Kara Haupt is the babe behind Babe Vibes, a collective of creative women. They interview babes and make publications on topics such as self-care.
How did Babe Vibes come to be?
I began Babe Vibes in mid-2014 because I wanted to create a publication/project that spoke about some of the ideas I was interested in: vulnerability, identity, self-care, and women—and experiment with loose ideas I had about making digital publications. Babe Vibes has evolved since then; now I’m trying to think of it less as a publication and more as an art and design collective. I want to be able to make a broad range of creative design work that isn’t limited to an idea of what publication is or isn’t.
How do you find the people that you feature?
They are usually rad women I admire from afar, I tend to follow them online, and then reach out to see if they are interested in collaborating with me/us/Babe Vibes.
How do you think that collaboration affects the creative process?
I think it’s a key way to create good work. I have a lot of skills and interesting perspectives, but almost all creative work is better when supplemented with another person with different skills and perspectives. The ideas and disagreements that come from collaboration almost always make the work better and more interesting—it automatically changes initial assumptions. It’s much more interesting.
We think projects like these are essential. Why do you think it is important to create projects that are specific to women?
I’m less interested in creating work that is “specific to women” and much more interested in just making work with only women. A lot of woman-specific media is created that makes limited assumptions about what women are and want (including stuff we’ve done for Babe Vibes!), so I’m now just like, “okay, here’s a rad woman, I’m just asking to her what she wants to make with me and we’ll go from there.”
What is it like to work with such inspiring women?
It’s life-giving. Only making work with women has changed my life. The hard work and creativity in process I consistently see from women is unlike anything I’ve seen from the most successful of men. Women find their power in much more interesting ways, I think because it’s not just handed to us.
Why is it important to work hard and love yourself?
Hmm, to me it’s the most fulfilling way to live my life—the working hard part. Other people have different goals for their lives and I think that’s fine, though I kind of stare at them in confusion. Ha. It’s important to love ourselves because we are worthy of love. Hating oneself is crippling. It’s boring, too.
What are some ways you personally practice self-care?
I purposely do not speak to myself with tough love. I don’t respond to it, I’m a fucking hard worker and I know if I’m exhausted or feeling lazy or sad, I have a really good reason to be. So, I try to speak to myself and set expectations for myself that balance what I know I’m capable of (infinity) and what I can do in a day (not infinity). I also try to sleep a lot and spend chill time with friends and pursue conversations and people that challenge, but don’t drain me.
What inspired you to discuss self-care?
There are lot of guilt and assumptions related to self-care that I think have to do with an assumption that self-care is selfish (and somehow that equals bad) or that self-care is an inaccessible, bourgie day at the spa. I wanted to re-orient the discussion to talk about self-care in more practical and accessible ways, and also discuss self-care in the way we talk to and about ourselves.
I wanted to re-orient the discussion to talk about self-care in more practical and accessible ways, and also discuss self-care in the way we talk to and about ourselves.
Why do you think it’s important to continue a dialogue about self-care for female creatives?
My days are pretty boring right now—I work a day job doing design work. I tend to get up a little early before I leave for work to work on Babe Vibes or freelance. Right now I’m working on Babe Vibes at night and on the weekend, and working my ass off.
What have you been working on recently?
Right now I’m working on a project inspired by the latest Beyonce album. It’s going to be a print publication and digital experience and I am so excited!
What motivates you to keep creating?
The emails I get from women and young women about Babe Vibes and the impact it’s had on them. My friend Mei. The way my heart swells when I know we’ve made something good.
What’s something you think every woman should know?
That, right now, it’s time to start.