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  • Unlocking Your Brand's Potential: The Core Values of Visual Smugglers

    At Visual Smugglers, we are dedicated to unlocking the true potential of our clients and their offerings. We believe that authenticity is key to revealing the true nature of a brand and its products or services. Our approach is to remove any superfluous aspects that do not contribute to the fundamental value, leaving customers with a clear and concise understanding of what our clients have to offer. Our Core Values (Explained) It is more important to stand for something than to sell something. Find below Visual Smuggler's core values. We belive what you stand for is more important than what you sell. AUTHENTICITY: We are dedicated to unlocking the genuine character of our clients and their offerings, rigorously removing any superfluous aspects that do not contribute to the fundamental value of the product or service. Our approach is to ensure that only the vital elements of the business remain, leaving customers with a clear and concise understanding of what our clients have to offer. We believe that by doing this, we are able to bring out the essence and reveal the true nature of our clients and their products or services. WORK - We approach our work with a sense of reverence, fully immersing ourselves in the task at hand and giving it our full and undivided attention. We take great care and consideration in every step of the process, understanding the importance of the work and the impact it can have on others. We strive to stay focused on the task at hand, and we never underestimate the importance of each and every detail. Every effort is made to ensure that the highest standards of excellence are met and that the work we produce is of the utmost quality. Our commitment to excellence is evident in the dedication and passion we put into our work. GROWTH - We believe that personal and professional growth is an ongoing process, and as such, we are dedicated to constantly exploring and developing our skills and knowledge. We recognize that it is only through continual learning and improvement that we can reach our fullest potential, and we are committed to making that happen. With that in mind, we strive to create an environment in which individuals are empowered to grow and develop, enabling them to reach their goals and aspirations. INTENTION - We take a meticulous and deliberate approach to our work, always considering the intent and reasoning behind each decision and action. We strive to ensure that our choices are based on sound and thoughtful analysis, and that the end result is something that will be beneficial for the company and its stakeholders. We prioritize our work, ensuring that the most important tasks are completed first, and that all our actions are taken with the utmost care and attention. Our approach to work is one that is both intentional and purposeful, with the goal of always producing the best possible outcome. DISCIPLINE - We firmly believe that discipline is a critical factor in achieving excellence and is the key to mastering our own impulses, allowing us to make sound decisions. It is essential for the development of an individual; it encourages self-control and the ability to stay focused and organized in any situation. Discipline is a powerful tool that helps us achieve our goals, both in our professional and personal lives. It teaches us to be responsible and to take ownership of our actions and decisions. With discipline, we can develop our skills, improve our performance, and increase our efficiency in any task we take on. ACCOUNTABILITY - We take responsibility for our actions and commitments and follow through on our promises without fail. We are accountable for our words and actions, and we strive to ensure that we are honoring our commitments and promises in a timely manner. We recognize that our actions have an impact on the world around us, and we strive to make sure that our behavior is a positive one. We are committed to being responsible citizens in all aspects of our lives. CRITICAL THINKING - We approach challenges and decisions with a critical and analytical mindset, taking into account all relevant factors, and striving to make the best possible choices. We look at the data and the facts, leveraging our experience and knowledge to make decisions that will have the most positive impact for all involved. We are committed to considering all the options before making a decision, and to being open and honest about our process. We strive to be mindful of the potential consequences of our decisions and to make choices that will benefit everyone in the long run Conclusion These are the core values that drive us at Visual Smugglers. With these values as our guiding principles, we strive to make every project a success and help our clients unlock their true potential. Visual Smugglers creates short ads for brands and businesses. If you're struggling to find your look or voice, we can help. Book a call and view our demo reel HERE

  • Ai 𝘄𝗶𝗹𝗹 𝗻𝗼𝘁 𝗿𝗲𝗽𝗹𝗮𝗰𝗲 𝘆𝗼𝘂. 𝗔 𝗽𝗲𝗿𝘀𝗼𝗻 𝘂𝘀𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗔i 𝘄𝗶𝗹𝗹

