A floral “jack-of-all-trades” for the past 20 years, Lisa Belisle,AIFD, CF, owner of Flora Elements Education and Design in Delafield, Wis., has worked in every aspect of the floral industry from management to wholesale flower sales, exporting New Zealand-grown flowers, coordinating shipping, and owning her own small business. With a strong passion for fundamental education at the beginner’s level, her tireless efforts to adapt to her student’s needs has allowed Lisa to prepare them for the challenges of the floral industry. Emphasizing learning the technical skills of the floral trade, she focuses on community floral classes and “floral therapy.” weaving in the art of storytelling into floral design.

What are your sources for creative inspiration? What renews and rejuvenates your creative spirit?

As a teacher, creative sources are unlimited to me. I look at everything as accessible. I imagine what I would do with certain items when I have the time to work on a larger project. Sparks of creativity ignite in me when I see what European designers are teaching. I like to interpret their designs with what I have available on the smallest of budgets. This way, I have a teaching tool to show any designer how to create gorgeous pieces quickly.
Something that completely renews my creative spirit is being outside and just reconnecting with Mother Nature. If I’m feeling really stressed or overwhelmed, I channel this energy into creating an armature. I love coming up with new armatures that help me work out my inner turmoil and headaches. Now that you know my secrets, when you see my studio, you will immediately know I suffer from chronic migraines!

Where do you look for inspiration outside of nature and the floral industry? What sources inspire you?

My creative inspiration starts with what, to others, may seem mundane or boring. I love going to Target, IKEA or online stores like Amazon and buying inexpensive items that I can use in a completely different way. Recently, I have purchased rubber bands, cork place mats, heavy duty box tops, nesting bowls and yarn. It has become a joke about how much I love my yarn, and if a new project doesn’t include yarn, my students wonder what I have come up with now!
I also look to architecture for inspiration. I love the lines, curves and how the architects of today are so bold with shapes. This, in turn, pushes me into a creative space to think past the contemporary and how I can extend lines, use negative space and techniques. If I’m truly in a dead space and searching for that creative pulse, I open Instagram or Facebook and just type in “architect” and look at someone else’s work. This begins a creative flow that, in turn, inspires me to dream up a piece that I would make for that home or business.