If you follow me on Instagram you might have seen peeks of what I have been up to in my spare time (spare time?) I finally got some watercolor prints into an online shop!!!!! I opted for Etsy, which was easier since I had a shop (MonicaLee) just sitting waiting to be used! I have been really excited to launch this for a couple of reasons!
1. I am feeling very creative and needed to carving out time to paint exactly what I want to paint! My very own point of view!
2. I actually have a bit of a PLAN behind it all. This is the first step in a 3 pronged plan to get Monica’s point of view out in the world 🙂 Granted, it is a plan still taking shape in my head, but that is how I work. I wrestle it all out internally until it makes sense, then I plot a course of action.
The e-course Smart Creative Style let me wrestle it out visually first. And I was designing the course, I saw themes in all the things I was surrounding myself with and I started to refine them. What did I REALLY love? I sat on my conclusions for a couple of months as I sorted how whether to just jump into wholesale, licensing or selling directly to consumers (yes, I am thinking big.) I have been pondering the idea of storytelling and evoking a mood. Honestly, my brain is so in this story, I cannot seem to leave it! That is how much I love it which is exactly what it is supposed to feel like!!
Every time I run Smart Creative Style, I gain something new! The women in the course help push me along as they unpeel layers about themselves and their own brands. Towards the end of the course, Michelle Strazec did a screen capture of her final brand board and her Etsy shop side by side to see if they evoked the same feeling. Brilliant idea! I utilize screen captures all the time, but I loved the side by side element. I have a secret brand board that I have been working on and so I tried this same exercise. This is a snapshot of the result!
I am happy! In this secret board I had been accumulating a lot of imagery with dark romantic backdrops. I struggled with taking pictures for my Etsy shop (oh! Photography skills!!) but I think seeing a print in some other form than just digitally is paramount for me. I wanted to show my items in a setting. I see an increasing amount decor shots like these below, I do think this is an upcoming trend of rich, dark backdrops suits my Monica Lee brand well. (Insert sigh)
We talk about trends a lot in the course, when they are a good match up for you and when they are not. While I know white, white, white everything is appealing, it felt too safe for me and the story I want to tell. I wanted a different a different kind of allure than just gold glitter on white (What? Crazy Monica! You love gold glitter!) Yes, and a good glass of champagne, have you seen my party board?
While I try to capture good light on gray New England days in my house (near impossible) I also wanted do very little color photo editing. Hard!
The GOOD news and other big news in the world of Monica is…I am moving my studio!!! (New photography space and adventure space in my future!) I have convinced the men in my life to do a giant room rotation and I am moving into the upper floor of our craftsman style house. This will mean 500 square feet for MEEEEEE! Pitched roof, short walls and all, it is a go! Hardwood floors go in soon! Lots to do!
Right now I have art prints in the shop BUT I did manage to sneak in some sweet note cards too! As I continue to populate the shop, I wanted to say THANK YOU!! As I have been talking about doing this (seem like forever) and sneaking images onto social media (feel free to grab images and share) your encouragement has MEANT SO MUCH. I can hardly believe how good it feels to have a community of creative, skilled, beautiful, talented, upbeat women like those of you who listen in to Smart Creative Women. Thank you for letting me be me!!