February: a creative sabbatical

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Yes, another blog post about cake! 

During January, I must have spent a maximum of 4 days in the leather workshop; what with that workshop being rebuilt in a different room, completing my tax return and enjoying as much time off as possible, to heal from the burnout that culminated 2023. 

This month, I am taking a 'creative sabbatical' where I will be focus on all my passions and none specifically. I will live each day according to my mood, and bake, take photos, videos, go on walks, design leather pieces, make leather goods, read, bake some more or sleep in, with no pressure or constraint. 

As long as I do either of the above, no day is wasted. In doing so, I am allowing myself time to put in practice some of the countless ideas I have jotted down in my 'inspiration' notebook, and hopefully build a small portfolio of photos and videos for my website... 

...because in 2024, I want to be know more for my photography than my leathercraft. 

I had the identity of a leather artisan for almost a decade, and it does not sum up all my creative outlets. 

Take cake, for example: I love baking. I have opened a bakery/coffee shop last year, and that is now part of my identity, even if I chose to no longer work shifts there. 

I take thousands of photos each month, I try my hand at sewing, I paint with watercolours, I scout the stores and antique auctions for antiques, I design and create leather goods. 

So why let the later define me? 

Well, for one, being a woman in the leathercraft industry has been a little difficult; in my experience. I felt elbowed aside, shushed away, felt small at times, insignificant. I tried to find 'my crowd' on social media, but at the end of the day, the majority of leather artisans I came in contact with are men. Men passionate about EDC, cars, motorcycles, denim, whiskey and cigars. Nothing wrong with that, except that I am not interested in any of those things, and I found it hard to relate and create any kind of community around my leather business. 

It's about time I start showing more sides of my creative self, despite the fear of ridicule. Yes, I'm soft and feminine, I like girly things like baking, flowers, indie music, linen dresses and books, sue me. 

I still have the right to walk into my dark and moody workshop and create some timeless leather pieces. Neither of those feminine things affects my ability to create a wallet or belt. I don't know why I always felt like they would. So here are some photos form the weekend that has just passed. Enjoy. 

orange slices for dehydrator

moody kitchen and blood orange slices

moody food photography

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