MEET #597: LUCY HEWETT
Photographer • Chicago, IL
In honor of tonight's Drinking Not Drinking Chi-town edition, we're featuring WNW Member #597 Lucy Hewett! Lucy's collaborated with top brands that include Kia, Popular Mechanics, Bon Appetit, Billboard, Monocle, Money Magazine, Ziploc, Entrepreneur, and Cards Against Humanity.
A freelancer since 2011, Lucy has a grounded approach to staying organized and remaining balanced. She advocates for a well-rounded schedule of side projects, hobbies, and lots of travel. When asked if her parents understand what she does for a living, Lucy's response particularly resonated: "It’s not as obvious to them that networking, marketing and road trips 'just to make personal work' are part of a real, adult job."
1. How long have you been freelancing?
As a Capricorn, I feel like I’ve been freelancing since birth. There’s always been side projects, one-offs, and jobs on top of the day job that have gotten me by-- financially and spiritually. I officially left full-time corporate life in 2011, while I worked to build relationships with photography clients. The last several years I’ve been able to focus solely on photography and currently work out of a studio space in West Town.
2. Is there a time or place that you feel most creative/have the best ideas?
It’s cliche but I find traveling to be an important source of inspiration. Exploring a new city is a visual treat and meeting new people is a great source of energy for me. It allows me to break away from my routine and be present with new experiences.
3. What's your ideal Working:Not Working ratio?
Ideally I would be able to shoot a week-long job and then have another week in the studio to take care of other business tasks. It rarely (never) happens that way. Luckily living in Chicago, January and February are often quieter. It gives me a chance to catch my breath, travel, and explore creatively, so I’m refreshed and ready to hustle again come spring.
4. Do your parents understand what you do?
Ha! Sort of. They love being able to pick up a magazine and find a photo I shot, but I think they’re confused about how I spend the rest of my time (when I’m not shooting). It’s not as obvious to them that networking, marketing and road trips “just to make personal work” are part of a real, adult job.
5. What scene from a movie makes you laugh just thinking about it?
Kristen Wiig drunk on the airplane in Bridesmaids. Kills me. Everytime.
6. If you were stranded on a desert island, with your computer, what 3 websites would you take with you?
I would send smoke signals through Instagram, and pass the rest of my time re-watching Parks and Rec on Netflix and making playlists on Rdio.
7. What do you do when Not Working?
Usually thinking about my next snack or which new restaurant to try. I tutor at the neighborhood elementary school every week and try to get to a yoga class whenever possible. I love to cook, and I’m trying to step up my baking (almost perfected my peanut butter chocolate chip cookie game). Now that it’s porch weather it’s pretty much potlucks and picnics on the weekend.
8. Do you have a hidden talent?
I’m really good at pulling off a chambray shirt and black jeans every day of the week, 90’s pop sing-alongs, and finishing the entire French press.
9. Any tips or advice for fellow freelancers?
Freelancing is not fun-employment. You still have to show up every day and work really, really hard. Sometimes that includes working long hours. Make it fun by seeking out people you admire and collaborating with them.
10. What's your favorite thing on the internet this week?
11. Anything else you'd like to add that we haven't asked?
People say it all the time, but it’s so important to make time for personal work. If you’re not showing people projects that you love and are really proud of, you’re not going to get hired for that kind of work.