By Calvin Berry
Photography by Kat Westerman
One of the hardest things about being a professional creative is managing your schedule. You have to set and meet deadlines, juggle multiple projects at once and structure your days on your own, all without getting completely burned out and overwhelmed. At times it can feel like you’re trying to maintain a one-person office, which can distract from the fun of doing what you love.
Since Poketo began (as a tiny start-up with deadline pressures of our own), our community has always been full of artists, artisans and entrepreneurs who are faced with this daily challenge. With these right-brained friends and collaborators in mind, we designed The Next Page collection, our new line of aesthetically-conscious, goal-oriented planners, to help keep it all together while you’re getting excited about your next big project.
We wanted to see first-hand how a busy artist would use these new planners, so we sent them to LA-based photographer Kat Westerman to see what she thought. An established, accomplished artist and longtime friend of Poketo, Kat was gracious enough to talk to us about her inspiration, her plans for the future and The Next Page.
Hi Kat, can you introduce yourself?
My name is Kat Westerman and I am a Fine Artist and Commercial Photographer based in Los Angeles. I specialize in travel, lifestyle and fashion photography. I am fascinated by the ability of people to connect through the medium of art and photography. Someone asked me once what I photograph and I responded “I photograph relationships.”
What inspires you?
I’m inspired by cinema (especially French films and Hitchcock), literature, the always-changing beauty of water, people watching, Picasso’s line drawings, the stillness of Edward Hopper paintings, William Eggleston’s use of color and ability to catch a photo in one capture, Cindy Sherman, Tina Barney, Brassai, the cleverness of Sophie Calle…
How do you use your Object Notebook?
I use my object notebook as an artists journal/brainstorm notebook. The Object Notebook is filled with my drawings, thoughts, lines from books that spark project ideas, polaroids and washi tape.
How does your Project Planner help you stay on top of things?
Because of the way it’s broken down and the breadth of what it offers, it really helps me define the tasks involved and visualize the timeline for the projects and thus meet deadlines, delivering accurately and on time. I also like its physical size allowing me to see all of the project at once, and that there are spots to check off when a project is done, as well as notes.
The way I organize is by sitting down and looking at the projects and timelines at hand. I then transfer the timeline information to the monthly goals, and that ultimately defines my week’s tasks and goals. While I shoot every day, I also have each day of the week “themed” so I’m not doing repetitive tasks and wasting time. Mondays are administration days, Tuesdays are creative, Wednesdays are for sourcing and location scouting, Thursdays are for meetings, Fridays are non-stop shooting, Saturdays are for family and Sunday is for planning. The project planner makes this a breeze and ensures I don’t miss or overlook something.
Are there any big projects you are currently planning?
Yes, there are several. I am currently planning out the final pieces for two fine art projects I am working on called “Night Seen” and “The Spaces Between Us.” I am beginning work on a project called Ghosts, and I’m also planning out a large concept shoot based in Palm Springs that is still secret.
What are some of the goals you’ve put in the Concept Planner?
To learn to cook everything in Sqirl LA’s Cookbook: “Everything I Want To Eat (because basically it is everything I want to eat). To speak French fluently. To get my website up to date. To finalize and shoot the last “Night Seen’s” in Los Angeles. To finalize and shoot “The Spaces Between Us.” To find a deck of Loteria cards. To create some cinemagraphs for an article. To get the blog started on my site.
What is your Next Page?
I have several things on my Next Page. One is to live in Paris for six months, another is a project called “Ghosts,” as well as a project called “The Map That Leads To You,” and even drone photography.