my life with always painting and drawing. It’s only recently that I’ve properly got into it again, moving to digital art after completing various design modules as part of my undergraduate degree.
Becoming self-employed has always been a goal, but I never thought it was realistic and just always a hypothetical. After impulsively setting up my design Instagram @saoirsemullan and Facebook last year @SM Designs– I’ve received positive feedback about my work, and it’s helped me think about the future and to ultimately set up my own Etsy store to start selling prints. Alongside this I’m in the process of establishing my freelancing business.
What/who influences/motivates you?
I take inspiration from everything around me and especially through looking at other great digital artists online. I follow so many of them on Instagram! You can get an unexpected spark of inspiration while on the train or reading a great novel.
I’m motivated by wanting to be my own boss in the future and to work for myself doing something I love. I recently lost my mum and at a young age it’s shown me just how short and unexpected life is. So, I ultimately want to be in a job I love and enjoy and that I’m proud to be doing every day.
What has been your biggest hurdle and your proudest moment or accomplishment with your business so far?
My biggest hurdle has been trying to get my name out there and to get myself known not just amongst the Belfast design community for my design work, but with others in the community in order to start receiving freelance opportunities.
My proudest moment and achievement I think so far as I’m only starting off, has been receiving my first commission for creating a logo and branding for a Vintage Clothing website. With so many freelance talented designers out there, small businesses undoubtedly have their pick. So, to find someone who likes my style and believes in my work, is really rewarding. I think it’s also helped give me the confidence boost needed to have more self-belief in what I do.
Could you give some advice for any young, emerging entrepreneurs?
As a young emerging designer, myself, I’d say the best thing you can do is to stay positive, work hard and don’t compare your work with others. Always keep your portfolio or design Instagram up to date so that others can see your work progress.
Secondly - Network, network, network! There’s so much happening in Belfast that you really need to take advantage of. Although it can be daunting especially if you’re going to an event on your own, but it’s honestly the best way to start meeting creative people with similar interests. And lastly, always learn new skills in your spare time especially with Graphic Design.
Cheesy and cliché quote but “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life!”
To find out and contact Saoirse Mullan you can find her website and socials down below.