Alumna Profile - Laura Martindale
Laura Martindale

Alumna Profile
Laura Martindale

With the way the economy is these days, being laid off isn’t exactly the best news for a person. Laura Martindale thought otherwise. She saw an enormous opportunity.

Martindale, a 2004 graduate of Coker College, was laid off from her job near Charleston, S.C., in September 2009. The very next day she started up her own business, and it’s what she’s been doing ever since.

“It’s something I wanted to do my whole life,” said Martindale, who left Coker with a bachelor’s degree in art with a concentration in fine arts. “Being laid off was an opportunity. It was the biggest life-changing experience for me.”

Her business is Artistic i, and she can be found online at www.myArtistici.com. Launched in October 2009, the site features artwork, giclee prints and graphic designs. All of her work can be purchased directly from the site as well as on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and eBay.

Business has grown enough that she’s hired her first assistant, and a graphic designer is expected to be brought in soon.

While she has experienced success through her website, Martindale has lofty long-term goals.

“I plan to make it on HGTV or another national television show at some point,” she said. “I have very high expectations of myself.”

Currently, Martindale says she is building five websites on top of having a blog and graphic design work. She also does side jobs for paintings and murals. All projects come in addition to preparing for her March 2 show at the Spencer Art Gallery in Charleston.

According to Martindale, being able to juggle multiple projects and start a business wouldn’t have been possible without her time at Coker.

“The art and communications departments were excellent programs for me,” she said.  “Having sales and marketing experience made all the difference.”

For those unsure of which career path to choose, Martindale has some advice.

“I highly suggest doing an internship in a field you love, even if it’s unpaid,” Martindale said. “Everyone has a talent or a gift that they can turn into a career. You must have confidence and put yourself out there. You will find a job if you continue to make connections.”

Martindale’s road to success was far from the traditional path. But the education and traits she left Coker with paved the way to make it all possible.

For more information, contact Chris Dougherty, Content Manager & Writer - 843.383.8018

 
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