Tell us about your business and how it started?
My business - From The Paint Shed - evolved from a need to find myself and find true happiness again. Claiming ‘artist’ status came through the need to take myself seriously as a creative and to put the money where my mouth was.
Pre-business, I’ve always followed creative pursuits. It simply runs through my veins and not a day goes by where I’m not dabbling in something. The creative energy is what ignites me and makes me feel good. This is when I'm most relaxed and positive.
In April 2020, during the start of COVID lockdown and homeschooling, I decided to take leave from my role as a teacher and work with my three primary school aged children at home. Leading up to this point, I was experiencing a stressful time at work and, quite simply, I was overwhelmed with the demands I was facing, feeling overworked and undervalued.
I was fortunate to be able to take leave and work from home for a total of six and a half weeks. This opportunity gave me the much needed time to reflect, and the glorious time to dive into painting.
The business evolved after lots of local interest in my artworks with private sales kick starting my confidence in the art world.
I launched an Instagram account on May 6, shorty followed by Facebook.
Within the first two and a half months of business, I successfully launched a website, gaining sales within the first week of being online, had my work represented in a local homewares store, been approached by a regional gallery and, to date, have sold a total of 24 pieces.
In addition, my passion for life and creative pursuits have been reignited, supporting my decision to reduce my teaching days to three a week so I can focus more on my painting.
The future looks bright.
What challenges or hurdles have you had to overcome in the early phase of your business?
For the most part, the struggles have been internal. Fighting the inner voice. I’m usually quite motivated by change, so I don’t usually stay in this space for too long before I snap out of it.
Learning all the ins and outs of social marketing has been exciting but overwhelming at times. I’ve always been one to want to do things properly; know how to do things first and then throw myself in. This feeling of not knowing enough could have drowned me before I’d even started, especially given the public nature of my business and, of course, my immediate network of family and friends following my every move.
I was determined not to let this happen. I was in such a state of needing a change in environment and my headspace that this had to simply work! So I jumped in head first and have fallen on my feet.
I’ve already experienced a dose of social media bullying. I don’t let it bother me. It comes from a space of insecurity, so I just face it head on. I won’t let people walk over me. Not on this journey. This one I can control.
What has been the most rewarding aspect of owning your own business?
People reaching out. I’ve been very transparent in my journey about the need to change. I advocate for changing if you’re not happy. I think so many people find themselves working for a living, and loosing themselves. I was indeed doing that myself. I now feel very empowered by this shift in energy and by giving myself permission to challenge the status quo and make this a success. This energy is drawing people in. It’s infectious, and I love the positive impact it is having on the women in my world.
What is you next big challenge?
Building momentum to fund my project of building my paint shed. I currently work out of my laundry. Albeit it lovely and big, it’s not big enough to sustain my momentum and dreams moving forward.
Interiors and design are also something I’m passionate about, so I can’t wait to dive into this project.
My goals to achieve this include firstly replacing my income two days per week, then using my profit to build the shed. After that, we will see what comes.
What are you currently reading, watching or listening to?
What do you love most about where you live?
I live on the outskirts of Wagga Wagga, perched up on a hill overlooking the town. It’s such an inspiring space. So much sky which is ever changing and brings with it, it’s own kind of energy. We have a light filled home with full north facing frontage. It’s like living in paradise.
I love Wagga. I was born here and returned again with my family after spending 15 years in Sydney for uni and my first teaching job. My husband and I wanted our kids to grow up in the country, and Wagga has the perfect balance of big town, small city.
How can women support other women?
I love this question. Women can be the best cheerleaders.
Over the past couple of years, I’ve really refined who ‘my people’ are. I think this comes with age. I look for quality friendships that are genuine and real. The women in my world build me up, and I’d like to think I do the same for them. They let me know when I’m shifting off course and when I need to focus back on me and what makes me happy.
In the social media world, I’ve been so pleased with the wonderful support I’ve received from other women from all around the world. People I’ve never met, and probably never will, have been so generous in providing advice and support in this journey. I generally find you just have to be honest and ask.---
Kate Marshall creates inspired artworks through her business From The Paint Shed in Wagga Wagga.
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Kate is a member of our Ignite Your Instagram Online Training Course designed especially for women in business.