If you’ve been on Instagram long enough, you’ve probably seen Alicia Souza’s work somewhere. Whether it’s on her own page, or shared by a countless others, her adorable illustrations are everywhere. She started off working for other brands, but now, Alicia Souza is a brand by herself. Hers is a truly inspiring story, especially for artists trying to make it on their own.
Recently, Alicia Souza was also a part of Bumble’s Find Them On Bumble Bizz campaign. Debuted in June 2019, Find Them On Bumble Bizz celebrated 25 remarkable Indian women with inspiring stories of personal and professional success.
We caught up with Alicia to get her take on what it takes for women entrepreneurs and career women in India to succeed, and about her own journey from an unknown illustrator to a brand known across the world. Read on.
All About Eve: A woman in business in India was a novel concept till very recently, and now we have Bumble Bizz, celebrating a community of such women. How do you think this will help to encourage more female entrepreneurship in India?
Alicia Souza: I think there were always Indian businesswomen, but sadly, they’ve not been encouraged or brought forth. It helps that in this age, we have platforms where women can meet not only other women who are doing amazing things, but also where making business a career move is more viable and profitable.
AAE: What do you think is the step forward to bring more Indian women into the professional fold?
AS: To encourage girls from a young age that they can do anything!
AAE: Everyone faces some sort of obstacles in their line of work, at least in the beginning. What sort of challenges have you faced in your career?
AS: I remember starting off as an illustrator was rather challenging. This was because starting off in a field as such, almost a decade ago, was a bit unheard of. Also, the fact that I had just moved to India and it was a big change, not knowing many people in the industry, let alone my field and that I had financial responsibilities. It made me serious about making this career work. My challenges ranged from personal ones like talking to people about money, to professional ones like learning to do accounts. Then when I started my own company, that was another ball game.
AAE: What inspires you to create such quirky, relatable designs?
AS: Everyday life is the best inspiration! Life is full of funny, happy, sad, strange incidents and it’s just about putting them down on paper in your own way, be it words, capturing it in a photo or drawing it out.
AAE: What advice would you give to young women who are just starting their careers, especially in the arts?
AS: Be diligent about your work and be kind to you and others.
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