Shana's Artist: Jushmu
Hi! Tell us a little bit about you.
I’m Julie, an Illustrator and Designer from Ontario, Canada specializing in making silly designs for silly people! I used to be an in-house graphic designer in the tech space and then quit back in March of 2020 (maybe not the best timing haha). Since then I’ve been running my online shop, Jushmu, and freelancing full time. I started my Jushmu shop back in late 2016, and have been plugging away ever since!
What was the first type of "art" you made?
In high school I practiced traditional art, but I got my first drawing tablet in my 12th year. It was a small Wacom Bamboo tablet, and I used my VERY limited knowledge of photoshop to learn to draw digitally. But, really I drew mainly traditionally until I was out of college. I’d typically use coloured pencil,markers, acrylic and gouache paints. About a year out of college though I finally bought my first on screen drawing tablet, my 22hd Cintiq. After that most of my work became digital, however, I’ve been trying to get back into analog drawing and painting again!
When it came to selling art though, I started off with prints, pins and stickers 🙂
When did you start designing pins, stickers and washi tape?
I started designing pins and stickers I think in late 2016-early 2017! I started designing washi tape and stationery late 2021 I believe, but it’s been a ton of fun branching out and trying new products!
You create so many cute characters. Got a favorite?
It’s so hard to choose, but I think my favourite would have to be my lil Cowboy Kitty. He’s just so rootin’ and tootin’ I just can’t help but smile when I look at this lil fella!
And what I really want to know is...Do you ride the Sad Bitch Express too? Anxiety Twins UNITE!
Heck yeah I do!! In fact, the Sad Bitch Express was the original design and I didn’t entirely intend on creating the other ones haha. But in all seriousness, I have ADHD, PMDD, Anxiety, and Depression, and I think I was in the middle of a depressive episode when I created this design. Truthfully, a lot of my mental health related designs come from those types of places where I’m struggling particularly hard that day–those are the ones that really connect with who I am as a person and it’s been really heartwarming seeing those designs connect with other people who understand those kinds of struggles. But when I make these designs I always end up adding in those silly elements because they help me get out of those bad days,and I think that’s been very therapeutic for me
What's the hardest thing about making and selling pins and stickers?
I think the hardest part for me is knowing what will sell and how much inventory to get. The nice part about making my own stickers is that I can make as many as I need, but when it comes to pins and other products I outsource I have minimum quantities that I have to order. That means if the design doesn’t do well I’m stuck with that inventory for months or even years sometimes. It can be really hard to know what designs will sell sometimes because even if there’s a lot of interest on my social channels, I’ve had many times where I end up making the product and then sell maybe a handful. It can be tough!
Do you have any pets?
I have 2 cats: Eevee (calico, 10yrs) and Piper (orange tabby, 9yrs) and a husky, Entei (4 yrs). Needless to say there’s hair everywhere haha!
When I was around 12/13, my best friend’s family was big into darts (yes, the pub game!). They were entering a tournament and they needed a fourth for their team and I joined. We actually came in 2nd in all of Ontario (and we should have come first, but the other team in the finals complained to the judges about a technicality in the semi finals. So we weren’t supposed to face them, but BOY were they taking the tournament incredibly seriously and our team was 100% just messing around. I don’t think they like the super small town team that was really rough around the edges haha. But yeah, I came in 2nd in Ontario for darts, and barely played it again!
Anything else you'd like to add?
Not that I can think of right now! Thanks for interviewing me, it’s been a blast! 🙂