Interview with Artist & Photographer Hayley O'Connor

Hayley Oconner art her waves

So, tell us a little about yourself and your creations:

I’m an Australian Illustrator and Graphic Designer living by the beach on the Gold Coast. I create unique artworks, textile prints and typography. While my style echoes urban lifestyles, surf culture and gothic references, my works possess a distinctly feminine quality. 

Hayley Oconner art her waves

What inspires the art that you create?

Surf culture, Fashion & Music are a big inspiration for me. I love incorporating patterns into my pieces and drawing my favourite beach babes or musicians. 

Hayley Oconner art her waves

What is the biggest challenge you face as an artist/entrepreneur?

Probably getting artists block with my personal work. It’s the worst when you feel like you can’t think of anything to create but when you get it back it’s amazing as well.

Hayley Oconner art her waves

What have you learned that you would love to share with others starting their artistic journey?

If I was going to give advice to someone starting out I would say you need to find your niche. Even now I’m still evolving my style to create something that's distinctively mine. When you start out it’s easy to see other artists work and want yours to be exactly the same. That can be ok to learn from at the start as long as you move on from it to create your own style because ultimately that’s how you are going to get work. 

Hayley Oconner art her waves

How long have you been surfing and what does surfing mean to you?

I first learnt to surf when I was 16 and I think I just got the bug then. To be honest I’ve never been great at it haha but it’s something I love doing and since moving to the Gold Coast 4.5 years ago its become a social thing to do on the weekends. Just makes me happy being in the water and getting some sun. 

Hayley Oconner art her waves

I recently started doing surf photography so check it out at @_waavi_ 

Her Waves interview Hayley surf photo


Her Waves interview surf fashion


Instagram: @hayley_o_creative @_waavi_ 

Hayley Oconner her waves interview

I’m inspired by the water, the sun, the moon, and the stars. My countless wipeouts, my dreams of noseriding, and the feeling I get when sliding across the face of a wave.

Meg Jacovino