We had the good fortune of connecting with Katie Connolly and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Katie, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
It was kind of a happy accident—the first few gigs I got were friends of friends that needed a logo or something similar. After my first experience getting to work one-on-one with a client, I immediately knew it was something I wanted to continue doing. As I expanded my client base, the projects I took on started to get bigger and more in-depth, and before I knew it I was officially open for business! I love freelancing because it gives me a lot of creative freedom and allows me to tap into my most imaginative mindsets to thoroughly explore every design request. At times, the design process can be a bit of a maze to navigate through, but every new challenge and obstacle to tackle are what makes it fun for me. There are always new things to discover in design, and I think that’s a huge part of the reason I decided to officially become a Freelance Graphic Designer.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I remember back to when I first started—which feels like a century ago—I never dreamed I would be where I am today. At that time, my design “experience” was merely based in interest, so you could say I had humble beginnings. As time passed my skills and experience grew (thankfully), and I started to trust my gut more with design decisions. Of course, there were occasions where I didn’t listen to my intuition, which usually caused me some grief, but I believe this helped me learn a lot of valuable lessons in my business dealings. Nowadays things run more smoothly, and I thoroughly enjoy each and every project that comes my way. I think the two most popular requests I get are for branding and website designs, but I also have a lot of logo and marketing-related requests as well.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Well, I’ve always been a sports fan, so I might take them to an Astros game for starters (post-covid of course). I’d probably also venture out to some of the museums downtown since I’m a bit of a nerd. Food-wise there are a lot of really awesome places downtown, so seeking out restaurants would probably make up the majority of the trip! If we’re feeling a little fancy though, I might take them to a little place near Dairy Ashford called Lynn’s Steakhouse. It’s a fantastic restaurant with an amazing atmosphere. Definitely a great way to end a quiet night.
The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
Thankfully, when I was starting my freelance business, I had the support of both family members and friends who also have their own businesses. I learned a lot from their experiences and they advised me at a lot of pivotal points. Whenever I had a question, they were always there with an answer or a mutual desire to brainstorm possibilities. I honestly wouldn’t be as successful without their aid, so I can’t even begin to describe how thankful I am to have them in my life. To Melanie & Chris Connolly as well as Peg Garrity, thank you all for your continuous guidance and support. I’d also like to give a special shoutout to Andrew Rivera and Ahyana Riley, who aid me with some of my more crucial design decisions. They have exceptional visual design skills and often help me out of a rut whenever I’m feeling stuck.