Rashaun Stewart – Summer Intern
The establishment of a business independent of any support systems is a daunting task for many. This is especially true in the case of artists who must market themselves successfully, lest their budding businesses suffer from atrophy. In the case of Abigail Hewitt, her proclivity for art led to her taking the big step of establishing her own business.
“I launched my business on August 25, 2014. It was a gift to myself for my 20th birthday to officially release my brand to the public,” Hewitt revealed. “The name of my brand/business is Abii Paris. My business surrounds art and design.”
Born and raised in Mount Salem, St. James, she spent her formative years there before eventually relocating to Porto Bello Heights, her present community of residence. A self-taught painter, Hewitt has always had a proficiency in the arts. Producing eye-catching visuals and weaving a tapestry with the paintbrush are particular talents that she enjoys developing. To that end, her education has been focused primarily on improving her artistry. She attended Herbert Morrison Technical High School, Miami International University, the Art Institute of Philadelphia and Edna Manley College of the Visual and Performing Arts.
Hewitt entertains ambitions of expanding her business and targeting more lucrative markets in the future. These plans are somewhat nebulous and are long-term goals rather than immediate plans. For now, she is content to gradually expand her brand and legitimize it even further.
“Some plans for expansion are tapping into different markets and providing a more unique range of products and services. I am currently not sponsored by any organization. Seeking sponsorship is not in the pipelines at the moment,” she added.
The establishment of her business was not entirely seamless. Some challenges beset her during the process of opening and others have arisen over the course of the intervening years. The most notable challenge she has experienced is the belligerence of customers who seek to obtain art pieces at dramatically reduced costs.
“Some challenges I’ve encountered are customers who undervalue your work and do not want to pay for services they requested,” Hewitt lamented. “Also, staying afloat when the drive to create is dwindling away is a challenge.”
In her words, one of the traits that is most conducive to success as a young entrepreneur is time management. “I would say time management is very important. Making the time to extend yourself in different areas and also managing it to get all the tasks at hand done in the scheduled time,” she commented.
Hewitt had words of advice for aspiring entrepreneurs. She affirmed that passion and commitment are key tenets that will facilitate the actualization of goals. Additionally, she believes that remaining steadfast in determination and a refusal to give up are also of paramount importance in becoming a successful youth entrepreneur.
“The journey is not for the swift but for those who can endure it. Being an entrepreneur requires a lot of passion, resilience and dedication. The greatest blessings in life come in small doses so always remember to honour your growth. Despite the challenges you may face do not give up. Don’t be afraid to take risks and challenge yourself.”
Hewitt may be contacted via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or via the direct messaging option on Instagram, where her handle is @foreverabiiparis. Her art pieces are also on display under the aforementioned handle.