STG x Mabintou!
Hey guys and welcome back to Support The Grind! I feel like I’m doing the intro for my latest YouTube video lmao – should I start doing YouTube👀? Anyways! If you’re new to QuenelleAshley Blogs, I have created this project (Support The Grind/STG) in order to ~try~ and make the creative community a more friendly environment where we can support one another with no ulterior motives! I have recently taken a break from blogging, check out my latest blog post to find out why, which means I haven’t released any new STG interviews! But rest assured, I have been working behind the scenes to bring you guys some amazing content with some amazing creatives! So let’s get into this one shall we!? Today I am interviewing a woman who has many talents! Talents that are all over our timelines and thank goodness for that because you do not wanna miss out on her work! We are here with the lovely Mabintou, digital designer, creative designer and director of Mabin2, so grab yourself a drink, maybe even a snack, get comfy and enjoy our first interview of 2019!
Mabintou, thank you so much for taking part in the Support The Grind series! Your consistency and work ethic is an inspiration to me so I’m kind of fan girling right now lmao. I undertand that you are a digital designer and have created Mabin2 as a result of that, what exactly inspired or influenced you to start Mabin2?
I think I’ve always been a free thinker and someone who has stood out. I’m usual one of those people who go against the grain and look for opportunity. I always say, ‘I didn’t find my business, my business found me’, but I have always wanted to be a business owner. I am currently inspired by a whole list of amazing women; Sharmadean Reid, Conna Walker, Oprah Winfrey – and that’s just to name a few! but the root of it all truly is down to my parents and upbringing! My mum made me write a diary when I was little, and I looked back at it when I was clearing out my room. My parents have drilled confidence and self-belief into me, so it comes as no surprise my goals written in my diaries 10 years ago were to graduate with two businesses. I think I manifested it.
The power of speaking things into existence really does exist! Right now we live in a society where most things are digital or are becoming digital, what would you say makes you stand out amongst others?
I think I am developing my own personal style, so people can easily identify and differentiate my work from others. I am also very good at identifying trends and stay in the loop with popular culture so that my work appeases those who are most likely to receive it. If my followers are into something, I’m going to experiment with it, and they will interact with it as a result. You have to be fast and I’m also very good at that also.
I believe there’s a formula to success and it begins with consistency and dedication. I am very consistent, so I know how to draw people in and what people react best to. I’m also extremely dedicated to a bigger end goal and I believe in longevity. I take small steps daily to ensure I’m working towards the bigger picture and nowadays that includes days-off so I can recuperate and perform at my best - I used to be a massive workaholic and took no days off for a year, even working on Christmas day.
Your work ethic and consistency are honestly amazing, but I am glad you’re taking days off to rest🙌🏽! I have noticed that you do create things that are trending and that definitely stands out to me, I’m always excited to see how you will interpret the latest thing! Turning your talents into a money-making venture is something I am familiar with but how long did it take you to do that?
It was a very quick turn-around time. I started teaching myself how to design in December 2016, had my first paying clients in January and started taking it seriously in September 2017. Social media is fast, so it allowed me to have a large client base very quickly. I was making money from it instantly, but I made the greatest amounts recently due to exposure and me expanding my skillset to UX design.
Social media is so fast😭! I defo struggle to keep up sometimes. So I’m curious, how exactly did you get to where you are today?
I was in my first year of my architecture degree and had reached a point where I was financially struggling. I allowed myself to get into debt and needed to find a solution which is why I always say, ‘I didn’t find my business, my business found me’. I was scrolling through my twitter one day and saw someone offering their services creating snapchat filters and I instantly went to research the dimensions, requirements and bounds for filters because I knew it was something I could do, with the software required for my course. I was paying monthly for the Adobe Creative Suite and hardly using it, so I thought, why not use it to create outside of my degree. I started researching and experimenting, started creating for my friends and ever since that moment in December 2016 I used social media to gain exposure and clientele. From then it’s been a rinse and repeat process. Recommendations and social media have truly pushed my business. I’m so deeply gratefully for the way people respond to what I create.
