Lindsay Keeling has been an artist her entire life.
“I took lessons at a young age, built some foundational skills, and as I got older, I created more and more abstract art,” Keeling said. “I found my own unique style.”
Keeling went on to study studio art, marketing and entrepreneurship, obtaining a master’s in business administration from the University of West Florida.
“In terms of school and career, I went the corporate route, the business route,” Keeling said.
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Still, there was another spark of inspiration she just couldn’t shake.
“I always knew I wanted to do something creative,” Keeling said. “Have my own creative business — at some point. It always felt like something I would have farther in the future.”
But when the pandemic affected the world as we knew it, Keeling decided to stop waiting and started to explore and feed that spark just a little bit more.
“I think part of it was just the pandemic and rethinking my values and what I was spending so much time on,” Keeling said. “I was really thinking about the impact that I could have here in the local community. As an artist, that is something I can do to give back. I have the skillset to pull together an art project and really simplify it, and put it out there for anyone. For beginners, families trying to get creative. So I’m really trying to encourage creativity.”
Art Within, Keeling’s new business, is an art project subscription box service for children and families 6 and up that welcomes all skill levels.
“The reason I chose the subscription model is to make it more fun and convenient for families to get creative,” Keeling said. “Some families may not know where to start. They might not have the art supplies on hand or they’re just not sure on what to create. With the subscription box, you get everything you need in the box. You get the simple instructions, the learning concepts with some art history, and you get a video tutorial where I personally walk you through the art project. It’s all about the full creative experience.”
Each box comes with a theme, a project and an opportunity to learn more about an artist that mastered that particular medium. For example, May’s art box features acrylic painting and an opportunity to learn more about Vincent Van Gogh.
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“Getting creative can build confidence,” Keeling said. “It can really instill a sense of pride, once they finish their artwork, and it could also help with self expression.”
If you want to try it out, but you’re still not sure, people can purchase one time boxes and gift cards to give to their friends and family.
“I always encourage you to tag us on social media and share your artwork because sometimes we’ll feature you and your artwork on our website and social media pages,” Keeling said. “That’s just part of the fun and encouraging environment I’m trying to build.”
According to Keeling, building an encouraging environment can’t be carried exclusively through a strong digital media presence. She’ll begin hosting hands-on, family friendly events and workshops later this month. The first one is scheduled for May 22 at Alga Beer Co. in East Hill.
“We are going to be exploring oil pastels, learn some basic techniques and get creative together,” Keeling said. “There will be more information posted on our social media pages about the event very soon.”
In addition to workshops, Keeling has also made appearances at local events and festivals, spreading the word about her new concept.
“If you are curious about getting creative, and you don’t think that you’re an artist, give this a try,” Keeling said. “Just take small steps and you’ll be surprised at what opens up for you.”
For more information, visit createartwithin.com.
Kalyn Wolfe is a freelance columnist for the News Journal. Send new business tips to [email protected]
This article originally appeared on Pensacola News Journal: Art Within subscription box service kickstarts creativity