Meet Rachel & Rachelle!

I know it’s not October anymore, but I didn’t want to rush to finish and I saved some of the best for last! First up, my good friend Rachel! We are so similar in so many ways. If you follow us both on Instagram, you’ve probably seen us post pictures of the same angle of Papa Murphey’s Pizzas on our Traeger Grills within an hour of each other. Seriously. With nearly matching captions. It’s almost creepy. 😉 
You can find Rachel on Instagram at @rachelacottrell or @bloomdesign.co and online at bloomdesign.co.

Tell us about yourself!

I’m Rachel Cottrell. My business is The Bloom Design Company: graphic design + marketing services, resources, and education to help young stay-at-home mamas start, market, and grow their creative side hustles.

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

Talk to a few supportive friends who get me and understand my purpose in running a side hustle as a stay-at-home mom. I also listen to podcasts every once in a while if I need a little bit of inspiration.

Why is creating important to you?

I feel so much happier when I’m productive, and when I’m “creating” I feel especially productive. I value my own work ethic and my ability to be creative with my work, and giving myself something to be proud of is the best boost of self-confidence I can manufacture for myself.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

I would label anyone who is pursuing some sort of activity beyond sitting on their butt for an extended period of time as “creative”. Whether you’re going for a run to get a bit of a break from your normal routine, or starting a side hustle as a way to bring in a little extra income, the act of purposefully working towards something with a goal or a dream in mind turns you into something a little bit more than “a person” — it make you “a creative individual”.
I’ve always been told I was “so creative” but parents, leaders, teachers, etc. but as I’ve grown up, the way I see myself as creative has changed. I loved doing artistic things like drawing and singing and in high school I participated in Yearbook, which sparked my interest in Graphic Design as a career, and school musicals, which taught me the value of working towards a common goal with like-minded people. The switch to a marketing degree in college made a lot of sense to me, and my occupation has evolved a lot as I’ve graduated and moved through other jobs until my passion became what it is now. It makes a lot of sense to me that I was able to create a job for myself that allowed me to be a stay-at-home mom for myself. That feels like the ultimate mark of creativity: that I created my own “best of both worlds” scenario and am joyfully living it daily.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I love puzzles, specifically Disney-related ones. I consider the hours set aside to complete a giant puzzle precious, and sometimes I just feel like I need to do a puzzle for a few days for a creative break from the norm. I really love all kinds of puzzles and have a few puzzle game apps on my phone that I play at night while we’re catching up on TV in bed.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add? Favorite quotes?

A candle loses nothing by sharing its flame. You don’t diminish your own creativity or light by sharing your creativity or passion with someone, and in fact, I believe it should be shared often with those you love! So I love this project for also believing in sharing that.

 —
And now, for our final feature, Rachelle! Rachelle and I were PR majors together in college and have stayed in touch through Instagram. She’s one of my favorite food bloggers to follow and often inspires the meals my family and I eat. 
You can find Rachelle on Instagram at @cinnamon_and_coconut or on her blog at cinnamonandcoconut.com!

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

I look on Pinterest or other food blogs for inspiration.

Why is creating important to you?

It helps me express myself and keeps life interesting.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

I feel like I’ve always been creative, but wasn’t very willing or confident to share it until I was an adult.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

Journaling and making photo books

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

Lots and lots of other food bloggers!

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add? Favorite quotes?

“Comparison kills creativity. There is room for you. Nobody can do it with your voice, your experience, your insight.” -Karon Walrond

Meet Amy and Amberly

I’m so excited to introduce you to Amy today! I’ve been following Amy for as long as I can remember. I love seeing the projects she creates and the tutorials she shares! You can find her on Instagram at @thehappyscraps or online at www.thehappyscraps.com

Tell us about yourself!

I’m Amy Cowley. I blog at The Happy Scraps. I share Cricut projects, paper crafts, home decor and an occasional recipe.

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

Let myself enjoy a little break and spend time with my family.

