Known for sharing her spooky-cute creations with her more than 70,000 Instagram followers, Tulsa artist Stephanie Bayles is keeping busy. She illustrated last year’s cover of The Tulsa Voice’s Halloween issue, and since then has redesigned her website, started Podcast Zero (on hold for now until she finds a permanent co-host) and designed T-shirts for a national retail brand.
How have you been during the pandemic? Did it affect your creative process? I’ve had times of feeling very low and stressed out, as I’m sure everyone else has felt. Though I’ve oddly had some good luck during this time: I just moved into another apartment that I love and feel that it is a better creative space. I’m also very excited about collaborations I have in the future.
This year has definitely made me stop and think about my art career and what I want to see it grow into. I’ve been learning new techniques and teaching myself new things, like how to better edit videos. There was were a lot of things I was afraid to try, but I’ve been pushing myself to further step out of my comfort zone.
What can you tell me about the designs you made for T-shirts releasing in the fall? I have four of my cat designs being printed on shirts. I’m not sure the exact date, but a trial release should be happening in September or October. The company is Hot Topic. I’m so grateful for this collaboration because it’s been a dream to create for them ever since I was little. It still doesn’t feel like it’s real.
How do you keep up with it all?Creating art and content is one of my favorite things to do. I heard a joke once that said, “I quit my 9-to-5 so I could work for myself. Now I work 9 to 3 a.m.” I’ve honestly never related to anything as much as this.
My days consist of drawing, packing orders and filming/editing videos. I know it’s a lot of work, but in all honesty I’m really happy to be doing it. I’m so grateful for where I am now and that people enjoy my creations. It took a lot of hard work and sacrifices to get here, but I’m starting to see all the work I’ve put in pay off.