FAQ on Happier Handmade Features

Hello Happier Handmade fans! We are excited to announce that we have reached 10K followers on our instagram feed. Happier Handmade’s community is strong and growing and we love interacting with all of our followers on a daily basis.

As part of our next stage of growth, we are going to begin offering paid features on particular days of the week. Our community features – theme Tuesday, work in progress Wednesday – will always be free. In addition, we’re going to offer a Free Feature Friday every week in which we will choose great images from those who have been following, commenting, and tagging with #happierhandmade every week, to reward our loyal followers!

However, in between, if you’d really like to get some marketing material out there to the world and are tired of waiting for us to choose one of your pictures, you have the option of signing up for a paid feature to do so!

Want to apply? You can click here to get started, or read more information below.

FAQ on Happier Handmade Paid Features

  1. Do you feature everyone who applies?
    Unfortunately, we can’t feature everyone who applies. We will let you know by email if you’ve been accepted for a feature. Please watch the email you provide for us for information.
  1. How soon will I know if I’ve been accepted for a feature? What happens next?
    If you’ve been accepted for a feature, you will get an email from me within 2-7 days, and a paypal invoice for the feature. Once your invoice is paid, I will schedule your feature and let you know when it is going to run.
  1. What if I don’t hear back from you in seven days?
    While I will try to respond to everyone directly, if you don’t hear back within a week, you have not been chosen for a feature. There are many reasons that this might be the case, and I hope you won’t take them personally. Mainly, we are getting more requests than we can feature with only three postings a day. Second, we are looking for a certain type of picture that meets our design aesthetic.
  2. Will you use the picture I suggest, and will you edit it in any way?
    We will certainly consider your suggested pic, but we reserve the right to pick the image from either your instagram or your shop that we feel best meets our overall look and feel and represents your work in the best light! We will discuss with you the picture we hope to use. And yes, we will very likely crop and adjust lighting on your image if needed. Image rights remain yours, of course, and we will not reuse your image in any other locations other than the twitter and instagram feature you’ve paid for.
  3. Are there any particular things that will prevent my items from being featured?
    There are a few general guidelines I can offer. First, I don’t like to use watermarked images, or images with the orange Etsy tag prominently displayed in the middle of them. Second, I prefer to use images with backgrounds that are clean and uncluttered, and backgrounds that read as either light (white) or dark (wood, natural, or grass). Third, just as a matter of personal preference, I rarely use collage shots where multiple separate images are pasted together. Having multiple items in one shot is wonderful, but I find collage shots with lots of little squares too hard to visually “read” when they’re viewed on smaller devices.
  4. When will my feature run?
    I’m a bit of a planner, and I obsessively plan ahead on the feed. That said, I can generally fit any new paid feature in within the next 1-3 weeks.
  5. Will my feature be taken down after a period of time?
    Features are permanent on Happier Handmade! I love seeing how older pictures continue to get likes and follows as time goes by.
  6. Can I request that a feature be posted on certain dates?
    You can certainly ask! I can’t guarantee that I will be able to accommodate specific date requests as Happier Handmade has regular community features that go up on particular days of the week and because our feed is often pre-planned for the next few weeks.
  7. Do you have any material available that I can use to share that I’ve been featured?
    I do! If you are accepted, the email you receive will contain an image that you can use on your own Instagram feed to point your followers over to your feature. We love to see cross-posting!
  8. Can I reapply?
    Of course! There is no limit to the amount of times you can apply or be featured.
  9. What if I’m not happy with my results?
    We don’t guarantee any number of follows, likes, shop clicks, or sales from a feature on our site. What we do guarantee is that you will get exposure to a vibrant community of handmade enthusiasts, cross posting to multiple platforms, and ongoing engagement from your feature.

Ready to apply for a feature? Click here to start the application process!

Thank you!

Artisan Interview – Laura Browning Art

Welcome to our second artisan interview! Today we are chatting with Laura of Laura Browning Art and the instagram feed @Elle Browning, a talented painter whose work I have been admiring for months now. I was excited to get a chance to talk with her!

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Tell us about @ElleBrowning. What do you do, and how does your work reflect who you are?

