August 7, 2009
Bueller's blogs: 2 and fro, bueller designs, bueller's kitchen
Bueller's shop: www.bueller.etsy.com
Why did you decide to start a blog?
Bueller Designs began as a way to keep track of inspiration rooms and images that I would come across while surfing the net. It started as a journal for myself. It then caught on and I began to have followers who loved the rooms I was picking and were moved by my photography. I very quickly realized I had an audience of more than just myself all over the world which really blew my mind and was very exciting. Being a photographer I'm naturally a very visual person so I really love the format of blogging as is it such a visual medium. Nothing makes me happier than looking at a beautiful room that makes you dream. I also wanted to create a mini online gallery to share my photography and creative projects, handmade coasters, huge canvas prints, etc. It's fun to share what I've made with others.
How did you come up with the name of your blog?
Bueller was a nickname given to me by my old boss so when I started the blog and formed my company it seemed only natural to call it Bueller Designs. Bueller has become my online persona as I'm not too keen of having all my info on the net. I also have my health and wellness blog Bueller's Kitchen which is all about health, wellness, anti-aging, and my journey in overcoming adrenal fatigue and mercury poisoning - health and sharing what I've learned about how to attain it is my other passion.
How has blogging affected your work as an artist/designer?
It has allowed me to grow in my ability as a photographer and designer by defining and sharpening my eye. I have learned so much about what my style is which I never knew before both in regards to what I shoot and what I like. I don't think I ever had a style per say. For instance, I designed my new apartment using only recycled vintage industrial pieces with the goal to not buy one new thing and to give everything a purpose. It looks amazing (as shown on my blog) and I was able to pull it off because I had been so inspired by the vintage french industrial trend I saw online. I kept narrowing down what looks I really liked by posting them on my blog. So when I went to design my apartment I knew exactly what I wanted and what would work. I good family friend, who is an exceptional designer, told me, "Pick what you love and the rest will fall into place." I think she was right. I've now created an apartment I love and it perfectly reflects who I am both as a showcase for my work as well as my character. This goes for my photography as well. I'm always redefining my eye and refining the way I see based on what I am inspired by in the blog world.
What are your favorite artist/designer blogs? Why?
I love Au Fil De. Beal's images are stunning. Everything is so soft and beautiful. It's really different from how I shoot so I am always looking for inspiration. She captures light in a way that is pure magic. It makes you want to put on a sundress and go running in a field. I love Bea's blog (not to be confused with Beal above) La Tartine Gourmande. The pictures make my mouth water and my soul want to travel. She also has a photography site. I can always find inspiration here. Jan at Poppytalk is always finding the coolest stuff. I love to go see what wonderful letterpress, posters, art, jewelry, vintage items and things she drums up. It just amazes at how much talent there is out there. Her taste is just exceptional. I may be biased though since I have a table at Poppytalk Handmade so you better check it out for yourself!
Do you have any advice for artists/designers who are starting a blog?
I would say speak your truth. Find what you love, what you are truly passionate about and blog about that. Don't worry about what will attract an audience or what will bring in the most viewers. The more specific you are about your passion the bigger your audience will be. When you love what you blog about, it shows. Also, find other bloggers with your same passion and reach out to them. Join the community. Read their blogs and leave comments. Support each other. Above all else, do it for yourself first and the rest will come!
What has been the most positive and inspirational aspect of having a blog for you?
What has really blown my mind is the community online. The bloggers and readers are all so wonderful, kind, supportive, and fun. I have made friends all over the world. It's great when I actually get to meet someone in person who I've only known through blogging. Some of my closest friends are people I met through blogging. I love hearing feedback, getting comments or emails and knowing that I've reached people all over the word. I have followers in Australia, Dubai, Holland, Brazil, Ireland, etc. I absolutely love connecting and hearing from people. Some of the people I have helped on Bueller's Kitchen have really touched me in particular. People who may not have considered diet and food as medicine who then heal themselves, that's pretty incredible. It's wild! It's really not like anything I've ever experienced. It's a wonderful playground!
What do you find the most difficult/most rewarding part of having a creative profession?
Definitely without a doubt the most difficult thing to do is to keep growing, to keep learning and pushing myself past where I am in the moment. I am like a child who is always reaching for what is just out of my grasp. I want that cookie on the counter that I'm not tall enough to get! My best photographs almost always come when I'm trying something new and I am out of my element. The most rewarding part is when someone falls in love with one of my photographs and it moves them. Photography is emotion captured on film and it should tug right at your heart. When you get that feeling I call the "pitter-patter", than you know you have something special. It's like a first kiss. I'm constantly trying to create something that makes the heart go "pitter-patter" just a little bit more than the last time. You can't beat that.
Other than your blog, what has been the most effective way for you to promote your art/design?
Reaching out to people who love my work and asking them to pass on the word has really been the most rewarding and successful. I really don't do any promotion as I'm rather shy when it comes to tooting my own horn. I have to constantly work on it. My Etsy shop helps a lot as it is constantly bringing in new clients. Also, my daily photoblog 2andFro helps to bring in an audience too. I think it's important to be in as many different places as possible and to funnel everything to one place. My blog is the hub and keeps people connected to everything I'm doing.
How do you maintain a healthy work/life balance?
Well this is not easy to do as I'm constantly juggling between Bueller Designs, my Etsy shop, Bueller's Kitchen, my daily photo blog 2 AND FRO, all in addition to a full time corporate career (that will remain a secret for now). So, I'm always doing something. Also, with adrenal fatigue you have to be sure not to burn out so it is extra important to find balance. Living in Silver Lake has really helped me to take some time for myself as I can just walk out my door and around the lake. It's all about creating a schedule for my own well being, so I don't get sucked into the vortex that is the internet. So often we schedule all the tedious stuff but we never take care of ourselves. Wellness and balance is a choice you make everyday. You can't just say, I will walk sometime today because you will get caught up with something and never go. I have to say, I'm walking at 7 am or 4 p.m., etc. I have to schedule it just as if it's an important meeting because the truth is it's more important than any meeting. I've learned to remain well by making these rules: -the computer is off by 10 p.m. otherwise I work all night -when I wake in the morning I don't allow myself to check email or anything until I've walked around the lake which is 2.5 miles -in the afternoon I force myself to break for yoga, even if it's just on my apartment floor -never eat at the computer, take a moment to just relax your eyes and enjoy your food.
What are your main goals for 2009?
There is so much I want to do in 2009. My main goal is to learn more about digital photography. I started photographing when I was 12 using 35 mm film and a darkroom and because I'm self taught I still have a lot to learn. I'm also going to be expanding my card line and poster line. I'm having a lot of fun and great success with my posters like KEEP CALM AND SURF ON and NEVER NEVER NEVER NEVER GIVE UP.....LIKE EVER and I'm looking forward to starting a newsletter so that I can connect more with my readers. As the little green sign on my desk says, There's so much I want to do!