Week 13 Challenge: What creative influencer on Instagram would you like to extend some gratitude towards?
Prize: A special collection of yarn from some of my favorite indie dyers! (including Magpie Fibers, The Farmer’s Daughter Fibers, & Ritual Dyes)
How to Enter: Post your challenge photo and tag @maressamade + @knitbrooks, using hashtags #CreativeRootsChallenge + #CreativeRootsWeek13. You have until Monday, November 30th @ 1pm EST!
In this week leading up to the holiday season, it seems like a great opportunity to not just be grateful for your creativity, but to also push yourself to extend that gratitude towards someone who may or may not know that they’ve been part of your journey this year. Let’s let those special people who inspire us know how much they matter to this community!
I’m Maressa, a creative coach that wants to empower and affirm your creative journey however it manifests! What I love about creatives is that even though we can all have such differing ways of showing that artistry to the world, there is a thread that collects us into a community and gives us comfort when we truly need it. That’s what I am to help provide through my creative coaching on Patreon: a place where creatives can openly discuss their obstacles with one another and find some action forward.
Maressa Made Q&A
When you first started your maker journey, what was your goal? How has it changed?
When I first began my maker journey, it was definitely to combat loneliness. As a former stay-at-home military wife with a husband on deployment pretty consistently, I needed something that would fill a hole that I was slowly seeing in my life. I needed an outlet for some true self-care in that I prioritized some time to myself and my dreams. I picked up a pair of knitting needles, and I never looked back!
What is your favourite inspirational (or creativity-related) quote?
“Great things are done by a series of small things brought together.” - Van Gogh
What is your main creative struggle, and how do you work through it?
Perfectionism is definitely the bane of my existence! I won’t start a new venture because I’m terrified that I won’t be amazing at it from the first step. As mundane as that can seem, it’s a significant obstacle for me in that I avoid the growth that I would get if I leaned into more of the hard things that would take me awhile to succeed at, but I attempt to combat this perfectionism with patience and grace. I know that I will not always be in an ambitious season of my life, but when I’ve learned to recognize the signs of when I am and when I’ll be most comfortable pushing myself beyond my comfort zone.
Tell us about a total maker FAIL. What did you learn from it, and how did that failure help you grow?
I would LOVE to make prints of some of my favorite quotes from my Maker Affirmations video series, but whatever skill I thought I once had in hand lettering is long gone now, lol! But what I’ve learned is that I should never take a creative skill for granted and that also I should never let go of the hope that I can relearn what was once lost. I’m still practicing and hoping till this day!
What do you feel has been your biggest accomplishment?
My biggest accomplishment has been advocating for women of color on my Instagram and Patreon. I’ve tried to give a voice to many of us in this industry - though the thoughts on the industry’s progression towards diversity and inclusion are always my own - and I’m incredibly proud of the courage it has taken (and still takes!) to step up and speak our truth to power.
What is one goal you’re working towards right now?
I’ve recently released an e-book on healthy practices for growth on Instagram, and I would love to turn that into a series of helpful topics on Instagram for creators that are just looking for a little help to go in the right direction. There are plans for more e-books in the future, but they are definitely far in the future for now. I’m also currently trying to grow our Patreon community a wee bit larger so that I can afford to produce my Maker Affirmations into a podcast format! I love the idea of creatives getting a short motivational push on their daily commutes or on the way to the grocery store. One day!
Name three creative people who inspire you, and why?
- I am very biased as this is my workplace during the day, but I am so incredibly grateful to have met Dami Hunter, owner and founder of Magpie Fibers. She’s not only allowed me to flourish in her work environment, but has pushed me to share my personal creativity entrepreneurially too. I don’t think you could ask for a better boss than that.
- Gaye Glasspie (@ggmadeit) is a ray of sunshine in our community, and there is no better honor for me than when she resonates with something I’ve written or said. She has an amazing way of getting straight to the heart of an issue and empowering you to do the right thing, and that speaks directly to me in a way not many can.
- Adella Colvin (@lolabeanyarnco) is the one of the most hilarious women that I have ever had the pleasure to meet! She makes me laugh on a daily basis, while still inspiring me to do better and be better for a community that is looking to women of color for guidance. She doesn’t mince her words, but whatever she says comes out with conviction, determination, and most importantly truth. I can only aspire to someday be as honest as she is.
What is your best piece of advice for someone who has lost their creative mojo?
It’s okay to have lost it in the first place! So many times, we take the opportunity when we’re already down to beat ourselves up even more. Just remember that your creativity is like a muscle: as much as it needs exercise and healthy practices, it also benefits from rest, relaxation, and restoration. Gift yourself the time and space to get back into the practice and the awareness that this is just a season, and it shall too pass.
Share five fun non-maker-related facts!
If I had to choose to do one task for the rest of my life, it would be to proofread documents. I have a weird obsession with grammar, and I’m not sorry about it.
I’ve lived in 7 different states and still miss something from all of them.
I’m a black belt in Tang Soo Do martial arts.
I love to read books more than anything else I do creatively!
I have four beautiful children that keep me on my toes daily.