Happy Monday! Today's featured artist, Taylor Beam of Magnolia Tree Paperie, is an incredible paper goods designer who truly puts her heart into everything she does. From traditional to whimsical, she creates gorgeous wedding invitations, bridal shower invites, "Will You Be My Bridesmaid" cards and so much more! Taylor also has from scratch designed the entire Heirloom website & brand guidelines! I cannot brag on her enough. She has worked so hard in creating a beautiful website for all of us to enjoy! I am so excited to share her with you today!
Heirloom: Do you have any morning rituals or things you do to get ready for a long day of creating?
Taylor: Absolutely, although it does vary from day to day depending on my work load.. I love waking up slow. I love to wake up, sit in bed for a little bit, read my bible and drink a BIG cup of coffee (let's be real 2).. I then sit down and write out my to do list for the day and decide what is actually realistic to get done and the best way to honor my clients through my deadlines and abilities. Once I get my head around all of this, I get to creating. I prefer to do one type of work at a time. So, if I have a day where I need to complete a watercolor and a calligraphy logo, I will split it up. Before lunch is painting, take a mental break, after lunch is calligraphy. I find I do my best work when I'm not hurried and when my mind is all there for each project.
Heirloom: Working from home, how to balance life & work?
Taylor: I would have to say this is a tough one, I try and set pretty hard lines. Office hours are 9am-6pm and I really try to not answer emails after that 6pm mark. But to say I did this perfectly every single day that would be...well false. I try to set realistic expectations with my brides and clients, they are not my only clients, though I am here to serve them in any way I can, and also try to make it clear that I don't work 24/7! It's a job just like anyone else's day in an office.
Heirloom: Tell us about your journey into design & calligraphy?
Taylor: I have always been naturally creative. Finding that joy in making something out of nothing. I can remember being little and having all sorts of emotions from life's events, and my only answer, the only way I could properly express what I was feeling was in making something. Drawing it out, escaping for bit, and just being at peace for a second. When I was in high school, for some reason, I was so scared of doing art and something creative. It wasn't until my senior year that the best art teacher ever told me, "just draw". In that moment I realized how much I loved the creative process. I attended ACU and studied all sorts of art - graphic design, sculpture, photography, and 2-d studio art. I fell even more in love with the creative world and especially design. After college I worked in photography, advertising, and church design. About a year and half ago, I had this desire to learn something new, and then came calligraphy. And then came my love for wedding invitations. Both of these meshed perfectly with my love for illustration, painting, and people. So, here we are today! This is my job, and I couldn't be more thankful!
Heirloom: What’s the story behind Magnolia Tree Paperie’s name?
Taylor: Two of the most influential people in my life are my grandparents. At the home where my mother and aunts grew up stood a tall magnolia tree that grew as they grew and was loved by our whole family. I remember climbing that tree and marveling over how tall and lovely it was as a small girl. When my grandparents packed up and moved to West Texas to be more a part of our life, they left this family treasure behind and replanted a new magnolia tree in their new front yard. It still remains a simple treasure for the whole family.
Heirloom: What’s one thing you wish brides & clients knew about the paper business?
Taylor: Can I say two? Ok, great! First, when you're commissioning an independent artist of any kind, be aware that you are not only paying for a product. You are paying for one on one attention and something completely custom, made for you. I value my work, just as any other creative should. Our prices should reflect that. The price tag is equivalent to the quality. And second, I deeply care about creating things that tell your story. I want each creation to be intentional and make you feel known and understood. That is my ultimate goal.
Heirloom: Why do you value hand crafted arts?
Taylor: I love knowing the story behind items. I love knowing that a person, with a history and a passion, made what I am holding, seeing, or tasting. It's like participating in part of their story in a way.
Heirloom: What’s one thing you want to pass on to other creatives and also to your someday kids?
Taylor: BE BRAVE AND PROUD OF WHO YOU ARE. I feel like I can't say this enough. I remember feeling this insecurity in college when I would tell people my major "oh, graphic design but really just art and I just want to make things". It felt totally not practical. But, at the end of the day it is who I am. I was blessed with a mother who let me explore creativity from a very early age. She would encourage me to make things before watching tv and encourage me to draw my own pictures before picking up a coloring book and just filling in the lines.
Also, it's ok to be good at and love multiple things and mediums. Sometimes creativity can manifest itself in multiple ways and talents in one person. OWN IT. It's ok to do more than one thing, as long as you are able to do them both (or all) with excellence.
Heirloom:Tell us about you - who is Taylor?
Taylor: Well, for starters, I love Jesus, my husband Simeon, and anything that makes my creative wheels tick. I also am very introverted, but love people. I run on (strong) black coffee and would choose chipotle or thai food for every meal if I could. I love to travel (especially with my hubs), art museums, red wine, maine root ginger beer, new girl, a really great typeface (try brandon grotesque and mrs. eaves), good humor...like the smart kind of humor, West Texas, my nephews and niece, deep friendships, succulents, creating floral patterns, craft cocktails, taking pictures, bright colors, my honda element, and meeting new people. I grew up in Abilene, Texas. I don't care what you say, it is one of the best places ever. Deep faith was instilled in me at a young age and also the right to ask questions. I'm terrible at math, besides geometry and I hate olives and dill pickles.
Heirloom: Where do you call home?
Taylor: Currently me and my hubs live in East Dallas. If you asked me this question two years ago, I would have said Abilene...even after living in Dallas for awhile. But now, Dallas....Dallas is home!
Heirloom: What’s your favorite medium?
Taylor: Depends on the day. Some days I love watercolor and some days all I was is a good piece of charcoal to play with. My top three would be watercolor, oil paint, and gouache.
Heirloom: Did you go to school for the arts?
Taylor: Sure did! Studied all sorts but in the end focused on graphic design, 2-d art, and photography.
Heirloom: What’s your favorite thing about owning your own business?
Taylor:I think it's simple. Getting to do something I love every single day that I wake up AND sharing that with those around me. Expanding beyond myself and sharing something I am so passionate about.
Heirloom: How would you describe your style?
Taylor: Most of the time people tell me it's "whimsical and painterly". I'm down with that.
Heirloom: What is the most challenging part of your job?
Taylor: Comparison. As a creative of any kind, comparison can be your worst poison and kill anything and everything you are about. It's not ok and it sure isn't good. It is so easy to look at someone and feel like you need to be just like them or be where they are professionally. Well, guess what? You're NOT them. You are you!!!! And that's even better! Your gifts are unique and only you can make and do what you can do. I believe this fully, but that doesn't mean that I apply every single day. I don't. Cheer on your fellow creatives, collaborate with them, and enjoy being a part of their story too!!