If you've been a business owner for longer than 5 minutes, you know design needs have the tendency to pop up everywhere.
You need a logo, a website, promo materials, business cards, blog graphics, pricing guides, packaging materials...
And that's just the tip of the iceberg. But how do you create them?
Introducing Adobe Illustrator Basics
Adobe Illustrator Basics uses video lessons and practice files to teach you how to create custom, one-of-a-kind graphics for your business using Adobe Illustrator.
I'm not going to teach you every capability of Adobe Illustrator - that would be incredibly overwhelming and time-consuming.
Instead, you'll receive simple, practical tutorials on the basic functionalities of Illustrator and create items like inspiration boards, blog graphic templates, and website buttons to help set your business apart.
The best part? You'll no longer be in a bind when a design need inevitably pops up.
My name is Lauren Hooker, and I'm a graphic designer, online business strategist, and the founder of Elle & Company.
The crazy thing is that I never wanted those titles.
The graphic designer one, maybe. But the business strategist and entrepreneur part? I wanted no part of that.
I grew up in an entrepreneurial household - my dad owned a gym in our small hometown - and I saw how much hard work, stress, and time went into running a business.
I spent many weeknights and weekends in my dad's office or the gym lobby with my art supplies while my dad managed employees, cleaned, answered phones, gave tours, and kept up with finances. Even when we were on vacation he couldn't get away from all the tasks of running a small business - he was always on call.
Members of the gym would occasionally ask me if I would take over for my dad someday and I always replied with an emphatic, "No thank you!"
I promised that I would never, ever own a business.
Instead, I chose to follow my love of design and it led me all the way to getting my BFA in Visual Communication Design from Virginia Tech in 2012.
I landed a job at a startup right out of school as their sole graphic designer. I made a decent salary for a new college grad and I had benefits...
...but I also had a not-so-awesome boss. (Maybe you can relate?)
I spent that year working for a company I didn't love, under a boss I didn't love, designing graphics for a brand I didn't love. So I did what any antsy designer who's unhappy with their day job would do:
I started freelancing on the side.
The more work I took on outside of my 9-5, the more appealing the idea of starting my own business became.
I quickly realized something I hadn't realized before: Many creative entrepreneurs start a business because they want to live out their creative passion on their terms. And that's what makes the long hours and hard work worth it.
For my dad, it started with his passion to see others live a healthier lifestyle.
And for me, it started with my passion for design.
For you, it may have started with your passion for photography, illustration, blogging, cooking interior design, or any other creative field.
So passion is what got me started and gave me the boldness to quit my job and pursue Elle & Company full-time a little over 2 years ago.
But strategy is what's kept me going.
I learned very quickly that without doing my research and learning more about the business side of creative entrepreneurship, I wouldn't be able to draw in clients and make ends meet.
I was in the red for the first 6 months of my business and searched for helpful resources to point me in the right direction, but I struggled to find any that explained things simply.
So I figured things out by trial and error. And as I came across effective strategies and tips, I shared them on the Elle & Company blog.
And that's when my business began to grow and change.
Now my passion is two-fold. It started as a love of design but it's grown to a love of helping other creative entrepreneurs turn their creative talents into a successful, profitable business.