Jolene Ung of Quirks & Smirks
Meet Jolene Ung, the Maker behind Quirks & Smirks.
"My name is Jolene Ung. I am a Jesus-loving, artmaking, coffee-loving, wandering and exploring Long Beach native."
Read her story below
What inspired you to start your creative enterprise? What steps did you take to set yourself apart?
As a child, I was always dabbling in creative activities like drawing and painting, but my heart was set on science up until I went to college. After 2 years in a biology program, I realized that my real passion and natural inclinations were more geared towards the arts. It was hard to let my science-oriented dream go, but the change brought me so much more peace.
I pride myself on being unique, and I realized that many commercial and mainstream stores did not carry items like greeting cards that said what I wanted to say. I decided to take the leap and start making my own cards that provided a more unique sentiment without being crass or crude. I made cards that said what I wanted to say, no matter how different they were from what is seen in stores.
“I decided to take the leap and start making my own cards that provided a more unique sentiment"
What does your workspace look like? What gets your creative juices flowing?
I have a vintage, refurbished desk with storage for both my Quirks & Smirks art and my work files! I wish I was a little more organized, but I have to admit I’m a little messy.
In terms of creativity, I’m extremely inspired by music, nature, and travel. I identify as an empath, so I feel things quite deeply, and I like to express whatever I am deeply feeling. Sometimes I will hear a song and a color, an emotion, or imagery will automatically come to mind. I channel whatever comes to mind into a painting or other medium.
Describe your perfect day out and about locally.
I absolutely adore introducing my friends to Long Beach! I like to start with a drive up to Hilltop Park, then head off to lunch. From there, we walk down Pine Street, shop and grab pie at The Pie Bar! Recently, I took a friend to one of my favorite spots – the Lighthouse in Rainbow Harbor. We took some great pictures, relaxed, and walked over to take a Harbor Cruise.
"I am constantly learning how to create items that will sell, while at the same time not compromising who I am in my work."
If you could move to any other place in this or any universe where would you go?
Honestly? My answer right now would be Copenhagen, Denmark. I know, not that exciting, but I’m just being honest! I’ve visited a couple times and fell in love with the city and the Danish culture. I would absolutely love to live there and paint around the city!