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Interview: Jenni Douglas, Designer-Maker A Pair of Blue Eyes

 

Can you tell us about yourself and your creative background?
I'm Jenni Douglas, designer-maker behind A Pair of Blue Eyes. I'm a self-taught artist who grew up in the Old Town of Edinburgh. In terms of my work, I enjoy using traditional and contemporary printmaking techniques to create designs which are printed as artworks, textiles, homewards and gifts. I work from a small studio in the Broughton area of Edinburgh which I share with my beloved and much-photographed cat.  

 

What gets your creative juices flowing?
I love starting new projects and I'm very lucky in that where I live, I'm surrounded by lots of inspiring places and people.  

 

When did you start A Pair of Blue Eyes and can you tell us about your business?
A Pair of Blue Eyes started at the beginning of 2012, shortly after I made the leap from full-time employment. Running my own business and being my own boss was never something that had occurred or appealed to me in the past but it just felt right at that time and I went for it!  

 

What is the most favourite part of your day at A Pair of Blue Eyes?
There are lots of nice parts, but I love mornings. I've lost most sense of routine in what I do now, so it feels good to sit down with a coffee and a piece of paper and list out my day. It doesn't always go to plan, but in that moment I feel vaguely organised.

 

What makes Edinburgh a good city to be based?
It has so many things to offer but it's probably the balance of being a major cultural centre with a vibrant creative scene along with a small-city feel that means you can walk almost everywhere and will inevitably bump into someone you know on the way.  

 

What advice would you give to someone thinking of starting up a creative business?
I'd say, obviously take your time to work out what it is exactly you want to do and what your first steps are going to be, but also don't let your head rule your heart too much. If it feels like something you should be doing then it probably is. Jenni has just finished a commission for the National Museums Scotland, to create a series of designs to support their Ming Dynasty summer exhibition. To find out more about Jenni and her work visitwww.jennidouglas.co.uk