She paints the most amazing murals, transforms people into glitter babes and is even gonna be featured in Vogue – no biggie. So when mega babe, Sophie Tea, offered to pop into HQ for a catch up and a coffee, we jumped at the chance.
Arriving with the prettiest painted pumpkin we ever did see (yep, she carried it all the way from London to Manchester) we caught up with the girl of the moment…
How did it all start for you?
I hadn’t actually done art since A-Level, but when I was travelling in India, I was running low on money and the hostel we were staying at had all this graffiti so I asked if I could paint something for them to stay. They gave me pride of place in the kitchen and I painted a huge cow and it just made me so happy. I think that was that day I realised “this is what I want to do.” I had a whole grad scheme lined up to be an Analytical Consultant which I turned down – it was kind of euphoric.
What’s a typical day for you?
I don’t set an alarm (which is the best thing) so naturally get up about 9.30 and leave the house at 10.30 and then I head to the studio if I don’t have any meetings. I have multiple paintings on the go, so if I get bored of one I move on. I’ll usually stay at the studio ‘till around 1 or 2AM – I’m most productive and creative at night. And I’ve got my art show coming up in November, too so I’m preparing for that.
What’s your fave thing you’ve painted?
The lion. I’m also doing a 100 Day Abstract Challenge which I’m really enjoying and can feel myself getting better every day.
What’s been the hardest thing you’ve painted?
Portraits are the hardest but they’re probably the one’s I end up enjoying the most. It’s all about capturing the expression in the eyes and it’s so hard to get right. My next one is gonna be of my Jamaican grandma.
How long does a mural take?
It depends what kind of mood I’m in but a standard painting on a canvas would take about four days – they’re all quite spontaneous but they’re getting more controlled.
Any advice for anyone who’s in a similar situation?
It honestly doesn’t matter what degrees you do nowadays – most of them teach you transferable skills. Make the most of the world that we live in right now – you can change your life through social media and you can get to anywhere you want at the click of a button. Everyone always says to me “I’d love to quit my job and do what you do” – and I think, “just do it. ” Everything always works itself out in the end.
Describe your style in three words…
YOLO, colourful and spontaneous.
Dress up or dress down for a night out?
Dress up – always dress up. I always think when I’m getting ready “no, Sophie, this is too out there” or “stop trying to peacock” but then when I’m out everyone loves it and I never regret it.
Trainers or heels?
What’s your party trick?
Break dancing. I pretend I’m really good but I actually can’t do it.
Do you stay in or go out over Christmas?
Go out. I spend zero time at home (other than to sleep!)
House party or club?
Party season – club. In summer – house party.
Mates or dates?
What are you gonna wear to go out over Christmas and New Year?
I wanna cover my whole body in glitter at some point. Or a really posh going out dress – ‘cos I never get to wear them.
How do you deal with the marathon of happy hours, awkward dinners and a party list that doesn’t quit? Do you give up or go out?
Go out. I’m the queen of energy.
Survival tips for going into work the day after a (Christmas) party/night out?
Just don’t set an alarm like me. Or have a cup of tea.
Follow her @sophieteaart