Alright – so today we’ve got the honor of introducing you to Denise Rodriguez. We think you’ll enjoy our conversation, we’ve shared it below.
Alright, Denise thanks for taking the time to share your stories and insights with us today. It’s always helpful to hear about times when someone’s had to take a risk – how did they think through the decision, why did they take the risk, and what ended up happening. We’d love to hear about a risk you’ve taken.
The biggest risk I have taken is starting my small business.
I am not what you would call an extrovert by any stretch of the imagination, I would rather stay home in my old t-shirts and shorts. I don’t think I have the personality of “business owner”, I would rather sit in a corner at functions. So starting the business, sustaining the business, advertising the business, for me, is the risk, was the risk and still is the risk.
Now that doesn’t mean that I don’t do what must be done, I do. I move out of my comfort zone and post on social media or call the customer when they are not satisfied or argue with the shipping company. I do these things because these are the things business owners do. I do these things because I love my small business and how my products make my customers feel. I love that something that I made with my hands makes someone else happy and will be cherished for years.
So my advice for all of those – “I can’t people” and “I don’t know how to people” or the “I’m afraid people” – is to start the business. Just start the business and learn along the way – the experience and all of the other things will come with time.
The days AND nights are long, the lessons are hard but the reward for taking the risk, is so much greater.
Denise , love having you share your insights with us. Before we ask you more questions, maybe you can take a moment to introduce yourself to our readers who might have missed our earlier conversations?
My name is Denise Rodriguez and I am the artist behind DeniseMosaics. I teach art full time to middle school students in San Antonio, Texas. I am a self-taught artist, who fell in love with mosaics after watching a show on HGtv. I went to the local craft store and the rest is history. Everything was in danger when I first started, I think I tried to mosaic everything. I was so blessed to be asked within my first year to sell my crosses wholesale in a small boutique. That was my first experience with wholesale and all that entails.
I create mosaic crosses, ornaments, jewelry , but have recently expanded to portraits. It is pretty neat to take a picture and create a portrait using glass. I am most proud of the portraits that I create, because they make people so happy.
I am proud that I built this business while being a wife, a mother, a teacher and now a grandmother. It has taken a lot of years of working crazy hours and through crazy busy seasons to get where I am now.
I want my potential clients to know I take great pride in making a product that they will love and cherish for years.
What can society do to ensure an environment that’s helpful to artists and creatives?
Society can shop small and spread the word.
There is a poster that says something about when you shop small, you are paying for a daughter’s dance lessons and so on. It is so true. It doesn’t cost anything to repost a listing or put it in your stories on social media.
Can you imagine the impact that it would have if we only bought small? It would be huge and you would have a one of a kind item from a small business.
We’d love to hear the story of how you built up your social media audience?
I am presently building my audience on social media and have done it all organically. I don’t have a big following but it is growing, so that is exciting .
I think the key is probably consistency and posting everyday. That is my problem right now, I don’t record everything and I probably should put myself out there, but there’s the whole risk thing again.
My advice is to post, let people see your face, take lots of pictures, show everyone your process and post consistently.
- Website: www.DeniseMosaics.etsy.com
- Instagram: @DeniseMosaics
- Facebook: DeniseMosaics