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Q&A with Chloe Scheffe

Graphic designer, occasional illustrator, and aspiring writer

My name is Chloe Scheffe, and I’m a graphic designer, occasional illustrator, and aspiring writer.

How did you get started in design? What is your background?

I first encountered graphic design in high school. I took an introductory elective on a whim, and genuinely disliked it for the first half of the semester. I remember finding it extremely frustrating, and so unlike fine art, which is what my most intensive training had been in. At some point, though, something clicked.

What are you working on now?

Right now I’m two months away from graduating from Rhode Island School of Design, so I’m working on my degree project, a couple of studios that deal with writing as a design practice and type design, and a handful of freelance projects.

What tools and software do you use for your work?

I use all the usual software, but I’m also trying to make tactile making a more essential part of my practice, especially when it comes to illustration. Essentially I’m transitioning away from digital painting, and towards actual painting. I most often use gouache and ballpoint pen when I draw, but I also love ink, graphite, oil, and screen printing. I’ve been experimenting with laser cutting as well.

What is your ideal work environment?

The thing that most affects me is natural light. I love a space that’s well-lit and open, but not too pristine—an old concrete floor or an exposed brick wall is always welcome. I also do well in spaces that allow me interact with people and be alone.

Where are your favorite places for art?

This might sound a bit cheesy, but I most love seeing art in the context of people’s studio spaces. There’s something wonderful about the raw materials and the finished pieces together.

Who are the designers, artists you admire most?

The list is long! A few of my longtime favorites are Irma Boom, Peter Mendelsund, Sam Weber, and Chris Ware. Some recent favorites are Ines Cox, Ghazaal Vojdani, and Eric Hu.