Interview: Chantal Lenting
Chantal is a designer and blogger. Her love for design and art is shown throughout her blog. I was lucky enough to interview Chantal about her work and career plans.
Hello! Thank you so much for letting me interview you. How are you?
Thank you so much for having me! I am doing fine, thank you for asking.
Tell us a little bit about your background.
Hi, I am Chantal. I am a 22-year-old art student and lifestyle blogger. I am in my last year of being an art student, I own lots of plants and I love to draw all day long.
I adore your work. What inspired you to start doing illustration?
Thank you so much! It means a lot. I always loved to draw even when I was a little kid. Currently, I am studying to become a teacher in Art & Design. But, I noticed that during my study there was no room for my drawings. I decided to keep on drawing at home and in my free time. It grew to become one of my passions.
Have you always been into illustrations and design?
As I said I have been drawing since I was a little kid but I got into illustrations and design more when I entered art school three years ago. I got to meet inspiring people that accepted me as a person. This lead to more confidence when it came to my drawings.
How has your creative process changed since the start?
My creative process honestly never ends. I always have a little sketchbook with me to draw whenever I feel like it. I even have a sketchbook on my nightstand. So when I wake up in the middle of the night, I can doodle.
I adore your business. What made you decide to set up Oceaan Groen?
I started my blog when I was fourteen years old. It always has been a part of me. As I grew older and more confident in myself and in my art, I decided it was time for a change. So I changed my blog from a fashion theme to an art and lifestyle theme when I entered art school. Oceaan Groen is Dutch for Ocean Green, which is basically my favourite colour. I needed a space where I could share my creations and thoughts.
What do you include on your blog?
My blogs contains, of course, my own work but also reviews of art materials I like. I also like to share my thoughts upon mental health and let’s not forget my photography.
Do you have any advice for photographers?
Create endlessly. Photography is endless. Find your own style and work with that. There is so much to discover and there should be no fears of making a mistake.
How did you manage to learn and hone your craft?
By staying curious. Ask yourself questions, explore and learn. My illustrations, my photography are all self-thought. These are the things I didn’t learn in art school.
Do you have any favourite pieces of work that you adore at the moment from your shop?
My absolutely favourite is my greenhouse print. It will probably always be my favourite.
What equipment do you use for your work?
Oh good question, I use lots of things. Copic Markers, Gouache paint, ink, digital drawing pad and my screen print kit.
What tools or materials could you not live without?
Basically all the materials I named in the previous questions.
If there were no resource restraints, what would be your dream project?
I would love to set up my own stationery line.
Why has social media been an important platform for you to use?
It made me learn to value and appreciate and love my own art more.
Who inspires your work?
@liekeland and @katepugsley are my favourite illustrators and of course Matisse, who doesn’t love Matisse. I happen to be blessed with some talented friends who are illustrators themselves. @studiosilvana and @madelonvanderavoort inspire me for the human beings that they are and for the work they create.
What are you currently working on?
I am currently busy with setting up my web shop and preparing myself for my last year in art school.
What's your typical working day?
I go to school full time. So I go to art school from 9 till 5, get home and work in the evening and the weekends. It is basically filled with replying to lots of mails, creating tons of photos and drawing.
What's been the biggest struggle in getting your business off the ground?
The fear of not being good enough. There are lots of amazing illustrators and bloggers out there. But sometimes you just have to take the leap and do as your heart says.
Do you have any favourite pieces of design work or illustrations that you adore at the moment
Yes, I do! I am absolutely in love with this piece by Liekeland https://www.instagram.com/p/BX0RK_YhrPh/?taken-by=liekevandervorst
What do we hope to see in this up and coming year for your Instagram and your work?
I honestly don’t know. I am not that of person that plans ahead. I don’t want to focus on the future but I want to focus on myself and my creations in the present day. I will see what comes to my path.
What are your career plans?
As I am in my last year of art school, I might decide to study photography in the upcoming years and I would love the keep on blogging and illustrating next to my study and maybe, if it is possible, work in an art museum for art education.
Do you have any advice for anyone who would like to start drawing or creating illustrations?
Just do it. Don’t let yourself or others tell otherwise, just do it. You will grow by creating and you will notice that if you keep on creating.
Do you have any advice for designers?
Go beyond your own limits, stay curious and work hard.
What's next for Oceaan Groen?
I honestly don’t know. I don’t want to focus on the future but I want to focus on myself and my creations in the present day. I will see what comes to my path.
What's the best piece of creative advice you've ever been given?
“There is no need to strive for perfection because you and your work are already perfect. Just good enough.”
You can follow this lovely lady on her Instagram ‘http://www.instagram.com/i_stolethemoon’ and her blog ‘http://www.oceaangroen.com/blog’. Chantal is always posting wonderful designs, blog posts and artwork.