    Introduction The use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) as a tool to improve daily life has increased significantly in recent years. AI is an advanced technology that allows us to perform tasks more efficiently and effectively. WE GOT THE POWER! in our hands. What we do with it, depends on us. It's like being a creative director. You direct the vision and intention. When it comes to achieving our goals and realizing our dreams, it can be easy to get caught up in the idea that we need to have everything figured out before we take action. However, the reality is that no one has all the answers, and the best way to learn is through trial and error. One of the most powerful tools we have for achieving our goals is the ability to adapt and adjust our approach as we go. Instead of trying to plan out every detail in advance, it's often more effective to start taking small, actionable steps toward our goal and then making adjustments as we gain new information and insights. One way to do this is by embracing the concept of "bad news early." This means actively seeking out feedback and information that could potentially derail our plans, rather than waiting until it's too late. By identifying potential roadblocks early on, we can proactively address them and make adjustments to our approach. Another key element of achieving our goals is having a clear sense of purpose and direction. It's easy to get bogged down in day-to-day tasks and lose sight of the bigger picture, but by taking time to regularly reflect on our goals and priorities, we can stay focused and motivated. Ultimately, achieving our goals is about taking action and being willing to adjust our approach as we go. By embracing a flexible mindset, actively seeking feedback, and staying focused on our purpose, we can overcome the obstacles that stand in our way and make progress toward realizing our dreams. Who we are Visual Smugglers creates short ads for brands and businesses. If you're struggling to find your look or voice, we can help. Book a call and view our demo reel HERE

  • Why is brand identity important?

    Introduction Creating a unique brand identity for clients is an important part of their marketing and communications plan. Having a distinct and recognizable brand helps potential customers remember the company and its services and products. Developing an identity involves creating a brand logo, tagline, mission statement, and other elements that represent the company. This blog post will discuss the importance of brand identity, how to create one, and how to maintain it. Why is brand identity important? Having a unique brand identity is essential for a company to stand out from the competition. It helps customers to recognize the company and its offerings, so it's important to invest time and resources into creating a memorable brand identity. It also helps to create a sense of loyalty among customers and can even influence their purchasing decisions. How to create a brand identity When creating a brand identity, it's important to think about the company's mission and values. This will help to inform the design of the logo, color palette, and other elements. It's also important to think about the target audience and how they will interact with the brand. Once the company's mission and target audience are identified, the next step is to create a tagline and design a logo. The logo should be simple and memorable, and the tagline should be concise and capture the essence of the company. How to maintain a brand identity Once a brand identity is created, it's important to maintain it consistently. This means using the same logo, colors, and tagline in all marketing materials. It's also important to remain true to the company's mission and values and to be consistent with messaging across all channels. Conclusion Creating and maintaining a unique brand identity is an essential part of a company's marketing and communications plan. It helps customers recognize the company and its offerings, and it can even influence their purchasing decisions. It's important to invest time and resources into creating a memorable brand identity and to be consistent in using it across all channels. Who we are Visual Smugglers creates short ads for brands and businesses. If you're struggling to find your look or voice, we can help. Book a call and view our demo reel HERE

  • Creative Agency by an Outlaw: Breaking the Rules to Make Bold Ideas a Reality

    Are you tired of the same old cookie-cutter advertising and marketing strategies? Look no further than a creative agency led by an outlaw. An outlaw in the advertising world is someone who breaks the rules and defies industry norms. They are not afraid to push boundaries and challenge the status quo in order to create bold and innovative ideas that truly stand out. At a creative agency led by an outlaw, you can expect a team of individuals who are not satisfied with playing it safe. They are constantly seeking new and fresh ways to approach projects, and are not afraid to take risks in order to achieve their goals. One of the key benefits of working with a creative agency led by an outlaw is their ability to think outside of the box. They are not limited by traditional industry standards and are able to come up with truly unique and impactful ideas that will help your brand stand out in a crowded marketplace. In addition to their innovative thinking, a creative agency led by an outlaw is also dedicated to delivering results. They understand that the ultimate goal of any advertising or marketing campaign is to drive sales and increase revenue, and they work tirelessly to make sure that this is achieved. At a creative agency led by an outlaw, you can expect a team that is passionate, dedicated, and driven to succeed. They will work closely with you to understand your brand and goals and will develop a customized strategy that is tailored to your specific needs. So if you're ready to break the rules and make bold ideas a reality, consider working with a creative agency led by an outlaw. With their unique perspective and dedication to results, they can help take your brand to new heights. Who we are Visual Smugglers creates short ads for brands and businesses. If you're struggling to find your look or voice, we can help. Book a call and view our demo reel here.

