6 x 6 in.
This image, the sunflower and the deer, came to me before I fell asleep and it is completely inspired and influenced by my friend Sharon's prints of animals, one of which is an adorable baby deer. Sharon opened her Etsy shop almost one month ago and she is literally "blowing the doors off" with her sales! I mention this not only because I'm so proud of her and so excited for her success, but also because her success as an artisan opening an Etsy shop, especially during "these economic times" is a profound symbol of hope.
And I know "hope" is a popular catch phrase of our time and with that I "hope" we don't lose sight of what this word means and how vital it as for all of us to have hope no matter what paths we are personally traveling. Hope is essential.
I realize that these may feel like scary times for many of us, especially financially. All you have to do is get in earshot of any media and it is completely overwhelming. I normally do a good job at keeping my head above these mass consciousness fears, which is why I intentionally don't comment much on it here on my blog either, but even I have to admit that the fear has tried resurfacing. Having finally succeeded in getting my business off the ground and actually making a living with doing the work I love most ~ I have to say that now dealing with an economic crisis, even if it is only dealing with the pervasive feeling of fear that the majority is trying to sell us ~is not quite what I had in mind at this time. But it is what it is, and being in business is always an exciting challenge no matter what is going on with the economy. I am so proud to even be in a position to have my own business, that I for one have decided that I will not let fear creep into my life and threaten to diminish any of what I've built ~ mostly my joy for creating and my peace of mind ~ I've come too far. And when I look at what is happening with artisan small businesses, including my own, and especially Sharon's success in the last few weeks ~ I am completely inspired. I am reminded that times like these are exactly the times to stick with your dream, they are times to rise to the challenge to not be paralyzed by fear but instead be innovative and creative ~ especially CREATIVE for those of us who are artists~ and above all to always remain hopeful.
While the majority people are probably giving more thought to how they are spending their money, which I think is a really good thing. It is true that people are still spending, they are still buying items that are meaningful to them ~ they still want to be inspired and they are still supporting this indie artisan/craft world ~ and that is so incredible to see and be a part of.
I once again want to thank everyone out there who is buying handmade, who contines to show up in support of small businesess like mine. It goes without saying that your support is profound ~ especially during these times.
And for anyone who might be on the fence about starting a business or putting their creations out into the world ~ do not let the "appearance" of these times discourage you. Do not let "these times" fool you into believing that there is no time like the present to pursue your dreams. I believe above all that these times are hopeful times disguised in a crisis to get our attention. More than just our leadership has changed, but the ways of doing business have changed profoundly. Now is a time when those who found businesses built from heart, integrity, innovation, creativity and sincerity will thrive more than they ever have.
All of this message is the hope contained in the sunflower above :) and inspired by my friend.
The state of the economy is not an excuse for your business not to thrive, it is however a really good excuse for you to become an even better business.
Just some thoughts to leave you with for the weekend. Wishing you a good one.