Why is creating important to you?

When I create, it gives me a sense of accomplishment and unlike housework, when I create, a finish project stays finished. Also, I enjoy creating things to help make our house a home.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

Yes, I would say I’m a “creative” and always have been. I remember when I was young doing creative things. I did a little bit of painting when I was young and the older I got, I started scrapbooking. This wasn’t something I did because my mom did it, or anyone else close to me. I figured it out on my own. Once I got married and started having kids, I continued scrapbooking and that grew I to learning to do other creative things as well. I don’t do the scrapbooking anymore, but I feel like my other creative outlets seem from all those years of scrapbooking.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I don’t know that it is creative, but I love being out in nature/mountains, where my phone doesn’t work. It rejuvenates me and helps me to be more creative when I am at home.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

What is your favorite quote about creativity?

You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.
Next up, Amberly! Amberly and I have become great friends through blogging and Instagram. I’ve helped design some of the printables, books, etc. that she has created for her blog. We make a great team together! I love following her for creative ways to prioritize my marriage. 
You can find Amberly on Instagram at @aprioritizedmarriage or online at www.aprioritizedmarriage.com.

Tell us about yourself!

I’m Amberly Lambertsen. I have a passion for marriage and family relationships and finding creative ways to make those a priority throughout the busy stages in life. I share ideas and suggestions for date nights, making time for your marriage, connecting activities, etc. on my website, A Prioritized Marriage. I’ve also created a local date night blog where I share ways that couples can keep their date nights fresh and fun in the area we live in.

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

I go for a walk and listen to podcasts or music. I get so many ideas and thoughts while I’m out walking. The fresh air and gorgeous scenery near my house is refreshing and inspiring. I’ve also noticed that as I read through content I created previously, it helps to get the creative juices flowing and gives me new ideas.

Why is creating important to you?

Creating keeps life exciting and allows me to share my passion with others around me.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

I didn’t always feel like I was a creative person. Crafting and creating cute things isn’t a forte for me. I quickly learned that creating and being creative is about a lot more than crafting cute decor or clothes. My creativity shows in my writing, coming up with unique date night ideas, and in what I come up with for our family to do together. As I’ve expressed my creativity in the ways that come naturally to me, I’ve found myself feeling more creative in other areas as well, like decorating my house.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I love changing up recipes in the kitchen to be more healthy, incorporate ingredients that I have on hand or fit dietary restrictions that our family members are experiencing (ie my husband is gluten free now).

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

@bethaneat has always been a creative inspiration to me with all of the different ways she expresses her creativity in life. I also love following @elisecreates because she shares such simple suggestions for being creative in your every day life.

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add? Favorite quotes?

I think everyone is creative in their own way! Some people create homemade Halloween costumes every year, others experiment with new makeup looks or hair styles, some can decorate a room to perfection and others can put together the cutest crafts. Maybe your creativity sparks in the kitchen or when you’re writing or through music. We shouldn’t expect our creativity to look like someone else’s and taking the time to find the areas where I really excel at creating has been rewarding and fun!

The lightweight, low-profile BrightPad makes crafting easier while reducing eye strain.

Hollie and Kimberly // Creative, Side Hustlin’ Mamas

Meet Hollie from Home by Seven Sixty! Hollie is my neighbor. She and her husband have the coolest home projects they work on together (and some of the craziest stories of things they’ve found!). I love seeing her work in her own home or in the designs she creates for others.
Hollie offers e-design interior design + design consultation e-design interior design packages. You can find her on instagram at @sevensixtydesign or online at homebysevensixty.com.

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

It’s a big deal to me as a creative who also creates as a job to remember why I create in the first place. Sometimes filling demands relating to work can feel like it drains all the creativity I have. But if I can get back to why I love creating and make something just for me then it can feel like it fills that creativity cup again.

Why is creating important to you?