  • Riding into the Future: A Look at Retro and Modern Tech

    I've always had a fondness for the old ways of doing things. There's something about the simplicity and ruggedness of the past that speaks to me. But just because I have a love for the past, it doesn't mean I'm opposed to progress. In fact, I find myself constantly drawn to new and exciting technology, especially when it comes to the world of gadgets and gizmos. One of the things I love about retro tech is the nostalgia it evokes. I remember the days of playing on my Sega Megadrive and the feeling of excitement I got when I discovered a new game. I remember the thrill of loading up a cassette tape on my Commodore 64 and waiting anxiously for it to load. There was something special about these old machines, something that modern technology can't quite replicate. But as much as I love the nostalgia of retro tech, I also can't help but be fascinated by the advancements of modern technology. The speed and processing power of today's computers are truly mind-blowing. I've been tinkering with a Raspberry Pi and the endless possibilities of this tiny computer never cease to amaze me. We front from this to... And the capabilities of smartphones? It's like having a personal supercomputer in your pocket! That being said, I do find myself missing the tactile nature of retro tech. There's something about the physical buttons and switches on old consoles that just feels right. Gameboy Emulator on a phone Gameboy in the real world. And I can't help but feel that we've lost something in the transition to digital downloads and streaming. But I also can't deny the convenience of being able to carry around a library of games or music on a small device. At the same time, we can only listen to so many albums. I went on a 15-hour flight and filled my phone with hours of music, but ended up bringing 3 tapes and listening to them. It's like your closet; you may have a closet full of clothes, but only wear three shirts. In the end, I think the key is to strike a balance between the nostalgia and convenience of retro tech and the advancements of modern technology. I may be an outlaw, but I'm also a realist. And I know that progress is inevitable. But that doesn't mean we have to forget the past. We can learn from it and use it to make the future even better. So, whether it's taking a trip down memory lane with an old console or experimenting with the latest tech, I'll be out there, riding into the future Who we are Visual Smugglers creates short ads for brands and businesses. If you're struggling to find your look or voice, we can help. Book a call and view our demo reel here.

  • I can do my own marketing and 4 reasons why you shouldn't.

    Yes, you can, but should you? As a business owner, your top priority is likely the success and growth of your company. But have you ever stopped to think about the impact that your work may be having on your personal health and well-being? Working long hours, juggling multiple projects, and constantly being connected can take a toll on your physical and mental health. This is where a creative agency can come in to help. By outsourcing some of your workload to a team of professionals, you can free up time and energy to focus on taking care of yourself. Here are some of the top benefits of working with a creative agency for your health: Reduce stress: Collaborating with a creative agency can help alleviate some of the stress and pressure that comes with running a business. You can trust that your projects are in good hands and have peace of mind knowing that everything is being handled efficiently and effectively. Improve work-life balance: By outsourcing tasks to a creative agency, you can create a better balance between your work and personal life. This can help you feel more fulfilled and satisfied both professionally and personally. Boost creativity: Working with a team of creative professionals can also help spark new ideas and approaches to your business. This can lead to more innovative and effective solutions, as well as a renewed sense of excitement and motivation for your work. Enhance mental health: Finally, taking a step back and delegating tasks to a creative agency can also have a positive impact on your mental health. It can provide a sense of relief and allow you to focus on self-care, leading to improved overall well-being. In conclusion, partnering with a creative agency can bring numerous benefits to your health and well-being. By outsourcing tasks and freeing up time and energy, you can reduce stress, improve your work-life balance, boost creativity, and enhance your mental health. These benefits can not only lead to a happier and healthier you, but also a more successful and sustainable business in the long run.

  • What is branding?

