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Meet Mint marketing intern Sydney Catton, who is cooking up new campaigns

She spent two and a half years living near Palmer Park, and first crossed paths with Mint Artists Guild at the Palmer Park Art Fair. She impressed us with her commitment to creativity and community as well as her varied marketing experience and for many coffee and tea shops.

So we hired Sydney Catton as our marketing intern for 2020-2021. “I was immediately drawn to Mint because of the work that Mint does, and because of where I’ve previously seen Mint,” she said. Her first assignments: Create a campaign for our first Paint Detroit with Generosity calendar and helping us prepare for a busy holiday selling season ahead. 

We are introducing Sydney with a question and answers as she balances Mint, making and selling coffee and her marketing studies at Wayne State University.

If you were creating a self-portrait of yourself, what colors and background imagery would you use? Why?

I would use a lot of earth tones and a lot of nature imagery. I love the outdoors. I try to be outside when ever possible. I grew up in the country – in an old apple orchard where I played outside every day. I climbed lots of trees and chased a lot of goats. I feel very connected with nature.

Who or what inspires you and builds your creativity?

When I need to rev up my creativity I listen to music, go for a run, or cook myself a new recipe. I listen to a lot of music every day. I feel most inspired by women singers from the ’60’s like Joni Mitchell, Mama Cass, and Aretha Franklin. I usually put on one of their albums and cook a new recipe that I’ve wanted to try. Cooking a new recipe really opens up my creative flow. I love how food contains different colors with so many combinations. Plus you can eat it when you are done creating it! 

So what have you cooked lately that looked and tasted delicious?

I make a lot of vegetarian shepherd’s pie during the colder months. It is the ultimate comfort food. I use lentils instead of meat and a lot of fresh thyme. I love the creamy mashed potatoes on a bed of savory veggies! 

What did working as a barista teach you about marketing and connecting to people?

Coffee brings people together; so does serving it. (Photo: Nathan Dumlao / Unsplash)

Being a barista is one of my favorite things to do. It has connected me with so many people and it has taught me to be a better communicator. Every barista role that I have had, I’ve also taken on marketing duties to prepare me for when I graduate from Wayne State. I’ve also made some of my best friends from working as a barista. I am very proud to be part of the coffee community in Detroit.

Speaking of coffee, what do you drink most often when working on a project for Mint?

When I’m working on a project for Mint I’m usually drinking a coffee I brewed, probably roasted by Populace Coffee. There’s nothing better than a freshly brewed cup of coffee that’s roasted to perfection. If I’m working at a café, I’ll usually get an oat milk cortado. My favorite!

Why does Mint feel like a perfect place to launch your marketing career?

I was drawn to Mint as soon as I read about the internship. The work that

Sydney Catton is leading our calendar launch marketing campaign.

Mint does really resonated with me. I try to work for organizations that I feel passionate about. It’s easier to create a campaign that I feel connected to the work or the products that I am trying to sell. I really want to continue to feel good about my work. I feel great that Mint has allowed me to work with them!

 

Learn more about Sydney Catton and connect with her on LinkedIn. And be sure to follow Mint on Instagram and Facebook to see her upcoming social media posts and videos.

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How Jessica ended up in two Mint videos and a show in the Fisher Building

Jessica Fligger showed up with her family for the Mint Paint Detroit with Generosity opening last month, a rare artist with a rare opportunity – two of them.

She left 90 minutes later with two interviews completed and her paintings shining. This young painter and ceramics artist was thrilled to have her art featured in the Fisher Building – and in the interviews.

The first was with Tim Brown of CBS Detroit, for a piece for Eye on Detroit.

The second was closer to home. Mint marketing intern Journey Shamily, who has sold art with Jessica through the Mint Learn and Earn program, talked to her about her show at the Fisher, which comes down on Jan. 2.

