Changing the world through design: Stacey Nomura

Every day, creative people are changing the world. Today, we’ll look at the designs of Stacey Nomura, an illustrator in Hawai’i, U.S. She offers a lovely selection of greeting cards, note cards, and notebooks that are letterpress printed, offset printed, or foil pressed. Her Pacific-inspired designs are fun, classy, and a great way to share a little piece of Hawai’i with others.

Who is Stacey Nomura?

I have known Stacey for over fifteen years, but when I met her, she had not yet begun to pursue illustration or design as a business. After moving to Hawai’i in the early 2000s, she decided to follow her dream and start her own stationery business. I think she’s a great inspiration for creative people who want to start a new business or sell their work online. As a primarily self-taught artist and small-business owner, Stacey has proven that creativity and hard work really can pay off. Not only is she changing the world by bringing more beauty into it, but her business directly benefits her community by donating to local schools and charitable organizations.

How is she sharing and promoting her work?

Stacey’s business, Bradley & Lily, has a beautiful website and accounts on social media. The website includes an interesting About page and a very nice online shop. What I like most about her site are the descriptions of the individual designs. She uses descriptive adjectives in a way that really get the reader’s attention, and her gift suggestions are a good way to persuade the viewer to consider a purchase. Here are a couple of examples:

“A peaceful view of iconic Diamond Head from the shores of Waikiki. This little notebook is the perfect size for a pocket or purse and makes a wonderful hostess gift or a great stocking stuffer from the Islands!”

“A bold red hibiscus silhouette makes an elegant birthday statement. Letterpress printed folded card with envelope.”

Although these descriptions are quite short, they effectively describe the product in a way that creates positive feelings for the viewer. I would strongly recommend that anyone selling their designs online include a description in a similar style.

If you would like to take a look at her site and see more examples, here is the link:

How could I help her improve?

If Stacey were my client, there isn’t much I would suggest for her to improve. As a native English-speaker and a savvy marketer, she is a good example for others to follow. However, I’ll point out some specific areas I could help others with for reference.

As I mentioned, she does a great job with the descriptions of her products, so my only suggestion for those is to include more of them. Finding the best adjectives to describe your work can be difficult, but using a thesaurus, or looking at similar designs by other native English-speaking artists can help. Try to think about the feelings you want your work to evoke in others and choose words that create those feelings.

She also has a very clear and confident speaking style, as we see in her interview. Giving a TV interview would make a lot of people nervous, but Stacey seems comfortable and relaxed. Although she doesn’t need any help with this, I have given interviewing tips and feedback to many of my clients and helped them practice. I find that taking the time to think and write clearly about your work also helps artists and designers to speak naturally when giving an interview.

My last suggestion is for the About page. Although Stacey’s About page is informative and easy to understand, I think it might be nice to learn a little more about her work. She shares some details about her background and her inspiration, but nothing about her process, which I think would be interesting too. Her antique letterpress sounds intriguing and I’d like to know more about it. It might even be nice to see a photo or video of how it works!

I want to help you too!

If this designer inspires you, leave a comment or share this post with a friend! If you want to share your work with a larger audience, I can help! Download my free guide: How to write a great About page (10 tips for non-native English speakers). It can help you to be sure your About page is easy to read, engaging, and effective. If you’re interested in working with a coach, you can also schedule a free trial lesson so we can talk about what you need and how I can help! 

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I help artists and designers with their English so they can focus on being creative and changing the world.

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