We had the good fortune of connecting with Danielle Dawn Lewis and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Danielle Dawn, why did you pursue a creative career?
When I was in college I attended a student art showcase and there was this one titled, “I have a dream and I have a job”. Those words have stuck with me in the back of mind for years now. “– I have a dream and I have a job,” As a child I was really creative, cutting up clothing and glueing them together to make new pieces, always drawing, making hand made cards, dancing, and singing. And this creativity wasn’t something that I grew out of. In fact, I don’t believe that anyone needs to “grow out” of creativity and imagination– I believe that it is essential to our being as well as essential to our world. I had several jobs before choosing to pursue floristry and wedding design and coordination and in each of those jobs I found myself saying, “I have a dream and I have a job.” There was peace in knowing that each of those jobs were truly a stepping stone and just as integral to my journey as where I find myself now, but there was still an itch because I knew I wasn’t supposed to stay there. I believe that art breathes life and hope into people who experience it as well as those who make it. In so many ways art requires you to slow down and appreciate beauty, which seems to be so counter cultural in a society where “efficiency”, “productivity”, and “instant gratification” are glorified and so sought after. Our company vision is to “cultivate evidenced beauty” and this is grounded in the belief that there is truly beauty already present everywhere we are; however, this beauty can be crafted or displayed in such a way that it is evident to everyone. Flowers are so incredibly beautiful, period. Flowers carefully placed together, honoring their curvature, size, and color, have the power to create such a warm, bold, lively, intimate– you name it kind of experience. Candles are beautiful, but candles placed on a gauze runner surrounded by flowers and hand crafted ceramic plates speak of a place ready for people to gather and enjoy one another’s company over a meal. So I have chosen to make my dream my job and it has already proved to be so meaningful. Already, I have had the opportunity to connect with so many creative and beautiful human beings– future brides, artists, photographers, florists, and the list goes on. I am only four months in and I am filled with so much hope for how my creativity through my career will touch, strengthen, encourage, and heal many others.
Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
One of my favorite things about art is to make something beautiful out of what may seem like nothing. This is how I feel about dance as your only tool is your body and therefore the movement is the art. This is the same way I feel about working flowers in reference to the art created from movement through the natural way that each flower grows. In my work I make an effort to recognize the movement of the flower and place it within the arrangement to accentuate that movement. It is most definitely not easy to continue growing as a small business, especially in a creative field as to create not only takes physical strength, but also so much mental and emotional strength. It is a an everyday decision to continue to create, but more importantly to continue to pause and reevaluate your “why”. I feel that it is in my “why” that I find what could make me set apart from others. I am not doing this for the money or to make a name for myself. Art is a gift and I do this because I love this and I love people. I so desire to give through my art and that is integral to my creative process. I want to create from a place of rest and not striving. I don’t mean that it isn’t hard, but rather that even though it is hard I am not doing it just to do it. I am doing it knowing that it is to give to others and to do so joyfully. DAWN. is part of my name, but it also refers to the first light in the sky that comes after darkness. I love that dawn is the beginning of something really beautiful and also the beginning of something unknown. Every morning we have no idea what the day will hold, but somewhere and somehow there will be beauty in it. My hope is that DAWN. may be the start to really beautiful things on the most special days in people’s lives and even the ordinary days that people decide to make special.
Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
If my best friend was coming to the area I would make sure that they get to experience all the best of California! I would want to take them to the beach of course and get Banzai bowls and Sidecar donuts! My favorite donut from Sidecar would have to be their huckleberry donut! I would also make sure we hit the mountains for a short camping trip! Los Angeles national forest isn’t too far and neither is Joshua Tree. But, most importantly I would want to carve out time to just sit and catch up. One of my favorite things to do is picnic at the park, diy a charcuterie board, and watch the sun set. Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I truly want to acknowledge that all the creativity I have and the ways in which my experiences have shaped me and the direction my life has gone and now presently is, is because of my Creator. I believe that God has so clearly led me to pursue this career, using the gifts that He has given and grown within me. And He has also done so through others trusting me to create beautiful things for them. With each person who has encouraged me, recognized, and appreciated the art I have created or the gifts of creativity that flow out of me I have become strengthened to take another step forward. My husband Aaron, my sister Tiara, my mom Ranee, and my dearest girl friends have so frequently lifted me when I have felt discouraged, tired, or was struggling to see the beauty in what I create. It is because of all of these ones that I can confidently and joyfully do what I do today.