Teagan White is an up and coming freelance designer and illustrator in the Minneapolis. She’s attending MCAD where her beautiful body of work continues to grow. Focusing on nature and intricacy she also finds herself producing work for music, fashion, and editorial industries.
Photos and Interview by Kelsey Johnston
Secrets: Where are you from?
Teagan: I grew up in Chicago, outside of the city, and then I came to Minneapolis to go to MCAD.
Secrets: What medium did you begin with?
Teagan: I suppose I actually started with digital media. Photoshop and stuff, and before that mostly colored pencils, etc. I didn’t use much traditional media until about a year ago; it took a lot of pressure from my instructors to get me to start using other things. I use charcoal a lot for my larger drawings, and have just begun using watercolors and other color media.
Secrets: Tell me about your recent work.
Teagan: Right now I’ve been mainly working on a body of work that has to do with life cycles. The ‘Everything Is A Cycle’ large drawing I have hanging up in my studio was the first piece of the series. It’s a response to ideas about decomposition and mortality, life and death, and an attempt to get my viewers to reconsider the perspective that death is ugly and a thing to be feared.
Secrets: What animal fascinates you the most?
Teagan: Right now bugs for sure. Any type of insect. Mostly for the fact that they are so under appreciated–there seems to be this physical recoil people get when they see them because they are not cute and fluffy, but they do so much good for the Earth and they are integral to how the whole world functions. So I’m trying to get people to step back and appreciate them for a second. I’ve had some positive feedback and people have actually said things to me like “my gosh, I like bugs now” so that’s really great to hear.
Teagan: Does Google count? I don’t know what I’d do with out it in terms of finding resources.Secrets: What is something that you learned today?
Teagan: My job on campus is a tutoring job to students. Today one student came in with a question about Adobe Illustrator that I didn’t know and after him tinkering for a moment he answered his own question right in front of me–It was just kind of ironic and unexpected and nice.
Secrets: What’s your favorite part about living in Minneapolis?
Teagan: I like that it’s a lot of different things at once. You can go over to St. Paul, you have a city atmosphere but also natural elements with some great lakes and trails to explore… I really love that about it.
Secrets: What’s your favorite establishment?
Teagan: I love the coffee bar in St. Paul called Cahoots. It’s a place to feel comfortable and meet people or just work on things alone. It’s got weird, over-the-top decor and nice owners and good coffee.
Secrets: Childhood dream career?
Teagan: Artist, actually, or poet. When I was a kid I thought an artist was someone with a beret and a palette which is a little different from what I’ve become… I remember telling my teachers I wanted to be an artist and they’d always say “that’s not a career” (laughs).