Hi there, friends!
I'm back with another Celebration Series interview and it's my great pleasure to introduce you to the ever-so-lovely Jodi Macfarlan!
I feel so fortunate to have met Jodi very early on following my post-college move to Charlottesville, Virginia. It was a scary and vulnerable time for me, having moved far away from just about every human that I knew, and I'll never forget how Jodi took me under her wing. I've looked up to her ever since — for her kindness, humility, and quiet confidence (among too many other qualities to list).
Jodi is thoughtful, intentional, caring and oh-so-talented. She's a brilliant writer and editor, and most recently, she's trying her hand (pun intended) at calligraphy and hand-lettering. Oh, and did I mention that she's also a mama to two of the cutest kiddos in all the land? This girl does it all, does it well, and I want to be her when I grow up.
I'm also very self-conscious about my grammar right now because I know Jodi and her eagle eye will be reading this. So let's get into the interview before I accidentally end a sentence with a preposition. :)
Give us a quick background on who you are and what you do for work.
Hi! I'm Jodi, a word nerd living in Charlottesville, Virginia, with my winemaking husband, Michael, and our two cool kiddos (plus one on the way!). I edit an in-flight magazine by day (go Ethiopian Airlines!), and by night can be found splattered in ink while playing around with calligraphy.
What about your work brings you the most joy and fulfillment?
The creative outlet it offers! I've never classified myself as the creative type — I've always veered toward pretty prescribed paths, and I unfortunately tend to shy away from things that push me beyond my comfort. With calligraphy, though, I've seemed to find this little space where my imagination flares up and in which I'm energized, even after a long day spent wrangling kids and sentences. It's really exciting to me to be tapping into this somewhat-new arena, particularly as I crest over into a new decade of life. No better time to start saying "yes" to things that are slightly scary, right?
Who or what is inspiring you right now?
Gosh, so much! The arrival of a new ink or nib I've been wanting to try out, for one. And of course the work of friends in all creative fields — from painting to cooking to homemaking — and others I stalk via Instagram; I can stare at a well-lettered "k" for minutes on end, it seems, or get all googly-eyed over a dreamy calligraphy style. But I think my most regular inspiration is simply a good quote that's crying to be calligraphed. My current favorite, by Julia Child — "People who love to eat are always the best people." — combines my love for words with my passion for food.
What has been difficult lately?
This ties back to the last question, but that old Teddy Roosevelt quote "Comparison is the thief of joy" rings so true for me. I see so much beautiful work out there that totally inspires and yet at the same time totally intimidates me! It's so hard to move beyond the paralysis stage and just keep putting one foot in front of the other. If anyone has any tips for that, I'm truly all ears.
What makes you different from everyone else in the world, and how does that uniqueness manifest itself in your work and life?
Shew! My fingerprints?! This is such a tough question, but I guess one of the things I've always loved about handwriting is that it's naturally unique to each person, and so much is said to be told from one's writing. Even if you try and mimic another's lettering, it's not going to look exact...that's why there are handwriting experts out there whose sole job is to distinguish the teensiest differences in detail!
If you owned a food truck, what would you serve and why?
I'm a bit embarrassed to admit just how much time I've spent thinking through an answer to this question, before ever even being asked by you, but it's a lot. I absolutely love food and thinking about food, so after much internal debate, I think I've settled on a gelato truck — with fresh waffle cones, too, obviously. There are few things in this world that bring me as much joy as any and all variations of ice cream, so it seems only fitting that I do whatever I can to bring a dose of that delight to the world (hypothetically speaking, of course ;).