Shannon Lucas Westrum has been passionate about creating since she was a young child. Crocheting, knitting and jewelry design are just a few of the artistic endeavors Shannon committed herself to learning as a youth and young adult. As is the case with many people when they have small children, her passions took a back seat to the hustle and bustle of family life. That all changed one day when her daughter asked about a piece of jewelry she had made. It was that moment when Shannon decided to conscientiously incorporate craft into her family's day to day life.
Since then, her creative spirit has guided her down some pretty incredible paths, paths lined with art. She owned and operated Shannon's Art and Soul in Bemidji where her own creations and those of her daughters were sold alongside those of other local, regional and global artists. She committed herself to 365 days of creativity where she crafted something new every day for one year and posted it online daily. She's been a staunch supporter and participant of the arts scene in Bemidji and last spring, she exhibited her unique basket weaving techniques at the world renowned and strictly juried American Craft Council Show in St. Paul. Her woven creations have secured her a spot at the same event this coming April as well.
Thanks to a Region 2 Arts Council Fellowship Award, Shannon will soon head off to Ireland where she will study traditional methods of Irish basket weaving under master weaver Joe Hogan and a host of other Irish craftspeople - and true to form, she's taking her family with her on the adventure. In this Area Voices segment, Shannon shares how this all came to be.