I honestly feel as if the desire to create is simply in our DNA as humans. There is something spiritual in creating beautiful things. And if we can get past our perfectionist tendencies and create just to create regardless of whether or not it’s perfect or exactly what we had in mind, then creating can open a window to Heaven. The fact that I can monetize it as well is a huge blessing in my life.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

I have always liked to create, even in the early years when what I was creating wasn’t actually any good. There were a lot of years where I only had lopsided creations to show for my efforts. I remember growing up all the girls grumbling about how camp or activity days was all about the crafts and the sewing and the baking but it fed my soul. I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I really enjoy dabbling in a lot of creative endeavors. I’ve tried just about everything, I think. I went through a photography phase and a jewelry making phase, a macrame phase, a painting phase, there was a long winded embroidery phase. I learned to crochet from my great grandma when I was really young, about 6 or 7, and outside of the creating I monetized it’s the only creative thing that’s ever really stuck. It feels like a connection to her, I suppose.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

I enjoy following people who do things that are very different from what I create. I think it helps create inspiration rather than something I’m trying to replicate. Off the top of my head I know I check in on @elisecreates @cyanellestudios @lacyllamacrafts and @frills_and_drills.

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add?

There is a quote by Elsie de Wolfe I just love, “I am going to make everything around me beautiful – that will be my life” , because I think it’s important in this world of sharing what we create and hoping for likes and comments to remember that creating is more than just garnering likes. It’s about feeding our souls and expressing ourselves, even if nobody else cares.
Next up, I’m excited to introduce you to Kimberly! We became friends through Twitter. I adore her creative style and the darling kid/baby clothing she designs. (Seriously, please go stalk her Instagram and Etsy and try not to buy an entire new wardrobe for your kid. 😉 )
You can find Kimberly on Instagram at @littleoliveclothingco and on Etsy at www.oliveclothingco.etsy.com!

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

Take a break. Shut my office door and walk away. Go on a walk, clean something, play with my kids. For me, forcing creativity is never helpful. It’s part of the reason I plan my collections so far in advance. When inspiration hits, I know to just roll with it! Even if I scrap it all later and do something different, it’s all part of the process.

Why is creating important to you?

Creating is important to me because I honestly can’t stop! All my life I’ve been creating one way or another. I’ve been sewing since I was 7 or 8, but I’ve also done some drawing, knitting and crocheting, writing and interior design. A few years ago I decided that I was going to try and focus on just my children’s clothing. I was getting buried under craft supplies. When I need to stretch in another direction, I try and focus on my home or something else that takes little equipment.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual?

I’ve been creating since I was a kid! I used fabric scraps and a stapler to make Barbie and doll clothes. I quit dance lessons so I could take sewing lessons. The sewing machine I got when I was 10 is the one I still use! The more I improved my skill, the more options have opened up to me. A person can imagine beautiful music, but a knowledge of instruments and writing music is required for them to create it and share it. Last week I learned a new placket method and now I have more options when creating. While we might be born with a natural creativity, there’s always work we can do to improve and hone our skills.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I love writing! I’ve written lots of short essays and I used to blog. I love that writing is a form of creativity that doesn’t require anything but a pencil and paper. In college when having a sewing room wasn’t an option, I leaned heavily on writing to express myself creatively.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

On Instagram, I love following textile designers. @mintpeony and @ivieclothco are two of my favorites.

Meet Kolbie!

Kolbie and I went to the same high school and the same college. But, we met through Instagram and have never met in real life. Isn’t that crazy? 
We share a love for hand lettering and I have LOVED watching her business grow over the last few years. Her talent and her dedication to her craft inspire me.
Kolbie is a watercolor artist, calligrapher, writer, and teacher. You can find Kolbie on Instagram at @thiswritingdesk and on SkillShare! Her classes are amazing!

Meet Kolbie:

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

I have a list of several things I’ll try! Go on a walk, listen to moody music, write in my journal, play the piano, paint my nails… actually, pretty much all of those things are self-care items for me! I’m pretty sure the cause of every creative funk I’ve had is burnout, so self-care is the best way for me to reawaken my love for creativity.

