listening

beautiful_old_bottles.jpg
antique bottles, Half Moon Bay, Canon 300D

Thank you for all of the excitement about the new jewels! (and the photo of my beautiful friend Christina. For the record, she was sitting on the loo which elicited squeals of laughter and hence, this photo)

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I sometimes feel pressure to come up with something new every season. Retailers get excited and say, “Send us your line sheet for summer!” and I just cringe because it doesn’t always happen that way for me.

I tend to work with new ideas as they find me and often my juice is for photos or stories and not for jewelry at all. This can be frustrating when I am trying to buckle down and create a new line.

I suppose I have an idea of what a “real business” is supposed to look like, how much I’m supposed to be working, earning, marketing, etc. and when I don’t measure up, I wonder if there is something terribly wrong with me. Maybe we all feel like that at times? like we are just faking our lives, just pretending our way through them and wondering if we are doing it right.

When I was searching for my dream job almost 10 years ago, someone asked me, “You should start with what you’re good at. What are you best at?” At the time I was doing a lot of collage art with photos and words and magazine clippings. I replied, “Cutting and pasting,” half in jest. They looked at me like I was doomed.

A few weeks later I had a job working with SARK, cutting and pasting her words and images together to create greeting cards and calendars.

I have always been a believer in listening to exactly where the inspiration lives. It might sound silly or impractical, but if you listen to what interests you, to what makes your heart shriek with joy, it is probably not an accident. If you open your heart to the possiblity that maybe, just maybe you are listening to something that is divinely right, you might find yourself somewhere very interesting, fulfilling, and even profitable.

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Hi, I’m Andrea

On this blog you’ll be learning with me how to use our voices, share our creative superpowers and live life in full color.

As an artist, photographer, life coach + mentor, I’m redefining what it means to be a SUPERHERO — ‘cause in my world, it’s got nothing to do with capes, spandex or sidekicks and everything to do with tenderness, intuition & baby steps of bravery.

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16 Comments

  1. angela

    my dear,
    you always just say the right things.
    and i think that’s what’s most important. listening to that inner voice. if it’s the stories or the photography that feel right at the moment, then that’s the next step in new creations and new ideas. because that’s what the whole package of andrea is all about.
    the colours, the words, the visions. that’s what you reflect in your work. and like a magnet, that’s what draws people in, what they sense, what they feel. maybe even what they long for.
    and yes, i too can’t wait to see your new jewels. something says [that inner voice], this is going to be beautiful.
    oxo,
    angela.

  2. jenn

    andrea,
    If the photo’s are speaking to you, listen to them. Maybe a buisness expansion is trying hard to surface. Your pictures and stories are so beautiful. I have often thought to myself, I wish there was a page on this site where I could view and possably purchase these stunning photos.
    I believe that when we listen and follow the inspiration, that is when we are truly successful. Everything else just falls into place. Trust yourself. You have a great support circle, and are completly safe.

  3. Julia

    Andrea, You seem to me, to be a creative person, who has talent in many areas. You write with humor and eloquence, your photos have such awesome clarity and depth, and you seem to be able to find wonderful subject matter for your pictures, even from the everyday people and simple objects you encounter. Your paintings have great emotion, and your jewels are wearable happiness!!! Whatever creative venture you decide to focus on…. I’m sure it will bring you success and satifaction. Creativity and inspiration lives where ever you find it. And you, my dear,seem to be one of those rare, lucky souls who find it often. Follow your heart and your passion….you’ll never be sorry you did. Many blessings on you and your wonderful work. 🙂

  4. stef

    Andrea – I can’t tell you enough how much your words ring true for me. I too think these same things but also struggle with actually listening to myself and doing what I truly love to do. And in SARKS voice – “do what you love and the money will follow” – I try to say those words daily since it seems like all the things I worry about have to do w/money and how much and where it’s all going to come from. Thank you for writing the words and really telling it like it is.
    Love the photos and the writing and of course I’ll love the new line of jewelry you’re coming up with! Can’t wait!!!

  5. katherine

    wow: did i need to hear this today . . . ummmm, now what was that again that i loved to do??? oh yeah, eat utz crab chips, watch movies, and wear your earrings when I go hiking! 🙂

  6. Jen

    What great words of wisdom you have! It always feels great to hear people speak the words I need to hear that I didn’t know how to put into words myself. Thank you for getting that off of my own chest. Ha Ha Ha!

