Artists Visions & Values
So wait till junior gets signed to give you her story but one of the reasons I asked any mcgee to come on is because she's relatively new to this whole entrepreneurial approach and I hope that gives you some hope okay are there any questions for the bathroom? We do have a lot of questions coming in but I think that she's ready to go if you're alright let's do it then great jenny I how are you? I am very new to this process and I feel my heart beat like accelerating everyone join us in brad stretch you're doing a great job by the way thank you I'm not gonna do downward dog because I got we're just talking that's all we're doing yeah that's it we're having a conversation just you and me that's it ok like last year right I said just like the past year that's like the past year we've been having a lot of conversations haven't weigh all right kenny so I want to go back to how you used to introduce yourself and what it sort of remind people how you introduced yourself when someone said hi je...
nny mcgee nice to meet you what is it that you do? What did you used to say? I am an abstract painter contemporary abstract yeah that says a lot and now what'd he say now I help people articulate and communicate their love to another person through my artwork can you explain how you do that because it just sounds amazing and intriguing how do you do that well like the how or how we came to the mission together why don't you get what do you take that how did we come to the mission together I help jenny are identify her mission yeah can you talk about that how do we come to that yes well uh you know it was it was a very rewarding but long process for me a lot of internal digging of you know the on state this time in my life where I was struggling with cancer and I was struggling with a lot of really hard situations and you helped me realize that through that difficulty what was so impactful and powerful for me was to receive this amazing amount of support for my community my husband from my family and not just support but like verbal encouragement there was just a huge outpouring of love which also on a personal journey I felt this intense desire and urgency teo express how much I loved my family and love my kids and husband and so love became a very powerful and attack full a means of communication and so you and I work together and trying to figure out you know if this is a true who indeed value mine how can I connect this to my artwork on and just hold on just a second? Jenny sorry this is j k on tv were the hosts here I know you can't see us but it looks like the necklace that you have on is hitting the mike where you're speaking no it's ok we just wanted to make sure everyone and the chat rooms could hear you jenny you're not the only one who had to remove their three thinking better okay so what you were saying where you were talking about your how lovely you rick recognised through deal through looking at a fifty fifty chance to live right you realize the value of love and expressing it specifically absolutely I having to face that I might not have it tomorrow put that into very clear perspective that my family and important the important people in my life I needed to know how much I love them how much I cared for them and valued them and if I was not to have it tomorrow at least I knew that they knew that so you and I worked on how tio communicate and how teo integrate that core value of mine into my artwork and that became my mission helping other people express how much they love another person in their life through money paintings hee hee I'm so proud of you honey no thank you she's she's doing it she's really doing it okay so I told you all kleenex so get it if you need it all right so jenny, I want you to describe you did what you did a commission recently for a bride and a groom can you just kind of walk through how that actually all unfolded cause I think it's interesting I think what's really we all are really inspired by your mission I mean, what greater value is there in love, right? But how do you actually do it? Break it down for us? Tell me about that bride and groom sure. Well, scott was the groom's name and kate is the bride's name and scott and kate we're getting married and we're going to write their own wedding vows and scott had a difficult time trying to articulate the specifics of these vows and so I approached god and I said, do you think that this would be a valuable tool for you to sit down with me and we can come up with a loveless together and this love list is going to be then interpreted into a piece of abstract art so that not only do you get to verbalize your wedding vows to kate that you have a visual, a reminder, a legacy of how much you love her and the specifics of that love so we just sat down casually over a thirty forty minute cup of coffee and we I just listen to him, talk about kate and talk about how they met, how much he loves her and just like my hand got so tired because I couldn't stop taking notes and manu and so I started the conversation with just give me five adjectives that describe kate so it wasn't like spill your guts to me but just give me five simple adjectives that describe kate and that just evolved into a beautiful conversation which filled a huge note no but full of notes about his love and then after that initial meeting I took those notes back into the studio and his his love for her inspired their wedding painting and on the day that they got married at the reception kate knew nothing about this painting and scott snuck it up onto the stage and unveiled it to her and read read those specific reasons why he loves kate and they were integrated into the painting as well so and what happened and hide forever and so what how did the bride react her jaw