On Air

#ArtInTheHammer: send doodz

Blog/FavouritesJune 28th 2023
Sarah Jessica

Designer, Illustrator and Art Crawl regular Tessa Presta – aka send doodz - describes her personal style as, “relying on a lot of cool composition, clean line work and clever imagery.” The illustrator is a fan of the silly, incorporating goofy cartoons, creatures, and lots of worms into her designs. The artist grew up in Burlington, moving down to Hamilton in 2018 with her dad, and fell in love with the city. Her biggest artist influence is her mentor and fellow Hamiltonian artist, The Dope Chief.

“You should always have people around you that are smarter than you and more accomplished,” says Presta. “He pushes me and advises me and everyday, I’m amazed with the splendor of motifs, emotion and hilarity that comes from his mind. I’ve never met a more dedicated person.”

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Besides The Dope Chief, Presta says she is more often inspired by, “business creativity and design problem-solving in the everyday,” than she is in individual artists. She says that she’s been drawing since she was young, joking that rumour has it, she came out of the womb with a pen in her hand.

“I used to draw all over myself and my classmates,” says Presta. “Yes I love art. But I really love people. Anything to connect with someone else. And if that means turning their arm into a Fresco, so be it.”

Even though the artist was passionate about art from an early age, she never thought of herself as a contender for an arts career until she met Dope, who inspired her to pursue her dream. The first piece of work she sold was a portrait of the staff members of Hamiltonian restaurant The Burnt Tongue, and Presta is currently able to live off of her art through networking, consistent Instagram content, and mixing in some freelance marketing and web design projects.

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The artist can be spotted during monthly Art Crawls, but says that the experience can sometimes be more draining than profitable.

“I love the community aspect of art crawl and I’ve been to a few,” says Presta. “A free art space is every creative's dream. However, you have to show up at 11am to get a good spot and probably won’t start selling until 4 or 5pm, so long days.”

send doodz’s current most popular products are her portrait series, and her stickers.

“I have been doing a lot of sticker emoji polls,” says Presta. “I offer choices of emojis and have my followers vote. I then use the winning emojis to create a cool sticker. People were into it!”

"I used to draw all over myself and my classmates"

Presta loves the Hamiltonian arts scene for its community-driven atmosphere, and diversity of artist and method.

“You may think the art landscape is saturated, but you take one step inside its world and see the thousands of creative veins that stem from it,” says Presta. “There is always room for more artists.”

The artist says that her work is just getting “cleaner, cooler and better,” and hopes to eventually work in a creative director position.

“I will always work an alternative job,” says Presta. “Whether that be remote or freelance, I’m never going back!”

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Presta likes to collaborate with local talent, designing art for multiple Hamiltonian artists like posters, merch and music videos, crafting product labels for Supreme Rosin, and labels for products from Locke Street’s Pasta Mercato/The Burnt Tongue. At the beginning of 2022, send doodz collaborated with Cambridge’s Farm League Brewing to design “Birdie Juice” can designs, Presta says to watch out for future projects with them.

“Watch for lots of random stuff,” says Presta. “I'm in an exploratory phase, and I’ve got an ideas folder that is never ending.”

“You may think the art landscape is saturated, but you take one step inside its world and see the thousands of creative veins that stem from it"

You can help support Tessa Presta/ send doodz by following her on Instagram, where you’ll find her recent collaborations, her commission works, and her website.

Instagram: @send_doodz_