Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Living LIFE with Body Image ISSUES.

Holy cow! It's week four already! Oh how time flies. This week is the glorious topic of body image!

It's funny... if i go through this blog from the last 6 years i have posted SO MANY super honest, raw posts about my battles with depression, anxiety and an eating disorder. Thinking about this now, it's NO WONDER i wrote a book about these SAME issues. :)

Here is a post i made on March 10th, 2011

" The worst worst WORST part about seeking help for my eating issues is finally truly realizing that binge eating WONT make me feel better...and starving myself afterwards is not correct 'punishment procedure' after a binge.

My coping mechanism for ANYTHING at all has always been eating, including right now. Consuming way more cookies then deemed necessary after eating a large meal i didn't even enjoy, doesn't logically make sense. ...Which is VERY interesting considering how logically i live my life is most other manners.

Could you IMAGINE how much we could do if we didn't feel any hindering emotions? If we didn't feel lonely, unworthy, over weight, 'stupid', inadequate? It sounds glorious doesn't it?

Now a days as I'm eating, I'm constantly aware that food won't change these horrid feelings; which in essences, takes away even the smidgen of 'happiness' that i used to feel from binge eating.

Add to the fact that there is NO REASON to stave myself or even take 'punishments' for my 'bad [eating] behavior'. All of this new reflection, awareness and change makes me feel like I'm drowning in a new way I've never felt before.

Coping, escapism, growing, learning, asking for help... My life right now is especially hard in ways I've always felt and never concurred.

There are days when i don't feel like it's going to get any better...that I've ever going to fully feel alive... but I'll just keep on swimming. The current has to slow down a little bit along the way, so i can at least coast until the next larger waves break.

Honestly and Sincerely,
Jenipher "

I also found this one on my blog a few months later about being THANKFUL for my hair after my eating disorder.

It's really crazy pants how much i LOVE food now, and just a few years ago i didn't ALLOW myself to enjoy food...

But alas! I am SO GRATEFUL i am able to enjoy food now! Yay progress!! 


Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Friendship, NSS, and Being awkward, Oh my!

I spent this past Monday walking the National Stationary Show and Surtex, and it started off as a super anxious day. You wouldn't think walking an INSPIRING show you might want to do some day would bring you anxiety, but as someone who always feels 'not good enough' and like a burden.. walking a show full of talented, driven people showing their colorfully incredible work is intimidating as heck!!!  

And at the beginning, i stayed scared, walking about, babbling about cats to anyone who would listen.. which HOLY CRAP, almost ALL of these photos are of cats, i just realized I'm INSANE. But alas, i found my friend Jennifer, or actually she found me... because of my cat shoes i instagram'd that morning [oh the irony!] And the day got a little better!

At one point I was walking through a row and someone calls out "I know you! You're an Instagram celebrity!" Low and behold, it's THIS stellar lady, @lovejaccards!! 

She found me last year on Instagram by reading the same magazine I read! Lol amazing right?? We chatted and then I continued down the row to be stopped TWO more times!! All starting the same way.. "Hey! I know you!" It was indeed crazy, and wonderful and I bet Jennifer thought I was quite popular even though I'm pretty much an introverted hibernating (in my studio) artist. 

After a few hours at the show, and a while at a tea house to decompress, i had dinner with 27 other incredibly talented women!!  And even though i'm pretty nuts, and have a cat obsession... I spent the evening being 100% myself. My weird, quirky, bouncy human self, and you know what? They liked me!!!! How AWESOME is that? 

So moral of the story is be yourself, and hopefully some people will like you... YAY!!

Happy Wednesday Friends!!

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Rachel, Jaclyn, and Bee and Jen share about being YOURSELF. :)

Ahhh so many talented friends i have!!
I asked four friends to draw doodles for "beeee yourself' week and look at all the goodness i was sent! :D

My talented friend Jennie writes... "The tortoise and the hare is for 'be yourself' because when I was starting senior school at age 11 I couldn't read.  I was bullied because I was in the divvy group and you know what.......I caught up and overtook all those who bullied me in the end.  So the tortoise and the hare mean don't worry, you'll get there."

Bee Brown ^
click to read her full post :)

Confetti Monster ^

^ Rachel Olsen ^
Hooray! I can't believe "Being Yourself" slipped away from me so quickly! 

Next week is a tricky week!

Are you ready to be SAD with us?!?
Love, Jenipher 

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Being Yourself is HARD WORK.

I'm not gonna lie... this week was a really hard one for me, and instead of being ANGRY at myself for not posting such pretty doodles people sent me, or to bash myself for not even posting my OWN blog post, i'm just going to tell MYSELF {and YOU} that it's okay... and i'm PROUD of you for taking time to feel better before posting.

As a work-a-holic i tend to FORCE myself to work even when i'm nearly in tears from anxiety. And this week, i didn't. I embraced {being myself}... my anxious self, and did 'fun' things that mean boss lady Jenipher never lets me do... like making art!!! Any art i wanted! [which happened to be work for my business but i still let myself choose!]

Your rest might look like a nap, or it might look like a walk, or even an art project. Any of those sound lovely! 

So... if 'being you' is tiring sometimes.. If you work yourself to the bone.. if you STOP yourself from having fun sometimes, i am GIVING YOU permission to JUST REST

Happy Thursday my beautiful friends,
-Jenipher :)

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Jennifer Orkin Lewis {doodles} about feeling isolated.

