Uptown resident Jessica Rhaye is an acclaimed artist in both the musical and graphic design fields. This week, she was kind enough to take a few moments to answer some of our questions as our Uptown Saint John Craftsperson of the Week.
Where were you born?
I was born in the old General Hospital in Saint John NB.
Can you give us some background on your current position as a graphic designer? Also tell us a about your music career. Anything new coming up?
I studied graphic design at the NB College of Craft and Design in Fredericton. Going to this college was the best decision I have ever made in my life. I originally went to the college thinking I would take pottery and become a potter, but I soon realized I had a passion for graphics and ended up majoring in creative graphics instead. I graduated in 2004 and have been freelancing here in SJ ever since. My company name is Jessica Rhaye Design (www.JessicaRhayeDesign.com). I design everything from logos, brochures and posters to CD layouts and websites + more.
I have been singing and writing music ever since I was a little girl. It wasn't until I recorded and released my first CD in 1999-2000 that I became involved in the music business. I have since written and recorded 2 more albums, been nominated for a total of 11 ECMA's and have performed all over Canada, parts of the US, England and Niger Africa. I have a small east coast tour coming up in April. Check my website for upcoming performances (www.JessicaRhaye.com).
Graphics and music lend very well to each other. I have full creative control when it comes to my music. I design all my CD graphics and website without having to hire or rely on someone else to do it for me.
How did you get interested in design?
I've always been interested in art and design. My hands are always making something and my mind is always thinking up new creative ideas.
When did you first start playing music?
I started singing and playing music at a young age. I was involved in choirs, ukulele, violin, guitar, voice, and musical theatre. School music programs and my music teachers played a huge role in my life and my interest in music.
Do you have any formal training? for design? for music?
I graduated from NBCCD in 2004 with a diploma in Creative Graphic Design. I took 4 yrs of vocal training when I was younger, but I don't read music.
What do you like best about uptown Saint John?
I love my home. My husband and I bought and renovated a home on the south end. I like that I can walk to my office. I enjoy uptown shopping and dining at all the delicious restaurants. I don't even mind the fog in the summer 🙂
Have you played with or opened for any famous musicians over the years? Any stand out in particular?
I have opened for Randy Bachman, Great Big Sea, Dan Hill, Valdy and just recently opened for Classified in Vancouver at the Olympics!
Where is the most interesting place youve ever been in the world?
The most interesting place I've ever been in the world would have to be Niger Africa. I was there with my band in 2005 competing at the Francophone games in the music and arts category.
Whom are you musical influences?
Jewel, Jann Arden, Karen Carpenter, Neil Young.
What do you like to eat for breakfast?
Lately I have been eating almonds mixed in vanilla yogart….mmm 🙂
Do you have any pets?
Do you have a favorite restaurant uptown?
I love Sense of Tokyo and Thandi's.
Do you have a favorite place to play in the Uptown?
I have performed on the beautiful Imperial Theatre stage a few times but my favourite venue to play in Saint John is The Blue Olive. I actually just finished designing their new website. Check it out! (www.liveattheblueolive.com)
Describe yourself in three words.
Organized, Imaginative and a Worry Wart.