    A common question we are asked is, what is branding? Branding is the process of creating and promoting a unique name and image for a product, service, or company. It involves the design of the product or service, the way it is marketed and advertised, and the customer service provided. A strong brand is built over time and requires consistency in all of these areas. The key elements of branding include the development of a brand identity, which includes a unique name, logo, and tagline, and the development of a brand message, which is the core message that a company wants to communicate to its customers. Having a strong brand can help to attract new customers, retain existing ones, increase loyalty, and build trust and credibility, leading to long-term success. It is important for businesses to invest time and resources into developing and promoting their brand in order to achieve success. Crib Notes (Summary) A logo is a person's clothes, an identity is what they think of themselves, and a brand is what they say and how they say it. Who we are Visual Smugglers creates short ads for brands and businesses. If you're struggling to find your look or voice, we can help. Book a call and view our demo reel here.

  • 🎻 Benito Realistic views on life

    We sat down with Benito (Tiktok Influencer) and talked about authenticity What 3 tips would you give to your young self? Benito TIP 1 Well, I feel like one tip that a lot of people would probably give their younger selves is to expand their way of thinking. Everyone naturally grows up in somewhat of a bubble. Less so now than before because of technology. The people around us, like the family and friends and school that we go to kind of reinforce that bubble. Then I think everyone kind of gets to the point where they start expanding upon how they think about it. TIP 2 I wish I could tell my younger self to value the parts of my identity, like mainly race. I think if you just don't think about it, you end up defaulting to society's worldview. You develop these inherent views of yourself and bring them into adulthood is kind of acknowledging those things and questioning them and seeing that they're wrong. I think that leads to better forms of self-empowerment. TIP 3 Then lastly, I would tell my younger self to focus on mental health more, that's definitely it. What are the three things you do to help develop who you are? The first thing that comes to mind is that I don't do this consistently, but every now and then I try to meditate. It stops the mind for a second and I think it's a skill to be able to observe one's thoughts and observe the world around them kind of like a third person. I think that's a skill that helps people look at to develop that skill through meditation. I also try to read or listen to audiobooks to get different perspectives from doing that on different things. That's right to do that pretty often. I work out as well. I try to do it consistently, but we fail, that's definitely something I tried to do. What are your thoughts on social media? My thoughts on social media are that it is just another form of technology. Let's say the internet is just another form of technology that's developed and then used by humans for good and bad. We invented planes and we use them for transportation to bomb the cities. The vehicle is invented and we see people use it for good and for bad and which in some ways is dangerous. Eventually, we get the rules and we wear seatbelts and we have all of these signs that we made up to. I think social media get's a lot of hate, and rightfully and I think it is equally as liberating as it is treacherous. I try to have somewhat of a balanced view on social media because I think it can be harmful to people's mental health. Cyberbullying and all these things, but at the same time, we get access to information. We get access to things going around the globe and different cultures and food. It connects everyone. I make content for social media. I keep in mind that it can be harmful, not only to other people but also to myself. Trying to take advantage to enjoy and participate in the ways that it's beneficial. You can follow Benito here Visual Smugglers is a boutique agency that is focused on helping brands connect with new customers on social media. This blog is about the minds that inspire us and teach us to banish the fears that stop us from being more authentic and growing to our fullest potential. This is the code we live by... 1. 🌱 GROWTH 2. 🧠#CRITICAL THINKING 3. 📲#COMMUNICATION 4. 🕸#INTENTION 5. 💪#DISCIPLINE 6. ⚖️#ACCOUNTABILITY 7. ⛏#AUTHENTICITY To book a call, view our reel and case studies, please visit the link