I’m Laura Browning, a painter based in the SF Bay Area. I live and with my husband, our 1.5 year old son (and dog + cat) in our mid-century modern home (my personal “dream home”). My work is inspired by the classic California dream and timelessness of modern design from the mid 20th century. I focus on luminous color interactions and iconic shapes that give glimpses of that idyllic lifestyle.

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How did you get started in your art?

I’ve always been passionate about art. I received my BFA with a focus in drawing and painting. After college, I was very determined to make my living as an artist. I spent most of my post college years working some pretty interesting jobs in the art world. I worked at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art teaching art workshops in tandem with exhibitions. I interned at the Guggenheim museum in Venice, Italy. I worked for an art publisher hand enhancing canvas giclees (meaning we added thick layers of paint over canvas prints to make them look more like an original.) I was another artist’s ghost painter. I ran a team of artists painting murals, then opened my own business painting murals, faux finishes and custom canvases. Eventually I became a published artist and my work (that was heavily influenced by the publisher) was mass produced and sold in major chain stores like Target and Bed Bath and Beyond. It’s only recently that I’ve stopped taking on projects that are based on the creative visions of others and really started to focus on my own body of work.

Where and how do you work? Do you have a studio? Do you have a set schedule every day or is your work more fluid?

I work in my home studio which is a bedroom in our house. We had a desk and shelves custom built to optimize the layout and storage space. I’ve also turned a large part of our garage into a second studio for larger and messier pieces. That’s also where I store older artwork, and pack art for shipping. We’ve talked about moving my work into a studio space, but it’s really important for me to be home with my son as much as I can. Before my son was born, I had a very structured schedule, working “regular” hours and treating my art business like I would a job. It was pretty challenging to re-adjust to working after having a baby, but I’m finally finding a groove with it. I have a few days a week that I schedule work sessions without interruption. Then I squeeze in a bit more time to work into the cracks during the rest of the week. During my son’s big afternoon naps, I make the most out of every minute.

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Your new series of paintings of water are amazing. What inspired the series?

Oh, thank you! I’ve really been enjoying creating this new series. It’s actually a little funny how it started. I was focused on painting mid-century modern chairs, and had a whole series planned for those. I had a large canvas that had been hanging on our dining room wall for a few months. I had started an underpainting but never finished working on it. I had planned to do a water painting and had many ideas but I never intended to make a body of work based on water. I just really wanted a painting of water hanging on that particular wall. I decided to do a few studies to help determine how the large piece would come together, then quickly became totally obsessed with painting water. It’s all I want to do right now… find more images of water and experiment with how to capture that light and movement.

 

Many of the visual artists I know say they struggle to balance the creative side of their art with the need to market, promote, and apply for shows. How do you balance these two?
I absolutely love tending to the business needs, as much as being creative. My dad always encouraged me to minor in business during college. I didn’t take his advice, but I often think I should have since I enjoy the business stuff so much. They are definitely different modes, and some days I’m feeling in tune with one mode more than the other but I’m very disciplined about my work time. I’m always working towards bigger goals, that I slice up into smaller projects. I’m a list maker, and I stay very organized, so as long as I’m making progress towards my longer term goals, I’ll consider it a productive day.

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Who are your favorite artists and who inspires you?
Mark Rothko, Wayne Thiebaud, Alphonse Mucha, Philip Barlow, Kelly Reemsten, Leah Giberson, Angie Renfro, Debbie Miller, Ali Cavanaugh, Michael Carson… oh, I could go on and on. I get so excited and inspired by art.

What are you currently reading, listening to, or looking at to fuel your creativity?
I’m looking at a lot of photos from my travels lately. My husband and I really love to take extended trips… and usually gravitate towards areas near beaches. Most recently we’ve spent two summers on the Spanish island of Mallorca. We visited so many beaches, went sailing, kayaking, paddleboarding. I guess it’s safe to say we’re water people. The beaches are so diverse on different parts of that island… so much color inspiration! I feel very at peace while painting water, but using the photos I’ve taken at beautiful beach destinations makes it even more fulfilling. It’s like I spend my days reliving some of my favorite moments. Listening to? I’ve been a little obsessed with listening to El Vy and the National lately. Also Flamenco music.

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What else would you like our readers to know? (How can they find you, etc.)
You can find more of my work, and more about me on my site laurabrowningart.com, and on instagram @ellebrowning.