A website. A real, professional looking website. I have one! And you are here!
How did you end up here? How did I end up here? Well, it played out not as imagined, but better than I could, and looking back, exactly like it should!
I follow an amazing blogger named Emily Ballard (seriously go read her stuff) and sometime last spring, either in her blog or Facebook page she referenced and linked a woman named Amber Lilyestrom. I clicked and found myself on her webpage that talked about rebranding, and following your dreams and she used the words "Hot Mess."
I felt an instant connection.
I downloaded a free worksheet, and signed up for her mailings, but found myself thinking "It this for people with real businesses?" and I tried to forget about what I had read on her page.
As school came to an end, I was commissioned by a friend to do some retirement pieces of jewelry for a few teachers.
These pieces garnered more commissioned pieces and I could not deny this little itch at my brain that kept saying "Amber!"
I felt like I had evolved past my original Diani Designs which was pretty much exclusive to my glass beads and I wanted to rebrand/re-envision what I do.
For a while, I had wanted to create a cohesive umbrella of a website to combine what I do, but even I had a difficult time explaining what I do.... write, sew, upcycle, design....
Am I an artist? Or do I just have ADD.....???
I've heard that nothing good happens after midnight, but after midnight is usually the only time my thoughts get to complete themselves. Late one night I found myself clicking around Amber's website again, reading testimonials, and finally sent her a message wondering if she could help me.
She was in New Hampshire and I'm here, a million miles away, in North Dakota.
I woke up to this:
Of course I can help you, lovely.
Physical limitations exist only in our minds.
I loved her already.
Before chatting, I sent her my Instagram Account, my Facebook Page(s), and my blog to peruse through. Upon meeting face to face (via technology, which is awesome) she already had a sense of me, probably better than I had of me.
She "got" me.
We talked about what my vision was (what vision? I just make stuff.) and my ideal client (you mean people like to buy my stuff?).
She asked me why I create the things I create (wow... no one has ever asked me that.) And through the questions and conversations the word "Story. STORY. story." was continually whispered in my head.
We needed a name. A brand. A vision that would connect how I view the world with people who feel the same. And yet I struggled with the whole validity of this. After all, I didn't go to art school. I was formally trained in the non-creative field of Nursing. (oh, how I forgot I originally went to school with a desire to be a photojournalist.) I didn't sit in angsty coffee shops with a beret and a sketch book. I don't even GET Clockwork Orange.
Am I really an artist with vision to share?
Then at one point Amber said:
You are going to continue to do this,
whether or not you call yourself one or not,
so why not just admit
you are an artist?
BAM! There she nailed it.
I realized I was going to continue to create... jewelry, photos, whatever...mostly as gifts I love to give. But maybe others would appreciate and desire my work also.
Maybe they would want their own Treasure that told a Story.
And it was amazing... It seemed the more I leaned into accepting myself as an artist, the more the pieces just fell into place.
It was like it was always out there, just waiting for me to accept it.
And so here we are. You are here, reading this. On a real website.
My story has lead to this place. Your story has lead you here to read this.
And I am so excited and grateful for all of it! On to the next chapter!