In a world where everything — even art — is being digitized, how does a beadwork artist and small business owner adapt her product amidst the challenges posed by the pandemic?
There’s no debate that we’re living in challenging times. Since the start of COVID-19, we’ve seen classrooms move online, companies adopt digital homes, and the doors of small businesses close indefinitely.
Blu Hummingbird founder Brit Ellis is a talented beadwork artist and graphic designer who has kept her business afloat the past two years through hard work and the chameleon-like ability to do all and be all. Receiving a generous gift from LG Canada, Ellis is able to continue expanding her business’s digital growth — from the artwork itself to the paperwork behind the scenes.
The story of Blu HummingbirdA beautiful niche art form, beadwork is the way Ellis shares her story with the world. She first started beading at a circle held by the Indigenous Student Centre at her college. In Indigenous culture, beading is unique to each nation as well as the individual. “We put so much of ourselves into the work,” Ellis tells Daily Hive. “Our roles as storytellers are never more evident than the way our experiences influence our techniques.”
All that inspires Ellis’s life weaves its way into her work; from pop culture and bold tattoo designs to traditional teachings. Her past experiences working in community and counselling also influence the pieces she creates, through which the aim is to speak to the complexity of Indigenous identities and experiences on Turtle Island. Ellis will often donate proceeds from certain collections to charities within her community.
Small business challengesIt’s because of Ellis’s commitment to her work and giving back that LG and influencer Brandon Gonez wanted to help Ellis grow her company, by providing her with the necessary tools to succeed in the modern business landscape.
“The pandemic really highlighted my weaknesses in the areas of tech. I used to work person to person a lot, and when all our worlds moved inside and online, that was hard,” says Ellis. “It was daunting but I have been doing my best to learn.”
For any business, the creation of a product is only the tip of the iceberg. Ellis is not only Blu Hummingbird’s primary talent, she’s also the company’s logistics coordinator, scout and product photographer, digital editor, social media manager, and website builder. To Ellis, the gift from LG means access and ability for growth.
Using these premium products, Ellis will be able to more easily adapt her style to digital art forms, such as the keychains, calendars, stickers, and magnets she’s been creating. With the new LG 16-inch 2-in-1 gram ultra-lightweight laptop, Ellis will benefit from its processing power and memory to manage her everyday tasks and projects, and its Intel UHD graphics and included stylus pen will enable her design work to come alive on the screen.
And anyone who does design — or just likes to have a lot of tabs open — needs a monitor. Ellis’s new LG 34-inch UltraWide Ergo Monitor is highly immersive, with a three-sided, virtually borderless display and an ergonomic arm stand that allows the monitor to pivot up to 370 degrees. Its elevated picture quality offers a dynamic visual experience for creating; it also enhances the colour of HDR content and compliments the industry-standard sRGB colour gamut.
With these features, Ellis will be able to move into the more intricate work she’s been hoping to tackle for fabrics and clothing, and ultimately to conquer larger business ventures. “It’s going to allow me to better organize myself and all the paperwork and behind-the-scenes work that goes into running my business.”
It makes it extremely easy for Ellis to join the Hustle Hub by LG gram, too, which is a dedicated online community where LG gram users — and anyone else who has an entrepreneurial mindset — can network, access relevant information and resources, and enjoy exclusive offers and membership benefits.
Ellis will now have the ability to grow Blu Hummingbird in new directions. “I’m excited to use these generous gifts to help me develop different product ranges to increase the reach of my work and my story,” she says. “I’m just so stunned and grateful.”