Oh, hi! My name is Billie Claire, and I am an illustrator and digital artist, specializing in ink drawings, hand lettering, and digital design.
I grew up in the desert mountains of New Mexico, where I chased blue tailed lizards with my sister, built forts, and biked to the pool every summer. From there, I went to school in New Orleans, where I fell in love with both a man (my husband) and a city. I had the privilege of working at Preservation Jazz Hall and as an event planner for the Contemporary Arts Center; and I got to ride the street car to work every day. I love that city like I would a person, and my chest swells when I even think of those oak tree lined streets and the French Quarter. I moved to Austin in 2009, and after working with pups for a bit and full-time teaching for a bit, I quit my day-job and started my own business. Billie Claire is half of what I do, complemented by The Hermes Lab - where I teach after school clubs like sewing and crafts, and enrichment classes like world geography and social studies.
All of my designs are original, and begin in my sketchbook with a pencil and a LOT of erasing. Once I have tweaked it and messed with it and erased some more, it is time to move to the second scariest part - tracing my design in pen. (Fingers crossed I don't mess this up!) Thanks to my favorite Micron pens (05 and 02), my design turns into a black and white sketchbook masterpiece. I then pull the design into Adobe Illustrator, where I digitize it and move to the biggest most scariest part - adding color. (There are literally MILLIONS of options.) After I've gone through a superfluous number of color schemes, I size the files and send them off to my favorite local printer - Harold at Southside Printing on Manchaca. He even has a 'Claire' setting on his massive printer, with my favorite paper and everything. From there, it's time to package and frame!
As for my magnets and buttons - those too, start in my sketchbook. These are really fun to make, because I can dream something up, sketch it, trace it, digitize it, and bam! I print it at home and stamp them into buttons in seconds with my handy dandy button maker.