  • Be Your Own Guru with Gautam Narang

    We sat down with Gautam (Visual Smugglers CEO) and talked about authenticity What 4 tips would you give to your young self? Don’t only focus on your art, learn about other aspects of your craft. I see it all the time, you got to work on the business side as much as your craft. It’s not what you do when you’re busy, it’s what you do when you’re not busy. To me, when you’re not on a gig is just as important. When you're not working practising on your craft. How are you using your free time? Use it wisely. Get used to saying No. You give your time, energy and end up spending your own money, so make sure your investment is really pushing you in the direction of your goal. As artists, we tend to trust others and their vision, but if they can’t show you a process and only talk about vision. That’s a red flag. The first thing I do when working with a new client is to find their intention and goals. If you don’t do this, it can end up freestyle and you end up wasting your time. What are 3 things you to do help develop who you are? Self Reflection - The world will tell you what is wrong with you, but you got to block that noise. You have to not only be a critic but also objective. You are your own guru. Only you know what you need to do. So it’s important to expand your mind and go down the rabbit hole. Books and Ted talks, help me understand my own behaviour and then take appropriate actions. Knowledge - Knowledge is power, they can take away everything from you, but they can’t take away your knowledge. Everyday I push myself to learn a little more. If you don’t know, you don’t know what to look out for. Also, on the other hand, I’ve also found the more I learn, the more I learn I know nothing. Trial and error - It’s true, success comes through failure. You got to keep experimenting. When you're a kid. To walk, you fall down 1,00s of times and then you finally walk. That’s like life. I think we all overcomplicate things. What are your thoughts on social media? It’s a double edged sword. It’s definitely affected our behaviour. The great thing is, I’ve seen it change. It wasn’t really a problem when I first got exposed to it. Instagram used to just be art photography and I remember not spending much time on it. When it was opened to the masses and stories was introduced. It became really addictive. If we are what we eat, we are also what we consume. So now, I just end up following paintings and illustrations. I was noticing too much noise and don’t want to be bombarded by others. So I try and keep my feed evergreen and thus follow mainly painting accounts, photography and other agencies. We need to disconnect from machines. There is something so great about going to a music store and having an album catch your attention. It’s the magic, digital can’t bring that. I feel one day, my goal is to be off the grid. "If you had to summarize this whole interview in one sentence, what would be the main takeaway?” Be self-aware, is important for growth and you got to be your own delegator, critics, cheerleader and objective. Nobody is going to help you but yourself, so go on a journey and discover who you are. Go down the rabbit whole. Less talk more visuals Visual Smugglers is a boutique agency that is focused on helping brands connect with new customers on social media. This blog is about the minds that inspire us and teach us to banish the fears that stop us from being more authentic and growing to our fullest potential. This is the code we live by... 1. 🌱 GROWTH 2. 🧠#CRITICAL THINKING 3. 📲#COMMUNICATION 4. 🕸#INTENTION 5. 💪#DISCIPLINE 6. ⚖️#ACCOUNTABILITY 7. ⛏#AUTHENTICITY

  • The Importance of Self-Awareness and Discipline

    We sat down with Adom and talked about his secrets to consistency and discipline. What four tips would you give to your younger self? Adom: 1st get rid of your ego as soon as possible. Keep accountable, keep yourself and everyone else around you accountable. Stand by what you say 2nd, don't say something if you're not going to do it. 3rd Art is meaningless focus on getting money. What are the three things you do to help develop who you are? Adom: I have a fairly established and disciplined routine that keeps me consistent. Duolingo and fitness are the basis of my discipline right now. I’m committed to doing them every day. I also try to be as self-aware as possible, which is done through self auditing. Journaling is very helpful for that. You can actually look back on your previous self, you know, take notes. What are your thoughts on social media? It’s a gift and a curse, depending on how it's used. It's very easy to place too much importance on social media, which is what a lot of people do nowadays. So as with almost anything, it has its uses in moderation. In what we do, it's very beneficial for us. It's vital, for certain things, but I feel it's very easy for people to convince themselves that they are using social media to network and get jobs. When in reality, 80% of the time spent on social media platforms is actually just pointless. So it's just something that should be used with a lot of accountability, especially since a lot of these apps were specifically designed to keep people on the app and to draw us in. In summary if you are trying to establish a successful creative career; discipline and mindset are key. Art cannot be the sole focus of your endeavour. Being accountable for yourself and your team, practising consistency and becoming almost painfully self-aware are pivotal aspects of success. Visual Smugglers is a boutique agency that is focused on helping brands connect with new customers on social media. This blog is about the minds that inspire us and teach us to banish the fears that stop us from being more authentic and growing to our fullest potential. This is the code we live by... 1. 🌱 GROWTH 2. 🧠#CRITICAL THINKING 3. 📲#COMMUNICATION 4. 🕸#INTENTION 5. 💪#DISCIPLINE 6. ⚖️#ACCOUNTABILITY 7. ⛏#AUTHENTICITY To book a call, view our reel and case studies, please visit the link