I love that!! You know how people say on Twitter ‘don’t let your boyfriend stop you from finding your husband’? I use that same energy and I don’t allow university to stop me from doing things, especially making money 🤣When it came to the support your brand received, was it hard to gain that support at the start?
Partially. I have a great support system at home and my parents have never doubted me or stunted my growth. Friendship wise, I think it’s been fleeting but the support from strangers has been immense. There are so many people I would need to thank for every part of my success because their support has truly changed my life.
You have a very active and engaging following on Twitter, do you have any tips on how other people can strive towards this?
Consistency is key! I tweet every single day purely because Twitter is my favourite social media platform & it keeps me entertained but also quality of content. I tweet my thoughts but not every thought. Some thoughts aren’t necessary for such a platform and some people don’t take this into consideration. I do and I always want to spread positivity or make those who follow me aware of something relevant. I believe should use social media as a tool for entertainment (because it can be hilarious at times), education, change and productivity
I really do love Twitter but sometimes people tweet things that just do not need to be tweeted lmao. With this in mind, do you get any negative reviews/ comments? If so, how do you deal with them?
I’ve definitely had difficult clients and I just deal with them as professionally as I can. You learn from every client, so I take each bit of negativity on the chin and learn from the critique if it’s justified. Pure negativity I don’t take. You only really get that on social media when you express your opinion, so I just block or mute people. I don’t have room for negativity, and I strive to keep a positive headspace.
Blocking and muting is really the way forward! You mentioned that consistency is key so what would you say motivates you to keep pushing out content and always keeping your social media up to date?
I love what I do. I am obsessed with good design. Nowadays a lot my time is eaten up by bigger clients (where I can’t even share what I’m working on) and provides me with less time to put out content but I’m not mad at it because the results will be seen in due time.
Talking about bigger clients, how did it feel when your work was recognised by Conna Walker and Maniere De Voir?
It was such a shock. I don’t reach out to brands with the assumption they’ll reply so it’s always quite overwhelming when I get a response. It's such a blessing that I'm so grateful for!
As STG is all about discussing the creative community and striving towards a friendlier environment, I have my two final golden questions for you! Do you feel like you have been supported by the creative community?
Definitely! The creative community have been so supportive but there are a lot of people who will use and exploit you so you must remain self-aware and ensure whenever you work for or with people it’s mutually beneficial and your efforts are paid for. Being clued up legally, having things in writing and drawing up contracts will save you a lot of headache.
I really do hope more people read up on the legal side of things as it is really important!! Finally, what do you think the most important part of being a creative is?
Definitely staying true to yourself. I am spiritual and I believe creating something is a Godly act. Your creation has the ability to inspire, to uplift, to captivate and you must stay true to yourself and create from the heart with the truest of intentions. It becomes a chore when you create purely to for financial gain, but I believe in a particular quote from the late, great Nipsey Hussle - “it's possible to monetize your art without compromising the integrity of it for commerce.”. You must find the balance and your own strategy as a creative.
Wow, that quote really hit home for me, especially as it was such a difficult decision for myself to take a break from blogging and taking on clients, but I also knew I couldn’t compromise myself or my work!
Mabintou, thank you so much for working with us! You are such an inspiration, you have achieved so many and I hope that more successes find their way to you! Your passion and drive is clearly shown through your work and I love to see that! Quite a few people tend to jump on the latest money-making venture without having real passion for it, and as much as I believe in the philosophy of ‘to each their own’ it is sometimes disheartening to see that, so to see your passion! I am in awe! I hope that the people reading this today can take something from what you’ve said. To all my creatives out there, keep pushing! Find your passion, your motivation, your drive and let that lead you. Thank you again to Mabintou, you can find her socials and website just down below. Be sure to give her a follow and check her work out!
See you next week guys!