Having graduated from Camberwell College of Art’s illustration course during the pandemic, Hellie Cartledge didn’t have the easiest start to her career. But fully embracing ‘slow growth’, Hellie is currently balancing her freelance work with a retail job. Hellie’s client list, too, is slowly but surely growing – all thanks to a persistent attitude that saw her responding to briefs and reaching out to brands and businesses on Instagram. Known for her unique paper-cut illustrations, Hellie weaves a passion for high-end fashion into her illustration work, a style which lends thanks to her ‘endless daydreams’. Here, we talk to Hellie about the importance of self-taught perseverance, building connections with clients, and the realities of graduating in a global pandemic.