Cassidy Boatright On Curating Community and Visual Arts
During my internship with Darling Magazine, I had the honor of getting to meet visual media manager, Cassidy Boatright. She not only curates beautifully on social media (seriously go follow her account), but she is the sweetest human to chat with and has an artistic eye for refreshing content. In today's world, visuals are absolutely everything. From the perfect Instagram filter to the way a caption looks accompanied by a simple emoji, we are living in a time where what we see sends our brain hundreds of different messages all at once.
It can be both tiring and inspirational.
But what I love about women like Cassidy is that everyday they are dreaming up ways to capture our attention with positive, uplifting art through the power of visuals. If you know anything about Darling, you'll know that Cassidy is part of a monumental movement that is helping to reshape our definition of what's beautiful in society.
With that being said, today we're chatting with her about her personal creative journey and what the power of visual arts has taught her at [almost] twenty-two.
V: Where do you draw creative inspiration from as a visuals artist and how has that influenced your professional career?
Cassidy Boatright: I draw most of my creative inspiration from the current work of other artists working in a similar field. Since my focus at Darling is social media, I tend to spend a lot of time on Instagram looking at brands, photographers, and artists who are nailing it at their craft and are creating fresh, inspiring work.
In the early years, I spent a lot of time on Pinterest cultivating an understanding of my own visual taste as well as what would catch the eye of others. Aside from the hundreds of screenshots I take from around the web, I love viewing fine art at museums, spending time outside in nature (or at least looking at it in the distance on a long drive), watching films, listening to or writing music, etc.
The key is just to keep your eyes open and always “save” what inspires you in some way, whether that's on your camera roll, in a note, or in a memory.
V: Building relationships is such a huge part of what you do at Darling. What traits have you found to be effective in building authentic connections?
Cassidy Boatright: Don’t be afraid to bring all of you to the table. Embrace your fullest self in all your nerdy/silly/serious/witty/caring (you fill in the blank) glory. Don’t let being “cool” or “perfect” stop you from showing your true colors. Show up fully to people and you’ll be surprised how welcomed you are.
Then turn around and kindly do the same for others. Equally as important, I’ve learned that a key to building genuine connection is allowing “humanity” into interactions (especially in the workplace). This is one of my main takeaways from being on the Darling Team. It’s so beneficial and healthy to have a laugh in a meeting, or to express your heart to someone, or to take a few moments on a coffee break to connect relationally with someone (all in appropriate times and settings, of course).
When you pair this type of mindfulness with a high level of professionalism and passion for the work at hand, you’ll forge bonds that are strong and deeply meaningful; work becomes more satisfying and better communication unfolds.
V: You began with Darling as an intern and then moved into this full time role. What has your journey up to this point taught you?
Cassidy Boatright: I always tell people that if there’s anything I have gleaned from this experience, it’s that timing is everything. I had applied for the Darling internship many times before I ever heard back from the team. In fact, I ended up getting in touch with a member of the Darling team through a connection I made by way of a friend and not through the traditional application process.
From there the opportunities flowed very naturally. That being said, once given that opportunity, it’s so important to foster it and make the most of every experience. Raise your hand, volunteer yourself, speak up, and embrace each moment. Be humble, teachable, and willing to work really hard.
As for where I am now in this journey, two years after landing my dream internship, and then one year later, job, I am in a space of learning to find purpose in more than just the work I do.
Rediscovering sidelined passions (music), embracing a meditative practice, and spending more time on relationships that matter to me are a few focuses of my current journey.
V: What books/podcasts have been changing your world lately?
Cassidy Boatright: I’m currently reading ‘Soul Keeping’ by John Ortberg. It was a recommendation from Sarah Dubbeldam (founder and CEO of Darling) and it’s fitting in so perfectly to my journey of learning to “be” instead of just “do.”
As for podcasts, I have been listening a lot to Typology with Ian Morgan Cron and The Enneagram Journey with Suzanne Stabile. Both podcasts are by Enneagram experts and explore all nine Enneagram numbers through interviews and conversations with a diversity of individuals.
Learning about the Enneagram, and my number (type 4!), has been very helpful to me personally. These are two of the best podcasts I have found that explore the subject through an expert lens.