hit the floor like she just she couldn't believe it she was so amazed and just her heart was so warmed by the gift from her husband and what do the people at the reception how today what how did they react? Well, I couldn't see a dry eye I couldn't see a dry eye in the crowd and in fact to make this wedding painting happened financially a lot of the guests from the from the wedding contributed to the painting and that was a neat part of the process for them to see so and note to self that's pretty good tactic right way were sitting here listening to her story I popped over to the webs to her website to check it out and I don't know if it's this particular wedding story but there's a photo on the web site and just the photo of the bride seeing the painting that's it it made my stomach I got butterflies I felt emotions okay so I just want a pass right here and I want it I want to ask what gal what's swanky gallery in new york city you could walk into and ever have that experience absolutely do you see how you can offer so much more value than the established thie establishment does a lot more because you worked with the gallery new york right yeah so were they crying when they bought the painting man of tears of joy that that happened no no okay so do you see how this is a value proposition that is unique right do you see how it's born of her personal mission that's grounded in her personal experience when I work with artists I lead them to talk about the most painful time in their life so jenny I think that you know you weren't you were you're crying when we were talking about this right we were evolving this you were feeling how you felt so absolutely it's an emotional process there's a lot of digging that has to happen and I think my biggest struggle through the process was just being patient and it still is I'm a mom of two kids like I have to use my time wisely and just know that it's this is a process that takes time right tio bail right it does take time so jenny what have you just took it off the top of your head can you give us the three biggest successes that you've accomplished so far well certainly it's finding and discovering my mission and just a deeper and more authentic purpose for my art. Okay that is uh that's number one ok whatever shoe getting paid amen getting a paycheck yeah exactly so and would be number three what's your other what's number three um I guess just the awareness and the recognition that my values can can strongly be integrated into my business do the foundation of your value proposition right? Yes, absolutely it makes you want to come to work every day knowing that that is the foundation I'm walking on right? Yeah it's just it's just it's a solid one you're not selling widgets right? You're selling love and she really is that sounds like some I'm talking to you from haight ashbury but it's not especially very very true right? What would you be? What was your what was your biggest fattest failure I'm certainly just not believing that I'm a business capable person I hear the word business plan and I kind of like familiar we're not calling it a business plan by the way anymore we're calling it than making money plan from now on oh yeah I made an executive decision alright number two fattest failure um I would say negotiating my prices and wavering on prices and not being confident in the prices that I asking for with somebody with somebody discounting does somebody not discount anymore new new because what will happen? Um ten dollars, twenty dollars like you turn into an auction house all right? Okay, so when I discount my are obviously so well my collectors and I need to respect my collector's out of respect for them I need to keep my prices were consistent, right? It's not fair right it's not fair to discount or charge basically one price to somebody and then turn around and charge somebody else another price is the lack of integrity. Yes. Okay and it it it it affects your really your self worth you know your perception not only their perception of the value of your the value of what you do which is obviously critical but it also affects your own so sometimes it's good to just say no, no, I'm gonna pass can't sell that too for that price not available right all right so and so that the lessons learned so you've left you've learned not to discount what else have you learned? I'm not alone in this process I am and something you've you taught me certainly is I can't succeed alone so I have learned to reach out to my local community friends that I feel are supported that are not negative that aren't competitive that be that really feed me and then that I genuinely feel like I could feed them to s o finding that type of mutual relationship in friendship and support network has been a big lesson from this so you've learned that you you're not to discount and you've learned that you don't succeed alone in number three uh number three or number four five the matter that I deserve six yes you dio she does, doesn't she for what she's doing ugo you absolutely d'oh and that's why you're on the cover of the magazine last month because other people obviously recognized that and lets you know jenny is just getting started she's just articulated her vision she's proved it she's proven through prototypes and she's working on targeting she's still working on all of that means you're not done but she's got a great start. Jenny what was one piece of advice that you'd give tio other artists if you had to look at the jenny we're going back to my friend grammy dan you know who uses the remembering process and if you know looking you know, putting yourself in a place in the past and you're looking forward to the very successful future version of yourself what would you tell that jenny what would you tell other artists