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Meet Paula Ventura of OverTheSunnySide

Today we’d like to introduce you to Paula Ventura.

Paula, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
I was always interested in art – whether it’s painting, drawing, or doodling. I think it maybe because I didn’t consider myself academically inclined. When my parents bought our first computer, I remembered discovering Microsoft Paint and I literally spent hours trying to get just the right colors and shapes of my drawing. I really found pure happiness in designing.

I continued my interest in art as I was growing up and took a degree in Graphic Design in college. In the hopes of making it a career, but I never thought that my passion for the arts will turn into a small business.

The idea of having my art as a small business came to me after college when I used to attend art fairs on weekends. I became fascinated with the concept of selling your art, creating what you love and doing it for a living. I mean isn’t that just the best job for a designer or an artist? I tried many different designs and concepts – from typography to digital prints, but nothing seem to work for me.

But when I started doing eggs, something just happened.

I discovered my talent in doodling and my style in EggIllustration when I joined a fitness program two years ago. I fell in love with working out because it made me healthy and happy. Another effect of working out was that it boosted my imagination and creativity. So on a whim I started writing notes and added my Eggdoodling in my thank you messages to my instructors and gym buddies. Soon after I had doodled dozens and dozens of egg designs until I finally had the courage to hatch them this year.

But of course, mastering the perfect egg shape for my brand didn’t happen overnight. I practice a lot because I know that I can sometimes struggle with drawing. I still remember getting really frustrated and crying during my college years coz I couldn’t put the right shadow on my drawing. And I used to cringe during critiques because I wasn’t too proud of my art pieces. But I believe that practicing consistently combined with the eggredients of a positive attitude, passion and most importantly, patience helped and shaped me into the person I am today.

When people ask me why I draw eggs during art fairs, I always struggle to answer them because I don’t know myself. What’s even more ironic is that I dont know how to cook eggs! But I always like the different shapes you get every time you crack an egg because one shape is different from the next. I guess eggs are like people: we’re all the same inside, but we are unique on the outside.

I like the idea that you can doodle an irregular shape and put a yolk on top and still call it an egg. That helps me a lot with honing my drawing skills because it gives me the freedom to draw without limitations. Eggs taught me that imperfections are okay and that I should embrace it because it’s a reminder for me that I can strive harder and get better each day.

My education and my experience working as graphic designer taught me to know how important branding is to any business and how presentation is truly a key to promote your product. Most importantly, the tremendous support I am getting from my family and friends, my patience and passion for the arts are the main ingredients to make this a great learning Eggperience.

Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Shifting and turning my passion for arts into a small business has not been the smoothest road for me. As a matter of fact, it’s one of the biggest risks I’ve ever done in my life. Some of the major struggles are finding the right product, allowing myself to take risks and keeping my creative juices flowing all the time. It took me years of planning and conceptualizing to discover what I wanted to promote and sell.

Managing a small business on my own while staying motivated is quite challenging. Being an art vendor has its high and lows. I’ve been to many art events where business is quite slow but that doesn’t stop me from continuing to try to make my business work. As a matter of fact, I take those setbacks to learn what works and what doesn’t in my business. It helps me take a step back, look at markets, listen to my customers and examine other trends to improve what I can offer.

Apart from sales, I also enjoy meeting new people, hearing their stories and definitely networking gives me many opportunities to learn from others experiences too.

I am most proud of finally taking that leap to step up out of my eggshell and hatch – for being able to draw and for getting into the marketplace. I felt that just putting your art out there is one of the hardest steps as an artist, cause your creation is very personal. More so, getting into business was such a terrifying decision, especially for someone like me who doesn’t have any background in business.

OverTheSunnySide – what should we know? What do you do best? What sets you apart from the competition?
I am a graphic designer, illustrator and the creator of OverTheSunnySide.

OverTheSunnySide specializes in sketches, doodles and digital prints of egg illustrations and other food puns which mainly focuses on eggs, sausages, bacon and condiments. All the writings, illustrations and typography are all originally designed by me and are influenced by my raw emotions, cravings at night, my love for sauces and positive quotes to live by which I write in an eggy language (that maybe some of the cheesiest puns you’ll ever read).

Most people known me as an EggyGal, a mysterious woman who draws eggs because I don’t show my face on social media very often. The reason behind this is because I want my audience to focus mainly on my art and not me. I do sometimes feel overwhelmed when people come up to me and say ” Hey! You’re the one who draws eggs on Instagram” just by looking at my art while I’m setting up at an art fair, or send me messages with eggy language, but I always take those comments as a compliment and appreciate their efforts because that shows that I’m building a strong brand with my work.

What sets me apart from others is the unique form of my EggyIllustration: how I transformed different characters into breakfast-themed drawing, how I present my products on social media and how I build a unique theme for my audience. I really enjoy seeing people appreciate my art, especially kids who hang out at my booth and played with all my props because I arranged my booth as an interactive EggyCart so people can experience the full breakfast theme through my art. I want my audience to feel that they are grabbing or taking home a complete meal but in art form.

Is our city a good place to do what you do?
Starting my own small business is a big scary step for me due to lack of experience with the possibility of many failures along the way. But I am happy to say that my city has been very supportive to inspiring artist like me and gave me the chance to hatch and get out of my eggshell to promote my business and to grow as an artist. The art community welcomed me and were very generous with their support and guidance, and for that, I am grateful.

The advice I can give for someone who was just starting out is to establish your style first no matter how long it takes, so you have something unique to offer. Scout different art fairs around your area, be the customer yourself and network with other artists/vendors. Of course make sure you do research to make sure your product will suit and sell at the event.

And most importantly be patient, be kind to yourself and be open-minded to all the great opportunities and even failures you might encounter along the way as they will help you become a better artist.

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