LITTLE EVIL STUFF
28-year-old Yeok Wang, visual artist and creator of brand Little Evil Stuff, explores the darker side of stuffed toys. No, no, I’m not talking about voodoo dolls but more about handmade toys that exude a whole lot of quirkiness and creepiness. Now, don’t dismiss the idea just yet, if you have an imaginative mind, you may just find a use for them.
It’s sad to say but there are people out there who have extreme creative talent but settle for a 9-5 office job with the mindset that it’s the only way to make a stable living. Yeok Wang talks about the pros and cons of not working in an office, big breakfasts and naps in a lovely sunny garden.
Q: What do you love about your creative career? A: I love the overall lifestyle in a creative career. You get invited to designer events, surround yourself with like-minded creative people, and work in beautiful spaces. Your creative skills can also be used in your everyday life, from styling your home, decorating your own wedding to smaller things like wrapping your Christmas presents in pretty ways. I particularly love when friends ask my opinion about something they are doing. We spend a lot of fun times together making things, shopping, planning parties and so forth.
Q: What has been the biggest struggle in your job/career? A: I have to say it took me a long time to realise I’m an artist. I used to work as a web designer and I just didn’t see myself doing that for the rest of my life. There are a lot of disciplines you can choose in the creative industry, I know a lot of people who work in a completely different industry after finishing their studies. I’m not saying it’s bad to change discipline, but it does take a long time before you will create enough impact in a particular area. The best way is to follow your heart, not what’s hot in the market at that moment.
Q: How do you stay inspired? A: Over the years I have trained myself to stop taking everything for granted and start questioning everything I see. I spent my first 16 years in Shanghai, China. The schools there at that time weren’t really good at encouraging creative thinking. I had to let go of many things before I could start coming up with original thoughts. I keep a list on my phone to record whatever random thoughts or ideas I have during the day. It’s really not hard to spark ideas, but you have to record it so you can take action later.
Q: What are the cons of not having a regular 9-5 job? A: When you don’t have the 9-5 routine with your manager pushing for productivity, it’s easy to waste few hours of your day without you knowing. There may be a lot of late nights because you didn’t feel the urgency during the day when the sun was shining and you didn’t mind having that afternoon nap in the garden. When I began working from home, I felt like I had a sign on my head saying, “Please disturb me any time because I don’t look very busy.” It’s hard to divide the family life with work life, really hard. An innocent personal question from your partner can waste at least 15 minutes of your work time. Also you have to manage your own finances if you work for yourself, you can’t ignore it but you also can’t let it affect your business decisions and your work quality.
Q: What would you consider to be the best part of your job? A: The best thing is probably getting up late and working in your pyjamas. I make a big breakfast sandwich every morning. If you don’t mind late nights like me, you will love the afternoon nap in the lovely sunny garden. You can also get a lot done during the working days – doctor appointments, bank visits, meeting up with friends, shopping, so you don’t have to do it when it’s so crowded on the weekends. One thing I’m definitely not a fan of is peak hour traffic/public transport, so not having to go through that everyday means a lot to me. Last but not least, you will have more time for your family! My partner works night shift, so if I was working a 9-5 job we would rarely see each other but now I can organise my hours to suit his.
Q: Any advice for those feeling they NEED 9-5 work to have a stable career? A: What I do is not for everyone. My view on what a stable career is might be quite different from the norm. A stable career for me is something you can do and be proud of for the longest period of your life. I have plenty of friends who started their career with a relatively “stable” position but their hearts tell them otherwise. They quit their job after few years and start pursuing their dream career. So if you don’t see yourself doing what you’re currently doing for the rest of your life, it’s always less risky to chase your dream earlier than later. Don’t you think?
For more information, visit: Little Evil Stuff
Words by Angela Palo.