I can't fully remember how or when I stumbled onto Amanda's instagram, founder and owner of The Creative Porcupine, but I can tell you I immediately recognized her as someone I wanted to know. Her spirit and excitement are contagious, and her work is splendid. Amanda has been gracious enough to partake in my interview series, and her heartfelt words are below.
The Creative Porcupine: I am big on creating your ideal day, but every day varies, which I love. I try to get up between 5:30-7 and cook breakfast. I make a cup of coffee and sit down to eat while I read my devotional. Once I finish eating breakfast I take a moment to write in my prayer journal. Starting my day with this quiet time starts my day off on the right foot. After my quiet time I get ready for the day and aroundI sit down at my computer and answer emails and then switch to design work, social media, etc. I am still trying to nail down my work flow because some days I am more focused than others. Most days around I seem to hit a wall and have to get up and either go grab a cup of coffee or make another cup. It really refreshes me so that I can sit down for the remainder of the day with a renewed mind. I think I have come to accept that I am not good at the typical 9-5. Some day I will work till 2, step away from work, and then get back at it around 6 or 8 that night.
MSC: What prompted you to start your business?
TCP: Well The Creative Porcupine did not originally start off as a business. It originally started off as a blog that began when I graduated college and suddenly found all this free time on my hands after working three jobs and working to make good grades. Over the years it has evolved into what it has become and it is still evolving. The blog was established as a place to find joy among the riffraff and to this day The Creative Porcupine remains a place where I work to do things that fill my life with a lot of joy, as of right now those things are branding, design, and stationery!
MSC: Is your business your full time job? If not, what else do you do?
TCP: The Creative Porcupine will be my full time job in October (hooray!). I currently work three days a week for Puddleduck Paper Co., hence thewake up call on some days for The Creative Porcupine.
MSC: What would you tell your 20-year old self?
TCP: Oh man, there is just so much. I would tell her that hard work will pay off, just keep moving forward. I would tell her that God has got her so quit worrying so much. I would tell her to quit waiting for life to be perfect and focus on the good now. I would tell her to invest in relationships more. I would tell her to do more things that bring her intense joy.
MSC: What's the worst job you've ever had?
TCP: I was a server at a country club when I was in college. I worked every weekend and holiday for two and a half years. It literally sucked my soul, but it paid the bills. There are seasons of life where you just gotta do what you gotta do, but it was a pivotal couple of years where I learned that money didn't buy happiness.
MSC: What's the best piece of advice you've ever gotten?
TCP: Feel the fear and do it anyway. When I was leaving my full-time job and paycheck to make the leap to work for Puddleduck part-time and have more time to spend on The Creative Porcupine I remember being terrified, but I felt the fear and did it any way and it truly made all the difference. I am not sure where I would be if I had let fear paralyze me.
MSC: What's the hardest part about pursuing a "non-traditional" career? The best part?
TCP: At this time right now the hardest part of pursuing a "non-traditional" career is being the only one behind it. I am the designer, the marketing director, the social media person, the accountant, etc. That's just the stage of life my business is in right now, but I hope one day to grow beyond that.
The best part is being my own boss. I create my day and the things I fill my day with and that is ultimately so fulfilling to me.
MSC: What inspires you?
TCP: Mattie of Puddleduck Paper Co. taught me a lot about inspiration. I used to not be sure how to even "be inspired", I know that may sound weird, but it was true. Now everything seems to have an opportunity to inspire me. It's almost like I see the world through a different set of lenses now. I notice patterns in furniture now or fonts in a magazine. Those are things that inspire my designs, but people inspire me too. People who are working to create a life with purpose and a life worth living. I went through the motions of life for so long and now I finally feel alive. I finally feel like I am actually living.
How inspiring is this girl?! And how beautiful is her word? After you're done cruising her new site, make sure to check out her Facebook page, and follow along on her twitter, instagram, and pinterest accounts. She's someone you'll want to keep an eye on :) Thanks so much, Amanda!