Today we’d like to introduce you to Paige Martin.
So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I studied Biology at Clark Atlanta University with the intention of going into the science field. I finished in 1994 and worked a few years in education and then the healthcare field while I simultaneously pursued an interest in the arts fields. While working with arts and entertainment company in Atlanta part-time, I began creating a curriculum for after-school programs and teaching arts-related activities. I eventually began contracting with other organizations including the City of Atlanta, After-School All Stars and YELL! Academy, as an art instructor.
With YELL! Academy, my background in science and art finally came together when I began combining the two to make STEM concepts easier to understand through the eyes of children and middle school students in connection with the common core standards.
Today, I am a STEAM educator and artist with Paige Martin Books & Art.
Great, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
It absolutely has not been a smooth road but it has been a fun road to travel. Some of the struggles along the way, have been finding the right venues to sell in that are appropriate for the brand, partnering with other organizations that understand the educational piece of the business (why dolls are important, how the construction process connects with creativity that is useful in STEM organizations, etc.) and continuing to find the clientele that supports this business.
Alright – so let’s talk business. Tell us about Paige Martin Books & Art – what should we know?
Paige Martin Books & Art is a book publishing and arts company. I self-published my first children’s book in 2010 titled “Daniel Keep Dreaming”. The art that accompanied the book were photography illustrations. I was looking at some different options for other books in the future and an artist friend recommended using handmade dolls in the illustrations. His suggestions were dismissed because I had no clue on how to make dolls, yet he continued to encourage me to go on YouTube and learn the basic structure of how dolls are created.
The first dolls that I made were absolutely horrible. It took at least 16-17 tries before they started to look like a real doll. Sometimes, the arms were too long or legs too short. It took a while to construct a doll that was in natural proportion to the human body.
Next, I wanted the dolls to look different and I started researching the faces and comparing them to dolls already in the market. I didn’t want them to look like something that was already in existence. I thought to create a doll with many colors in the face which depicts what most people are made of anyway with the vast difference in cultures present in our society. I wanted to dolls to promote diversity, kindness, benevolence and character. Thus the Color Of Humanity™ Dolls were born.
I started to make more dolls which took a while to perfect. I was trying to carve out a unique look for them
that would signify my own brand. Finally, people began to take enough interest in them to not only find the reason why they looked as they did but to also make purchases.
In addition to creating art, I also teach art with STEAM programs where I create a curriculum that merges art with the components of science, technology, engineering, and math.
Doll making is actually a STEAM activity because it involves creativity and strengthening of the fine motor skills for future engineers. Lego building, jewelry crafting and robot construction go hand in hand with doll making and engineering.
Is there a characteristic or quality that you feel is essential to success?
Integrity is the characteristic I feel is most important to my success. Your integrity is all you have when you are a start-up business. Keeping your word, doing what you say you are going to do, and appreciating your clients with perks and small gifts is important to keep them coming back. I want my customers and students to have an experience when they encounter my business products and my workshop activities. I try to treat my customers and students well and it shows in their feedback and continued support.
- Dolls range from $45 to $300.
- Doll products range from $5 and above.
- Workshops for Doll Making Workshops $25 a person and above.
- Website: Web: paigelackeymartin.com
- Phone: 678.754.8183
- Email: Email: email@example.com
- Instagram: IG: @pmartinbooksandart
- Facebook: FB: https://www.facebook.com/paigemartinbooksandart/
- Twitter: Twitter: pmartinbooks
Getting in touch: VoyageATL is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.