Here at Paper Source, we think everyone should Do Something Creative Every Day, but our in-house designers take that to a whole new level. They are the creative geniuses behind the beautiful designs on our Paper Source planner and calendar covers, so we asked them how they get inspired and create design magic every day.

What are the first few things you do when you get to work each morning?

Erin B.: I make a cup of tea and start my list of priorities to get done for the day.

Jenna H.: I think organization is important for creativity, so I like to get started for the workday by writing out my projects and prioritizing. I always have a hot cup of coffee and usually eat breakfast at my desk while I prep for the day.

Kendra H.: I always like to complete a small task first thing to ease into the work day. Then coffee is a must and I’ll get started on something that needs more focus while listening to one of my podcasts.


What are your ideal conditions for a creative and inspiring workspace?

Alison M.: Being surrounded by fun and colorful artwork, a window for some nice natural light, some plants, and a great creative team to work with!

EB: Quiet, sunny space with non distracting music playing. 

JH: Lots of plants, bright natural light, and some good music! I also have design inspiration hanging everywhere, which I like to refresh often.

What are your go-to tools for design? 

EB: I am not the type of person to do much sketching before I jump right into the computer, but have been drawing more on the ipad, since it allows the same feel of paper with much quicker results. That and Adobe Illustrator.

JH: I couldn’t work without my drawing tablet and sketchbook, but I also use the Adobe Suite every day. Watercolors are also frequently in the toolbox. 

AM: Really loving using the iPad lately! It’s really great for both sketching out ideas and turning them into finished illustrations.


What is your creative process? Where do you find inspiration?

EB: I find inspiration all over the place, on clothes people are wearing, galleries and museums, books, travel… 

JH: I follow a lot of artists on Instagram, so I usually save posts throughout the day to find trends and new processes. Living in a city, it’s easy to see inspiration wherever you go—murals, fashion, museums, even architecture. I really love trying new illustration techniques and creating mixed styles. 

AM: I find inspiration in nature, other artists and illustrators, art museums, interior design and fashion from the past.

KH: Research has always been a big part of my creative process, and I rely heavily on Pinterest for that. But more often than not, I need to step away from the computer and be out in the world to be inspired. 


A lot of people work with music. What’s on your playlist that gets the creative juices flowing?

EB: Been listening to a lot of John Maus, Operators, and any new wave playlist.

JH: My music tastes change depending on my mood, but lately I’ve been listening to a lot of Fleetwood Mac, Queen, and Cake. Sometimes I’ll throw on an early 2000’s playlist for some nostalgia.

AM: Mostly been listening to podcasts lately!

KH: I’ve been more on the podcast train lately, but I love the new Black Keys album!

What colors are you currently loving?

EB: Sepia, deep oranges, bold reds, dusty pinks, emerald greens.

JH: I really like earthy colors like olive green, sage, and warm rust.

AM: I’m really loving our new Rose and Eucalyptus paper colors. I’ve been feeling earthy colors more lately, but also pops of neons and brights. Basically, I love every color when used in a thoughtful way!

KH: Right now I’m loving warm rich tones like Rust and Terracotta.


Are there any trends or themes that we should look out for?

JH: Vintage botanicals and ornamental lettering are on my radar.