Using social media without being a big Fakey McFakerton

My 5 year old made me this puppet- don't you love the eyebrows?

My 5 year old made me this puppet- don’t you love the eyebrows?

As an artist who is just starting out with getting her work out there, and hoping to become successful, I’m always looking for the ways in which I can give my business the best start possible. I like the notion that successful handmade market businesses are the ones that allow their own, authentic voice to shine through. Not only in the products they make, but also in all aspects of marketing. Don’t make things you wouldn’t buy, or give to a friend. Don’t use branding that doesn’t represent you. I don’t mean to say that I wouldn’t stretch my boundaries and try new things even if it is uncomfortable, I mean that I should listen to myself when trying to find the right fit, and really examine whether or not it allows me to use my authentic voice. My head is so saturated with social media right now, I was finding myself clenching my teeth every time I thought about it… not healthy! Here’s the thing- online businesses require online marketing, and for many people that’s waaay outside their comfort zone, present company included.

Facebook and I are not friends. (If you are reading this post via my Facebook page, I’m totally not talking about you) Yet, it is so hard for me to pinpoint the reason why. I’m testing out as much of the social media options as I can, and some are a better fit than others. I don’t use my personal Facebook page, only the business, but my husband’s page is always open, so I shamelessly scroll through it. I think what really ruins it for me are those people who find it perfectly within the realm of social normalcy to post the most horrible pictures from the OTHER side of the internet you know what I’m talking about stop looking confused.

So I’m all, scroll scroll

“Oh, Diana’s having a baby”

“Hey, looks like Jenn’s making vegan lasagna for dinner again”

Selfie

Selfie

OPEN HEAD WOUND.    

 

What. Is. Wrong. With. You.

 

Ok, ok… that never comes up on a business page, so it can’t really be the reason why I don’t click with Facebook. Continue reading

Meanwhile, on my other continent…

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So I’m finally getting around to sharing my Brazil trip with you… man, time sure zips by around here! There are so many things I want to share about Brazil, I know I can’t pack them all into a post, so I’m going to be setting up a new page soon with our travel gallery. This felt like such a special trip to me, somehow a little different then all the past visits. When did it happen that touching down in Sao Paulo felt more like coming home than arriving at an exotic vacation destination? When did looking at my sister-in-law’s face start to feel like looking into a mirror?

I’ve been traveling to Brazil on a regular basis for 13 years, and I feel like the balance has quietly shifted from “that far away place” to a place where memories have taken root in all the regular places we visit: From the family owned Padaria (bakery) where we have our morning coffee, to the everchanging landscape of bustling downtown Hortolandia, and finally to my in-law’s home on the deeply sloped street of tighly packed houses like two sides of a zipper, that hardly changes at all.

I always say that Brazil is beautiful, but the truth is, where we go, I don’t think most people would agree. There is alot of ugly- the red earth seems to kick up a constant dust that hangs in the scorched air. It is a relatively new city, so homes are always in some state of construction, staying that way for years. On my first visit I assumed that it was an old city that was crumbling apart, when in fact it was only 10 years old at the time. But it’s a beautiful kind of ugly, you know? Like crudely rendered outsider art, you either see the beautiful, or you don’t. Of course, we also travel to the beach, and the mountains, where the beauty redefines the term “breathtaking”.

So, anyway, we had a great trip (yes, we went the hospital- this time for an ear infection, and no, I didn’t get to use my art supplies that I had packed), and we missed it before we even left the ground. But, we are home again, and for me- back to artwork! I’ll post soon with some fun new stuff.

There will be bugs

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It’s that time of year again for us to visit family below the equator! 100 degree temperatures and cockroaches the size of Mint Milanos not withstanding, I am looking forward to our annual trip to Brazil.

Of course I’m happy to get out of this crazy cold weather, but something about international travel with two young children is a wee bit anxiety provoking… still packing at the last minute, terrified the kids will get sick, trying to remember that thing I was supposed to do…

Did I mention we are leaving in 5 hours? Continue reading

Clever post title goes here…

So I’m new at blogging, (hi mom!) but seems to me from reading other blogs that posting regularly is what helps most in building readership other than my mom. But what do bloggers find to write about every day? Let’s see what did I do today… I just came back from having my eyes dilated.  Should I write about that? That doesn’t seem very blog-worthy. From what I understand blog posts are supposed to be beautifully written tutorials about how to make your own shelves from tofu and pottery shards, accompanied by a well lit, perfectly filtered picture of said shelves.

You’ll have to settle for retina dilation today. Maybe I can assign it some deep meaning… Continue reading