Tuesday, February 25, 2020

real talk with Alisa

When I left for college I made the decision to major in art- specifically painting. But my college art education was a wakeup call about what class critiques, teachers, opinions, business and the art world will do to your passion (spoiler alert- it can break your love of making art into a billion little pieces). I stuck with it despite the challenges and then I ventured out into the world with an art education that taught me that in order to be a working artist, I needed to show my art in fancy galleries with big price tags, get an agent and share my work in circles with money/ status. After some art shows under my belt and trying to be something that I was not, I quickly came to the conclusion that I DIDN'T FIT into this world and that was ok!

It was amazing because as soon as I accepted that art wasn’t precious for me- it never felt fancy- it didn't feel like it should be exclusive for people with money- I didn't care about status- I loved selling my creations at holiday bazaars instead of fancy galleries and I loved my glue gun, puff paint and and craft projects- this was the day that I WAS SET FREE! Set free to simply be myself- to love art and craft, be weird, unconventional, messy, rule breaking and not fit into one category.

And while building the creative business that you see today took me over 15+ years of lots of trial and error, it was that moment of OWNING WHO I AM that ended up being my secret sauce! I think we all have to travel our own paths (and no shade to the gallery artists out there) but it just feels so good to be yourself. To own all the things that make you unique and different, to let go of pressure and limiting beliefs about who or what you should be.

So if there is someone out there today feeling like you have "do all the things" that everyone else is doing, if you are making art/craft that you want to fit in, if you want get "discovered", if you are fueled by money or status or if you are hiding all the unconventional things about yourself...here is my advice- don't do it! It's just not worth it. You are blessed with gifts, you are unique and you GOTTA lean in to all those wonderful, wild and weird things that make you..YOU!

Thursday, February 13, 2020

new batch of art journals in the shop!

Friends, I've got a batch of handmade art journal bundles in the shop!

UPDATE! We sold out of the journal bundles within the first 10-15 minutes and we had so many people inquiring about when there will be more that we added a preorder option. You can find the information HERE

I've also got a new offering- sticker packsI’ve got the first 4 design packs (more will be coming in the future). They are black and white paper stickers made from my drawings, intended for your mixed media projects and art journal layers. While I love color I wanted to make stickers that were interactive that you can color, paint over and use in your art journals! 

Wednesday, February 05, 2020

in the studio

A big batch of handmade valentine themed art journal bundles coming next week!!

Monday, February 03, 2020

real talk

I spend a lot of time over on Instagram and if you follow me over there you will know that I like to pull back the curtain, the polish and pretty photos and talk about real life behind the scenes over here. I thought I would start sharing some this "real talk" over here on the blog once in a while with the hope that you find a little encouragement.

People always as me why I still make handmade goods. Why I don't mass produce things in a factory. Why don't you hire people to edit videos or run the blog or manage your social media? And the the list of questions (and unsolicited advice goes on and on).

My answer to most of these questions comes down to one thing & that is creativity. I didn't start a creative business for money, popularity or even the desire to grow big! My art & creativity comes down to the unbridled passion that I have for making stuff. Since I was a kid, all I ever wanted was to make art & that desire has always looked like pursuing any kind of creative job that I could find. I spent years chasing an art degree, countless creative jobs, side hustles & along the way carved out the business that I have today.

I've had moments of thinking things need to be bigger, mass production, employees, pivoting into something with less work/more money but those moments are fleeting because my soul needs to create more than it needs a bigger paycheck. You see, making art consumes me, it feels like breathing, I literally cannot go a day without creating & this where my all of my business decisions come from.

If I mass produced things, if I hired a videographer, photographer, an editor, etc, I would miss out on the joy and inspiration that happens when I do these tasks. The things that most people would hand off to someone else are the things that fuel my new ideas, strategy & my decisions. Sure I could grow bigger if I hired out but if I were chasing growth & money instead of creative passion, I would be really unhappy.

Don't get me wrong, there is nothing bad or shameful about chasing growth and money- it's just not the way that I've built my own business. I did (and still do) ALL the things that business experts tell you NOT TO DO & it worked! It worked so well that I am running a successful creative biz that supports our family. And I've learned that you don't always need to follow a formula or use a strategy based on growth, competition or money. Sometimes all you need is to silence the noise, put your head down & stop at nothing when it comes to following your heart.


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