we want to tell YOUR story!

So we are only about a month away from when we hope to start touring, and we’re starting to line up some of our interviews!

Meet one of our interviewees!

Marlon Braccia, author of The Enlightened Cook: Protein Entrees and star yoga instructor, contacted us a few weeks ago about being involved, and we are excited for the chance to meet her in LA and taste some of her amazing cooking! Check out some great cooking tips on her YouTube channel!

We have some other people in mind for interviews already, but we want YOU to have a say in it!

Check out the map of our tentative stops and see if we’re going somewhere remotely close to someone you think we should feature. (it can even be yourself 😉 ) Although, honestly, don’t worry about the map too much as the trip will be a little flexible, just nominate away!

All you have to do to make a nomination is to write a blog post talking about why that person would make a good interview candidate, which might include how they have inspired you in some way. If you’re writing about yourself you can talk about obstacles you’ve overcome on the way to living your dream, or how you are working toward a dream you have.

The bottom line is, we are looking for people to feature who have or want to have,
a mindset of adventure.

In other words, those who have done something that could be considered “crazy” in going after their dreams, those who have been scared and unsure of how things were going to turn out, and those who want to pursue a dream but aren’t sure if they’re ready to take that next step.

We also want to hear from those who are pursuing their “normal” dreams, like being a teacher or doctor, and want to be real and open about the struggles and obstacles that they face. One size does not fit all and all kinds of dreams are very real and relevant. The most important thing is that you are pursuing and seeking out what you were created to do (and we recognize and identify with the fact that sometimes we do a lot of different things on our way to finding our niche – and even that can evolve over time, but we want to record the journey).

We’ll be promoting the people and businesses we connect with to interview on our tour, and featuring them now and to be continued indefinitely as we build up a resource of encouragement for people everywhere.

One of the reasons we want you to be involved in this process is because once the nominations are in, we’ll be letting you vote on your favorite story potentials. Once we start putting up the interviews everyone will be able to vote for their favorite, and the winner will be awarded a percentage of our product sales while on tour, to put towards  pursuing their dream!

We’ll be starting the linkup in the next couple of days, so put your thinking caps on and get your posts ready!

If you have any questions, feel free to ask!

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a shoutout and some art!

First of all, we want to say thank you so much to Erin of Indie Gift Box for becoming the first ad sponsor for the Blank Canvas Tour! Indie Gift Box is pretty awesome and we’re going to be part of the first boxes that will be getting sent out in July. Go check it out and send Erin an email to let her know you want to join the fun!

Second, have you visited our summer tour projectyet? Did you know that one of the sponsor rewards we have set up is download credits for the Beauty of One? That means that you can download BlankCanvas™ files and all sorts of other pieces of art to keep forever!

Let me tell you, this is a DIY artist gold mine. Just imagine all the bajillions of things you could do with our work! We’ll be putting up some ideas as we go, but in the meantime, check out an example of variations that we do with one concept.

Comment to tell us which version you like best!

These are just some of the many, many pieces that will be available in our store! We have lots of items just waiting to get uploaded and will be making more all the time.

We’d love for you to visit our project and support us in our mission to spread encouragement – store credits are only one of the 11 options you can pick as a thank you for your sponsorship. Every dollar counts and means SO much to us. Thank you!

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Launch Party!

What do you do when your crowdfunding project launches before you realize it is going to happen? Well, in our case you scramble around like crazy to try to get up to speed!

We have SO many ideas of where to take this, guys, you can barely imagine! It’s a long, long road with a whole LOT of sweat and probably some tears… but by the grace of God we’re going to keep going!

We had to have a little team celebration for making it this far. Since we stay away from sugar most of the time, and also keep it out of our kids’ diets for the most part, we picked midnight to have the Kalona Chocolates that Krista brought us 😉

and the next day we had a pizza party!

Thanks for taking us to 4% of our goal so far!

(by the way, we had a free pizza, we’re not just throwing good money sense to the wind 🙂 )

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what does it look like from the inside?

Well, currently it looks like some buggy technical website issues that we are having to deal with, as you can probably see the extra lines of random code showing up. Don’t worry, we are addressing the problem and it will hopefully be resolved shortly!

The inside also currently looks like us freaking out a little bit because, well, apparently that is what people do at the start of things like this. Who knew?

We want to maintain a very real look into how this all works and what it feels like to be a part of. It’s so easy to have doubts and fight negativity in the middle of something and look at all the other success stories as having happened overnight – we want to change that impression with a behind-the-scenes look at our journey.

We obviously don’t know what the outcome will be, but we do know that it will have its ups and downs and be a crazy ride 🙂

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and then things got a little crazy-go-nuts!

So we just ran across START.ac on Wednesday afternoon. We were almost ready to start putting our project up on one of the other crowdfunding sites we’d been checking out when some of the features of START caught our attention, one being that we could put everything up live before we actually launched, kind of like a test run, to get feedback about the way we had everything set up.

