One Year Later – Soul Graffiti Art Studio

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I still have a hard time believing I own and operate an art studio. Soul Graffiti opened for business and creative ventures October 1, 2013.

The past 12 months have been a time of rapid growth for me. As an artist, as a business owner, as a believer, and as a dreamer.

I’ve cried, laughed, and yelled. I’ve experienced the amazing community of local artists who have supported me and loved me. I’ve been doubted, questioned, and looked down upon. I’ve been supported, loved, and encouraged.

People I barely knew one year ago have supported Soul Graffiti in ways I could have never predicted. People I’ve known for decades don’t even know Soul Graffiti exists…is this even possible with social media?!?!

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I’ve washed more paintbrushes than I care to think about. I’ve learned to appreciate mason jars in a whole new way. Acrylic paint may be permanently embedded beneath my fingernails.

Michael, Jerry, and Mr. AC Moore know me by name and my checking account number.

I’ve painted my rear end off. I taught more than 60 classes. I’ve partnered with other amazing artists. My work has received criticism and made divisive waves. Received accolades and gotten raves.

I’ve shipped paintings to towns I’ve never visited. The Soul Graffiti Art Studio FB page has almost {we’re so stinkin’ close!} 500 LIKES. I’ve been commissioned to create gifts for birthdays, weddings, and new babies.

All this and I’m still in disbelief…walking on water. The waves are always beating against my feet, but my eyes have to stay on Jesus, the architect of my faith.

Faith, the evidence of things hoped for, but not seen. Soul Graffiti Art Studio was a massive leap of faith. I had no idea what was even possible. I started paying rent on a 400 square foot space and didn’t have the first class scheduled. I even thought it was a little bit cray cray myself.

My husband and my kids believed in me. From inception. From the moment I met a complete stranger turned soul sister Andrea Noles and she spoke life into my soul…”Lizzie, you need a place to land”.

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Her aptly spoken words fanned a spark in me that ignited my inner artist and turned into a flame. Now that flame burns with fervor and energy that’s palpable. Before last summer, I never even knew owning an art studio was a possibility.

But…I’ve seen some of what’s possible in the past year, and I believe we have only begun to scratch the surface of what’s possible when people have a place to create soulful masterpieces. A place to express and put on a canvas the graffiti that is written on their very souls.

Even with all I’ve mentioned, you know what makes me cry and smile at the same time? Artists who’ve landed at Soul Graffiti. Precious souls to me. People who took a risk. Dear souls who chose to show up. To play with paint. To share little pieces of themselves on a stretched canvas.

They took a huge risk and showed up. That’s what life is all about. That’s all I did when I opened the doors to Soul Graffiti one year ago.

So, one year later, how do I measure success? It’s not my checking account. Or the number of canvases I’ve painted. Or the accolades. All of those things are incomparable to the smiles, and aha’s, and tears, and “wow, I did that!” comments that I get to hear every week.

That’s how I measure success. One soul at a time. One artist who takes a risk and shows up at Soul Graffiti. That’s all God asked of me one year ago and that’s all I ask of the artists who take a risk at Soul Graffiti. And of myself. Success is showing up.

Hope you show up at Soul Graffiti Art Studio very soon!

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Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders
Let me walk upon the waters
Wherever You would call me
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander
And my faith will be made stronger
In the presence of my Savior.

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. You really are too far away…but you’re inspiring me anyways! I have a few canvases on my shelf that got to make the move and I packed my brushes and paints that I haven’t used since folk art went out of style. One of these days something is going to leak out onto canvas…applauding you from the great, not-yet-white, North!

    • awww. I just love you. We would make great neighbors. And our kiddos would love each other to pieces. I would love to see your finished masterpieces. An empty canvas is always an invitation.

  2. Lizzie this is so amazing! I had no idea of your story and that this began at SS’13. Sounds like an amazing place for so many souls to land.

  3. I stumbled upon your blog while googling “when god led me to my studio space”. Your story immediately resonated with me as over two weeks ago, I received keys to my first studio space in Atlanta, GA. I have the same, joys, fears, faith that you have described. I know that I am called to do something is great but I have moved into my new space and I could not be more lost. I’m multi passionate and I rolled with the idea as it excited me. God told me to move but has yet to give me an answer on how I am to be used. I do have a few ideas in mind but nothings really is a burning desire. I am starting to believe that I’ll be connected with a gift that I’ve never tapped into until now.

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