Danielle Selby’s first “piece” consisted of blue Crayola marker scribbles on a wooden dresser canvas. After her start at age four, Ms. Selby’s work progressed into a modern flair. This Artist & Designer embraces the Brave Tutu spirit. Therefore, the talented owner of Pasadya and Zuzu Zenie, known as “Danie” to most, is our first official guest artist. The word pasadya derives from the Philippines, translating in English to "custom." Therefore, as is custom with art, I’m going to let her work and our Q&A do the talking.
"La Joie" examples one of Danie's calligraphy handwriting pieces. Her most frequent clients commission her for tattoo design. Danie finds "the joy" in working with each client to cultivate ink-imaginations and personalize dreamt-up script. This and others is available on her Pasadya Etsy Store.
Q&A with Rebekah Manley (Brave Tutu Founder) and Danie Selby (Guest Artist and Delight)
Rebekah Manley: First of all, as you know, I’m a huge fan. Your work on Pasadya and on Zuzu Zenie combines playful whimsy and delightful creativity that, I believe, resonates with Brave Tutu readers.
Danie Selby: Aww, thank you! I’m so honored to be sharing some creative love on Brave Tutu!
RM: What does “Brave Tutu” mean to you?
DS: Personally, I relate “Brave Tutu” to the openness to evolve. Sometimes that openness allows you to dip your pinky toe into a slow-moving lap of water; sometimes it totally makes you lose your balance and fall face-first into tumbling waves.
When I started Pasadya in 2011, it was supposed to be a business geared toward the making and selling of illustrations and abstract paintings. I had always loved the idea of creating custom work (after all, the word “pasadya” translates to “custom”), but I couldn’t put my finger on figuring out what to offer other than fine artwork. I secretly had my “face-first” moments when absolutely amazing clients trusted me to step out of my comfort zone with completely new projects ranging from photography to handwriting to logos. My “pinky toe” moments happen every time I begin a new project --it’s so exciting to go through the process with clients in pursuit of a beautiful result. You have to pull up your big-girl tutu for any type of evolution, whether it’s a big “face-first” situation or a small “pinky toe” moment.
RM: In what ways do you take courage in delight?
DS: Without a doubt, I would say that the interaction with my clients makes me take courage in delight! I always find myself balancing my nerves and gleeful happiness when I first meet clients, whether the meeting is virtual or in person. With each new project, I have the honor of learning a small portion of people’s intriguing stories. As a visual person, I adore beautifully-curated designs, but what I love more is the genuine human interaction behind those pieces.
RM: In what ways do you find bravery in the day-to-day?
DS: It can be difficult not to compare yourself to other artists, designers, business owners--the list can go on and on, right? Every day, I need to remind myself not to compare myself to others. When I get into the groove and and stop worrying how I can make my work in-tune with another person’s work, I end up loving my own, original work.
RM: How do you exhibit bravery as an artist?
DS: For me, bravery is exhibited behind-the-scenes. I feel completely in my element when it comes to art, so when I need to deal with the non-visuals of my business (like contracts, managing money, and even just getting started on a project), I’d love to slink away and have a special business fairy do the dirty work for me. When I face the left-brained parts of my business and take them on, that’s a real accomplishment of courage in my book.
RM: How do you discover power in small moments?
DS: I actually discover power in small moments when I step away from work and put my mind elsewhere. I’m just the tiniest part of this world that God put me in, so when I take part in the smallest actions, I find the sense of wonder and appreciation I might be missing when I’m working. Those actions include taking the time to praise God for grace, walking outside with my dog and seeing her absolute joy in her surroundings, and practicing yoga to connect my mind with my body. Every time I take part in these small actions, I’m reminded how utterly lucky I am to be able to enjoy the life that I’m living. In turn, my mind is refreshed, and my creativity becomes fueled.
RM: Thank you so much, Danie! I know everyone will enjoy checking out more of your work.
Your Brave Tutu (You’re brave, too-too!)
Danie, thank you again for capturing the video and photography below. Created for Brave Tutu's "About" page.