Creatives Working From Home
Madison Isbell, Florist
As the whole world goes into lockdown it can be a tough time for freelancers working in the creative industry, as they're restricted to their homes, many are having to shut up their studios, give up fund-supporting jobs & it's just generally hard to meet clients and get their work out there! So we're taking the opportunity to feature a number of creatives on our blog and across our social channels to give them the recognition they deserve, but to also keep you guys also working from home inspired.
My name is Madison Isbell, I've was raised abroad and currently reside in the sleepy little town of Seal Beach, California. I'm a traveller, surfer, florist, avid reader, and Digital Marketing Consultant.
When did you first become interested in floristry?
I've always been enamoured with nature and was raised in remote corners of the globe. I grew up weaving hats out of palm fronds, collecting mushrooms after rains, and sticks by the sea. My first proper floral experience was an accident, when I was working as an event stylist with a creative agency. Since then I've done installations all over; from DTLA to the weddings of olympians in Fiji, but my favourite experience has been working with the ladies of Petals and Pop- a beautiful studio that honours seasonal blooms, the organic movement and a range of texture.
Tell us about your current routine working from home, and how that compares to your usual day to day routine.
I am operating out of a small studio we aptly named Sevu, which means "the offering." The routine has changed a great deal over the past few months, but
it's been a massive upgrade to have this off-site space where my man and I produce out of. Apart from the required solitude, crucial things are much the same. I wake up to coffee brought to me by a man I love, a dog who stays in bed long after I leave, and a day that is full of screen times, laborious projects, and creative ideations. Time has become a little lost, and it's not very glamorous, but I look forward to watching each day unfold.
How are you continuing to find inspiration?
From anything that is useful or brings absolute joy.
We're all walking a fine line between pushing through; finding the time for new influences and hobbies, and feeling like we're being pulled back to the basics. The push-throughs: I planted a vegetable garden; involving harvesting various types of mushrooms. I've also started hand sewing leather bags, dived into reading, movement, and visual graphics. The pullbacks: more cooking (which leads to more dishes), naps, petting the dog, and cleaning the very lived-in home.
What do you usually do when you’re not working?
Surf, travel, allow the body to drop into the mind whenever possible. I try to tap into all the wisdom of other lives lived, from family, to friends, good books and other creatives.
What are you doing to find some escapism & freedom in the current situation?
Projecting & concentrating small. Corners of the house, blooms in the garden, and slow walks on the local streets. It's a unique and challenging time, but never before have we been globally paused to go inward collectively. Take inventory of ourselves, our priorities and our perceived path. My heart feels fragile, as many do, with a lack of control and the pain all this is causing. I do remain hopeful that we will emerge with a new sense of being and consideration for one another.
Are there any songs or playlists you can recommend to help people get through it?
My sister created a playlist specifically, for now, titled "Alone Together" by Meagan Isbell. It has strict instructions. Turn it up nice and loud, and play it in order. The wit is found in the titles- a poetic nod to the current climate.
We have been collaborating on playlists that are based on the feelings of fabric. Leather - Denim - Linen- Polyester - Silk - Cotton... You'll have to circle back with us or request permission to get ahold of those ones.
Any other advice or messaging for fellow creatives & freelancers working from home?
This is a challenging time. Do your homework or due diligence. Learn that new skill, master a program, backlog your work, schedule out time. Set your own standard, don't deter when you fall short and exceed it when you can. I've said this before, but I truly believe it, there is a certain amount of self-discipline required to be free. Freelance - Free Creatively.
And finally how important is creativity during these times?
As important as it has always been. You can relish in the complicated layers, or the mindful meditation of something that requires undivided time and attention. It's grace under pressure, you can bring that frantic mind or your heavy heart, it's all part of the experience.