We had the good fortune of connecting with Decue Wu and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Decue, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
I used to work 40 hours a week for my full-time job, and dedicated my nights and weekends to freelance projects. It was exhausting. Gradually, I realized all of my time and life was about work, and more work. So, I decided to change my lifestyle, and better balance my work life this year. I learned how to reject clients properly and how to only choose the projects that I am really interested in, without exhausting myself. I learned to not think about work after work time, and tried to dig into other hobbies beside my career, such as gardening and wood shop. This really makes me feel so much happier than before. I now have a chance to learn many other skills other than illustration, and whenever I go back to work, I feel more energetic and inspired by my life.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I am an immigrant, originally from Shenzhen, China. I came to the States in 2012 to earn my Illustration master degree from MICA. Currently, I work as an illustrator and art director in Los Angeles and San Francisco. My multi-city lifestyle and cultural exchange experience, provides me with rich creative inspiration. It’s my daily hobby to collect images of different cities and record them in my “city diary.” I am also an avid collector of all things fashionable, and as someone who is inspired by a large number of independent designers’ works, my particular style focuses on the combination of illustration and fashion. My work has been chosen for American Illustration, and was also featured in the Society of Illustrators of Los Angeles. I have also collaborated with Armani Exchange, Louis Vuitton, The New York Times, Time Magazine, Vogue, ELLE and other well-known brand and media companies. I recently have been listed Forbes 30 Under 30, Arts and Style, Class of 2020.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I would like to take my friend to the local museums first; my favorite museums in LA are The Huntington Library, Eames Foundation, MOCA, LACMA, Norton Simon Museum and The Getty (includes The Getty Villa). For shopping, my favorite shopping districts are Silver Lake, Sunset Blvd, Venice, Melrose, and numerous flea markets, such as Rosebowl, Melrose Trading Post, and Long Beach Flea Market. I will also take them to Malibu to see the ocean and beach. My favorite sunset spot is Griffith Observatory. There are so much variety of good food spots in LA; my personal favorites are Pasta e Pasta by Allegro, MhZh, Pho Cafe, Han Bat Sul Lung Tang, Howling Rays Chicken, Central Market, Republique, Necco, Bestia, Go get em Tiger, Ho Kee Cafe and Chengdu Impression.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to thank my husband, Justin. He is always a very supportive, encouraging, and understanding partner in my career and life. I am inspired by his diligence at work. I consult him whenever I need to make decisions about my career. He is my lovely audience and always the first one to see my artwork when it’s finished!