The site having just launched definitely made us think twice or three times about actually going with them, but we figured it wouldn’t hurt to just try it out for the audition week or so and then maybe use one of the other sites to actually launch. So we put our project up early on Thursday morning.

To our surprise, we got an email on last night (less than 24 hours from posting) telling us that our project could be launching as early as Sunday night. The plan had been to get caught up on other things over the weekend at least, but we quickly realized we needed to push preparations into high gear!

Truth be told, we hadn’t really even told anyone about the project yet because even though we had been working on the side towards launching it, the language we used when talking about it was always very tentative. It really didn’t seem like there was anything to discuss yet!

So now here we are, freaking out just a leeeetle bit about how insane this actually is…

David has been working on a press release and I’ve been working on refining our supporter rewards for the project (with a lot of help from Krista!) and we’ve both been working on getting the site updated – this section is totally new and we will be trying out the file downloads we’ve been planning to add for forever. I also have a lot of work to do in developing the framework for our tour team. I’ve set up the initial info here, so check it out!

Pray for sanity! 🙂

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the start of something bigger than us!

We know what it is to want to think outside the box,
but be nervous about leaving the comfort of that box.

Dreams can be big and scary, but everyone starts somewhere. 

Sometimes things line up in a way that you realize you could not have manufactured on your own and they really couldn’t have been coincidence. The past six months, maybe even more, have felt that way for us. There is really no way to go into all the detail of it, but we look back and marvel at the intricacies. Some of the bigger things are:

  • Brainstorming how we were going to display our artwork randomly leading to buying a blank canvas.
  • In the middle of the shoot realizing that there was a concept here that had potential, but not quite sure what it was.
  • During image editing, the realization that these could be used as stock images and as printed cards.
  • Krista coming to us and asking if she could job shadow a bit – us pondering that maybe we should just ask her to work with us.
  • Everything coming together for us to spend the winter back in Costa Rica, along with Krista, who had become our intern.
  • The random harebrained notion to do a BlankCanvas™ tour when we got back to the States.
  • The realization that we needed a reason for people to get behind it.

Cut to side story: Kaleidoscope International.

Before the Beauty of One, we were (and still are) the creatives behind Kaleidoscope International, a branding & identity design company. Our intention was never to become a huge design firm, in all honesty, our goal was to garner our subsistence in other ways and leave Kaleidoscope as an avenue of helping out small businesses and non-profits with design, an area where corners are often cut. But somehow in the past two years our focus has started to shift and we began to see a broader picture of becoming a real small business resource and cheer-leading team of sorts.

Our vision for our family has always been to live and work together all the time, not just on evenings and weekends. After 7 long years of juggling day jobs (sometimes with 12 hour days) and all the regular life stuff that is imperative to survival, while working to learn and develop our other ventures on the side, figuring out how to be parents x2 and add all of that into the mix – we know how hard it can be, how many times you so badly want to give up. We know what it’s like to have to give each other pep talks every other week.

Contemplating all of this, in the past six months especially as we’ve set sail with little to no guaranteed monthly income, we’ve realized how incredibly valuable and necessary it is to have people around you who are encourage-ers, who not only don’t look at you like you’re crazy when you tell them about an idea you have, but who actually get excited with you!

We feel like this is a void in the regular business world that we want to do our part to fill. We want to come alongside our clients and brainstorm great ideas with them, be their biggest fans. And oh yeah, we also do great design.

Back to the BlankCanvas™ tour:

Somewhere along the way we had developed the slogan “Life is a blank canvas – paint an adventure!” and began to realize that these two components blended together into one amazing idea.

While traveling around capturing fun BlankCanvas™ shots, why not talk to people about what adventure means to them? Why not seek out and collect stories of real people doing scary things, taking risks, just putting themselves out there. But not only those who are already on the other side of success! No, why not collect stories from every stage of the journey? Why not let people see that much like being a grownup is not so sure and simple as a child envisions, the start of something big doesn’t always feel like you thought it would feel either.

For the past month we started researching a few crowdfunding options, namely Kickstarter and IndieGoGo, but we happened to learn about START.ac which launched just in time when our project was getting close to ready to put up, and we really loved some of the unique aspects of project building that they bring to the table, so we decided to give it a shot.

Our hobby has grown into something bigger than us – the blank canvas a symbol of endless possibilities, of creativity waiting to be unleashed, of taking risks and living with a mindset of adventure.

And that, my friends, is what we would like the opportunity to do. We want to take this adventure, we want to gather real life stories, and we want you to be a part of it!

Our vision is then to compile all of these stories and behind-the-scenes along with loads of other resources into an online community of people who can connect with each other, find things in common, and all help each other on our adventures. Because we know that collaboration and community are a powerhouse.

If this rings true with you, if you identify with some of these feelings, if you would like to be a part of an adventure movement, then get ready for a crazy ride…
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