Today we’d like to introduce you to Courtnie Harris.
Courtnie, let’s start with your story. We’d love to hear how you got started and how the journey has been so far.
Well first off, I am a local potter, crochetier, and soon to be personal blogger of Mckinney, Tx. I recently launched by own website to combine all my passions, Inspiration by Craft. I am a free-spirited individual who loves caring for those with special needs. In my free time, I enjoy finding beautiful treasures at thrift stores, geocaching, and playing with my nieces and nephew. My journey into the ceramic’s world began in 2017, when I started my first pottery class with my Grandmother as a hobby. The joy of learning to make pottery pieces sparked my passion to create colorful and unique works of art through hand-building and wheel-throwing.
Being hands-on in the clay brings a calming peace, in which I can intentionally slow myself down and connect on deeper levels; mind, body, and spirit. Not only does the clay help alleviate the pain of my aching joints caused by Rheumatoid Arthritis, it also soothes my soul. Every piece of pottery I make is an extension of my kind and colorful spirit. My intentions are to create both decorative and functional pieces of art that have character and charm while bringing joy to the hearts of everyone who experiences my work. In March, I decided to file for disability while continuing my art as I am able. Recently, around June 2020, I stumbled into the world of crocheting and began making fun summer tops; while also exploring how to start my own personal blog. My website, Inspiration by Craft, was created in hopes of inspiring others and creating change all over the world. This combination of personal blogging, crafting skills, and works of art will be a place for all. My goal is to provide personal positivity through my words, sharing the views of others, and featuring a variety of other beautiful art forms.
Overall, has it been relatively smooth? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
I can’t say it has been all rainbows and sunshine. There has been more than a fair share of bumps along the way. The biggest hurdle has been struggling with both my physical and mental health for many years. In 2012, at the age of 21, I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), an autoimmune disorder that attacks both organs and joints. Just two years later I began having non-epileptic seizures; later diagnosed as conversion disorder. The seizure episodes had slowed down and even stopped for a while, but currently have become more of an issue again. In July 2019, my health started to steadily decline. I began having reoccurring sinus infections, leaving me unable to take preventative medicine for my RA.
My income went from around $30,000 yearly to barely making around $13,000 these past two years (2018 and 2019). Due to my struggling health, I ended up leaving both part-time positions in March 2020, as I was completely unable to work productively any longer. The hardest part emotionally of all my struggles is losing my ability to work, both reliably and consistently, enough to maintain any job in all the various positions and professions I tried over the last couple years. Also it has slowed down my creative side tremendously. It is a hard hit to my ego coming into my 30’s as a person filing for disability and just doing my best to get by on the happiness and joy of my art, and the compassion I have for helping and creating change for people who need it the most.
We’d love to hear more about Inspiration by Craft.
All of this started off as a hobby, until people started insisting that I share my talents and my story with others. My response was always I’m not that good, or why would anyone possibly want to hear my story? People probably first got to know me for my pottery, humor, and personality. After that, it branched into my crocheting, and hopefully, the blog I have in the works will be next thing they know me for! The thing I am most proud of about creating my own brand/website is, it’s uniquely me and I can make it what I want while also making people smile. I feel as if so many people will always be able to find a way to relate or contribute to what I am making, because my heart and kindness for others is what will always set me apart from others.
What is “success” or “successful” for you?
Success is being happy and proud of who you are, and being able to make it by, as far as bills and money go.
- Website: www.inspirationbycraft.com
- Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/inspirationbycraft
- Facebook: facebook.com/inspirationbycraft
- Go Fund Me: https://www.gofundme.com/f/hope-and-support-for-courtnie-harris
- Other: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC-7u5GuxMHoON9X_uAM9n9w?view_as=subscriber