We are continuing our series, "Interview with a Renaissance Mom," with one of my favorite creative mamas ever. She's part flower-girl, but all God's girl! The way she captures the beauty in everyday moments with her 4 little people, absolutely captures my own heart! I love her use of natural light. And the bold use of color throughout her home (both indoors and out) are the absolute best! Honestly, I dream of flying her out to my home one day to decorate my backyard with me, and then take pictures of my family frolicking around the fire pit! It sound ridiculous, but wait till you see this girl's fun style and you'll want her to help you frolic too!
Welcome with me, Renaissance Mom, Lee-Anne Haggett
1) Please introduce yourself to us by sharing a little bit about yourself - who you are and where you live, and a bit about your kids.
My name is Lee-Anne and I am from the Ottawa area of Canada. I have been married to my best friend + high school sweetheart for 10 years this August. We met in grade 9 and have been inseparable since! We now have 4 beautiful children and yes, we were crazy and had them all within a 5.5 year span! Our oldest is 6yo and her name is Priscilla, a year and a week later our Maelle came, Malakai is almost 3yo and our little Clementine is 8 months old. They are the sweet balance of chaos + beauty every hour of the day!
2) At Life Creative we believe that art morphs as a woman transitions from season to season. This is especially true of creative personalities. What did your creativity look like as a child, throughout school, or in your adult years before motherhood? And what shape does your creativity take today?
Oh goodness, my art has been all over the place! I have always been a crafty person, even as a young child. I loved painting + drawing growing up. I took art class all through high school and then decided I wanted to go into hairstyling. I went to a trendy little school in Toronto for hairstyling that I specifically chose because I would get to do runway hair. I was the head hairstylist for a few different runway shows during Toronto Fashion Week. It was such a rush and I absolutely LOVED it! I even got to be a model for one show because a model didn’t show up. It was AMAZING!
After hair school, I knew I didn’t want to be just a regular hairstylist in a salon but Ottawa didn’t have much opportunity for wild + crazy runway hair. I got a DSLR camera and started taking random photos around home. Friends loved my photos and I received an opportunity to have a payed gig photographing an anniversary party. That led to my first wedding and my husband tagged along taking photos as well. We had so much fun shooting together that we decided to make a go of it! My husband started researching you tube videos on photography and when he learned something, he would show me. Over the years we got better + better and more people wanted to hire us so we started a little business.
Once we started having children, it was the perfect business to let me stay home with the kids but still earn some money to supplement our income. That's how Luke and Lee Photography began!
I have also picked up sewing! My hubby found an old Singer at a second hand store years ago, and for about 2 years I refused to even touch it. Finally I brought it to my grandma and she showed me how to thread it, and since then I've been making random outfits for my kids. I am always tinkering away at a craft of some sort, whether it be something for around the home or for a gift for a friend or family member. Creativity comes in many shapes + forms around our house!
3) In the busyness of motherhood it can be hard to find the place and the space to fit your passions within the practical places of family life. Where and when have you carved out the time to create in your busy days?
Oh this is SO TRUE! There are months were I look back and think, “Man, I have barely done anything creative!” and then other months where you will see me huddled at the kitchen table over my sewing machine every night or tinkering away in the darkness on something.
I keep my camera available in my dining room so when an opportunity arises throughout the day, I can quickly grab it and snap a photo. It keeps my eyes sharp and my heart soft to the beauty of the everyday when I can so easily just pass over it.
It is such a struggle but it is so life giving when you can set that time aside after the kids have snuggled up in bed or you have given them a pound of play dough to keep them busy as you work away beside them.
4) I believe that God purposed our creativity to be one of the vehicles through which we respond to the Great Commission call on our lives?
It starts in our home. I think just seeing the creativity that is flowing out of my children is such an honor to the Lord. To see that they have watched me and learned from me and are now creating masterpieces on their own for their loved ones is so amazing!
Beyond the home, God has given me many different ways to use my creativity to bless others. One is decorating our church each season. I would have never thought that such a simple act would bring so much life to the body. And, of course, our photography has brought us into so many different lives, people we would have never met or spent time with otherwise. For a wedding, we get to spend a good 10 solid hours with a couple that may not ever have had a personal relationship with Jesus and we can be a light. One of the first questions most people ask when we show up at a wedding is “Is photography your full time job?” and we get to respond with, “Actually no, Luke is a pastor!”. It is pretty cool and often leads into more discussion which is totally God!
5) We spend our days caring for “our most beautiful creations” but there are other creations we long to pen, sing, paint, stitch and bake. It’s hard to embrace any other dream during this dream-come-true season of mothering. Share one of your dreams with our readers?
Oh the dreams!!! lol One of my dreams is when all of my children are in school, I would LOVE to go back to school and take a fashion design course to learn how to properly make clothing and I would love to start up my own clothing line with funky clothes and bright colours. I love creating things with my sewing machine and I feel like it would be such a life giving opportunity!
6) Would you share with us one of your “creative crushes” – another creative mom who inspires you and why.
One of my favourite “creative crushes” is Joy Prouty. Her simple beauty for life and the way she can make a spec of dust look beautiful behind a camera is so magical! She has a raw sense of life but in that rawness, there is so much truth and encouragement. Follow her on Instagram.
7) If you had one piece of advice to leave us with, concerning this awkward dance between faith, family and the flourishing arts, what would it be?
Simplicity. Simplicity is everything in a world that is moving so fast. Do what you can and let go of the rest. This life is so busy, especially when you have little ones. Don’t pack your days so full that you give no opportunity to create or let your littles create. You will find your balance. And do not compare yourself to others. You were made to create, let God show you how in this crazy dance!
8) Where can we find more of your work and connect with you online?
We hope these interviews inspire you to celebrate your own Life Creative.
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