Thursday, September 14, 2017

The birth story of MADE by jagged

Starting Jagged Daisy design and photography was a non-decision. I studied graphic design, copywriting and advertising art and had been working as “graphics girl” for a few years in the corporate world. My hubbie, a computer geek, and I decided that we would like to have kids at some point and we both liked the idea of a parent that can have a more flexible schedule. So, weighing up pros and cons of each of us leaving our “safe” jobs (I love making lists) and starting our own venture, it just made sense that it would be me. This was 2004, and in 2008 our son was born. 3 years later our daughter made her appearance. A few years later a close friend of mine, Cornelia, pushed me to add my photography as a more official service to my line-up, and in 2013 I opened my home based studio.

Now I’m not gonna go into an extended tangent of how hard it is to work-from-home and balance kids and family life. Or that the idea we have of being able to sleep until noon and work until 2 in the morning quickly shatters (I’m a night owl, but most of the business world aren’t, so 7am I’m up, usually). That’s not the point of this post. Most of the time my design business does well enough to pay the bills, and I do mostly have the flexibility to be at home when a kiddo gets the sniffles.

But, as I guess happens with most long term relationships, I got a bit of an itch. Nothing to serious. Not, “I wish I became a lawyer” or anything. (Side note: my brother wanted me to become a lawyer and work at his firm. I think he liked the idea of having his little sister as a sidekick.) My itch stemmed from the fact that I had little to show for what I do. Yes, I see the logos I design on a store front or a business card, but although I designed it, it is my client’s. I see adverts I design in newspapers, even hold pamphlets and brochures in my hands. I can hop online and look at websites I built. But none of it is mine. And most of it fleeting. After the event, the posters I designed are taken down and probably end up in a bin. Hopefully a recycling bin.

“Sometimes in the digital age I feel I need something to hold on to….” 

A couple of years ago, while having sushi, a co-photographer friend of mine (Hennie from Cadmus) asked me, “what art have you made lately?” Say what? I’m a designer, not an artist! was my first reaction. (The “I am an artist” post is a post of another day.) But he insisted. “I designed and made a doll…” I offered and showed him a pic on my phone. He was super excited, and almost strong-armed me into a Facebook page.

Not long after an artist friend, Talita Olivier, showed me her work and told me I should draw. I can’t draw… was my first response. I was met with a blank stare. She introduced me to Zen Tangle and I was inspired. I have followed the Zia route – Zentangle inspired art – and never looked back. At some point I even noticed I can paint...

It is somewhere there that I realised; I want to have something in this world that I made on my terms. Not according to a client brief, but according to my (he)art. And that is the birth of MADE by jagged. I am still very happy to do design, writing, websites, photography as per the “rules” of my Jagged Daisy business, but with MADE I can expand into touchable, feelable, artsy things that I’m inspired to make on my own terms. And if I’m lucky, my art find its way into the hearts and homes of others and bring them joy.

MADE has grown. This year (2017), my mom-in-law (Cherry-Bee) and sister-in-law (Cally) has joined me with MADE by jagged. We are launching our on-line shop and crafting up a storm. And at night, when I close my eyes in by bed, there is a little fleece bunny next to me, keeping my warm and reminding me what I have MADE…

Love, art and happiness.

Jagged Daisy website
Jagged Daisy Facebook

MADE by jagged website
MADE by jagged Facebook