  7. rachael

    My aunt, one of my biggest inspirations, always laughs and starts many conversations with, “When I grow up, I want to…” She is ever-changing, ever-growing, ever-evolving. She is a photographer. A story-teller. A painter. A jewelry maker. A gallery owner. A teacher. A potter. When people ask her what she does for a living, she’ll often reply, “What don’t I do?”
    This is an area I struggle in. I like to define myself, to put myself in a category, to give myself a title and a goal… and a purpose. For the longest time I wanted to be an illustrator. Though my full-time job of graphic design gave me many opportunities to illustrate, I wanted to BE an illustrator. I like to divide my life into little slices.. and give one portion my all, while the rest of me is ignored. I’m working through this and allowing myself to be more than one slice at a time. I can be the whole pie. 🙂
    You are such an wonderful story teller and artist, A. I’m sure however your business evolves, it will be equally wonderful. Good luck!

  8. Mandy

    I often wrestle with myself regarding what I’m doing career-wise. I graduated with a b.a. in psych/social work almost 2 years ago, but since have been working as a bridal consultant in my hometown. I sell/fit gowns and tuxes, help girls with creative ideas, etc. It’s extremely imaginative and positive, and I love it. I feel antsy quite often, though, like I feel a pressure to move on and do more. Some little part seems to tell me that my life and the world would be more enjoyable and satisfying IF ONLY I made more money, or held more power in my company, or had more responsibilty, etc. ugh. Even though I make beans for money, and I live a retail hour life, I love what I do. I love making the women happy. I love seeing that look on a woman’s face when she knows that she’s beautiful. I love telling someone that she’s beautiful! That’s what I’m good at, and I do feel a peace in that. Your post tonight was so encouraging for me (as always), and I thank you. 🙂
    Oh, and I have to say that whenever I wear my fabulous Grass and Sky jewels to the shop, I get nothing but enthusiastic and gleeful responses! 🙂
    Thanks, Andrea! And thanks to all the other ladies who reply here, too! I love reading everyone’s contributions. 🙂

  9. Heather

    Andrea~
    You’re post today was so inspirational for me! Its just what i needed to hear. I’m studying photography in college, and often get overwhelmed thinking that what i am doing is too impractical and worried that i will never make it. But i love photography so i know it must be the right thing. Thanks for the encouragement!
    Heather
    ps – i LOVE your jewelry and have wanted to purchase a necklace for the longest time, but as a struggling art student i can never afford it! I’ve decided to try to save a little bit and maybe i can afford it one of your new summer colors. do you have any sort of student discount?

  10. kat

    Thank you for once again being such a beautiful inspiration.

  11. Lori

    Andrea,
    I am sure lots of people would buy your prints!
    maybe with some quotes on them?
    I love the colours of your necklaces.. i may treat myself to one for my birthday ( Aug)
    I love Sark! I first heard about you in one of her books..I thought now theres one kewl chick!
    I’ve met lots of great people through the MMB.

  12. Jen

    I don’t mean to make a request, but I guess I am just a curious girl. I would love to know the story about how you met up with such an amazing gal like Sark. So-should the spirit move you, I would love to hear that story. I think it’s so amazing how life connects us with people right when we need them most. It seems like whenever I ask the universe a question it seems to respond.

  13. andrea

    I love your requests and questions!
    thank you for them~
    I am planning to sell prints of the photos on the site soon, something I am very excited about… so thank you
    for your questions about this.
    And one day I will defiinitely share the SARK story; it is a magical one for sure.
    you guys rock.
    xoandrea

  14. mademoiselle a.

    I found that when people ask me “What are you best at? What do you want to go in for?” and I tell them my visions and feelings, many [and that is my professors, former employers, work professionals, family…]seem disappointed – because I don’t seem to fit their (!) vision of what is best for me. As an effect, they fall into critique mode, rather than encouraging me for the way I would like to go. It used to bring me down until nothing was left of myself, but I have learned that the problem is with them, not with me, even though there are still a lot of fallback moments. People are too used to conventional ways and categorize the world according to tiny, labeled boxes – isn’t that sad?

  15. Susan

    I visit your site often and it always leaves me wanting to know a little bit more. I think you’re truly amazing.
    I’m writing specifically because of your mention of Sark. I remember when her first book (play journal) came out; I thought it was amazing. I refer back to it often…it’s definitely a treasure. I recently wrote Sark because I’m getting married and I didn’t want a typical “guest book.” As I began to search for something creative (with not much luck), I thought that Sark could create the perfect book/journal for this occasion. I know a lot of other women would feel this way.
    I can see why she hired you years ago…you both have great vision and creative festivity for life.

  16. erika

    Your words are inspiring. Truly. I’m at a point in my life (26) where I’m finally understanding myself. What I want, what I won’t tolerate, what I need, etc. One of those things is what I enjoy and I just wanted to let you know that your words inspire me to keep trucking and just know it’s all in God’s hands. I can’t do it by myself and I need to remember to listen to that inner voice.
    (real email is info@five3.com)
    🙂

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