I want to tell you a little bit about me, @toastedbyeli, since I am the artist and founder of the brand.
I struggled with depression and anxiety my whole life. The major trigger for years of deep depression was my grandmother’s death, and it sent me to rehab on my 18th birthday. At that moment, blowing out the imaginary candles in my mind, I thought more about my future than I ever had before.
I slowly came to understand that the paths of life can be winding and complicated, but that they are plenty. I could choose a path lined with promise and healing or stumble towards those filled with toxicity and ruin.
In 2020, I made the conscious choice to design a poster every day for 365 days. At first, it was a task intended to keep me busy and get me through the days. But soon, it became a passion that propelled me to look forward with positivity to all the days ahead.
My designs helped to keep me on a path of progression. They pushed me through the concrete, helping me bloom even when struggling with the darkness. And soon, the rays of sunlight were streaming in from all directions. People around the world found my art and responded with love and encouragement. My art, intended to heal my heart, was touching the hearts of so many.
I have learned that we are all the sidewalk, and we are all the flowers. Obstacles and possibilities. Struggle and growth.
I am a flower, growing through the sidewalk. Sometimes it feels like the concrete is shifting. Getting in my way, preventing me from embracing the sun. But I will break through it – I have before, and I know that there is growth on the other side.
Welcome to Sidewalk Flowers.