Started From The Bottom Now We Here
Since you've gotten to this point on my website, you've probably seen this right?
<---------- This is one of the custom mission maps that I have painted! This is my bestseller, my pride and joy, and my favorite thing to paint for people. I've been asked before where I got my start from, so lemme tell you.
I've always LOVED art and design. I used to dream big of moving to LA and attending a fashion school, where I would make my way up in the fashion industry. Although my specific interests have changed over the years in design, I have always maintained an interest in design. With the big price tag of not only paying for school in LA, but also LIVING in LA (aint nobody my age got money fo dat) I decided to attend Utah Valley University. I've spent decades visiting family in Utah, and I would be far enough away from home to have my own life, while still being close to family. Utah was the way to go. As I looked into the Visual Communications program offered at UVU, I knew that major was MADE for me! I didn't even think twice, or look into anything else. I had enrolled in classes but soon felt like school wasn't right at the time. I'm grateful I decided to follow that feeling, because soon after I received a giant white envelope in the mail, and soon I was off to Carlsbad California to serve an LDS mission. The first few months were torture for the inner artist in me. I felt as if a giant part of me was taken away, not able to search the internet to look at art, and the lack of technology to be able to design. I thought it was the end of who I was! I began taking in interest in lettering after seeing how amazingly talented my mission trainer was. I will admit, when I started, it looked AWFUL! I'm flattered when people tell me I'm talented, but really, all I am is PRACTICED. I started practicing everyday during lunches, and the very scarce free time we had. I then started practicing watercolor, and soon I started really enjoying it. Towards the end of my mission I had this idea to paint a mission map on the back of my last planner. I had seen watercolor maps for weddings and stuff, and had the idea to make one of all my mission areas! I began getting a bunch of compliments about it.
When I got home, I decided to make a full sized one. I realized, "hey this is cool, maybe someone will want one too." I searched and searched the internet in fear that maybe someone had already done this, and I didn't want to copy their idea. I was surprised to not find anything like it! So I decided to post it on our mission moms page to see if anyone would be interested. I was shocked at the positive response I got! I ended up starting an Etsy to keep track of all the orders, and have slowly expanded my realm of design. As sad as it is to see others steal my idea for this, I have been so grateful for all the support I have gotten! I have also loved being able to learn about people's missions, and places all over. It has been such a blessing, and I look forward to expanding my Etsy over time, and creating new and exciting pieces that bring other people joy.