I have patients this is not a microwave process. This is a slow cooker process. Thank you for that. I'm glad you recognize that generally I don't have my value proposition articulate again I am so blessed right in her back stop it right? Yeah, I heard you scream through that email I did but future jenny definitely wants to tell president jenny to be patient and failure is part of the process. I mean, I've had went out of the three consult this past week I'm sorry to out of the three consoles a sweet not come through and that's okay? And like, I'm just recognizing I'm getting started and um you know, when we are in this process of getting started failure is going to be part of it and just, um future jenny's telling her and jenny not to be discouraged by failure and toe let that be just a step among the path, right? Okay so quickly let's ask if they would have a question for jenny magazine what's the magazine columbia columbia home magazine and it but it's on your website, right? Yes. Okay with your website what's the website any mickey art dot com all right anyone if anyone knows anyone think of one or two people who need to express their love for one another in a meaningful memorable and amazingly impactful way go to jenny mcgee dot com okay anybody our dotcom okay, thank you so much jenny appreciate your time thank you so much thank you. How about that for business? Isn't that a beautiful business? Okay, so we're actually going toe move on teo a member of our audience yeah chat while we're pulling them up yeah, just there was a couple questions coming in and they were loving jenny's input and everything she had to say but what diaz what do you do in the meantime when this is a slow cooker process bill still need to be paid and food still needs to be what do you have any advice for while you're getting to that? Yeah there's no shame in having a day job awesome that's my advice? Great yeah, I mean just there's here's a thing you can suffer the day job a lot with a lot more ease if you know you're working towards something that you really want what really makes the team leader less annoying makes the commute a little bit easier to endure. So cheryl why don't you come on up on stage and just talk to you? Yeah that's you that's you lady this's my safety so you hear ok here thank you cheryl nice to see you haven't seen her in years actually so your mission is to help people celebrate their friendships and their relationships thru jewelry in relationships with themselves do you remember how we actually came to that? I wonder if she does find out well what strikes me um is so similar to jenny story I kept my own cancer experience and I know we talked a lot running being great yeah and I really felt the need to I had some amazing people that helped me through my year long treatments and surgeries and all of that kind of thing and I I wanted to find a way tio make something to make them feel special or make them I know that I knew and to adorn them to adorn them yes yes and I started I don't know I just picked up a guide on local art classes in the east bay and I saw an interesting jewelry making class and it was something that I'd already always wanted to learn and it just it was amazing you went for it I did there's something very clarifying about death oh definitely yes you're gonna get assignment at the end of the day that is going to clarify some things for you yeah it does I mean I actually grateful that I didn't have a health scare myself but maria and angela helped me understand that you know someday is today right okay, so so you're so we have a good understanding of your mission your unique value proposition who's your target market well, my target market is primarily women twenty five to seventy five although it doesn't necessarily isn't really the target it's really more about the I think I'm going to fill this blanket for you I think it's the you know there's a lot of jewelry available all right is there like there's a lot of photography available there's a lot of paintings available but you really are of service to the collector's because you personalize them or you tell stories about the elements that they condone connect with and identify with not just as adornment which of course we all love jewelry as adornment but also as a relation is a reflection of a relationship is that about right? Yes. That's right on target. Okay, good. I know her. Does that make sense to everybody which she's up to and how she differentiates so what's your what's your three top success is well, I have been able to double my sales each year since two thousand ten. So when we start working together yeah, yeah. And, um I I think I can't stress enough that we're not in this alone and I found a young tech savvy genius named dominique to help me with social marketing and my website because that's not my they're definitely not help great yes ok and then number three is and maybe this should be number one just finally matter no no orders to fire just what comes to mind finally accepting that showing up and doing the work even if it was putting one tiny bead on one tiny head pen every day was what was going to make the difference so is consistency and the discipline and some days are filled with the muse and some days just aren't right but you just have to keep showing up degree of possible fire you yeah hopefully alright that's wonderful so those air cem significant successes especially sales like did you imagine that your sales would double no no especially not I mean one of the challenges I had in my head and a story that I told myself was I really couldn't feel how I was going to get from a dollar teo one hundred dollars because jewelry you know I wasn't working with fine gold ideas real gemstones and sterling and you know but you know you