Why is creating important to you?

It’s how I express my love for the world, for humanity, for beauty—for basically every happy and joyful thing in my life. I also believe creativity is an innate part of being human. We were born to make beautiful messes.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

I think as a child I lived an unnecessarily split life. Creativity is something I pursued at an early age, but I also valued reason and analysis. Intellect. For some stupid reason, I was taught that people were either smart analytically OR they were smart creatively. Never both. That’s obviously so false, and now I find I’m my most creative when I combine reason with imagination—I think that’s why I love making classes and resources so much. I discovered a passion for watercolor as an adult (I thought I was so terrible at art until I was 23 and tried hand lettering on a whim), and a lot of the analytical processes I learned as a literary analysis major helped me unlock what had always seemed so unattainable: how to be an artist.
Since then, I’ve found that if I give myself room to figure something out, if I remind myself that every technique can be broken down and simplified, then I’m more eager and motivated to create and make messes because even if I don’t achieve exactly what I set out to achieve, I’ve still learned something. I’m not sure if that really makes sense? I guess my point is that for me, creativity isn’t just some state of madness that has no rhyme or reason—it’s using building blocks to unleash potential inside myself I didn’t even know I had. But I need the building blocks first, or else I get too self-conscious to really delve deep and find what it is from inside me that needs to be created.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

Acting and theatre, although I don’t do it so much anymore. I did a lot of acting in high school, and it was one of my very most favorite ways to express my creativity. Stepping inside someone else and living their life for a short time in front of a live audience is such an exhilarating way to connect with humanity. I miss it a lot.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

Oh, so many people. @ensigninsights @jennarainey @pocketfulofletters are a couple of my favorites in my general niche, but I also love following photographers, florists… basically, anyone who posts beautiful things on their feed.

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add? Favorite quotes?

“Creativity takes courage” -Henri Matisse. I’ve found that you have to be willing to fail hard at something if you’re going to unlock your creative potential, and that’s why creativity takes courage. It’s pretty brave to put your heart on paper, and that’s basically what I do every time I paint something. I’m proud to say I’ve pursued a lot of things I could (and have) failed at. That makes me brave. I think my goal over the past few years first with my Instagram and then with my full-time business has been to help other people be brave, too.

Meet Katie Perkes + Sadie Banks: Creatives, Photographers, and So Much More

First up, meet Katie Perkes! Katie and I are birthday buddies and cousins by marriage. (Guys, I inherited some of the greatest family when I got married and they’ve become such good friends too!) We love to hire Katie for our family pictures. She also did our bridals! And she often inspires our weekly meal planning when my husband and I both see her delicious meals on Instagram. haha 🙂
You can find Katie on Instagram at @katieperkes and @katieperkesphotography!

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

Get outside. There is something about fresh air, moving my body, and disconnecting that does wonders for my soul! I’m also often inspired by nature and light.

Why is creating important to you?

It’s a big part of who I am as a person. Being creative fulfills me in a way that nothing else can! I love the feeling of accomplishment from making something that I’m proud of.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

I’ve loved creating things since I was a young girl. I had a big imagination and was constantly daydreaming and making big messes. 🙂 As a teenager, I found myself dabbling in photography and quickly fell in love. When I think of myself as a “creative”, photography is a huge piece of that! Through learning about light and capturing relationships and personalities, it’s helped my creativity flourish especially as I’ve learned to document my own life.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I enjoy decorating my home and dreaming up room designs and furniture options! I also love to cook and create meals for my family.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add? Favorite quotes?

“Perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created.” I was created to create. We are all creators! Let go of expectations, be true to yourself, and make things that bring you joy!
Next, meet Sadie Banks! Sadie and I met through Instagram (which is the case for so many of my favorite people! haha) and have been friends ever since! I love designing for her and I love hiring her for pictures. She is creative in so many ways besides photography and I am always inspired by her.
You can find Sadie on Instagram at @sadie__banks and online at sadie-banks.com.

