Today’s FACE of Birmingham, Carrie Beth Taylor, is an amazing illustrator who is well known for her fashionista, bridal, home and pet watercolor prints, as well as fine stationery. She has been commissioned by celebrity designers, such as Lauren Conrad, and fine retailers, such as Birmingham-based Gus Mayer, and also by Kohl’s. Her signature watercolor style is instantly recognizable. We are delighted to introduce you to the lovely, talented Carrie Beth!
Where did you grow up? And what brought you to Birmingham?
I grew up in LA … lower Alabama. After graduating from the University of Alabama, my sorority sisters and I migrated to Birmingham together like a tribe. I guess we were still in the “Love in Our Bond” mode?!
Tell us how you got started as an artist.
Like most artists, as a wee tot. My dad is a composer and mom is a seamstress. It’s safe to say they knew I wouldn’t be a mathematician, right? They embraced my artsy flair and placed me in private art lessons at a young age.
Where do you find your inspiration?
I find inspiration in having happy clients. My art is my business, so in the end, it’s all about getting a grasp of their vision and successfully putting it on paper.
Fashion seems to play a large role in your watercolors. Is fashion another passion of yours?
Mother has always called me a clothes horse. But doesn’t “connoisseur of fine threads” sound so much better? Yes. I do have a love of fashion. Designer clothing evolves from a sketch on paper. It goes hand in hand with art.
What is your “must have” purchase for the Fall 2013 season?
Just one? You’ve thrown me in a fash-hole…. The ‘Serena Legging’ from Lauren Conrad’s Paper Crown is a must for me this season.
What did your bedroom look like as a teenage girl?
Well, like Laura Ashley dropped a bomb and Pepe jeans came in behind with a machine gun and blew tight rolled denim all over the floor. Remember this was in mid-nineties.
What’s the best piece of advice you’ve ever been given?
“Just ask. All they can say is no.” My mother always said this to me growing up. That advice has taken me far!
What advice would you give to others?
Be kind. You never really know what someone may be going through.
What is your favorite thing to do to relax?
A lot of my relax time is spent with my little boy. He loves to cuddle and watch The Adventures of Milo and Otis.
Favorite thing to do on a Saturday night?
Eat, drink, laugh, dance … as long as there’s fun, I’m on board!
Favorite local restaurant?
I’m a Bottega Cafe fan. The food, the atmosphere and the bartenders are my fav.
What are you listening to these days?
Johnny Cash and Jeff Bridges are shuffling around in my iTunes
What books are you currently reading?
Do you have any personality quirks or irrational fears?
At the risk of sabotaging my dating life, I plead the fifth.
If your house was on fire what’s the one non living thing you would grab?
Jewelry box. Inside are pieces of both my great grandmother’s jewels that were passed down.
I was fortunate to know them both very well…so they mean a great deal to me.
Name three things you can’t live without excluding friends, family and God.
1. Batiste Dry Shampoo. It saves me about 4 hours a week that I would lose to a blow dryer.
2. Red lipstick. Caffeine for my face.
3. Diet Dr. Pepper. Caffeine for my body.