Meet Erin Silliman
Artistic creation has always been a part of who I am. I graduated with a fine arts degree in Illustration almost 20 years ago. Since then I have dabbled in many different creative ventures - freelance illustration, logo work, a small online shop. All of this quite sporadic and as time allowed while raising our four children. As our youngest was getting ready to begin kindergarten, I began looking to narrow and tune my creative energy. That is when I discovered surface pattern design and Bonnie on Instagram. Surface pattern design seemed to me to be the perfect combination of my love for illustration and a clear practical application of design. With all my kids about to be in school, I thought it was a wonderful opportunity to learn and surface pattern would become the avenue in which I could work on my own terms and schedule.
I began Bonnie’s Immersion course and absolutely loved it. I loved being able to illustrate and the magic of turning artwork into repeating patterns. Bonnie’s course is so well organized and she is a delight to listen to and learn from. I was truly inspired! Surface pattern design is definitely for me. An unexpected benefit of the course was the increased knowledge of the illustrator program that immensely improved my logo design skills. It truly has been one of the best investments I have made for my creative side hustle as well as my personal learning and development.
When Covid hit, things changed for everyone. The time I thought I would have to work on learning and designing disappeared as my kids ended up being online and at home for school for almost 2 years. The beauty of Bonnie’s course, and the flexibility that it allows made it possible for me to return to lessons as I was able. I learned pattern design on my own schedule and pace - which was not quick, and that is okay. My kids were able to go back to school this year which has allowed my paused plan to begin to play out again.
It has taken a lot of hard work and courage too, but I am so excited that just this week I ordered fabric with my own print design on it from a pod site for the first time. I am working on a website which will be launching soon. It will feature my very first complete pattern collection. I feel like I am on the precipice of some thing good, something rewarding and fulfilling. It is a wonderful feeling. I will always be grateful that I decided to take the immersion program. My 40th birthday is coming up this year, and I am so happy to still be learning and growing as an artist and designer at this point in my life. It has been confirmed to me that it is never too late to learn something new and that it is okay to lean in to the seasons of life. Because when you find a worthy place to put your energy, exciting new beginnings can happen any time.