When she was in fifth grade, she found some stones on the side of the street.
’” She wrote them back and said she wasn’t old enough, and went to RISD instead—even though it was more of a hands-on fine arts school, and she came from a digital background. Sometimes, when someone is really good at something from a young age, a natural, they know. Whether it’s arrogance or a realistic self-awareness is irrelevant. Through college I always had a really big sense that I was faking it or I shouldn’t have been there and everyone else was a real artist and I just stumbled my way into this through the web stuff.” After school she nabbed an internship with Paula Scher at Pentagram in New York City.
“I think as soon as you attach all these expectations, and it’s not doing the work for yourself, then you lose the honesty in what you’re doing in a way.
So for a while I was just in this weird spot, but eventually, I said I realized I just can’t live for other people, I just have to do my own thing—and people will hate it sometimes, and that’s fine.” The result was the illustrated 40 Days of Dating website in 2013, which Walsh created with designer Timothy Goodman.
It wasn’t just design—it was story and authorship and content creation, so I really just wanted his advice in starting a studio.
These are the things they do not teach you in design school.
Walsh was a very shy and anxious person at the time, and was naturally overwhelmed—because suddenly, she says, people expected things from her.
While Walsh says she loved the gig (with no prodding from me), she always wanted to be in a studio and branding environment.
So in the middle of the night in February 2010, she sent Stefan Sagmeister a “super-long, emotional email, unsure of where to go in life.” She had never met him before.