Emily Balsley in Her Happy Place

Emily Balsley's illustrations

PORTRAIT OF AN ARTIST

IN 2002, graphic designer Emily Balsley landed a great job at Pacific Cycle. But when she had a baby in 2008 and started freelancing, she realized that she was happiest while drawing. She decided to go for it, taking classes and building up a portfolio of commercial illustration. In 2013, her decision to take the leap was validated when Lilla Rogers Studio, a renowned illustration agency, selected Balsley’s work among the top five out of 1,500 in its “GlobalTalent Search.”

Last year Balsley joined the Happy Happy Art Collective, a group of six women working to create and share their complementary illustration styles, and now Balsley is in a happy, happy place. Her illustration and graphic design work—from animation, company logos, magazine graphics, hand-drawn type invitations and even a kids’ cookbook, to fabrics, plates, clever prints, posters and, our favorites, her playful custom family portraits—keep her quite and creatively busy.

– Karin Wolf

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