  • The Story of Aaniin - A Brand With A Deeper Message

    We sat down with Chelsee-Marie Pettit (Business owner) and talked authenticity through her clothing brand A conversation about educating others while growing a brand that has a deeper message Question What 4 tips would you give to your young self? Chelsee My first tip would be there are multiple different ways to learn. Just because you aren't really figuring it out in day-to-day schooling and in the regular system doesn't mean that you're stupid. You can definitely go on to accomplish really amazing things. The second would be to trust your instincts. I don't know why I just think things and they end up coming true. So I just would tell myself to trust my instincts earlier. Third, don't look for approval. Do what you think is right. I always thought growing up every adult that I listened to is always right. When you become an adult you realize like wow, you know nothing. So take everybody's opinion with a grain of salt, and then again, just trust your instincts. Lastly don't get defensive over other people's perspectives of you. Just because people are criticizing you doesn't mean you have to listen to what they're saying. Basically just taking yourself less seriously. Question What are 3 things you to do help develop who you are? First self-confidence, everyone who knows me always knows I'm very confident and I'm very assured with what I decide to do. I just try to learn from my mistakes, and I think that's why it makes me so confident because I know that I've experienced many things through trial and error. So when I do come up with something that I do feel passionate about, it's always from a positive place. It's not because I want to be right. It's just because I'm so sure that it's going to work. If I didn't have the self-confidence that I did. Basically working in retail, I was very young. I was like 18 and by the time I was 21, I had my own retail store. So it's just being very persistent asking questions that would lead you to good possibilities and really not taking no for an answer. And if it is a no, you're always asking why is it, and you're learning from those experiences. Second, always ask questions. This kind of goes with the first one, but don't be afraid to ask questions. The worst that you're ever going to hear is no. People can allow themselves to feel that intensely, but go in accepting that the worst-case scenario is no, then you're never going to be caught off guard and you're always going to accept whatever outcome comes with it. Third, take risks that you believe in. So don't just put your word into anything. Always kind of keep in mind that you want to keep credibility. You just want to have that self-confidence you want to ask questions, and I think in turn that just allows you to take smart risks and always be calculated. Question What are 3 things you do that help improve yourself? So these three things are the things that I've done recently. I started to learn Anishinaabemowin which is the language of Ojibwe. Since my ancestors had spoken it I feel that there's less of a learning curve in terms of just being able to actually enunciate and not feel embarrassed when I'm trying to speak it. That's like a thing that I recently started doing that I feel has brought me a lot of healing in general. And I feel like it's making me a better person. My second one would be to educate others in my community. I grew up surrounded by a lot of non-indigenous people. So, I'm kind of making it my goal, not to speak for all indigenous people, but just to make that bridge. As an indigenous person being around non-indigenous people all the time. You obviously, think like them, and then you start to kind of second guess things that might be coming naturally to you. So making it more accessible for people to ask questions and be able to learn without having to kind of overstep boundaries. So, that's why I had QR codes on my clothing. I think it's more meaningful and proficient for non-indigenous to be able to spread the message on like what they're wearing. A lot of the people that buy my clothing, don't know what syllabics are. You always want that self-teaching and hold yourself to learning about other people's cultures. So I think having the QR codes on the garments kind of allows that to happen opening an entry-level gateway to come together. Last is to partner with other indigenous people. I'm really excited to be partnering with other indigenous designers and bead workers, jewellery designers on my website, this upcoming new year. The whole point of that is I want to create a platform where you don't have to buy from just one indigenous person but from several or a few. So somebody likes one of my hats and they like a set of beaded earrings it basically cuts down the shipping costs for both of us. It also creates better word of mouth for both people. So that's kind of my next goal is to create a platform where we can all come together and share our own experiences, our own ideas and kind of bridge a stronger community. While educating the rest of North America. In summary, educating others about your culture can really help the next generation behind you that may face the same issues you did. By finding a bridge that connects education and a product that everyone enjoys can open doors to cultural appreciation. You can buy Chelsee's products on and view her product on her Instagram. Visual Smugglers is a boutique agency that is focused on helping brands connect with new customers on social media. This blog is about the minds that inspire us and teach us to banish the fears that stop us from being more authentic and growing to our fullest potential. This is the code we live by... 1. 🌱 GROWTH 2. 🧠#CRITICAL THINKING 3. 📲#COMMUNICATION 4. 🕸#INTENTION 5. 💪#DISCIPLINE 6. ⚖️#ACCOUNTABILITY 7. ⛏#AUTHENTICITY To book a call, view our reel and case studies, please visit the link

