Inspirations

Creator Karen’s sunny side hustle allows her creativity to shine brightly

Post by
Marisa Young
Creator Karen’s sunny side hustle allows her creativity to shine brightly

Hailing from sunny Brisbane, creator Karen Baker’s work shines with bold colour, eclectic style and playful aesthetic.

As an early Creatively Squared community member, Karen began her journey participating in our creative challenges. It didn't take long for us to see that the trained graphic designer and marketing professional had a natural flair for styling products, so we welcomed her onto our team of creators.

Karen has created over 70 Creatively Squared projects so far, including memorable content for Ponds, Fantastic Noodles, Dove, and a variety of other brands. In spite of her significant creative growth throughout that time, Karen has maintained her signature style and bold colour palette.

In addition to customer work, Karen has also been very helpful to the community by sharing her methods, insights, and behind-the-scenes work in a variety of resources and tutorials, including her textured panel DIY hack and her water play hack.

Read on to learn more about Karen and let her brighten your day with the colours of the rainbow.

Let’s meet Karen

Hi! My name is Karen Baker. I am a trained graphic designer and I work in administration and marketing full time. I have always loved photography so combining my love for design and style with photography was a natural progression.

Karen Baker Creative is my side hustle allowing me to step out of my 9-5 job, challenge myself creatively, and show my style and personality through images I wouldn’t normally create at work.

My favourite content creations are what I like to call ‘freestyle’. It can be anything - a drink, beauty product, flowers – just a crazy idea brought to life without any boundaries to create a still life image.

I also love working on products that ask for a colourful, eclectic, playful and relaxed aesthetic.

Karen has honed her skills as a Creatively Squared content creator and mastered different techniques along the way like her clever levitation edit for Fantastic Noodles. Source: Creatively Squared

My Creatively Squared Journey

I first got to know Creatively Squared when I participated in their monthly creative challenges. I enjoyed working on them so much that I thought I would take a chance and apply - it was the best decision I made!

I have worked with some amazing brands and have met amazing creators through joining the Creatively Squared community.

We love seeing Karen’s water play techniques on show for our Skin Doctors and Venus Snap projects. Click here to see one of her tricks of the trade. Source: Creatively Squared

I most enjoyed working on the Colgate Electric Toothbrush project. I quite liked the challenge of working with a limited colour palette while playing with shape, texture and light to create impact.

I have also enjoyed working on the Olly projects, they are my favourite style of bright, colourful, and fun scenes.

Karen’s colourful content for Olly. Source: Creatively Squared

Tools of the trade

I use a Fujifilm XT-3 and mix up the lens depending on what I’m shooting. But my favourite go-to lens is their 35mm f1.4. Over the years, I have expanded my tools including my Godox SL-60 and Profoto A1 lights. I edit with Adobe Photoshop, Adobe Lightroom, and occasionally use Adobe Rush.

Aside from using my artificial light, I also love to create summery poolside scenes around our pool. It’s the perfect mix of being outside in the sunshine, playing with natural light and capturing a glistening blue pool.

I have transformed one of our spare rooms into my home studio and have not looked back! It’s my sanctuary for creating where I store my props, backdrops, and tools. I also utilise other parts of my home too and especially love using our pool area for summertime in-situ scenes.

Karen’s colourful home doubles as her photography studio. Source: Karen Baker

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Karen’s creative process

When I have a photoshoot, I usually put together a shot list with scenes, locations, prop items, etc. but sometimes an idea will come outside of this and I’ll wing it! Gladly, I often rope in my husband to help when I need to be the hand model. He’s also good at helping make a splash in the pool when it’s required!

Creatively Squared always brings the inspiration too for my shoot.

To keep my creativity flowing, taking break on a regular basis helps to keep me inspired. I have also found that taking time-out to do something completely different during a project sometimes can spark a new idea!

Top creative tip

Try to stay true to you and be as original as you can.

Karen’s colourful style was perfect for these Sunsilk (Elidor) and Pond’s projects. Source: Creatively Squared

What’s next for Karen?

I have a drone and have been too nervous to use it! I’d like to master flying it and take it on our road trip from Melbourne to Coonawarra at the end of the year!

Karen’s colourful simplicity for Dove. Source: Creatively Squared

Thank you Karen for sharing your Creatively Squared journey with us. Thank you for being a loyal and vibrant member of our creator team, and staying true to your creativity. Follow Karen’s journey (and drone action) over on her Instagram at @karenbakercreative and her website for more of her work.

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