I have to be honest and say since the first time I visited Jeremy & Kathleen’s blog I was hooked! Kathleen is a freelance art director, design and lifestyle blogger while Jeremy is an electronics engineer. The perfect left-brain/right-brain combo Jeremy & Kathleen are young dreamers who love family and all it’s annoying quirks, appreciate the ideas of simple living and love design in every form and fashion.
I know this might sound juvenile but they are honestly the type of people that just by knowing them you somehow feel cooler! I (Meg) was never in the “cool” group in high school so it’s exciting to get to introduce you to some of our “cool” friends…
Q1) How are your personalities alike and how are they different?
A) KATHLEEN: I crave adventure and drama while Jeremy is very methodical and organized. I am definitely more of the creative right brain in the family while Jeremy is the logical left. We meet in the middle with our need for stability and our love for each other and our families.
A) JEREMY: We also recognize that it’s those attributes in the other that we need to foster within ourselves. It doesn’t come naturally, but I know I need to leave my comfort zone every once in a while and enjoy life. I think that Kathleen, likewise, recognizes the value in being organized. Maybe.
Q2) Everyone has a different approach toward balancing business and life. For Jeremy and Kathleen how do the two coexist?
A) KATHLEEN: I believe that business and life should go hand-in-hand. I’m passionate about what I do – who I am in my professional life is the same as my personal life and nine times out of 10 my clients become great friends. Meanwhile, Jeremy is more of a “working for the weekend” kind of guy. He’s good at what he does and is a hard worker 40 hours a week but when he’s home he’s not thinking about work – and he likes it that way.
A) JEREMY: I don’t work THAT hard. Ha. Though, I do fantasize about being passionate about my work. It’s just not practical for me. I’m better off keeping work and play separate.
Q3) Kathleen, what was the final straw that made you take the leap from big ad agency to freelance design?
A) This is a really great question. The face of advertising as we know it is changing and that’s been really challenging for the industry as a whole. So, I guess I sort of jumped ship when I started to feel some growing pains within my agency. At the same time, I had been blogging consistently and building a community of people who wanted to see me succeed on my own. And of course, Jeremy’s unwavering support and encouragement definitely gave me the courage to go for it.
Q4) What advice do you have for creatives and/or couples wanting to start their own freelance business?
A) JEREMY: From the point of view of the barely-involved spouse: Be supportive! Even if you have your doubts (I didn’t), or you’re jealous that your spouse will be working from home (I wasn’t), be her/his number one fan. Anything else is just going to be counter-productive. Don’t be afraid of all of the upfront investment (and don’t buy software from shady online vendors). Just have complete faith that your spouse is going to be wildly successful. It worked for me!
A) KATHLEEN: I would hardly say that Jeremy barely involved. As a freelancer work-life can feel lonely and isolating. I make sure to keep Jeremy in the loop. If I get really great feedback from a client I’ll share it with Jeremy. If I have a technical question about estimating or billing Jeremy is a great resource. Even though he’s not a designer I try and find ways to make him feel a part of my success. I used to try and keep tricky issues and insecurities at “work” but found that when I share the hard stuff with Jeremy he’s always good at giving practical advice or just listening – it always makes me feel a million times better.
Q5) Kathleen, in your opinion, define what makes good design?
A) In graphic design, I think typography is one of the most important components. Beyond that the grid, color, photography, originality, copy, layout and composition are all major factors to good design. But what makes really great design is that little bit of magic each designer brings to a piece.
AND NOW FOR THE FUN STUFF!
Q6) Kathleen, what is your favorite outfit on Jeremy? Jeremy, what is your favorite outfit on Kathleen?
A) JEREMY: The Scribblenauts outfit will always be a favorite, but I have to say – nothing gets me all riled up like seeing Kathleen in a skirt (or anything that shows off those legs).
A) KATHLEEN: Uh… now I’m blushing. Jeremy is one of the most unaffected, stylish guys I know. I love how he combines his clothes – like wearing light teal shoes with a burgundy puffer vest. [see KathleensFave.jpg] Lately we’ve been making an effort to shop mostly at Shop Good and in the Plaza District but I also have a lot of luck at Target and JCPenney’s.
Q7) List three ways you keep creativity fresh in your day to day?
- I blog every single day. It keeps me aware and present of the details in my daily life that I could normally overlook or take for granted. I also read other blogs every day for inspiration and a new perspective.
- I work out every day. When I work out I kind of meditate on the functions of my body, I count reps, I count seconds. It allows me to focus on something other than being creative, which in return makes me that much MORE creative when I need to be.
- I watch a lot of TV. I know, it’s not really cool but I find that good TV really inspires me. Right now I’m watching True Blood, United States of Tara, Weeds and Flipping Out. We also really love watching documentaries and movies on Netflix.
Q8) You both seem like extreme dreamers that set goals and make them happen. List a few dreams that are on your bucket list for the next year(s).
A) JEREMY: I’m not half the dreamer that Kathleen is. But I have a few. I want to get my master’s degree (mostly because my employer has a deal that’s too good to pass up). I want to get into making music again. Those are my more glamorous dreams. Of course I still have boring dreams like buying enough investment property to retire on and building $x of net worth, but I don’t want to bore everyone to tears.
A) KATHLEEN: Well, we recently trekked to Mt. Everest base camp. I find that dreams start with knowing what you want and then taking little steps to get there. So for our trek through Nepal it started with a plane ticket – it’s that easy. I would really like to travel more and experience everything the world has to offer. I would like to go kayaking along a coastline, go sailing, ride a scooter across Europe…
Q9) What are your favorite local hangouts?
Q10) Describe a typical Jeremy and Kathleen date night?
A) JEREMY: DATE night?! What’s THAT? Why don’t we do date nights? We’d rather just hang out with our families, I guess. We do date VACATIONS instead.
A) KATHLEEN: Ha! My idea of a great date night is picking up sushi and a bottle of sake, grabbing a couple of cupcakes while we’re at it, watching a movie on Netflix and then if I’m lucky, I’ll get lucky (wink, wink).
Q11) Kathleen, what design project are you the most proud of? Why?
Oh gosh! I’m always proud of projects that challenge me and make me grow both as a designer and business owner. But I think my favorite project to date is documenting our Mt. Everest trek – I spent an entire month after the trek going through photos, designing and writing about our trek. It made zero money but it was so rewarding and fun to work on.
In the last few months I’ve had the pleasure of meeting up with Kathleen for lunch. It’s been such a blessing to be able to meet up with another blogger (in person) and talk through the day in and day out of running your own business and still balancing family and maintaining a “real” life (whatever that looks like!). Our lunch topics usually hang some where around client drama and “Oh God will I ever be ready to have children”? They are usually very honest and in the end I can always appreciate another girl who’s ready to kickass and take names (right after I cry from what that client said and pull myself back together)!
From fresh vegan meals to feedback on starting your own freelance business Jeremy & Kathleen are trying to figure it all out and we are so thankful that they have allowed us to be a part of their journey!
Here’s to many more girly lunch dates at our favorite pizza place.
From the Farm
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