Brisbane born artist Celeste Fishburn is living her dream. It took 21 years of working in various industries including music and entertainment before Celeste took the plunge and opened her own company, Design by Fish, earlier this year.

Using the term “creative allrounder” to describe her breadth of experience, Celeste Fishburn’s story is testimony that one’s true calling will eventually ring loud and clear. Growing up in Brisbane, Celeste always loved drawing as a child. “I did art class in high school then I went and pursued other interests,” Celeste explains. After travelling the world and working in numerous companies, Celeste landed a role in an architectural firm where she rediscovered her passion for drawing and illustration. “I guess it’s funny how things tap you on the shoulder, things that you forgot about. It gains momentum because it’s something that you really love.”

Celeste formalised her skills with part-time study before launching an Etsy store last year to share her work. “I had an inkling that I wanted to do something more visual,” she said. From artistic prints to vibrant zodiac themed tea towels, Celeste’s business expanded to local markets, such as Finders Keepers and the West End Street Art Festival.

As Celeste’s hobby grew, so did her vision. Design by Fish was subsequently born, raring to go with a promise to bring artistic brilliance to clients far and wide. “I took that leap at the start of this year … it’s been fun and exciting,” Celeste beams. “I thought to myself, I really enjoy this. I think I can really do this … with hard work, let’s see what happens.”

With a mission to bring joy to those around her, Celeste’s work is more than just beautiful illustrations designed with immaculate attention to detail. Her art is feel good and playful, capturing her radiant spirit and zest for life. “My style is loose … there’s bold colours, an element of fun … things that make people happy.” Celeste mentions one of her favourite childhood books, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, inspires her to create artwork with longevity. “I want my art to be as long-lasting, timeless and bright.”

The creative soul draws inspirations from the things she loves. “It’s about having your eyes open to the world. I look around for inspiration, from things such as succulents, flowers, a guitar, chairs and tables.” Celeste particularly credits music as one of her biggest muses for her designs. “Whilst it’s not in the illustration world, new music is always a constant inspiration. It takes courage to put your work out there; you never know what’s going to happen — I find that inspiring.”

With clients in Ireland and New York, Celeste’s work is quickly making a name for itself. Specialising in branding, publication design, digital content and custom illustrations, Celeste’s favourite part of her job is the variety. “In this role, you don’t have to be pegged into one industry. I get to do something creative every day and that’s exciting.”

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