I want to tell you about something kind of exciting that I have been working on for what feels like a few weeks, but has probably been more like 2 years now [and it is actually not photography related]...
First Came the Dreamcatchers
A couple of years ago, my beautiful, talented, wonderful friend Brittany [owner of Tapestry Massage & Yoga in Radford, Virginia] taught me how to make dreamcatchers. I quickly became addicted to creating art with my hands, I was churning out so many dreamcatchers simply to treat my neurosis that I started selling them at Green Heron Arts Center because I ran out of room. I hijacked the phrase “Romantic in Revolt” that I had seen floating around on a neon sign that read “Childlike in Wonder, Romantic in Revolt” because it spoke to my soul and that became the name that started selling my artwork under.
Weaving My Worries Away
I started to feel really drawn to weaving and I had been fortunate enough to meet Kate Albee in her short time living in Blacksburg who is also a weaver. She helped me push through some mental barriers and man up enough to purchase my first loom and go for it. I learned to weave in 7th grade art class. My only finished weaving from that class was a cartoon turtle that I drew myself made in neon colors, being the extremely harsh critic of my own artwork that I am, I threw it away thinking I would never return to the loom. Here I am almost 20 years later teaching myself new techniques as I soumak my ways into the wee hours of the morning on a Melissa & Doug children’s loom. The artistic process of weaving is so much more therapeutic for me than creating dreamcatchers, I always hit a point where I HATE the way my work looks, but I have to push through because I only have one loom – I swear this process is improving my problem solving skills and working through my doubts and insecurities. Again I found myself in this predicament that I’m creating a mountain of artwork and squirreling it away in a room that I had once intended to be my photography studio [never say never, if I can sell my artwork maybe I can still end up turning it into a studio].
Etsy Anxiety and Crippling Self Doubt
The time had come to start selling my work online instead of in one retail location where my “ideal client” may or may not ever see them. With a huge push from yet another amazing talented artist friend of mine, Stephanie of Celestial Surf Studio, I made a plan. First came the dedicated Romantic in Revolt Instagram account [holy shit I hardly keep up with the photography one!] and I set the date that I would open my Etsy shop. To take it one step further and make sure I get some eyeballs on my work and give myself accountability, I decided I would host a giveaway [see below] that I set to automatically publish the day the shop opened so if I didn’t follow through I would look like a complete jackass so here I am reluctantly following through. Etsy has always been a mental block for me, I have dipped my toe in the Etsy waters a few different times and never sold a single item. So I’m facing my fear of Etsy and I’m putting my weaving out for everyone to see and judge – it somehow feels more personal and like I am more exposed than sharing my photography. Overwhelming anxiety. With a MAJOR knot in my stomach I hit publish on 24 pieces of my handmade artwork on the Romantic in Revolt Etsy Shop this morning and sent an email blast out to the handful of people who asked to be notified when I made the leap.
To celebrate me finally gathering up my courage to give Etsy another try, I am hosting a giveaway! The winner will get to choose a medium sized woven tapestry out of the Romantic in Revolt Etsy shop.
Below are easy ways that you can help me get the word out about my shop and to thank you for your help, each item will provide you an entry into the giveaway AND almost each of the entries can be completed once per day from now until the timer runs out on April 8. Thank you for joining on my journey of branching out into various other mediums of art!