Friday, September 4, 2015

Featured Friday: The Redheaded Camel

As I'm sure you've noticed, Campbell pride runs deep in this former Camel's soul! That is why I am SO excited to share a fellow Camel who also happens to own and run a fabulous business while being a full time student! Talk about a go-getter and #bosslady! 

This week, I had the great privilege of being able to interview Sarah Roberson from The Redheaded Camel. Sarah creates beautiful and unique hand-painted master pieces that ship to inspired customers all across the United States! Whether its a painted canvas, wooden or burlap sign, hand-printed letters, or stationary, Sarah's work is sure to be exactly what you had in mind! 

Tell us a little bit about yourself!
I am a full-time college student at Campbell University in Buies Creek, North Carolina.  I’ve been running The Redheaded Camel since June 2014, and it has been the best adventure ever!  I am a Business Administration major, a student mentor, and a Writing Center tutor.  When I’m not painting or studying, I enjoy traveling, writing, exercising, and baking!

How do you juggle being a full time student and running a business?
It’s definitely a balancing act!  There are some weeks that I can commit a lot of time to the business, while other weeks, The Redheaded Camel has to take the back burner.  Sometimes, it’s more difficult than others, because not only is painting my business, but it’s also my stress reliever.  I choose not to paint when I’m on campus in order to keep myself focused on my education.  I do 99.9% of my painting from my home studio on the weekends. 

What inspired you to start your business?
This is a really hard question!  I think at the heart of things, I always knew I wanted to start something unique.  After a serious injury in 2011 that ended my career as a competitive dancer, I started painting.  To be completely honest, looking back, those first canvases were far from Etsy-worthy.  I still have them, though, because they’re a humbling reminder of how far you can go, if you put your heart in it.  It wasn’t really so much an inspiration that sparked the interest, so much as it was an outlet.  And in looking back, it’s an outlet that saved me… in so many ways. 

Who is your biggest supporter of The Redheaded Camel?
There are so many supporters!  It’s incredible to look around and feel so loved and encouraged by the people in my life.  All of my family and friends are awesome advocates and such a huge part of my success.  If I had to pinpoint one person who I couldn’t do it without, though, that answer would be easy.  My mom does so much to help make this possible – she helps pack boxes, attach ribbons, match colors when I can’t decide.  If you have a piece of The Redheaded Camel’s art, chances are, she’s touched it.  I would not be anywhere close to where I am today if I didn’t have her. 

What’s your favorite piece you’ve ever created?
This is such a hard question!  Every single canvas I have had the opportunity to paint is infinitely special to me, because each one has allowed me to live my dream another day.  People order canvases as gifts for family and friends, and though I may not ever have the chance to meet the recipient, each canvas is special because it has allowed me to play a part in making that person’s life a little brighter, even if just for an instant.  So, in that regard, it would be impossible for me to pinpoint one favorite over all the rest.  I think Vincent Van Gogh said it best… “There is truly nothing more artistic than to love people.”   However, when I look back over all the pieces I’ve done over the years, the one that stands out the most is the very first canvas I ever painted.  It might seem odd, but it still hangs on my wall to this day.  Every day when I see it, it serves as a reminder of the evolution of my art and the way that a leap of faith has allowed me to make my dreams my reality every single day. 

Can you give us a little sneak peek of the fall collection?
For now, the Harvest Collection is still under wraps… but I can tell you this.  Imagine yourself with a snicker doodle cookie in one hand and a mug of apple cider in the other, wrapped in a cozy blanket on a brisk fall day.  That’s the feeling this collection conjures up, complete with hues of orange, deep reds, and dark greens. 

What do you love most about painting and owning your own business?
I have always wanted to do something that matters.  In my estimation, a canvas that is gifted to someone in need of a smile is that something, and being able to be a part of that is more than I could ever ask for.  For me, painting is a lot like life – once you add a stroke, you can’t take it off… you can only work from there.  It’s a beautiful connection for me.  From the business perspective, I love working for myself!  I love getting to see (or read) people’s reactions when something special to them is brought to life from an idea to a physical, tangible piece of art.  It’s the most incredible feeling in the world. 

Where do you hope to see The Redheaded Camel in five years?
Quite literally, I’d love to see The Redheaded Camel in all fifty states.  Other than that, the possibilities are endless.  I’d absolutely love to be a full-time entrepreneur with a brick-and-mortar shop or an in-home studio. 

Where do you get your inspiration?
Inspiration is everywhere!  I have been known to mix paints to match the color of the day’s sunset… and I hope I never stop doing that.  It’s about noticing the little things and bringing them to life so that other people will notice them, too.  That, and of course, the joy that people have when they receive their canvas.  No matter what the day has looked like for me, when I hear from a happy customer, it’s so obvious to me why I keep doing this.  It’s all for the joy.  And that’s probably what inspires me most of all. 

What is one piece of advice you’d give to creative minds who hope to open a business one day?

There are so many things I wish I could tell you!  I think the best piece of advice I have to share is to follow your dreams.  I was always really nervous to take the first step and actually start The Redheaded Camel, because it’s a lot different than most 20 year olds’ dreams.  Don’t let what people think stop you from chasing your dreams… and catching up to them, too.  March to your own drum and do what makes you excited to get out of bed in the morning.  Don’t wait until you’re ready to start… do it now.  You’ll be so glad you did.  

I want to say thank you so much to Sarah for taking the time to share your heart, inspirations, and dreams with Wonderfully Wolf readers! 

To see more of The Redheaded Camel, be sure to follow her on instagam and like her facebook page! 

Don't forget to also check out her etsy page to shop her amazing latest collections! 

Here's a few of my personal favorites :)

Sarah was kind enough to offer an exclusive discount code just for Wonderfully Wolf readers!! Use the code "BELIEVEINPINK" for 15% off your entire purchase! As always, don't forget to tag Sarah and I when you get your amazing pieces!

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