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

I do lots of different things because sometimes my creative bucket needs different things. Go outside. Take pictures of something for myself. Crochet. Visit friends/family. Listen to a podcast or audio course.

Why is creating important to you?

It helps me feel fulfilled. It gives me an outlet.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual?

No, I don’t think I would label myself as a “creative” because everyone is creative and the need to create is within all of us. I’ve always liked crafty things, but more than that, I’ve always enjoyed the entrepreneur and business side of the creative lifestyle.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I really enjoy crocheting. I don’t do it often, but I always feel really happy when I do it.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

I actually have a really hard time following really creative people on Instagram because I compare myself to them. So I don’t follow very many– only people I know in person who use different creative mediums than I do. But if I had to choose one, I’d pick Elsie Larsen (slash a beautiful mess).

What is your business/blog/hobby?

I am a photographer. But I also enjoy creating content for my own personal Instagram.

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add? Favorite quotes?

Arts and crafts don’t equal creative. I think there are so many other ways to be creative other than arts. You can create in whatever vocation or life path you choose. The world needs innovative people who think of new ways to do things. That’s being creative too. Don’t discount your talents because you aren’t good at fine arts or crafts.

Brittany and Joanna

Brittany & Joanna are such wonderful people and I am forever grateful for them in my life. Brittany and I met through blogging and have kept in touch for years. My bridal pictures include hydrangeas from her garden. She has been such a valuable support to me in speaking to my doctor about postpartum depression. 

Joanna and I have been friends since high school! We sang together in Madrigals and social media has kept us close since we no longer live in the same state. We use Instagram messages as a way to cheer each other on in our goals and challenges. She’s one of the best accountability partners I’ve ever had!

Meet Joanna Hackman! You can find her on Instagram at @joannahackman or on her blog at JoannaHackman.com.

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

If I’m stumbling over some writer’s block, sometimes it helps to reread some of my favorite things I’ve written. It’s like a little wink from my past self that I can do this. Other times, it eases some of that tension and adds the fun back in if I step away to do something entirely different creatively. Like working on a graphic, some kind of photo, or doodle. It may not be something that’s ever shared, but creating just for me is just as important.

Why is creating important to you?

It feeds my soul! I believe we were created in the image of our maker – the most creative one of all! If that’s true, I think it’s no surprise that so many (myself included) feel called to create.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

I would. And it still makes me giggle a little bit to say it, admit it. Like I’m declaring something about myself that others might question. But it’s always who I have known myself to be. Whether it’s been acting, singing, doodling, writing, storytelling, pretending I can dance… creating is in my bones. I’m finally at the place in my life where I don’t believe I have to have a specific measure of success to identify as a creative. I’ll wear that badge with pride!

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I really like graphic design. I have no training in it whatsoever, no fancy programs I know how to wield. But I really love using Canva or Spark Post to create quote cards and things to post on social media or my blog. Sometimes people will repost the things I’ve made not knowing that it wasn’t just a graphic I found on Pinterest. It never fails to make me smile.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

@EliseCreates (duh!) – her creative talents know no bounds. I’m always (and never) surprised by the skills she shares.
@KindredWedEvents – I’m not prepping to get married (10 year anniversary coming up!) – but Sarah always has beautiful photos, graphics, and ideas to share. They always leave me feel dreamy and inspired.
@LGEmerick – Leah is my favorite photographer extraordinaire. The images she creates are stunning.
@WeldedRoots / @TheKatTuohy – fab photog and jewelry maker! Kat is all about a creative life & I love following her.
@JenessaWait inspires me creatively and spiritually with her words and graphics.

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add? Favorite quotes?

“Creativity is the way I share my soul with the world.” – Brené Brown

Meet Brittany! You can find her on Instagram at @muchmoreprecious, on her blog, or on YouTube!

