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Alice Jeong, graphic designer, illustrator, and entrepreneur

Alice Jeong, graphic designer, illustrator, and entrepreneur

Published by Leonardo Calcagno

who are you?

I am Alice Yeonju Jeong. I usually go by Alice Jeong. I am a graphic designer, illustrator, and an entrepreneur.

Your current job:

I do freelance work and manage my online shop – Alice Jeong Studio, where I design and sell my own art work such as greeting cards, art prints, and tote bags.I launched my online shop in 2016 on Etsy. I have had ups and downs with running my shop. I’m still learning from mistakes I make as I go. 

In Which city are you located?

I am located in Toronto, Canada

A word to define what kind of worker you are

Persistence. I make it happen.

What tools are essentials to your life?

My go-to tools to document/sketch my ideas are of course my good old sketchbook and my pen/pencil. I make as many thumbnail sketches as possible before I go to the next stage, which is drawing.

I use tracing paper to edit my drawing/design so I can make changes without directly affecting my originals. This saves me a lot of time because I can simply “undo” the changes by lifting up the tracing paper.

A scanner is another valuable tool since I use it often to bring my drawings to my computer. I mainly use Adobe products such as Photoshop and Illustrator to execute my work. I also can’t get any work done without a Wacom tablet. 

What does your office space look like?

As a freelancer, I don’t have an office space since I work from home. I don’t have a designated working station as I tend to move around in the house because I find that switching my work stations refreshing. My “main” desk is set near the window so I can enjoy bright day light. I keep my sketchbook, Mac computer, scanner, and Wacom tablet on my desk. I also like to keep art books around me so I can be inspired when I get stuck in a creative process. Other than digital tools, I also use traditional media such as watercolor, brushes, rollers, and ink, which is tucked away in a little drawer in my bottom shelf. 

What kind of music do you listen to when you are working?

I usually tune into podcasts or stream YouTube or Netflix in the background when I am working. I work alone at home so I find having someone talking in background oddly comforting.

Do you have a way to organize your day to maximize your work?

I decide what needs to be done for the day and break them into smaller tasks so my daily goals seem more manageable. That way, I can focus on one task at a time without getting distracted or stressed.

What tips would you give to improve productivity?

I find that spending some time away from a desk and doing physical activities like taking a walk or going to the gym really helps. It might feel like a waste of time at first, but in a long run, it increases productivity. I’ve been going to the gym 3-5 days a week for two years now and it really changed me and my life in a good way. It allows me to stay focus, positive, and have a healthy life style, which all lead to increased productivity in a long run.

You’re better than your colleagues to:

Peel apples in a long perfect thin strip lol. Well, on a more serious note, I think everyone is different and unique. We all have different styles, weaknesses, and strengths. I used to compare myself to my peers and it wasn’t fun or healthy. My motto is to be a better version of my self than yesterday and I try to make that happen however small baby step I make every day.

“Sometimes you’re ahead, sometimes you’re behind. The race is long and in the end, it’s only with yourself” – “Everybody’s Free to Wear Sunscreen”

What is the best advice anyone has given you? 

I actually got this advice from one of the podcasts I listen to-“Happier with Gretchen Rubin” and the advice is 

“We tend to overestimate what we can do in a short period, and underestimate what we can do over a long period, provided we work slowly and consistently” 

What is your best tip for saving time?

Set up a 40-50 min. timer (depending on your attention time span) and do not do anything else but focus on your task at hand before the alarm goes off. And remember to take 5-10 min break and stretch or walk around. It really helps with refreshing your mind. 

What is your routine start and end of the day?

I start my day with morning stretches and a cup of water. I end my day on Facebook facetime chat with my fiancé who lives in NYC.

Aside from your computer and your phone, what gadget can you not you go without?

My Kindle Fire. I carry this device with me pretty much everywhere I go. I use this device to read books when I’m on a subway or to pass time while waiting for my friends/food to arrive.