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(All images in this post are credit @happydaysfactory)

Through the past few years I’ve had the pleasure of meeting creative artists on Instagram  who inspire with their innovative take on arts, crafts and illustrations. Highlighted in a new series called Meet The Artist are some of our favorites to feature. Let us know in the comments some of your favorite Instagram creatives and nominate them!

Nothing brings a smile to my face more than designers who use real-life objects combined with whimsical, original images to create a display of happiness. Maria from @happydaysfactory finds her inspiration everywhere! Originally from Germany, Maria makes her home in a suburb of Chicago for the last 17 years. In the city and at home with her two sons, male dog, and husband (boy overload!), she channels her inner femininity into design.

As a self-described “experimental creator”, Maria photographs objects to pose with her little girl character, Amelie. Since Maria has past experience working in marketing for a candy company and running her own jewelry design company, you can see some of this influence pop out in her designs. Bountiful florals, colorful sweet candy images, and intricate beauty are commonplace on the @happydaysfactory instagram page. Maria has advice for budding creatives: “go for it”. Too often, online creatives post images for the “likes”. Just do what you love, create what inspires you, and success will follow. Check out Maria’s amazing designs to find your own creative inspiration and read on for our interview below!

1. Please tell us about yourself and your background!

Maria / @happydaysfactory – I am originally from Germany, but have been living in a northern suburb of Chicago for the past 17 years. I graduated University with a degree in business, worked in marketing for a candy company, and ran my own jewelry design business before falling in love with illustrating and photography. When my oldest and only daughter took off to college, I realized that living with only men (my husband, two sons, and our golden retriever, Bo) was a bit too much male energy to handle on my own, so I created my little girl character, Amelie, to help me out. Together, we go on fun adventures, often involving swinging from, dancing on, or balancing between pretty little blooms. When I am not hanging out with Amelie, I work on training our dog to become the next big influencer on Instagram (not too successful so far… 🙃), entertain my children with one-of-a-kind snapchats, and try my best to keep our house from being taken over by laundry and dust bunnies.

2. What inspires you creatively?

I find inspiration literally everywhere. Often I stumble upon real life objects that I think are cute and would make great props for Amelie (at a craft store, in the candy isle, at a flower shop, …). I don’t necessarily always have a set plan and definite picture in mind when I create. I would describe myself as an “experimental creator”. I photograph objects multiple ways, draw Amelie in all sorts of poses as I think of them, and ultimately an idea pops into my head which elements I want to pair together.

3. What advice would you give someone who is wanting to enter the art or creative space? 

If you feel the desire to do something creative, just go for it and have fun. In terms of social media, whatever it is that you do, try not to get too wrapped up in numbers. Create what makes you happy – do it for the love not for likes.

4. What IG accounts inspire you and why?

@golden_freckles I am a huge fan of her style. Her illustrations are the perfect combination of whimsical and modern. (P.S. read our Meet the Artist interview with @golden_freckles!)

@georgiestclair her drawing skills and knowledge blow my mind. Her pictures inspire me to keep learning new techniques.

@goralka102 – I am in love with her unique account and incredible photography. Her signature items are a red evening gown and red pumps. (You can see her mountain climbing and wind surfing in the gown!!) Spectacular.

Follow @happydaysfactory on Instagram.

Check out more Meet the Artist posts herehereherehere and here!

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