We had the good fortune of connecting with Stephanie Boinay and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Stephanie, we’d love to hear more about how you thought about starting your own business?
Before starting my small business as a professional artist, I had just finished college and was trying to navigate the waters of “getting out there and getting a job”. However, I soon felt I needed to try a different path because after each job interview, I kept thinking, “Why not work for myself and give that a go first?” I always wanted to be my own boss anyway; setting my own schedule, doing things on my own terms. Its been a road full of triumphs and struggles, as any small business owner can probably attest to. But the timing was right and the reward has been greater than the sacrifice for me.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I aim to have my work recognizable through my use of bright, vibrant colors and and tropical beach scenes. Painting plumeria and hibiscus flowers on the beach with the ocean in the background is my jam! I lived on Oahu for about 8 years, and my paintings very much reflect my inspirations from my time in the beautiful Hawaiian Islands. It hasn’t always been an easy road to becoming a professional artist. I had many setbacks along the way, but I knew I wanted to pursue this passion and dream to make it a reality so I kept pushing along. In the beginning didn’t know what to do or where to start, so I set out to visit just about every art event, festival and gallery show that I could find, to talk with the local artists showing there. I wanted to meet my future “peers”, make artist friends, gain a sense of community through art. If I had an art or business question I couldn’t find help for within my artist community, then I would spend hours researching the internet to find my answers. My most valuable lesson I learned, was that its okay to ask peers for help or advice, but to make sure you do your OWN research, to fit your OWN company’s aesthetic, and come up with your OWN voice and style. Always strive to be original!
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?
If we are talking Oahu, Hawaii, I know a lot of great spots! I’d probably start off by giving them a plumeria lei at the airport, a tradition of welcoming someone to Hawaii. Next stop we would grab some ahi poke from Foodland, (Kahuku Suprette has the best poke in town but its on the other side of the island about an hour away), and a spam musubi snack. I’d make sure they’d get to visit the North Shore, with its local shops, galleries and amazing food trucks. We’d jump the rock at Waimea Bay in the summertime, or if its winter watch its MASSIVE waves safely from the beach. There’s a great secret spot with a palm tree beach swing (and no tourists!) we’d visit, grab food at Seven Brother’s (burgers) and Ted’s chocolate haupia pie for dessert. We for sure would have to catch the sunset at Sunset Beach. We would visit Kualoa Ranch, Kailua town, Lanikai Beach (Heaven on earth!), and the legendary China Walls on the east side, finishing at Duke’s for dinner and on Friday nights catch the fireworks show at The Royal Hawaiian in Waikiki. So many fun adventures to be had!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Shoutout to my close friends and family, who supported and believed in me no matter during those early days when I announced that I’d be making and selling art for a living. Special shoutout to my dear friend Jenny, who took a chance on a young green artist and commissioned my first ever paid painting. Thank you to Chailoh, Kathy and Kim and so many friends for helping me with art shows! Thank you to all who have supported me over the years and given my art a place in your homes. I am beyond honored!
Studio Images taken by Carlos Mozo.