Jennifer Mazur is an artist with a mission to smash the stigma of mental health. Born in Florida and currently living in Sweden, Jennifer finds inspiration in colors, texture, nature, women, and dreams. I absolutely love her art and am contemplating a trip to Sweden to pick one out 😉
When did you start your business, and why did you create it?
I started it in 2020 because I felt it was time I moved from something I despised, to something I loved and felt passionate about. I had spent all of my life working in the corporate world, and honestly, I was failing miserably. It just wasn’t for me. I have both ADD and depression and my jobs just weren’t bringing out the best in me, whereas when I am working as an artist, I feel so much energy and drive and passion. I also felt an extreme urge to make a difference in the world and knew that it would be through my art addressing mental health and striving to smash the stigma.
For the first time in my life I don’t feel like a failure, I feel like I am in the right place.
What do you feel makes your audience special?
I believe one of my biggest strengths is connecting with people. Making them feel seen and heard and understood. And because I am an artist working to smash the stigma of mental health, I feel it is so important to give them that. I hope that everyone I interact with feels that. And I believe that like attracts like. My audience are generally people who also want to make a difference. Who feel passionate about mental health and art. Who want to be seen and heard and make others feel the same. They are all amazing people. I can honestly say that about every single person I have communicated with.
If you could magically give all of your community members one thing in this world, what would it be, and why?
Self love and acceptance. Because so many of them are also dealing with mental illness and the stigma that tends to come along with it. Because of that, so many people suffer from low self esteem. Feeling unworthy and ashamed. That’s why I do what I do…. I want to help others to feel accepted and perfect as they are.
Has anything surprised you about starting a website?
How overwhelming it can be. So many things to think about! So many possibilities out there. And most sites advertise their interface as a simple drag and drop…. hardly. And there is so much upkeep when selling products!
Did you create your own website or hire it out? Do you use WordPress?
I did it myself using Wix. But I am now turning to others to help me set up small things that I just can’t seem to figure out on my own. I am ok with making it look shiny and pretty. And I think I can handle the messaging ok. Integrating Mailchimp and Facebook pixels and whatever else I am supposed to do…. Clueless.
What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about starting their own business?
Dream big, baby. And find yourself a group of cheerleaders. Likeminded cheerleaders. Especially online ones. Your family loves you, but naturally they want to protect you from potential failure.
If you could go back in time and do something differently, what would you do and why?
I would have started earlier. I realised that the “starving artist” concept is only a story and that I can make this a full time, successful business. Because I have never been happier. At the same time, I think this is happening at exactly the right time for me.
Do you have an email list? If so, did you start it when you launched?
I do, but I only recently started it. It needs some love. Anyone interested in art and mental health want to sign up?! 😉
Is this your only job? Did you launch your business while working another job?
Well, the only paying job 🙂 I am also a single mom.
How do you promote your site?
Mainly on social media- Instagram and Facebook, but also by doing free monthly workshops on art therapy exercises to help with anxiety and depression. And I have been lucky enough to have been asked to do some interviews, blogs and podcasts.
Who are your favorite bloggers or podcasts right now?
I follow so many! It is really hard to say. I have to admit that I am more for podcasts than blogs these days, because I enjoy them in the tub 🙂 I listen to a ton, and they all focus on art, art business, mental health and spirituality. Oh! And Office Ladies. Because I am an enormous fan of “The Office” and just love hearing the stories behind the episodes.
Is there anything else you’d like to share?
Just like everyone else, my 2020 tested me in ways I never expected. I lost my mom which was the hardest thing I have ever gone through. But as cliche as it sounds, it made me see things differently. Losing mom made me realise how short life is. Mom was diagnosed with cancer one month before she was supposed to retire. And she passed away on her 70th birthday. Don’t put your dreams on hold. Make them happen. Find a way. Live big and live happy.