Today's doodle is from my talented friend Jennifer Orkin Lewis. I am CONSTANTLY in awe of Jennifer's work. She paints masterpieces every morning in just 30 minutes and it's a delight to see them on my Instagram feed!

"I remember this sense of isolation in high school. Believe in who you are and be true to yourself. It'll {all} be OK."

Until tomorrow...
Don't LOSE Hope!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Lets be UNpopular this Friday Morning!!!

Today's doodles are from the Super Awesome Confetti Monster, and Kerry Batty. Both ladies are posting more on their own blogs, but i wanted to give you a HEAD START to be inspired this morning! :)

Kerry says "In the 7th grade I got some of the best advice I ever had in my young life:

One day, you won't know any of these people. Maybe 1 or 2 of them. Your lives will move on & so will theirs. So don't worry about their bullsh*t. 

That came from my step-mom. If it had come from my parents I might have ignored it, so if you are an aunt/uncle/step-parent/person on the periphery of a young person's life, you are in a unique position to make an impact. Know that kids they are listening to you. Her words seemed a little long for a blog graphic but I felt they could be summed up by something my grandmother used to tell me all. the. time. This too shall pass. We all know that nothing is permanent - even if it feels like it."

There are THREE more posts happening this week, and i can't wait for you [and me!] to read them!! Yay! 

Next week is "Be YOURSELF" week and BOY do i have a lot of amazing contributors! Yay!!!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Top things i learned AFTER opening an Etsy Shop!

One of my best friends texted me yesterday SUPER excited about opening an Etsy shop asking if i could help her. So i decided to make her [and YOU] a blog post tutorial! :)

These are the TOP 10 11 things i've learned from having an Etsy Shop...

1)While getting ready to create an Etsy shop, look around a lot to see how you want to format your shop, what way you want to photos to look and your descriptions. 

2) Make sure you really like your name, b/c it's a PAIN in the A word when you want to change it! Trustttt me!

3) Try to plan everything out ahead of time so you have an idea of what you would like to sell, how you would like to display your pretty thing, and how much you would like to charge.

4) Keep your photos the same. You want it to look like a nice little cohesive shop so it looks nicer when all your photos are similarly shown.

5) Understand that you'll most likely find a better or more attractive way to do something AFTER you open your Etsy shop and you'll have to kind of start over. BREATHEEE, it's going to be okay!! 

^My photos USED to look like this^

^ Now they look like this ^ 

6) This one i'm TERRIBLE at, but consistently add new items. If you have the time, plan ahead and do a bunch of drafts and add them little by little.

7) Don't spend too much time looking at others pages. Don't compare yourself to other sellers. Everyone's journey is different. Some faster, some slower. Just do your thannng and people will be drawn to you!

8)And a piggy back off number 6, try to figure out YOUR style and work with that. If i spent hours agonizing, trying to make my images look really modern and clean thats not me. That doesn't fit my brand.

9) Don't COPY. EVER. It's ridiculous that i even have you say this, but it happens SOOOO often. Here's a good post from my Kelly Rae Roberts about whats okay and whats NOT okay.

10)It's rare that people will just 'find you'. You have to promote yourself. Get a twitter and Instagram and be consistent there too so people get to know you. People like buying form REAL people. Often they buy things because they connect with you and your story.

11) Use ALL the tags they allow you to use. Try to research what others are using. Perhaps that key word will lead people to find you in search. [i am NO PRO by any means in this area! SEO seems very complicated to me! lol]

Phew!! There are MANY more, these are just the first 10 11 that seemed most important! 

Good luck friends!!!
I have faith you're going to have a STELLAR Etsy shop in NO time!!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Zoe Ingram talks being GOOD {ENOUGH}.

Today's post is from the AMAZING Zoe Ingram! I met Zoe in an licensing class called MATS last year, and have watched her BLOOM before my eyes! I'm super proud of her, and so happy to have her on my blog today! 

"I made this illustration as a reminder to myself as an adult but it’s definitely something I would have told myself as a teen or even as a younger child and also it's something that I will always tell my girls and anyone else who struggles with this. Don't let anyone tell you or make you feel that you're not good enough. You ARE good enough."

Ahhh soo true!

Until tomorrow...
Don't LOSE Hope!

Monday, May 5, 2014

Blog PARTY {DAY 1}! - Lets be UNpopular!!

Woahhh boy friends.. I'm going a little Nutty doing WAYYYY too many things at once!! So many fun projects happening right now BUT first up is the Book LAUNCH blog Party for my book!!! Yay! Today is the FIRST day of the 'party'!!

In addition to others posting, each week i'll be posting multiple blog posts from myself, and from SO MANY amazing other illustrators! I'm so so excited! This week already we have 10 incredible people participating!

This week's topic is....
so lets get started!!

^ This doodle was the START of page 16 in my Book! ^

Holy Cow, i still suffer with "Why Don't Like They Me?" syndrome All The Time. ...but the good part of being older, and "wiser" is that i can realize WHO my GREAT friends are, and during hard times, i know i can go to them and they will love me no matter what! It would SO hard to tell my younger self this though.. I'll keep trying to remind young people this though!!! Maybe if it's repetitive enough, they will one day believe me! :D

My friend Margot will be blogging later on today, so make sure to check that out!

Happy Day BEAUTIFUL friends!
See you tomorrow!