Meet Laura, owner of EcoEfficient Solutions, a solar company in the Hawkes Bay of NZ - she won runner up for the Hawkes Bay Small Business of the Year (2019) for our region - way to go Laura!

Laura is a bright, cheerful and busy young woman. She's in full command of what she does, knows what she wants, who she serves and isn't shy in being direct and to the point. I find her refreshing, as she is genuine and has a really friendly disposition. She also loves my work, so how can you not like someone who appreciates what you do?

Laura had been admiring my car decal for a few months and finally asked me to illustrate her in like manner so she can use it within her business.

She'd sent me one of her favourite photos of herself and reminded me, however, at work, she always has her hair up. I knew that having surprised her with an illustration of her in the spa from an infographic I'd previously created of her. I'd Facebook-stalked her to get that image and she loved how I did that. Yet, now, she preferred it down. And that's how we decided to illustrate it.

But, as the detailing of her blond locks (left) began taking shape, she cut her hair much shorter, died it and then had to resend me another photo of her new-do so I could illustrate a more up-to-date version of her.

I find the best way to help people understand the potential of how illustration can serve them in business, is with a show-and-tell, which is one of the reasons I'm driving around the region with my face sign-written on my car - it's a talking point. More so, it's meant to help the self-confessed less creative of us find inspiration in the creative ideas presented - I want their mind to explode with concepts as they see themselves in the artwork, using it as a springboard into ideas pertaining to themselves and their business. I want them to delight in the idea of how much their clients would get a kick out of seeing them and their team as a cartoon pictures wearing a Santa hats and star glasses, say, and feel a deeper, genuine connection with them, strengthening their relationship in business. Because everything is about relationships.

Laura did this! She was inspired further by my personal Thank You cards I'd created.

Quickly connecting the dots, and with Christmas looming in a few months, what better way than to reach out to all of her clients, with something personalised from her to get their attention, and that's what we did.

Having finished Laura's Illustrated Seflie, we set about making her festive in a Kiwiana kind of way - AKA, Summery, kinda perfect also as she's in the solar business, and she chose a couple of props to make her so.

Laura and Shaun, her partner, wanted to make sure the artwork was on track for her target market: 50-year-old men. She wanted to come across as 'warm, friendly, and appropriate', while also letting her individuality sparkle. Shaun felt we'd achieved this with the image created, it capture all she had intended.

As a fun bonus gift, I surprised her with a set of Social Media banners with the imagery and text from her card and a Christmassy email signature to tie it all together - tactile Christmas cards with her online presence.

In Laura's own words:

"I am in love with my new illustration that Tania has made for me, it really looks like me, especially the eyes. I think it is a fun way to present myself to my clients, especially at Christmas time!!" - Laura | Eco Efficient

Can you see yourself as an Illustration? Wouldn't THAT be fun!

The Next Level

Better still, think about your most important client/s, how do you think they'd feel if they received a bundle of greeting cards with their face on them to use within their business as a gift from you?

It. Would. Blow. Their. Minds!

To be considered in such an unexpected way would leave an everlasting favourable impression. You know why? It's never done. We mean well, we strive to be remembered, but everyone else is doing the same thing. This week alone I received two desktop calendars! Everyone. Is. Doing. It.

Let's be different, personal, meaningful in how we do what we do. It would show our clients they come first in our eyes because of the effort we put in to strengthening our relationship with them.

Something to think about.

If it be greeting card's you'll be wanting, I've got what you're looking for here

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