We had the good fortune of connecting with Carolyn Whittico and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Carolyn, is your business focused on helping the community? If so, how?
A Cup of Cloudy holds the value that natural spaces must be protected. When I was growing up, I spent a lot of time in the woods. We made make-believe houses from patches of swamp trees and went on scavenger hunts to find wildflowers for the kitchen table. That’s why a lot of the artwork I produce is focused on state parks, natural spaces, and plants. And it’s why 20 percent of art print sales are donated to Michigan State Parks — there should always be land where children can go and discover nature. When children love nature, they respect it and protect it as adults.

Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I began experimenting with my creativity from a very young age. I’ve got a lot of practice but not a lot of formal education in the visual art arena. As a result, I had to teach myself illustration as well as business. It’s been a long road of trial and error, but I’m most proud that I was successfully able to blend all my passions into one career: nature, painting and teaching. The biggest lesson I’ve learned along the way is that you have to follow the signs life is giving you. If you feel pulled to making art – make more art! It’s amazing what good can come from you pursuing what brings you happiness. You can overcome any challenge, contribute to any cause, and be as successful as you wish through following that north star of happiness and persevering.
That’s why I lead by example.
I create the illustrations that I like – not because I think they’ll make money, but because they make me happy. I donate to state parks not because I feel something is wrong with them, but because it makes me feel good to keep them maintained for future generations. I teach art business to new artists not because I don’t think they can do it alone, but because I get joy from showing people a shortcut.
I know other creatives see this behavior and know it’s possible for them to blend their passions, too.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I want to thank my parents for always letting me explore. Exploring my surroundings in nature and exploring my interests with when I was a kid allowed me to figure out what I wanted to be and do quite early.

Website: www.acupofcloudy.com

Instagram: www.instagram.com/carolynwhittico

Other: Pinterest: https://pin.it/5nBqlWw

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutArizona is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.