  • The balance between joy and work

    We sat down with Naz Nahidi and talked about authenticity A conversation about authenticity through the eyes of an Artist and Illustrator Question What tips would you give to your young self? Naz Number one do your homework. Don't slack off because you're wasting time. For example, Like the first two years of OCAD, I just didn't really pay attention. I kind of just flowed through, and I missed a lot of opportunities that way. Not only did I lose the opportunity to have to show my peers, what I could really do cause I was skilled. I also miss opportunities to be able to apply to shows. During school and using the facilities at school to showcase my work. Second, take advantage of all the opportunities that are there in school. Because there's a lot of things that are available to you in the bubble of being in a university that is not available to you when you leave the studio space. And teachers to talk to, peers to talk to and connect with art shows to put up with no pressure. Third have confidence. This could be like a universal feeling. You know, as an artist you're kind of like special in what you do, but then you go to OCAD or you go to your specialized field and everyone's special suddenly. I would say if I could go back, I would just focus on just making work and not worrying about any of that. Just doing my own thing and not worrying about what other people are doing. Like if it's cool, if it's interesting, just kind of doing my thing and seeking out opportunities that will benefit me. Question How do you push past the creative block? Sometimes I try to figure out first what's creating the block. Like, am I just doing a lot of commissions that are not really my style and not really feeding into my purpose? Then I need to enrich myself by researching topics that I'm interested in. What I like to do is go to indigo and look at magazines like juxtapose, design and illustrations to get inspiration. Just looking at how they're designed and all the cool drawings of what everyone's doing kind of gets me excited. And going out seeing art helps me, like going into galleries seeing again what other people are doing. Going to the library and reading about an artist that I like. I like tapping into the things that used to excite me in the past, usually help and then putting a bit of music on and just kind of meditating on these thoughts, ideas, brainstorming, things like that. Question What are things you to do help develop who you are? Improving your skill, for example, just sitting down and doing still life drawings, figure drawing or practicing things that I like to do. It's kind of boring, but it's just practice. Reading, having an open mind, talking to new people and doing things that make me uncomfortable. Question What are your thoughts on social media? I don't even consider Instagram social media anymore. Instagram is just like work and an online portfolio. You can start creating work just for social media for likes but it's very draining. I feel if you're competing with your peers in a healthy way, it only helps to move your work forward, and make your work better because otherwise, what are you doing it for? Question How did you fall in love with illustration? I used to do a lot of oil painting. Then as I grew up I kind of realized that I was just doing it because it seemed like the proper thing to do and actually oil painting doesn't actually fit my life very well. It takes a lot of time to dry. It doesn't make sense with the type of work that I do. And my stuff is funny and silly and kind of fast. I started realizing being able to work fast, being able to work digitally, working in a clean environment helps. Getting out ideas that I'm thinking of that are kind of funny and topical. That's what's important to me and that's what makes it fun for me. So I started focusing on that and then realized that okay my work actually makes more sense as an illustration rather than being a painter. In summary, it takes a lot of work to stay in a creative mode. Sometimes we must accept that today isn't our day creatively, but this gives us an opportunity to do things we once enjoyed, for example, reading, researching and looking at peers or your favourite artist's work. You can view Naz's work on her Instagram. Visual Smugglers is a boutique agency that believes in creating content that is authentic. Asking the question to get to the root of WHO you ARE and WHO you do it for. To book a call, view our reel and case studies, please visit.

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