Hi friend! I’m Rylie, the head and heart behind this creative space.
San Diego is home, where I enjoy adventuring and learning alongside my husband, Jake, and our Blue Heeler pup, Sequoia. After some time abroad and an attempt at braving real seasons in the midwest, I am enjoying putting down some roots in one place for a while. Apart from my obvious loves – writing and photography – I most easily lose track of time when I am exploring the outdoors, enjoying a good book, traveling to a new place, or chatting over coffee with my people.
As a creative, I am captivated with telling stories and snapping photos that illuminate our shared humanity and this South African concept of Ubuntu: I am because you are. My artistic work is centered around three themes: social justice, faith and spirituality, and the simple and complicated experience of being human. You will find the common thread of ubuntu woven throughout all three, a steady reminder. If we forget we belong to one another, we will be ineffective at moving the arc of the world towards justice, participating in the redemptive work of Jesus, and becoming fully, deeply, and beautifully human. I am because you are.
I write about social justice to create a space for us – especially for us as white folk – to look at the injustices in the world and acknowledge our participation in them. Lamenting the broken, corrupted systems of our time, naming our roles in sustaining them, and learning how they continue to oppress our BIPOC, LGBTQIA+, and disabled siblings is the starting point to cultivating freedom, healing, and restoration for all of us. My work is but an entry point intended to stir us to tangible social engagement, where we can then join the collective movement towards a more whole, just, and affirming society.
I write about faith and spirituality because I often walk around with more doubts and questions than answers, and yet. I haven’t been able to walk away from the truth and goodness of Jesus. I have, however, tromped out into the woods and now fondly refer to myself as a wilderness believer (term borrowed from Sarah Bessey, Jeff Chu, and other kindreds). For me, this has meant that I often don’t fit into any of the boxes that the church and mainstream christianity have drawn for me. Yet, when I wandered outside the boundary lines that others had drawn, Jesus was waiting in the wilderness with all of the beautiful misfit humans who couldn’t accept one prescribed way of doing life and faith. My creative work seeks to be a safe space for anyone to wrestle through faith and spirituality… or to leave it all be, and to just, well, be. Everyone is welcome as we are today.
I write about being human because it takes a lot of damn work to be fully, painfully, beautifully alive. It takes incredible amounts of courage to make space for our grief, and it takes an equal amount of bravery to make room for our joy. Retaining and reclaiming our humanity often requires a resistance of the status quo. I am committed to cultivating spaces for us all to (re)connect with ourselves and each other, doing the hard work to remain fully human, and capturing the beauty of those who are doing the same.
Thank you for taking the time to engage with my work. Looking forward to connecting with you!