Welcome to The Daily Artisan website! After several months of planning and development, today’s launch is an exciting time as a new adventure in my life and hopefully yours. I’m looking forward to connecting with you on these website pages featuring a daily blog, photography galleries, and an e-commerce store with some of my work for sale. All the photographs on the website are my original work, as are the photography subjects, including the foods baked, decorated, and styled; the artwork and illustration; and the paper and other crafts.
The Daily Artisan is designed to celebrate, inspire, and infuse more creativity into our daily lives, and this online community will be a gathering place for people who enjoy and value these pursuits. “Artisan” is expanded to include not only its traditional definition of items made by a skilled hand, but also unique instances of creativity such as the perfect bite, a special photographic moment, or anything that inspires us.
Let’s get creative!
Earlier this year I decided to leave an executive position and career I’d held for the past 27 ½ years as a founder of the organization. With no concrete plans other than a sense I’d probably start a consulting business for crisis and executive communications given my background, I decided to first take a few months without deciding for certain just what I would do next. I would let each day unfold with the unusual opportunity to wake up and decide what I wanted to do with my next 24 hours!
Each day I found myself choosing to do one of the fulfilling and creative pursuits that for my entire adult life have been marginally squeezed in where precious time away from my career would allow. Photography and baking and writing and drawing and reading and painting came to the forefront, and my days now are devoted to these things that are filling my life with beauty and creativity.
Who would have guessed that the most uncertain (career-wise) time of my life could feel more certain and engaged than ever before? I have found myself using my hands and heart to regularly create in a way that never seemed to find enough time before.
I soon realized I couldn’t go back to sidelining what matters most to me, and thus the idea of The Daily Artisan came to be as a gathering space to share things that bring me to this centered place, and to encourage and inspire others to find those things that can do the same for them in making a more creative life.
I recently read a quote from American music composer Truman Fisher that goes like this: “The pause is as important as the note.” Well, I don’t think this for me is a pause because it surely feels like the note!
I come from a long tradition of making things with your hands. My grandfathers and great-grandfathers on both my parents’ sides of the family were farmers in Georgia. My grandmothers and great-grandmothers also made a life with their hands in creative ways, passing them down through the generations.
The family farms grew and harvested row crops and livestock, including cotton, sweet corn, tomatoes, potatoes, butterbeans, purple hull and field peas, watermelons, okra, pecans, cows, chickens and pigs. One grandfather combined his farming with building custom homes back when “custom” actually meant something unique and creative. In my families’ homes, everything cooked and baked was homemade from scratch with the freshest, homegrown ingredients from the farm to put natural and delicious foods on the table for family, friends and neighbors.
My mother and her three sisters, born into a family with no sons, inherited many creative abilities from both their parents. They’ve been gifted with extraordinary talents including quilting, drawing, cooking, painting, sewing, furniture design and building, wedding cakes, cross-stitching, arranging flowers, upholstery, preserving fruits and vegetables, and baking. One of my non-architect aunts even designed and drew the plans to build their home!
All my life I’ve been surrounded by the value and beauty placed on using your hands, your creativity, and your time to make things that are special by their uniqueness and the heart that goes into them. While anyone can quickly buy something for a friend or a loved one, how much more it means when someone cares enough to think up something unique, and then hand makes it for the person — or hand writes a personal note on a card that becomes a keepsake. Long after the actual thing may be forgotten, the feeling of being special never leaves.
All of this has been a part of my life since the beginning, and I’m excited to have – no, to take – this opportunity to bring it back to my center and to share it with you through The Daily Artisan!