I have a friend-in-blogging named Evie Schaffer and I really like her. Evie is an artist, designer, Etsian, mom...you name it and she does it (and does it well, I may add), but her latest is something that involves us all -- artists, handcrafters, indie designers and conscious consumers alike. Read on my friends because it's, truly, A Beautiful Idea.
Personally, I've always struggled with how to consider myself successful if I don't do anything that makes an honest-to-goodness difference in the world and how to find a balance between what I take and what I give back. Perhaps it's safe to say that each of us, to some degree, wrestles with these same principles. Maybe it's a simple philosophy, but I really do think that sometimes, the true successes in life are found through supporting the things bigger than ourselves.
Evie puts it eloquently when she says, "As an artist, I’ve struggled with the “why” behind the creative urges I have — to be used for something more than myself or for profits. I’ve longed for a greater purpose. I know I am not the only artist who feels this way. That’s why I created A Beautiful Idea. As a friend of mine said it so perfectly,
“How can God use artists to meet real needs in practical ways?
My hope and prayer is that A Beautiful Idea will motivate artists to use their gifts to change the world."
How ABI works:
1. Artists partner with A Beautiful Idea and create products.
2. The artists then donate their items through the ABI Donation Center.
3. The items are then put up for sale with 100% of their proceeds being donated to the featured charity (currently World Vision, delivering relief to the people of Haiti.)
That's it. It's that simple. Amazing, isn't it?
me: What was your "a-ha" moment in committing to A Beautiful Idea, that moment of revelation when you knew it was right?
Evie S.: ABI was one of those things that has been percolating for quite some time, maybe for as long as a year. I knew I wanted to do something with my art to make a difference, but I also knew that I wanted to do something bigger than myself. The "ah-ha" moment came while watching the movie "Ghost Town" and I really can't remember why. The idea just popped into my head and I've been formulating the details and slowly working on it ever since. That was about 6 months ago."
me: What do you see A Beautiful Idea growing to become?
Evie S.: I'd love to see the entire arts community get involved and literally span the globe. It's great seeing all the pockets of things that artists are doing, but I think it would be awesome if there was a more unified effort so we could all see the impact we are making in the world. The Arts can be so overlooked as a form of giving back to humanity that's hurting, and I believe that ABI is something we can all rally around and show that it's important to us.
me: What can we do to help support ABI?
Evie S.: If you are an artist, you can join the network. If you love to shop, you can purchase products and know that 100% of your money is going to help someone in need, not to mention getting a great product! Since we are brand new, any and all publicity helps us out so we can keep the momentum going and keep building awareness. That means blogging, tweeting, and sharing ABI with your friends. You can also add a badge to your blog, become a fan on facebook, and follow us on twitter.