can't exactly yeah I'm I'm not and so to sell um I mean, how many pairs of earrings would it take me to make the equivalent of maybe one painting and I really beat myself up about that, so no, I didn't think it was possible I know you kept telling me it was I did remember ok and so what else? What other what other big fat failure do you think you have well skipping the process despite the fact that I had my road map because I worked with sally from people e I have to say I didn't patently disregard but I kind of shoved under the carpet the business pieces that you didn't I don't enjoy like that apartment doing it, huh? Yeah, yeah exactly yeah, but it's like brushing your teeth right do that it really is and what it cost me was when I would get my my busiest season typically is fourth quarter because of holiday right? And you did trump shows still yes ideo I do trunk shows and I do in home shows and I saw online and I went caught what was my price painful price to pay was not being as organized as I needed to be in order to pick everything up and go take my heart to south. Okay, andi I said a lot of time um doing things by hand that I could have automated yes. Oh, I remember one of the assignments that gave you was to clean up your studio. Yes. And I did not talk about business clean up your studio because I know if that's a mess you're a mess and I know if that's an order you're going to start teo becoming nor did it worked right yes absolutely it did work okay so remember man two three three three three three fattest felt what's the third one oh well the third one the field harboring the secret wish that oprah would discover me oh yeah I think the other role in this book is no one is coming to save you you're not going to be discovered no yes she didn't come not yet okay and so what were the three lessons from that? Well the first one is be grateful every day that I get tau wake up and make jewelry because it really is a blessing it's really a beautiful way to make money is to do something that you love and that is a value to other people yes compared tto working in an office which he did yeah for many years so then what would be number two left and learned always listen tio what? Listen to myself and act accordingly and I think it's in equal as your own counsel that following my own counsel I guess another way to put it what you were talking about earlier is not selling myself out I don't take creative direction but hear that I did when I first started everybody has an idea about what kind of jewelry they want to see but did you ever think about doing this? Yeah so I like tio what I explained to my patrons if they start going in that direct ashes you know, I'm kind of like think of me as the chef, right? You would never go back into the kitchen at the french laundry and tell thomas keller to add more oregano exactly sit down while I make your dinner for you it's gonna be great great perfect and makes some of you could make some allowances that they have high blood pressure, okay? I won't I won't, but no problem won't put so much salt in it, but I'm not talking about being rigid great, but I am talking about you are in control and that's why they're commissioning you or that's where they're buying what you've already made because you're in control fantastic. So what's one piece of parting advice really quickly I think the best thing for me that I really ever heard was the eloquent russell simmons said do you I make everyone read the book by russell simmons called do you and it's just as the title says it's really about being authentic remaining true to your values? The only way you can differentiate yourself in a crowded market space is to be yourself because only one of you right? So if you try to emulate someone else's sound someone else's look someone else's design or style you really shot yourself in the foot, so do you use a fantastic business book for artists to read? It really recommended this has been great it's so nice to see you so happy you're thriving it just makes me feel really wonderful and very proud of you I'm very, very proud of you thank you so much so behind everybody where they confined cheryl's work if they wanted yeah cheryl what's your website bella charisma dot com right charisma dot com and its charisma without an h right thank you. Any questions from the online audience? We've got some questions about some chapas well, absolutely simpson good comments people have been saying that they're really following the emotion of this people saying everyone they were crying along with you that was really interesting and I think particularly when our earlier guests was up a swell, any journey that was everything for the points where everything from the students that they want to share this point a lot of nodding, a lot of thinking it's a lot, right it's a new way of looking at things yeah for me and what I do is like not being afraid of the emotion is like letting it wash over you and knowing that it's gonna wash over you and you're gonna be going to do exactly that it's gonna wash over you and you're gonna be a lot clear toe what you value in what you want this definitely what I got from listening to the shares and stuff like you know, it is hard, you know, for myself, it is hard to keep that clarity. But when the emotion comes up, like, okay, or even like, I'm ok and I think that's that's a key thing, because it's hard, because you're, as you're saying, you dig into the pain of what's happened your life, it's not gonna be easy, but you know that when it washes over you, you'll be mean, say this. All my students, like, doesn't feel good when you cry after you cry or doesn't feel good, and you had a really good laugh. It's the same thing. Yeah, and what art is transforming pain that's, really what we're doing?