We had the good fortune of connecting with Viscaya Wagner and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Viscaya, how has your perspective on work-life balance evolved over time?
I’ve been grappling with work life balance since the beginning of my career, really, but definitely since I’ve been freelance. When your livelihood and growth is in your hands everyday it can be difficult to “turn off” and step away, even when it’s needed mentally, creatively, or emotionally. I’ve been working really hard to set boundaries with clients around when I’m available, and I try to stop working at a normal hour to give myself time in the day for my own personal projects and just general down time to recharge. Trying to detach my self-worth and identity from my work is a constant practice, but over time I’m hoping it will get easier.

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
My work is multidisciplinary, working in both two and three dimensional mediums. I’m most known for illustration and murals, but my work comes to life through painting, printmaking, sculpture, and spatial design. I’m primarily inspired by the natural world and how we as humans relate to the larger order of things. Relationships and connection are big themes in most of my work. Most recently I’ve been working on a sculptural series I’m excited to share. It’s been such a joy – and challenge – to work with new materials and methods I’m not familiar with.

Being able to do what I do every day has given me great pride, but working for yourself can be really isolating and stressful. I’ve found that having a diverse skill set allows me to market myself more broadly and keeps my days feeling different from one to the next. There’s absolutely no way I’d be where I am today without the support of family, friends, and – very importantly – other artists. Sharing feedback and resources, and cultivating community has been the single most important thing that has led to any sort of success.

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
Until very recently I’ve lived in Brooklyn, but now that I’ve moved back to Vermont I feel like I’m rediscovering so many of the places and things I love, so this is a fun question!

I’m going to assume it’s summertime so that I can fit in some specific faves. We would definitely get coffee at one of the many great spots in Burlington – Brio and Onyx Tonics are some of the best cups I know. But it’s also fun to take a little road trip down to Vergennes Laundry – it’s a sweet little bake shop in an old laundromat that has beautifully curated homewares and specialty foods.

If we’re down in Vergennes, we’d definitely go strawberry picking at Full Belly Farm – they also have pick-your-own flowers, which is fun.

There are really cool antique stores all over Vermont, but as you drive up Route 7 you can hit a few of them up. We recently bought a “new” dresser from the Champlain Valley Antique Center, where I’ve been going with my dad since I was a little girl.

My all-time favorite thing in the summer is soft-serve ice cream. In Northern Vermont we call them creemees, and the best one (in my opinion) is from Cookie Love… it just so happens to be down the road from my dad’s house… very convenient for a quick post dinner treat!

Another good day would be getting sandwiches and a bottle of wine from Poppy Cafe and heading to the river to swim and hang… after we’d head over the mountains to Canteen Creemee or Mad Taco for some dinner and another creemee 🙂

Some other special things, in no particular order: swimming in the lake, stopping at one of the many breweries, Folino’s Pizza, dancing at Radio Bean, bagels from Feldman’s, City Market… that may just cover the highlights but there are endless amazing things to do here… it’s very special in my little state.

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Sidney Howard

Website: www.honeyandrust.co

Instagram: @honey_and_rust

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