Minted artist Kristen Smith was at the top of the list of candidates for the first Minted ambassador, a pilot program we created to help artists connect with each other in their local regions of the world. Minted artists are constantly connecting with each other online, and routinely share with us how much they enjoy meeting and interacting with other community members in person. As the Minted Artist Ambassador, Kristen volunteers to organize a number of events for existing community members and prospectives in and around her hometown of Atlanta, Georgia.
“Kristen is a passionate advocate for the Minted community, excellent at coming up with fun ideas, has good relationships with the creative community in Atlanta and has an infectious enthusiasm,” says Anthea Tjuanakis Cox, Minted’s Director of Artist Relations. “You can’t help but feel better after chatting with Kristen.”
Here, Kristen shares a few thoughts about the ambassador program.
Minted: What are your goals as the Minted ambassador?
Kristen Smith: The main goals for the program are building, and also maintaining, established relationships among Minted artists at a local level. As the online Minted community grows, new designers and veteran designers alike may have a harder time establishing connections with each other digitally. With face-to-face meet-ups, the community feels a little more intimate and personal and also affords us the opportunity to engage with other local creatives, artists, and prospective Minties.
“Picture Frame Merry” foil-pressed holiday card by Kristen Smith for Minted
As a Minted ambassador, you’ll be doing so much to support the community. Why is this important to you?
Like many Minties, I run a small design studio out of my home and do the bulk of my work remotely for clients. This of course allows for several perks —flexible schedule, more time with family, etc.—but also creates a kind of solidarity that can often be crippling creatively.
The beginning stages of my business were very lonely and isolated for me, and I yearned for some sort of peer interaction. I found that interaction in the Minted community, and it completely changed the course of my business. Minted gave me a place to share, grow, and learn but also facilitated new business relationships, additional freelance work, and incredible friendships. The community is truly an invaluable resource.
We featured you in “Meet a Mintie” here on Julep in 2011. Back then you said what you liked most about the Minted artist community is that it’s helped open your eyes to a whole new world of design. Five years later, what do you like best about being part of the Minted community?
The sentiment is still very close to my original answer. Minted feels like the design “home” I was constantly searching for in the early stages of my career but couldn’t seem to find, and it introduced me to this whole new world of creative thinking that I am incredibly thankful for. I am continually inspired by this insanely talented community and it makes me not only a better designer but a better person to be surrounded by such kind, generous and fiercely loyal men and women. Love my Minties!!5 COMMENTS