"We must plant our dreams in real earth. Every dream needs a place in which to take root & grow.”
My first apartment on South Brook Street in Louisville, Kentucky was indeed that place. Experiences scattered throughout my life narrative left me with new perspective, a dream, and a passion to craft a different kind of lifestyle. A lifestyle that challenged traditional pathways and challenged the thinking that compartmentalizes work, service, and passion.
After spending time in brothels, refugee camps, homeless parks, and orphanages, I saw that empowering others was not an action, but a lifestyle. This left me on a mission to develop a lifestyle where my vocational calling as a designer was interwoven with my life calling to plant seeds of Hope in places that deeply need it.
I so vividly remember the moment that I walked into that new apartment for the very first time and, with a load of boxes in tow, the freelance idea I had been searching for so clearly came to mind – South Brook Studio. This apartment would be the space for me to dream it and to create it. I immediately put down my boxes and quickly wrote down the idea on paper. This original writing was my inspiration for the South Brook Studio logo mark.
My little home on South Brook was a place where I could plant my dreams in real earth, and where I could tangibly work towards those dreams. A place where I could rest, design, encourage, and be encouraged. And that it was.
In November 2017, I said "farewell" to that space and embarked on the journey of moving overseas by living out my passions as a designer and volunteer worker among vulnerable people groups, while studying the local language. It has been my most challenging, yet rewarding and invigorating journey to date.
My ideal client is someone who shares a similar vision. Our lives and our work will look different, but we will chase the same thing – to live out our passions and our dreams for the benefit of others.
Do you want to join me in this journey? If so, poke around on my site then let's start a conversation and see where it goes!
Claire Van Der Eems
founder & designer