” I just knew that I wanted my interview with her to be fun for the both of us while still giving her a chance to talk about the beautiful art she made for three beautiful nonprofits. I truly did have a blast and with this internship I can mark ‘interview someone’ off my bucket list,” said Journey Shamily.

Guilded by her Mint mentor Kelly O’Neill, Journey also edited the video of Jessica Fligger, which is presented here and on our YouTube channel. 

Jessica was paid to create original paintings and art through Mint’s Creative Summer Jobs program.  (Follow us on Facebook or Instagram to see some of the paintings created or stop by the Fisher Bakery by the afternoon of Jan. 2 to see them all in person.)

Jessica is one of the rare artists who was accepted into both of our training and development programs. Both she and Journey learn creative and business skills through Mint – including how to answer questions from guests or in front of the camera.

Support more youth developing skills with a donation to Mint or become a monthly donor and give even more opportunities.

Jessica is interviewed by Tim Brown for CBS Detroit’s Eye on Detroit. (Photo Journey Shamily for Mint Artists Guild)

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Meet Mint’s new marketing intern Journey

Marketing intern Journey Shamily at TedX Detroit with Mint. (Photo: Vickie Elmer)

Journey Shamily has a big, silly, sweet smile on her face.  Despite setbacks in her life, she smiles and giggles a lot, maintaining a sense of optimism and professionalism.

Her digital art shows her sense of “body positivity,” no matter the size, shape or shade of the women she creates.  She wants every woman to feel empowered about their bodies and every girl to see someone who looks like her, “beautiful and unique.”

Shamily, 18, was chosen as Mint’s first marketing intern in November, selected for her experience in graphic design and her attitude and enthusiasm. In that role, she creates videos, social media posts, fundraising materials and will help establish Mint’s social media policy guide. And she is learning new skills, guided by her mentor, Mint board member and marketing lead Kelly O’Neill and others on Team Mint.

“It’s helping me take my career to the next step and be more professional,” Journey said. 

Her favorite early assignment was serving as the Mint photographer and videographer at our Paint Detroit with Generosity opening at the Fisher Building. (Watch for a new post soon sharing one of the videos and a couple of photos from that wonderful opening. The show is up at the Fisher Building through Dec. 30.)

Journey Shamily, 18, attends WayMichigan, an online school and will graduate from high school next year. She has bounced around, living on her own, briefly in a homeless shelter with her mom, and now with her grandma, who has been very supportive of her creative projects. 

After graduating, she intends to  take a gap year to save money and add to  her experience as a freelance designer and digital illustrator.

In 2020, Journey is planning a community service project, bringing Mint Artists Guild into Detroit area homeless shelters to work with children on creative art and gifts for their moms.

 She has been part of Mint’s Learn & Earn program since September 2018. She has learned to connect with others and network around her art among other things. 

Mint is “very inclusive, very friendly and safe,” for all artists, she says.  She helps make it friendly, with her big smile and the “hello, hello, hello” greeting for all.

 

Fun fact:  She loves Ted Talks  – and sold her work with Mint Artists Guild at TedXDetroit 2019.

Digital art © Journey Shamily

Future plans: Attend a university in New York or elsewhere to study graphic design or illustration.

See her work:   Visit her website or stop by at Mint pop ups and the Mint tent at the Palmer Park Art Fair in June.

 

Support Mint Artists Guild with a monthly donation now, so we may hire more Journeys, more creative youth for internships and creative work in the year ahead. 

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Mint Artists is starting to collect creative internships and summer jobs that are available in and around Detroit. This one sounds like it’s pounded from sterling silver:

Smith Shop, a Detroit metalworking firm, is seeking a 35-hour a week intern to start in early 2017. Candidates must already know jewelry-making, black-smithing or hollow-ware. Interns are “encouraged to develop their own artistic work in off hours.”  The internship will last at least three months.

 Deadline to apply is Dec. 1. Details are available on Smith Shop’s website.  (Photos: Smith Shop)