Through this series, Community Spotlight, we are highlighting a range of designers who inspire us with their boundless imagination and resilient spirit. We hope that in doing so, they too will bring inspiration to your doorstep.
For this Spotlight, we had the immense pleasure of chatting with Martha Regina Monteros, a Guatemalan designer who finds herself leading a vibrant life in the Dominican Republic. Martha can design virtually anything under the sun, and as a self-professed introvert her superpower lies in expressing herself through her art.
Q: Hi Martha, would you mind telling us a little about yourself?
Hi Design Cuts Community! I am Martha Regina Monteros and you can follow my work at @martharegina_m. I was born in Guatemala, located in Central America, but our family relocated to the Dominican Republic (DR) eight years ago due to my husband’s job. The DR is a country full of rhythm, color and wonderful beaches; have you heard of Punta Cana?
Our daughter is graduating from college this May and we are very proud of her. We also have a teacup French poodle dog as part of our family.
I enjoy traveling and visiting art museums and tend to look at the small details. As a self-described introverted artist, the way for me to express my thoughts and feelings is through creative and artistic outlets. I tend to focus on positive, motivational, and inspirational themes that bring positivity and encouragement to people.
Q: How long have you been with us as a Design Cutter?
This is a recent thing and I have loved it since the first session! I discovered DC in August of 2020 (as one positive thing that came out of the global pandemic). My first experience was through a live session marathon to celebrate their Birthday, which coincidentally also aligned with my birthday. From that point on, I was hooked on the diverse portfolio of products available, the sessions, and the vibrant DC community . I have learned a lot from the extremely talented people in the community and the whole team, who are willing to contribute and share their knowledge.
Q: What was your graphic design journey?
I was crafty from a young age. I remember making greeting cards and gift wrapping/packaging designs since I was a child. I always loved crafts (knitting, crochet), making handmade stationery and jewelry, illustrating, mastering the art of calligraphy, and exploring the world of lettering and beautiful handwriting. My background includes a Bachelor's degree in Graphic Design, received while still in Guatemala, and working at a design agency that began my journey in using computer-based tools to create beautiful things. A friend and I opened up our own design studio working on advertising campaigns for well-known brands including Pepsi. I then freelanced to create personalized products for people and brands, expanded my skill set, and now focus on artwork licensing, calligraphy, lettering and surface design. I love to continue learning and the DC's live sessions are great for that. I enjoy experimenting with new digital and analog tools to continue evolving my style and point of view.
Q: What is your design process?
I start with inspiration or something that triggers an idea. While lettering or illustrating a quote, for example, I first write it down to visualize the most relevant words of the message. Then I create a rough sketch, experiment with different layouts of the outline, and once I have that defined, begin drawing the letters. My favorite part is incorporating illustrations such as leaves or flowers and finally adding the details including shadows, textures, backgrounds, and so on.
Q: Where do you find inspiration for your work?
A big source of inspiration is the shapes, patterns and colors found in nature. I love plants, flowers, foliage, clouds, and sunsets. I also find inspiration in daily activities and passages that are relevant to things going on in my life at the time.
Q: Where do you hope to be in 5 years' time?
I would love to have my own line of stationery products. Seeing my designs in homeware products that would bring people joy, potential collaborations with other artists and maybe even creating digital material for DC.
Q: Which graphic designers do you look up to?
I admire the following artists and their style inspires me:
Q: What's your top tip for other designers?
Find your passion, aim to follow your dreams, and never give up because practice makes perfect. More importantly, never stop learning! Creative blocks are a real thing in the design field, but it is important to keep going and not get discouraged. When that happens, taking a break and going for a walk helps me feel inspired. It can be an iterative process to create something, tweak it and try something different (whether it is a new technique or color scheme) until you are happy with the result.