Destiny would have it no other way, Paris Gerrad was born to be an artist. Taking after her mother and grandmother who are both full time artists, Paris grew up creating and painting, following her bliss that ultimately lead her to seamlessly fuse her art and life. “They go hand in hand for me. I feel like I don’t know how to do life any other way. I love creating, discovering, and exploring what it means to be alive – what it means to be human, so life as an artist is perfect for me,” she mentions.
At the age of seven, Paris’s family moved from Salt Lake City, Utah to Hawaii’s “garden isle,” Kauai. “I feel fortunate to have had those early experiences, leaving behind a rather homogeneous and provincial place, and meeting, head-on, a whole new world of peoples, cultures, and ideas,” she said.
Today, she finds herself back in Utah where she has her art studio and circle of close family and friends who keep her grounded. It is here where she began her sensational blog, Charcoal Alley. Charcoal Alley has become “a world within a world,” she explains, “It is a space in life, where it feels really wonderful to express myself in so many forms – fashion, art, photography, and writing.” Scrolling through her blog is like stepping into her mind and taking a glance at her soul. Her words convey honesty, gratitude, and vulnerability. An inanimate computer screen suddenly comes to life with her fashion editorials and the uplifting quotes and motivating words. You can’t help but want to be in her presence, secretly hoping that some of her innovative vision will rub off on you.
Surprisingly, blogging was something Paris put off for years, struggling with her perfectionist character and allowing it to hold her back. It was through her Instagram that people began asking where to find her blog, and she knew she had to begin. “I think this is an important point that many people should consider, don’t wait for everything to be perfect in your life. Just start where you are. Of course you are going to grow and improve at everything you do. You don’t have to be perfect, you just have to be true to who you are – and get started. The rest will follow,” she remembers. We are are excited to follow her positive journey, knowing that her faith and creative spirit will lead the way to big and bright adventures.
Follow Paris’s blog at: www.charcoalalley.com.
By Leslie Schipper
Photography by Jen Fairchild + Tessa Barton