Hello everyone! So you want to know about me and how I got to this point, huh? Cool stuff! I do like to tell people about me (sometimes I'm known for oversharing) so grab a cuppa, a biscuit or two and get comfy. I'd be lying if I said this will be brief. You've been warned!
Hey, hey, hey!
I promise I'm not this miserable in real life. This was the most recent photo I could find of myself where I'm wearing something that isn't my pyjamas
And, who are you?
My name is Sarah-Lou, a.k.a Giggabubs and I am an illustrator. I love doodling cute, kawaii pictures and creating cute patterns that hope to put a smile on your face. Initially I thought it would be great to use my drawings to create stationery, but why stop there. My cute drawings should be EVERYWHERE. So no longer am I just wishing to create stationery, I want to make commissioned art, book illustrations, wherever art is needed, there I will be. So, here I am!
I live in Birmingham U.K with my two little girls Zari and Brie. They are my world and largely the reason that I'm even starting my own business.
How did you start out?
STORY TIME: I actually got into art accidentally. About 4 years ago I had a bit of a mini non-midlife crisis and decided I need a change in direction. All my adult life I just worked because that was what you're meant to do right. You go to school, maybe go to college, then get a job to support yourself. I ended up working in various customer service jobs which is great, but I wasn't doing something I loved. The things I loved doing were all creative (I used to dream about being an actress!), but I grew up during a time where the idea of making a living at being creative meant you were going to starve. So with that idea shoved to one side, I looked at my "transferable skills" and was studying to get into financial compliance. Try saying that really fast after a couple jagerbombs!
So I had to pass 3 exams to get my foundation qualification thing which would mean I could do the higher level of...other stuff (look, I don't exactly remember what it was called, but just know that it was super important). I managed to pass 2 of the exams and had just 1 left. I'm gonna be super honest with you, I knew I was going to fail even before I sat the exam as I couldn't get my head round the module. So it wasn't a massive surprise that I failed. What I was surprised by, was that it wasn't by that much. Because of that, I decided to retake the exam but I'd have to wait a few months for the updated coursework to come out. Whilst I was waiting, I started doing random doodles during my spare time. Doodling on scraps of paper and on any bit of blank space on paper I had to hand. It was actually my BFF Minhaz (yes, you got a mention :P) who suggested I get a sketchbook and it kinda just evolved from there. Over the next few years I drew on and off, trying to hone in on my style and actually what type of art I want to do. I then hit a bit of a wall with my confidence and not having a clue how I could turn my dream into something more, so for a while I actually gave it up and looked into retrying my compliance exams.
This is my Zari. Super independent, totally bossy and with a heart of gold
Here is my Brie. For a ickle bubba, she is SOOO chilled. She's always smiling...unless she's hungry
Say what?! Tell me, what got you back into drawing?
My daughters, Zari and Brie. Becoming a mum exhaust the actual hell out of you, like in a way that you can't physically or mentally prepare for, but it also puts things into a whole new perspective. I'm not happy with my job and I want to be able to do something which gives me the flexibility to be there for my girls as and when. I want to teach my girls that they can be anything they want. I wanted to set an example and show them that they can do something which makes them happy AND support them financially. but how can I do this when I'm not following my own passion? To set an example, you gotta practice what you preach right. Plus I wanted to do something for myself that didn't involve watching several hours of kid videos on YouTube.
So whilst on maternity leave for the second time, I looked back at my art, my style and had a really long think about where I could take it. I knew I had to learn some new skills and I somehow ended up watching a video about how to create a surface patterned it just spoke to me. You mean I get to draw super cute characters and can turn it into my something I love, stationery! Say WHAT!?!?!? And here I am. Taking a plunge into an unknown area, squirming from being beyond my comfort zone, but I must say I'm LOVING that I'm just here giving it a go!
Where did the name Giggabubs come from?
It's a mash of two words, giggles and bubbles. Years ago I asked my older sister Stacey to give me a nickname. She was known as The Gaffer (aka The Boss) and I thought Bubbles would work for me. Yeah she didn't like that. She started saying that Bubbles was naff and that the name should be something that was more me and that I'm always giggling...Giggles. The name never really took but i never forgot it. Sadly my sister passed a way and when it came to thinking of a username for my art,I thought it be nice to somehow add her into it. As you can imagine, giggles was already taken and so was bubbles.So smushed it together and that's how Giggabubs was born!