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

I’ve actually learned not to push it. I’m starting to trust that life is a process and I’m not meant to be creative all the time. So I try a little here, and I try a little there, and sometimes I got nothin. And then sometimes the inspiration starts to flow.

Why is creating important to you?

It helps me accept and make sense of the things that have happened to me and gives them beauty and meaning. More recently, I have been using writing to help write me through the things I am going through. These experiences often inspire my

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

I wouldn’t think of myself as creative in the general meaning of the word. I did well in school growing up, I could ace spelling tests and get 100% on my math assignment. But when it came to art, I remember feeling so embarrassed that I didn’t have the same spark that I did for academic things. I remember my art project would usually not look like the teacher’s and I would sometimes crumple it up and stuff it to the back of my desk. I have realized that creativity manifests itself in many, many ways. The way I use it is in writing, speaking, and presenting my thoughts in interesting ways. I’ve found that processing my experiences through writing and other ways of sharing them actually ends up influencing my outward creativity. There are places in my house I’ve put together that express the things that I have learned and the things I hold tight to.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I like to take everything I’m experiencing and reading and learning and turn it into videos that I share on YouTube and more recently on Facebook. It is therapeutic for me to make them and to receive feedback that other people have had similar feelings. I also hope they can help people.

Creative Fashion // Meet Elisabeth!

Elisabeth is one of my dearest friends. We lived in the same stairwell one year in college and found that we had so many things in common. We’ve road tripped to blog conferences together, competed for the mayorship of the local Chick-fil-a (lol remember foursquare?), and even got to be coworkers for a while! 
I’ve always been so impressed by Elisabeth’s confidence and creativity in her fashion sense. She inspires me in many ways. You’re going to enjoy reading her interview and learning from her today!
You can find Elisabeth on Instagram at @fashioncrime.

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

Exercise. I know it sounds crazy, but over the past couple of years I’ve noticed if I’m not exercising regularly, I always get in a funk. I also like to people-watch. You can get a lot of outfit/fashion inspiration simply from those around you.

Why is creating important to you?

Creating is important to me because I think creativity impacts everyone. Because even if you’re in a field that doesn’t necessarily promote creativity in the way we think of creativity directly, it can be found.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

I didn’t label myself as a creative for a long time. I always thought that to be considered creative I had to be able to draw or take pictures or make something physical and as creative as I am – my drawing skills are amateur at best. It’s only been in the last year that I’ve really realized how creative fashion is. I think I’ve always been creative although I don’t think I conscientiously thought that when I was younger. I scrapbooked when I was in high school and participated in speech and drama and I ended up winning a gift card in a ceramics competition. Those all seem very different from each other, but definitely cultivated my creativity. Fashion is my true creative passion though.

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?

I really like cooking and baking. I’m not good at making up recipes or anything, but sometimes I’ll add or subtract things from recipes to see what I like and don’t like.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

@beccaclason has been my current favorite creative inspiration. She does a ton of stop motion videos and they’re incredible!

What is your business/blog/hobby?

I’ve been trying to get my business, Shop Your Closet, up and running!

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add?

I think the most important thing about creativity is finding out what it means for yourself. Don’t let societal parameters pressure you to define creativity in specific way. There is always creativity to be found!

Meet Creative Photographer Kylie Pond

I adore Kylie. She is so inspiring and full of creativity. I love seeing her posts of the simple things that become beautiful, creative things. She’s a photographer with an emphasis on storytelling– which I really love. 
You can find Kylie on Instagram at @kyliepond and online at kyliepond.com.

When you are in a creative funk, what do you do to reignite your creativity?

When I’m in a creative funk, I take a break from the activity that’s giving me trouble, and I try out something else creative or another way to unwind, like reading. I think it’s really important to not place too many expectations on our creativity, an idea that Elizabeth Gilbert has written extensively about. A couple of years ago, after a personally stressful year and a busy photography season, photography lost the joy for me. So, I didn’t push myself. Once my commitments were fulfilled, I put my camera aside for a couple of months and focused on other things. I came back to it when I felt the desire spark again.

