Good morning and happy December, my friends!
I've been doing a lot of thinking over here at String & Story, and I am just SO EXCITED for the things we have ahead of us, y'all. We are on a super fun journey of creativity and quilting, and it is just going to keep getting better.
Today, our journey introduces a wonderful new acquaintance of mine, Sarah Golden of MakerMaker. Sarah's gorgeous studio makes me drool with inspiration and excitement, and her wild and crazy ride of being a mom and a thriving creative at the same time makes me want to cheer for her from the rooftops. We are so glad you're here, Sarah!
1) Tell us a little about yourself— your family, hobbies, creative background, etc.
I live in Sacramento, California with my husband Jacob, our twin girls who are four years old and a Boston terrier named Captain. I’m a fine artist and service pattern designer, I sell original artwork, and I design fabric for Andover fabrics. I didn’t go to art school; I’ve always been creative but didn’t quite find my niche until the last few years. In my 20s I was pursuing music, I worked in record stores, I was a music publicist, but honestly I always hated working for other people, haha! I always thought about being an artist, having a creative career and being self-employed, I just hadn’t found my voice or the love of a daily studio practice yet. Fast forward to having kids, no time, being exhausted and that’s when I found my voice, my need to create daily and my love for working hard and being in my studio. Kinda backwards I know!
2) You are a thriving artist as well as a wife and Mama. Is there a way to balance those roles? What tips do you have for being present and invested in both work and family?
I certainly haven’t found a way to balance those roles-- I feel pretty stressed and overwhelmed frequently, but I’m trying to get a hold on that. Slow down and be more patient with my career. I say no to a lot of awesome opportunities that I just don’t have the bandwidth for. But my kids are still young, so I have to look at it as a season in my life and just roll with it, enjoy it even. They just started preschool, so that gives me more studio time than before, which is wonderful. I don’t work at night; when they’re at school, that’s when I do my work, and I really try not to let household work distract me. Having dedicated studio time and studio space really helps me stay present, over the last couple years when I was trying to fit in work here and there whenever they were sleeping or napping, I found that rough.
3) What helps you break through when you’ve hit a creative block? Switching to another piece, if I’m working on a painting and it gets to a point where I’m starting to hate it, I work on a new one. I like to work on multiple pieces at once, and helps make each one less precious and takes the pressure off. Honestly I don’t have very many creative blocks, I just keep working. I just move to the next thing, working daily and producing a lot of work has really helped my work flow in general.
4) How is creative community important to your work?
It’s super rewarding to have a creative community, my main community of artists is online. The Internet has really helped me find like-minded people who you can chitchat about specific things like supplies, pricing, how to deal with a client; this is really helped me so much and I’ve made some fantastic friends that way.
5) What advice do you have for other makers on their creative journeys?
Just keep making, stay curious, keep learning new things, stop complaining about the algorithm (ha!) and wasting that energy, get creative with marketing, make more work, then make even more work, share it, keep finding new ways to share your work, share everyday. Don’t compare and despair, just take notes on how you can improve. Enjoy the process, for me that’s key.
Thank you, Sarah! You're an amazing and wise artist, and I hope we keep getting to know each other. Y'all can find Sarah on her website and on Instagram @makermaker sharing gorgeous images of her work, WIPs, and spaces. I would love to connect with you on Instagram as well. You can find me @stringandstory sharing tips and tricks for your quilting and free motion quilting adventures.
My job here at String & Story is to inspire and guide you to quilt with confidence. In fact, I'd like to give you "3 Easy Tips to Improve Your Free Motion Quilting" for free today. Just enter you email below, and I'll send them straight to your inbox.
Happy making this weekend, dear!
PS If you haven't read Monday's post from the Modern Marks Blog Hop, be sure to check it out and enter the giveaway!