Content Creator: Tayst

This article is part of our Create & Cultivate 100 List created in collaboration with KEDS, you can view the full Content Creator List Here.   

Don't call her a doodler. 

When Taylor St. Claire, AKA Tayst of Tayst Design, received negative feedback from a her college art professor on a project, she posted the piece on social media “on a whim.” 

For the first time, she received positive affirmation of her work, while also having fun creating the artwork she was posting. After a few months of posting her illustrations to her personal channels, companies started reaching out. “Requests for sponsored posts and custom graphics for their company’s use started to flood in. I was so happy to think that people appreciated and wanted my artwork.”

"I was so happy to think that people appreciated and wanted my artwork.”

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Growing up in a very creative family, Taylor has been drawing as long as she can remember. Art came easily, but it’s been her unique approach to marketing herself as a brand, as well as “a lot of persistence and hard work,” that has catapulted a passion for art into a career that she loves. Take for example her approach to the business card. “At the beginning of my career I attended a seminar in New York at the Teen Vogue offices for young people interested in the business of fashion,” she says. Rather than opting for “the common business card,” Taylor created mini flip books showcasing her artwork. It set her apart from others at the event and hooked some of her favorite editors who were also in attendance. “When they contacted me,” she explains, “they helped give me confidence that I had found the right career path.” 

That she has. “Ever since my initial post, business has been nonstop,” Taylor claims. Which sounds ideal, but can prove difficult for a young artist dipping her ink into the business world. Initially time management became a struggle. “It all happened so fast, I had to pretend to be professional, while still trying to figure everything out,” she explains. Everything from pricing, to copycats, including fake social media accounts imitating her style and blatantly copying her work, became hurdles. “Some even went so far as pretending to be me,” she says, “in hopes of taking my clients.” It was admittedly difficult, but Taylor is “always striving to learn the next latest and greatest thing to make my work stand out.”

“Not everyone understands what I do,” she adds, “but I am proud of all that I have accomplished in such a short time.”

Taylor is wearing Keds' Champion Originals.

She's inspired by "interesting" boss ladies who “live their lives with a sense of playfulness and humor.” Women like Beyoncé, Adele, and Chrissy Teigen. Taylor also says that her “absolute favorite character" Molly Gunn from the movie Uptown Girls, "gives me hope that the free-spirited and young-at-heart will overcome the hurdles in life to eventually thrive.”

Her favorite life advice is fitting for an artist: “Don’t be passive and end up with the black crayon. Always go for the red crayon.” But like many 23 year olds she also looks to Instagram stars like Gigi Hadid, who has said, “Eat clean to stay fit. Eat a burger to stay sane.” Which might help when she’s wide awake at 2am, the time she claims is when her “best creative work happens.” 

"Don’t be passive and end up with the black crayon. Always go for the red crayon.”

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In addition to her work for Tayst Design, Taylor is also the Digital & Creative Content Manger for La Femme Collective, a site she launched with some of her best friends last year on International Women’s Day. “LFC,” says Taylor “is an online community created to support and celebrate the careers and personal development of women. On our site, we feature women from all walks of life to share their triumphs and struggles, and encourage both male and female audiences.”

After hearing their stories for a year Taylor says her takeaway is this: “Be strong, be independent, volunteer, get involved and support the women around you. It’s the only way that things will change.”

Styling provided by Reservoir LA. Hair and makeup provided by Glamsquad. Photography courtesy of Light Lab and Woodnote Photography.