Interview of Cat Willett by Andy Reyes
Interview of Cat by Andy Reyes
Cat is an illustrator based in New York, she encourages aspiring illustrators to follow their dreams, however difficult and challenging they may be, she shares some tips on how she has been able to turn her business into something solid. Currently, Cat has an online store, where she sells illustrations as prints.
Hello Cat, how are you? Thanks for this interview! Could you tell us a little about yourself and what you do?
Hi friends! I am an artist and illustrator living in Brooklyn, NY. I aim to make work that uplifts others, and celebrates womxn.
How did your interest in illustration begin?
I have a fine art background, and have always been creating. I think my interest in illustration probably started as a young child because I loved to read, and was drawn to rich, illustrated books. I didn’t realize then though, that illustration was a viable career path, and ended up going into arts administration. Once I moved to NYC about 5-6 years ago, my eyes were opened to the possibilities of life as an illustrator, and I began to pursue my art in a more professional setting.
What does success mean to you?
Success to me means being able to stand behind your work, knowing that it impacts the world in a positive way.
Has it been difficult for you to devote yourself to art? Has there been a moment that you thought you would not achieve?
This is an interesting question, because I often fear that I won’t be successful or continue to sustain myself as an illustrator. Pursuing an art career is an unconventional lifestyle, and can be full of doubt and instability. However, the drive to create and my love for my job is strong enough to keep me going and silence any voices of doubt in my head.
Which women inspire you the most?
Womxn who persevere despite all odds working against them.
What excites you the most right now?
The plethora of amazing femme illustrators who are changing the game.
How can we move from fear to believing in ourselves?
We can move away from fear by working together and supporting one another.
What part of your work do you enjoy the most?
The days when I can spend hours in the studio drawing. Creating makes me feel happy and grounded.
What advice would you give to someone who is beginning to form their own path?
I would give the following advice to someone who is starting on their own creative path: set yourself up before you begin. Pursuing a creative career can be risky, so identify what you want, and then lay out the steps you’ll need to take to go down that path. Maybe that means working another job for 6 months to save up enough funds to support you while you’re getting started. Maybe it means creating vision boards and making a comprehensive timeline to help guide you. Either way, the more you can do to support yourself creatively and financially before you start your journey, will make it all possible.
Do you have any personal and professional goals at the moment?
To continue connecting with like minded brands and individuals, helping them to share their message with the world through visual art. I also want to do more murals and public art projects!
Favorite places in New York ?
Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, Sincerely, Tommy cafe, Rockaway Beach, my neighborhood (Bed-Stuy), every thrift store.
Favorite books ?
Hard-boiled Wonderland and the End of the World by Haruki Murakami, The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, Just Kids by Patti Smith.
You can follow Cat on Instagram @catxwillett