Why is creating important to you?

Creating is part of my identity—it’s been part of my life since my childhood. It helps me to feel like myself and brings me joy. I was talking to a friend a couple of weeks ago about creative hobbies and why I think they’re so important to me. As a mostly stay-at-home mom, a lot of my work is consistently un-done and needs re-doing daily (or hourly). Diapers are always needing changed, food gets eaten and more needs to be purchased and prepared, laundry gets dirty, etc. Creating is more permanent. Once I’ve made a picture or a dress or hand-lettered a quote, it’s there and I can see it. Even when I’m participating in less tangible or consumable creative activities, such as singing in a choir or baking muffins, it bolsters my confidence and feelings of accomplishment. Creativity is a huge part of how I take care of myself and feed my soul.

Would you label yourself as “creative”? Have you always been a creative individual? How have you developed creativity?

Like I mentioned, I’ve been creating since childhood. I credit my parents with fostering that creativity by providing the materials, space, and inspiration to create. My mom was always doing crafts with us, and I don’t remember her ever saying no when I wanted to try something new. My dad is a great woodworker and a DIY type, and I remember many hours spent alongside him in his shop making things or watching him. I think it’s so important to provide this for our children, even though I see with my own that it’s not always easy. As a child, I loved to draw, craft, and make little polymer clay figures. I often used my allowance to purchase clay, sketchbooks, and pencils. I have always had a camera since about age 8, when I started with a little point-and-shoot film camera. I made my little sister pose for my photo shoots around the neighborhood.
Eventually, I was making my college roommates my subjects and within my first year of marriage, I was gifted an old DSLR (a Canon 20D). I took online workshops in photography and devoured as many free web resources as I could. I think overall I’ve developed my creativity by staying curious. If something seems interesting to me, I try it out (like the time I took a jewelry and metalsmithing class in college). I’m rarely very good at first, but if I like it enough, I keep practicing.
What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect? (i.e. I love Photography, but it’s not something I post about or talk about often.)
I have so many creative interests that it’s difficult to choose a favorite! I also seem to have seasons where one interest is more predominant than the others. Currently, sewing clothing is one of my favorite creative activities. I’m known for my photography and it’s where I’ve established a business, so sewing is something that is just for me. I love knowing that I can make something so useful and being able to make something I know will last and fit well.

Who do you follow on Instagram for creative inspiration?

What is your business/blog/hobby?

I’m a photographer! Primarily families with a storytelling emphasis.

Do you have any other thoughts on creativity that you’d like to add? Favorite quotes?

“Most individuals never have enough time, and they’ve never had enough resources, and they’ve never had enough support or patronage or reward…and yet still they persist in creating. They persist because they are called to be makers, by any means necessary.” Elizabeth Gilbert, Big Magic

Learn How You Find Inspiration // Meet Lauren and Maria – Handlettering Artists (and more!)

If I were going to create the hand lettering version of a fantasy football team, Maria and Lauren would be my quarterbacks. Seriously, I love following these two on Instagram and seeing what they create. Although they’re both hand letterers, they have such unique and amazing styles. They also both have great thoughts on creativity and finding inspiration. 

You can find Maria on Instagram at @mariaharmandesign and you can see her portfolio here.

You can find Lauren on Instagram at @blushriverdesign and you can purchase her Procreate brushes (and more) on her Etsy shop!

First up, Maria: I’m an aspiring Hand Letterer and graphic designer. It’s taken me years of creating to finally come to terms with the fact that I’m creative haha. Ever since I can remember, I’ve been doodling words and letters in the margins of papers, or even tracing them with my finger on table tops (which my friends have lovingly assured me is not quite normal haha). I did receive a BFA in Graphic Design from USU five years ago and that has given me almost like an official stamp of approval that I really am a creative person.

I honestly almost feel compelled to create at times. It’s such a personal vehicle for self expression that I think I kind of feed off. Plus, there are so many different type faces and styles of illustration that I feel like I’ll never run out of things to try.

