We've had so many of you tell us that you want to know more about Heidi, the lovely lady who has become the face of our brand this year. Actually, we had a lot of questions for her, too, so we set up an interview with the multi talented Mom/Model/Artist. Read on to learn more about this special gal!
E&A: Would you like to introduce yourself?
Heidi: Yes! Heads up, I’m going to lay this out like a user manual:
I go by Heidi Stoker, though my birth name is Jessica Kamp. I like to pretend that the ‘K’ is a ‘C’ and this is no coincidence. I am 31, my birthday landing on Women’s Independence day…another fate. I was born and raised at the foothills of the Colorado’s Rocky Mountains. My family spent summer weekends hiking and camping; and winter afternoons sledding and skiing. I find honest pride that within the many hats I wear artist, adventure addict, and mother of young gentlemen are a few of them.
Traditionally, I am a painter but my artist-wanderings have stretched me to explore other paths to fulfill my need to create. I, now, find myself doing many things from designing and using various different media to accomplish creations—to—guiding women through the journey to become a mother and embrace themselves as women. Largely, my art has to do with life cycle and the perfection within imperfection. Here’s some of ‘my’ favorite [im]perfections: Hair around my ears is not one of my favorite things, I was born with an extra tooth; and, I, most often than not, forget to shave my legs. As for the mother-vibe, my children are wildlings who are encouraged to use power tools while following their own creative ventures in the outdoors.
Some handy things to remember: If you would like my company, do one of the following: Hand me a cup of earl grey tea with milk and sugar (please), cheese, street tacos, or a steaming bowl chicken vegetable soup. Note, if you could observe me in my natural habitat you would find me roaming backwoods or having a dance party in my Vanagon (named Bertha) or hiding undercovers with my nose in a historical fiction novel…or…somewhere building something. Oh…and I like long walks in the wilderness.
E&A: From a modeling standpoint, what is your favorite feature?
Heidi: I am a fan of my eye color, and specifically the changes they decide to make as I adventure onward.
E&A: As you pointed out, you wear many hats. What is your most challenging role?
Heidi: Myself…more specifically the beautiful feather in that hat which represents ‘taking care of myself.’ I love to put everything before me. It’s how I love. I don’t fancy saying the word ‘no,’ so, I ask myself ‘why not?’ and go from there. Sometimes, I am neglectful as to what I may need to balance myself.
E&A: Do you have any rituals that you use to raise your creative energy?
Heidi: My creative energy is always pretty high, my ritual has to do with keeping the energy flowing in the direction and speed I need. I use music to get me jazzed. When I am doing art I need a repetitive beat and flow that isn’t erratic because if I have to stop and change a song I end up breaking my concentration. When I am getting pumped to do some sewing, one would witness me blasting Iggy Azalea’s “Fancy” and pretending to be gangster while singing “first things first I’m the realist.” If I am getting ready to sit down and focus on a repetitive task, I am going be highly caffeinated with a sandwich at my disposal while punching out my to-do-list to a song like “C’mon” by Big Gigantic. I use music to change my mood, motivate me, keep me going, relax me. It is my ultimate go-to.
E&A: Do you feel there is a common thread between your doula practice, yoga instruction, and your art?
Heidi: Women. To me, it is interesting being a female and woman. It is magical and I am fascinated with all aspects of it.
E&A: What stresses you out?
Heidi: Large groups of people vying for my attention. It usually results in me taking an alone moment with some fresh air.
E&A: What relaxes you?
Heidi: The outdoors. I find I can breathe much better there.
E&A: Yes! Clearly you love adventure and the great outdoors (Follow her business on Instagram: @optoverland.) How does your relationship with nature influence your life?
Heidi: On an artistic level much of my inspiration comes from nature: the color of lichen and moss on rocks, the shadows between rock crevices, atmospheric perspective of mountains, the light’s stained-glass imaging through tree leaves.
On an energetic level, nature calms my fast paced mind and soothes my nerve. It is vital to my being. I feel I can always go to nature to reconnect with the greater picture.
E&A: What are you most looking forward to right now?
Heidi: “Would you like an adventure now, or would like to have your tea first?” said Peter Pan on page 38 of J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan. Personally, I half agree with Wendy’s answer: my answer is, BOTH!