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Conversations with Emma Masur

Today we’d like to introduce you to Emma Masur. 

Hi Emma, it’s an honor to have you on the platform. Thanks for taking the time to share your story with us – to start, maybe you can share some of your backstories with our readers?
I have been an artist of sorts ever since I can remember. As a product of a Cincinnati Waldorf School education, I grew up surrounded by gifted creatives from my early childhood years-years that I believe have profoundly impacted my passion for visual communication and shaped me into the woman, entrepreneur, and creative I am today. Art has always been a means of self-expression for me, and growing up in the digital era has opened doors to limitless opportunities to hone my digital design skills each and every day. 

I entered the creative field shortly after graduating with my MA in Composition, Rhetoric, and Digital Media from Nova Southeastern University in the Spring of 2022. I knew that focusing on my creative talents was the only path towards doing what I love but calling it “work.” With two communication degrees in tow, I have entered the visual communication field with an innovative eye for art and writing combined-an eye, that I believe, gives me quite the competitive edge in the fast-paced, ever-changing world of digital art and media. 

Thus, The Lookout Co. was born! My business is a small branding + web design studio that uplifts the voices of small businesses, entrepreneurs, and creatives alike. While I am only about a month into my career as a female entrepreneur, I have already fallen in love with owning my own small business. I am so proud to say that I am growing each and every day, both as a business owner and a creative alike. Owning my own business has given me so much new insight as to what it means to “be your own boss,” and I am so grateful to be able to be a small business owner and be able to call myself successful already as well. 

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall, and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
Being a female entrepreneur or small business owner is no walk-in-the-park by any means. Like every other small business owner out there, I have had struggles, questioned my worth, doubted myself as a designer, and been quite afraid of what the future may hold. Learning how to navigate the world of owning a small business straight out of college is extremely challenging in and of itself! While I am confident in my abilities as a designer, there are hurdles involved in being a small business owner that had not crossed my mind before my launch a month ago, such as the time it takes to market myself, bookkeeping, or project and time management, to name a few. That said, I’ve learned to do the research, make the necessary investments in my business that I am confident will produce a strong return, and learn from trial and error. I’ve discovered that there is no “right way” to be a small business owner. Yes, of course, there are strategies that may work for others and also work for you; but at the end of the day, everyone’s business is different, everyone’s goals are different, and it’s important to focus on yourself and grow your business in order to grow as organically as possible. 

As you know, we’re big fans of you and your work. For our readers who might not be as familiar, what can you tell them about what you do?
My company is a small, woman-owned branding and web design studio called The Lookout Co. At The Lookout Co., we specialize in brand development, brand strategy, and marketing collateral services; these include anything from a full branding suite to print marketing to social media management and more. My business is known for its focus on both the visual and communicative aspects of design. Not only do we make your brand “look pretty,” but we ensure that it is functional in terms of what it communicates with its audience – both visually and through the written word as well! I feel as though the aspect of focusing on how the visual impacts the written and vice versa through branding is what sets my company apart from others. I’m so proud of the fact that I am a strong and capable writer, as well as an intentional and creative designer as well. I think these two facets really complement each other, especially when being a brand-new small business owner in 2022. 

Is there something surprising that you feel even people who know you might not know about?
I think something surprising others may not know about me is that I get quite bogged down with imposter syndrome and self-doubt on a day-to-day basis. If one is looking at my brand from the outside in, much of my website and social media presence shows confidence and strength, which is not always the case for me. Like I’ve mentioned previously, I am very new to the world of female entrepreneurship still, and am finding it quite challenging to navigate this new space. The imposter syndrome I get from looking at other designers’ websites, and social media accounts often weighs on me more than I let on. That said, with every coming day I am learning how to be myself in the saturated world of design, and let my own creativity speak to my ethos and capabilities as a designer and entrepreneur. Each day it gets a little easier (I think?! Ha!), and I am so excited for what the future holds. 

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Image Credits

Ross Van Pelt Photography

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