Where do you find inspiration/how do you get out of a creative funk?

I like to look at the work of people I admire. Instagram and Pinterest have become such a source of inspiration to me, from color palettes to type styles, I constantly find myself saving other artist’s work to reference later that makes me excited to start creating again. Oh, also vintage labels and ads are so so dreamy and always get my little retro loving heart beating faster and ready to create.

I’ve been completely smitten by @bydylanm as a source of creative inspiration lately.

What is your favorite quote about creativity?

“Perfection will only hold you back.” – Stephen Kunz

What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?
I adore makeup! It’s been a side hobby of mine for at least ten years and I love creating new eye looks that are bold, colorful, and still (mostly) appropriate for every day life.
Meet Lauren: I make and sell Procreate brushes and color palettes, SVGs, fonts and digital prints. I have always been aware that I am a creative individual, I believe we all are. I have further refined and developed my creativity by simply doing it often and not being afraid of “doing it wrong”. I try to make a conscious effort to squash any power fear is trying to get.
I deeply believe that we came from a Heavenly Father who is the ultimate creator. I believe a huge part of my purpose gets fulfilled when I create. My mental health is stable when I create, because it lets me express myself. It helps me to work out my emotions in a healthy way. It releases tension and stress and makes me feel like I am being productive.
Where do you find inspiration/how do you get out of a creative funk?
When I am in a creative funk for designing something new or unique – I simply just play and have fun. I let go of any expectations or negative feelings and I just do anything I feel passionate about at the time. I don’t allow any external influences to come in, and I only do intrinsic led activities. Comparison is a major flame dampener for me, so I just let what is inside of me come out. Then I make sure to put it out into the world, and decide before hand that I am happy with it. This helps me to kill any of the power fear might have in my creative block.
I follow a lot of people on Instagram, but I don’t look to any one person for inspiration. It’s a really big deal to me to be intrinsically motivated. So I try not to get ideas from any one person.
What is your favorite creative activity that someone might not expect?
I actually love cooking. I went to school for Professional Cooking in college. I also love crocheting/knitting/sewing were my passions before I started digital design and modern calligraphy. I still love them immeasurably, but with 3 kids that are 3 and under it’s just not feasible at the moment. I used to design quilts, and knit/crochet patterns. I designed my wedding quilt that I had quests sign instead of a book, which I still look at often, it happens to be on my bed right now. I designed an amigurumi bunny, designed a C2C Christ block for my crochet Christmas blanket. When my children are a little older, I’ll definitely be doing it again.

Creating Helps You Find the Best Version of Yourself // Meet Katie Lee

First, and most importantly, press play on Katie’s brand new single for the perfect soundtrack to this post/your Saturday.

Katie Lee is a singer/songwriter and photographer. One thing I love about following Katie on social media is the passion she portrays in all that she does. Her excitement and joy for her photography and her music shines through in everything she shares. Her confidence in her performances inspires me. Without further ado, here are some thoughts on creativity from her!

Everyone has creativity within them. It’s so healing for the soul so just try new things until something sticks and brings you joy. Creating is important to me because it’s an essential part of my life. I feel like the best version of myself when I’m creating a song. I love that it can be like therapy. I can spew out so many feelings and repackage them into something beautiful.

When I’m in a creative funk, I usually go to the mountains or listen to or watch people that are really good at the same things I am. It inspires me to see what people can accomplish. I love photography and have been really working on that lately but I also love art and I’m trying to carve out space to do more of that.

I was always a creative child. I loved art and music and luckily I had parents that wanted to foster that. They put me in voice lessons, piano lessons, choirs, art classes, etc. When I got older it became something I wanted to do of my own accord and actually wanted to put time into building.

Katie’s Favorite Instagram Inspirations:

Photography: @aubreebellephotography
Photographyy: @loriromneyphotography
Music: @kimberlyknightonmusic