Kat Potter Graphic Designer and Illustrator

Is there anything more exciting than watching your own business evolve?

Perhaps. But for me, the journey from being a graphic designer to an illustrator has been not just a career shift, but a life-changing adventure.

The Spark of Change

Let’s rewind twenty years.

With a fresh fine arts degree and a major in illustration, I took a side step into the world of graphic design.

The printing industry was my playground and I moved from roles in print production to pre press designer, soaking in every aspect of the design industry.

It was all about logos and layouts, with drawing saved for my spare time only.

Just when I thought I had it all mapped out, life threw me a curveball thirteen years later. I was handed my walking papers in a rather unceremonious fashion (thanks, redundancy!), and around the same time, my marriage hit rock bottom (hello, cheating hubby).

Suddenly, I was navigating life as a single parent with two kids, a mortgage, and the urgent need to reinvent my career trajectory—fast.

Freelancing, Family, and the Art of Balance

In the whirlwind of change, I grasped at a lifeline: freelancing.

It offered the flexibility I desperately needed—I could work during the quiet hours when my kids were tucked into bed.

This wasn’t just about making ends meet; it became my passion.

Alongside freelancing, I’d snagged a part-time gig as a pre-press designer. It was the perfect balance, allowing me to earn a steady income without missing precious moments with my kids.

From there, I even started a side hustle to my side hustle! Launching an Etsy store selling custom family and pet portraits.

And as I delved deeper into drawing and designing, it didn’t just fill my time—it filled my soul. The more I created, the more my skills and my spirits soared.

Drawing and designing became more than just a job; it was my sanctuary, my happy place.

My design and illustration career timeline

The Shift to Illustration

My journey took an exciting turn when customers began requesting more tailored illustrations.

I introduced vibrant, lively illustration sets in my store—gone were the days of bland clip art. These pieces didn’t just sit pretty; they were illustrations that businesses could use to make their brands pop.

As my side gig flourished, my ambitions soared.

And six years down the line, it was clear it was time to go big or go home. I shifted to full-time freelancing and combined my 2 side hustles.

Pumping up my branding design services with unique illustrations.


The Impact of Diversification

Blending illustration with graphic design didn’t just diversify my services—it supercharged my business’s potential. This strategic shift brought to life more personalised, impactful designs that really clicked with my clients’ audiences.

And would you believe it?

Within just a year, my income grew by 60%.

It turns out, unleashing your creativity isn’t just satisfying—it’s incredibly profitable.

Why Illustration Matters

In the bustling worlds of Graphic Design to Illustration and Creative Business Growth, diversification is more than just a survival tactic—it’s your secret weapon.

Here’s why beefing up your services with illustration is a game-changer:

  • Diversification of Services: Draw in clients seeking out-of-the-box, custom designs for their marketing and branding.
  • Enhanced Creativity and Originality: Stand out from the crowd with designs that not only look great but feel great.
  • Greater Client Engagement: More engaging designs lead to happier clients who stick around and spread the word.
  • Increased Value Proposition: Tackle more creative challenges, justifying juicier rates and meatier project scopes.
  • Cross-Promotion Opportunities: Leverage your knockout illustrations to turbocharge your marketing efforts and visibility.
Brisbane graphic designer, illustrator and surface pattern artist Kat Potter from Little Black Kat Creative

Join Me on This Creative Journey

Interested in how mixing illustration with graphic design can grow your business? 

Pop into my FREE webinar:

Design & Diversify: Earn More with Illustration


Watch the replay HERE!

In just 30 minutes, followed by a Q&A, we’ll dive into effective strategies to weave illustration into your design business, diversifying your offerings and boosting your income.

And don’t dash off right after—stick around for the launch of my Illustration Inkubator E-Course. This 7-week course is tailor-made to elevate your skills and business, enriching your creative output and marketability.

Ready to Expand Your Creative Horizons?


  • Learn Valuable Skills: Discover the art of seamlessly blending graphic design with illustration.
  • Boost Your Business: Uncover strategies to supercharge your growth and market presence.
  • Engage More Clients: Learn how to attract and retain clients with your newly enhanced creative arsenal.

And take your first step towards creative business growth by becoming a Graphic Designer AND Illustrator.  Let’s light up that creative spark together and turn it into a blazing trail of success!

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