Concord Young Professionals Network (CYPN) introduces you to the “Young Professional of the Month,” Rachel Sotak. Each month, the CYPN Steering Committee recommends a young professional in the community it thinks readers would enjoy getting to know better.
How old are you? 32.
Where do you live? Downtown Concord.
Where do you currently work? I have owned my own business, based in Concord, NH, for the past five years. R.S. Creative is a creative studio with a focus on illustration-inspired branding and graphic design. I am also the founder of Broaden Collective, a women-owned business collective.
Tell us a little bit about yourself. I’ve been doing graphic design and custom illustration for five years since I moved to Concord. I’ve worked with many of the small businesses in and around Concord to create branding, murals and illustrated content. I’ve enjoyed working with new and existing businesses, non-profits and local events, including Red River Theatres, Teatotaller, Revelstoke, and Wayfarer Coffee.
I also enjoy connecting with other women-owned businesses, and collaborated with Penumbra, Concord Handmade, and Spruce Home to create a holiday pop-up shop through my passion project Broaden Collective.
What is something you would like to see added or brought to Concord? I would like to bring more community-based art, interactive installations and murals to the downtown area. There are so many ways to engage people with our downtown that also serve as opportunities for connection and learning.
What’s your favorite part of your work day? I love learning about why new clients want to start a business. This is tremendously informative in creating brand identity for a small business. I also love getting the opportunity to create art for myself. Creative play and experimentation with new mediums away from the computer is really important and something I’m looking forward to exploring more with others–stay tuned for more on this!
Where did you go to school? I went to a small private school for highschool, based in Sharon, VT. From there I went to Skidmore College, where their motto was “Creative Thought Matters”. I’ve carried this mindset with me since graduating in 2012.
What organizations are you involved with? Concord Regional Technical Center (CRTC) – I am a board member of the graphic design technical program at Concord High School.
Inkygoodness —This is a UK-based online community for artists and illustrators all across the world. They facilitate workshops, courses, and online meetups to discuss everything from pricing, imposter syndrome and member talks. I’m giving a talk on August 2, 2023 to discuss how connecting with your local community can yield your best work.
What is one of your life goals? To be hired to paint a mural somewhere internationally!
Tell us a few interesting facts about yourself! I love to spend time outdoors; I’m a rock climber (a bit out of practice), play basketball, and take backpacking trips in the White Mountains when I can.
I had the unique opportunity as a young child to live in a house off the grid without electricity or running water. It shaped who I am today, and makes me appreciate our natural world and living eco-consciously.
One of my all-time favorite places for inspiration is the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston. If you haven’t been, I highly recommend it!
Join CYPN at Sunfox Farm’s 5th Annual Sunflower Bloom Festival on Wednesday, August 16 at 5:30 p.m. Wander through the towering sunflowers, pick your own bouquet, and meet new friends from your CYPN community at this fun outdoor event. Sign up for all CYPN events at concordnhchamber.com