How many identities do you have?
hmmm this is hard to answer. There is a lot of little facets. Most people know me as Sophie the Traveler, Sophie the Editor in Chief and Sophie the Barista. Sophie the Educator & Teacher. But I am also Sophie the musician and Sophie the Photo Taker and Sophie the Nanny.
Who is Sophie Cottrell?
I am an avid dreamer and creator. I always have a million ideas going through my head and to be honest, I try and do most of them. There are definitely a few hundred though that sit in a book in my bedside drawer, waiting for the right season to come out and play. I love love my family and am very close to them all. I am a passionate lover of my country and my city. I have worked in a lot of different arenas and I love that. I have worked in retail, food, helped my parents open a cafe, coffee, nannying, corporate, agencies, design, freelance and small business. I play a lot of music in my spare time, either on my piano or through my headphones, whichever suits the mood. I am pretty passionate about health and am currently healing my body of some health issues I have dealt with my whole life, through the right foods and functional medicine. This makes me cook a lot more for myself, which I have had so much fun learning and creating!
What was it like growing up in the Cottrell household?
Wild, with a side of crazy and lots of fun. I have three siblings and parents who are best friends. We knew growing up we would never do the normal thing just because that is what everyone is supposed to do.. My Mum has always championed and firmly believes that just because everyone does it one way, doesn't mean you have to as well. So that's probably why, when a few of her friends starting talking homeschooling, my parents researched the heck out of it and leaped into it. My Mum is pretty selfless.. all homeschool Mum's are! You are giving up the 6 hours of child-free time to invest in your child's learning and honestly, that's a lot of pressure. It never felt like that though. She was always so creative and my dad was incredibly supportive. He always had her back and taught us a lot of things as well. It definitely wasn't all sunshine and roses, but I don't think there is a family that is. We are a pretty passionate bunch. If you ever came over for dinner you would have to be able to jump into the convo or just sit back and listen.. you would definitely see the loud side of us. Funnily enough, my older brother and my sister are both qualified teachers, so she must have been a pretty good one!
What inspired you to leave your Corporate career behind and start your own magazine?
Corporate was never my cup of tea, but I knew there was so much to be learnt in it so I stuck it out and boy, am I so glad that I did. I left to go travel America and live with some friends. Upon returning, I met up with a friend who had been to similar places but had very different experiences, not knowing locals. Which sparked the idea of starting a print magazine that locals contributed to, to show their favourite places in their city. It was a risk leaving corporate but it was also liberating and something that really pushed me to do what I was passionate about.
What other business ventures have you started since you started Sceen'ry?
Sceen'ry is my main business however I have recently ventured into the education sector and run a series of media, editing and production workshops and classes in various schools in Perth. In addition, to keep things varied I work casually as a barista and I am also a hobby photographer.
What do you do to balance your multiple identities and stay grounded?
Work is work and play is play. When I am working on one thing, that is where my head needs to be at and as soon as I am finished, that is it. Working as a part-time barista is such an outlet for me. I get to chat to people face to face rather than be behind a computer and I love that interaction. This really helps me stay grounded when it comes to Sceen'ry.
What advice would you give to other women out there who want to leave the corporate world but are afraid to do so?
Don't be afraid! We can't live in fear, otherwise, we will look back with regret and that is no way to live. If you are worried about money, start as a side hustle, you don't have to jump to full time straight away or even a few year into it. If you are finished with corporate, find something that allows you to do what you are passionate about, think outside the box and make a business plan. Do loads of market research and by loads, I mean, way more than you think is necessary, then reach out to people who are doing it and ask to have coffee with them. I bet you they will say yes, cause they have probably been in the same position!