This week I welcome Ellen Mulcrone to the series. Ellen's stunning pear pods are art meets craft meets mindfulness and safe haven. And her personal message and business vision is as strong and gorgeous as the pieces she weaves!
Tell us a little about your background...
Having grown up with a deep yearning for quiet, simple, stable space, only to be met with schedules, exams, extroversion, busy-ness, my desire to return someway to simplicity only grew. I am almost certain this is what has led to me now creating rest-spaces as a creative career. On my art foundation degree in Falmouth I ended up combining my love for mindfulness and pears by making a giant, hanging cocoon-like structure that one can curl up inside. It turned out I wasn't the only one, and after such a positive response I have decided to focus on creating and installing these spaces in all shapes and sizes, wherever I can.
Do you have creative habits or rituals within your work that help you stay focussed and happy?
When it's sunny, I stop. Luckily in England that isn't so often, so this rule is manageable. I trade in my hours; play in the sun, work in the evening, or a bit more the following day.
Another integral decision to my wellbeing was to opt out of wifi in the home. This means my home is a place for rest and stillness. It has totally transformed my relationship with my creative business. Hurrah!
What two things can't you live without?
My partner (the love of my bloody life) and lemons.
What is your biggest source of inspiration?
It has to be the state of our current society. The extroverted addiction is what inspires me to create cocoons, rest-spaces, pods, where people can simply BE.
What is the meaning of 'creativity' to you?
To be in a continual state of questioning. The desire to continue to develop and explore. A curious and inquisitive mind that cannot help but add layers to what they already know. Looking at something and wondering how it was created and how it could be done differently.
If you could collaborate on a creative project or idea with anyone... who would it be & why?
It would be to work with the top 10 roughest schools in the UK and run workshops where we create cocoons which then live in the schools for the students to retreat to whenever they need.
Do you have a favourite piece of equipment that inspires your day to day process?
My bose speaker as it thumps out inspiring podcasts and songs to me through the waves
What is the best thing about running your working for yourself?
It means I have space to be there for things that are really important; A friend in need, a sunny day, a long conversation, a listening ear, a spontaneous slow morning.. I can stretch and shrink time in some way, to flow with the present moment.
And what is or has been the most challenging?
Trusting myself in financial dry spells. This has been a real lesson. Recognising that sometimes the abundance comes later and that it doesn't mean I have failed. It has taught me to really believe in myself whilst at the same time enhancing the self critical aspect which is so important for remaining grounded and rational.
What is your proudest creative moment in the journey so far?
Building a 5 metre wide, 3 metre high geodesic dome for a refugee camp in Greece. I worked through the night in a workshop along a motorway in the middle of winter to create this haven for refugees. They also participated by weaving the triangular panels that make up the dome with waste donated clothing.
What one piece of advice would you share with fellow women who create to help them on their business journey?
Make sure you are clear on your intention, and throughout your creative career, continue to reflect on that intention, to check that you are still aligned with what it is truly important to you. This will also help with branding and presenting yourself in a way which is clear and easy for people to understand and connect with.
Thank you Ellen. If you loved this weeks interview and want to learn more from the series hop on over and meet Rachel Shorer now!