Q&A: Empowering Alphabet

The Alphabet. but Empowered.

#empoweringalphabet contains words of encouragement, faith, and general bad assery to remind you that you are amazing and powerful.


Why did you decide to draw empowered sayings?

I really wanted to feel like this every day. Photo from unsplash.com

I really wanted to feel like this every day. Photo from unsplash.com

It all started because I really needed some reassurance in my life. Anyone can Pinterest search ‘empowering phrases’ and become bombarded with cheesy, overly optimistic, or too religious (for my personal taste) of sayings. I decided I wanted to challenge myself right then and there to create phrases that resonated with me. Because I’ve learned I work well with an end date in mind, I limited myself to the number of letters in the alphabet.


Did you set any restrictions for yourself?

Besides creating a phrase starting with every letter of the alphabet, I also limited myself to four color combinations. These were used in a sequence throughout the whole challenge.


Did you have an idea of what you were going to do for each letter?

I actually had started a Trello board of sayings back in May of 2017. Once I got this idea for my challenge, I adapted some of the sayings to fit within my guidelines. Just for a rough timeline, I didn’t start this challenge until October of 2017 and I just finished my last letter Nov 2 of 2018.

I added, deleted, and tweaked sayings through out the time of this challenge, so I had a rough idea of what I wanted each letter to say but many were changed within the week of me creating it.


What is your process for creating a saying?

Photo from unsplash.com

Photo from unsplash.com

I began sketching the saying in different layouts and I would play with upper case vs lower case. Once I found a form I liked, I would scan in the sketch and re-create the lettering in Illustrator. During the start of this challenge, I loved the round brush stroke because while it had a little playfulness to it but was all one uniform weight. After the letters were completed, I would layer with colors and a dot pattern I had created from my palette.


Which letter was the most stressful?

You know what my least favorite letter to create is? A capital D. Ugh. My hands just haven’t created a ‘D’ that I think is pretty.

Letter U wasn’t necessarily stressful, but a challenge because ‘UNapologetically’ was a lot longer than most of the words in the rest of the alphabet challenge.

Other than that, what was actually stressful was trying to stick within my restrictions I had created over a year before this project finished. My style has changed from a monoline form and it was really hard to not add embellishments (I had to give into the temptation on Letter R and Letter X).


Which letter is your favorite?


Well of course the one that I broke the rule, Letter R: Radiate from within.
I also enjoyed Letter P: PERFectLY imPERFect because I really enjoyed how the letters interacted with each other.
Letter F: f☆@k YES was also a fave because I enjoyed integrating shapes and symbols in.


How did you feel during the process?

Unlike my successful #108daysofLOST challenge or my failed attempt at #100daysofpets, I really enjoyed not forcing myself to make a letter every day. If I didn’t feel inspired to create a saying that day, then I wouldn’t. If I felt a rush of creative energy to make 2 or 3 sayings in a day, then I would. That was the really important thing for me to respect in order to make this challenge a fun one!


How do you feel now that it's complete?

Gif from giphy.com

Gif from giphy.com

This sums it up. I’ve definitely grown more confident in myself and my design style. I’m also relieved to have it done, so I can focus on my evolved style of lettering. I also don’t feel like I’ve quite shut the door on this project, as I have a desire to create some postcards or stickers with these phrases on them :) Weigh in on the comments if you have an idea of what I can do with these sayings!


What have you learned about yourself?

As a designer, I’ve learned it’s okay to only design when your passionate. I truly believe the joy I had when I was creating these shows through in my final pieces. I’ve learned it’s also okay to change and adapt my style and it’s really fun to see how that’s progressed over the year of this project.


Will any of the sayings be available for purchase?

I would definitely like to do something with these now that the alphabet is complete, so stay tuned :)

 See the full Empowering Alphabet by clicking here.