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Life & Work with Lisa Ing

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lisa Ing.

Hi Lisa, we’d love for you to start by introducing yourself.
I’m the owner and artist behind the brand infiniteLi. As a small business owner and self-taught designer, my body of work has been influenced by my background, upbringing, and everyday life.

Born to Chinese parents in Cambodia, my family and I came to the United States as refugees during the Khmer Rouge regime. We first arrived in Wisconsin and later settled in California when I was three years old. I grew up predominantly in the Echo Park and Venice areas.

As the youngest child, I had a lot of hand-me-downs, but that never really bothered me. I was happy spending my days making art and playing outside in the sunshine. LA’s great weather and relaxed vibe allowed me to develop a love affair with art, nature, and philosophy early on in my life.

My mom was a talented pattern maker and seamstress and could make just about anything. I remember going fabric shopping with her as a kid to pick out what I liked, and I’d get compliments at school whenever I’d wear a dress she made me. She taught me how to sew at a young age, and I credit my appreciation of quality, textiles, and craftsmanship to her.

After getting my undergrad from UCLA, I didn’t know what I wanted to do for a career. I followed along a few different paths, including becoming a social worker and later an elementary school teacher while bartending on the side.

Eventually, I accepted that at my core, I would always be an artist and a seeker – endlessly curious and perpetually driven to create. Not wanting to be forever a cog in someone else’s machine, I started my handmade jewelry business in 2014 and have grown so much since as a brand and artist.

Can you talk to us a bit about the challenges and lessons you’ve learned along the way. Looking back would you say it’s been easy or smooth in retrospect?
As a first-generation Asian American, I was always conflicted about where I fit in and what labels I identified with. My parents were stringent and raised me with conservative Asian cultural values, but I grew up American, so our views often conflicted. Because I never felt like I fit in anywhere specific, I often shied away from too much attention. My natural inclination to avoid attention made it very difficult for me to promote my business initially.

Overall, running a business is HARD and requires a lot of time, sacrifice, and commitment. When every decision is yours to make, and you’re always on the hook, there’s never enough time to do it all. But despite the many challenges and the long hours, for me, there’s nothing quite like being your own boss and having the opportunity to try to carve out your path in life.

Alright, so let’s switch gears a bit and talk business. What should we know about your work?
In 2014, I started a handmade gemstone jewelry business under my name (Lisa Ing) and since then, my offerings have evolved to include artisan eyewear, crystal-infused products, footwear, apparel, and home goods.

I restructured and rebranded my business this year as infiniteLi to better reflect this evolution and growth. But I’m not done yet…

Throughout my life, I’ve studied painting, fashion design and construction, jewelry making, graphic design, and now I’m planting flags in where I feel art will experience a modern renaissance redux as a result of NFTs, metaverses, and play-to-earn platforms.

For 2022 and beyond, I’ll be focusing on releasing NFT collections, community-focused tokens, and a virtual boutique in the Metaverse. (Construction currently in progress.)

Who else deserves credit in your story?
My parents deserve all the credit, as I wouldn’t be here without them. I’m grateful for all they’ve sacrificed and endured to provide a better life for us here in the US.

My sister, Amy, has always been very supportive of my dreams, and she follows all my business social media accounts and shares my posts with her friends.

I’m so grateful for my friends who’ve supported my dreams and for customers and fans who’ve made purchases from me.

There are also many fellow designers and artists that I’ve befriended through online courses and communities who’ve helped me learn a lot along the way. Also, my friend and fellow jewelry designer, Michelle Watson of Mimi & Lu was a thoughtful source of knowledge and guidance when I was first starting with jewelry.

Last but not least, I’m lucky to have the most incredible, thoughtful, loving, and supportive partner. He keeps me sane and grounded, and every day with him is a reminder that life is a gift and a celebration.

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Image Credits:

Lisa Ing

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