&& Scene. (Final reflection of my Yellow Conference experience)

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It is Friday Night I am sitting on a beach.

The air is sticky and kind of gross but there is a flood of voices and the slight popping of bonfire licking the air. The waves are crashing and adding its own sound to this Friday night soundtrack.

This moment is perfect.

Every voice, every conversation, every wave, every inhaled s’more. The end scene of yellow conference 2015 looks like acoustic guitars, striped back and white blankets and lots of sand.

This moment is perfect.

It is Saturday afternoon. 

I am sitting in my friends studio while she photographs and it only seems natural that I am back in the heart of downtown LA. Home feels very strange right now, or perhaps it is more like I feel quite strange right now.

It’s almost like the day after you return home from summer camp and everything around you feels the same but you yourself are not the person you were just a few days before. You are inspired, you are filled, homesick not for places but for people who made time for a moment seem infinite. Your mind is in two, three, four different places at one time and your body is having the hardest time being still.

It is Sunday evening. 

This entire weekend I have been going, going, going without much time to sit, process everything that I experienced those two days at yellow, so here is my attempt to grasp it all and share them with you.

Takeaways from day two and the finale of conference as a whole:

ONE. Make room for grace. 

Jocelyn Hefner was one of the speakers for day two and I found that her story was centered around her search to make a name for herself, despite who she’s been associated with throughout her life. Jocelyn talked a lot about grace, about knowing when to unclench our fists a little bit and let grace in. We are so undeserving of it to be completely honest yet he pours it on us by the bucketful when we need it the most.

But on the other end of it being given to us, I am also believe that he allows us to extend a little bit to ourselves too. Extends that necessary pocket full of grace on the days we look at ourselves too harshly in the mirror and when the words spewing from our lips look more like hate mail.

Though undeserving and given regardless, grace can only be accepted if you make room for it.

Only if you make the declaration that today, today I will be sweeter to myself than I was yesterday.

TWO. Accept sorrow with open arms and swallow challenges 

Between the story of Jocelyn and another speaker Ruthie Lindsey (interior designer) both women who have encountered some extreme difficulties in their lives, it made me realize even more so that sorrow is inevitable and challenges just love to come pounding on our doors of comfort.

And when, not if but when that day comes stand there and take it like a champ.

Now sometimes a “champ” can also be laying in bed for days or crying over a carton of ben&jerrys but the part that makes a champion is the getting back up. It’s the ability to stand there and take the blow and let it hurt (and do not think that the hurt means weakness). Then you swallow the challenge (like I used to do with peas whenever my parents would give us mixed vegetables) and get back up.

Know that you are capable of getting back up, not how fast, not how well but simply that you do it.

THREE. Explore what you're passionate about and take the risks necessary to breathe life into them. 

I think sometimes creatives get lost in the beauty. We are fascinated by the flames and the shiny ball but what Yellow conference and just a handful of other experiences has taught me, is that creativity is born from the ashes, not the fire itself.

I think sometimes creatives get lost in the beauty. We are fascinated by the flames and the shiny ball but what Yellow conference and just a handful of other experiences has taught me, is that creativity is born from the ashes, not the fire itself.

Even though we might be pretty screwed up when it comes to the idea of “consistency”, this generation is revamping what “professionalism” looks like. For many reasons that attribute is a con and in other ways it is absolutely amazing. Years ago, we were only known as starving artists, as unrealistic or irrational but now, we are turning the arts and creativity into more than just superficial entertainment or side gigs, we are turning them into lifestyles. Forming thriving companies that are able to hire team memebers who can utilize their gifts and abilities instead of spilling into whatever random extracurricular outlet they can fit into their 9-5.

We have the ability to not only be told that we can be “whatever it is we want to be” but to actually do it.

The paradigm is shifting and we’re the tectonic plates.

FOUR.  Woman are going to change the world.

I believe very strongly that the most freeing moment for a woman is the moment she can take off her bra and the most powerful moment is when she has the courage to find her own voice.

I believe that the moment women realize what powerhouses we are and what that means when we gather together— shoot. Let’s jus say THIS.WORLD.IS.NOT.READY. Which is why we’ve had to fight to be able to speak, which is why for so long we have been silenced. We are told to be small, we are told to be hushed, we are told to be less. 

That ends now. that ends with this generation of women who are screaming from the top of their lungs, No. No more silence, we are too big for your cages.”


Ladies && gents, this is Joanna Waterfall, she is the creator, founder, mastermind of everything dealing with the Yellow Conference.

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At the end of the conference, I found myself completely amazed and creepily staring at her because all that we just experienced was a result of a beautiful, seemingly crazy dream that she had in her hands. The amount of compassion, quirky authenticity that this woman beholds translates into utter brilliance.

Joanna- thank you for creating a space and being the example for what it looks like, when we as women are not fighting, not comparing but are open doors for one another. Open doors that are the epitome of genuine encounters that can shatter the foundation of this very worlds existence. Thank you for believing in each of us without even knowing us directly. I am so in awe of you and what you will continue to do with this yellow world that you have created and I am honored to be a part of it. 


Yellow Conference in all its glory has completely wrecked my world in the best possible way. They have made me believe in the most wild of possibilities and allowed me to see the power in the community of women more than ever.

Tickets are on sale for next year starting December 1st and the person I now work for will be one of the speakers say what (shameless plug) and I have every intention of creating a whole yellow house to stay in with whatever beauties are wanting to be involved and I am so PUMPED.


That was a lot && it was all so good.

Don’t be surprised if these next couple of months I refer to this sweet little community a lot.

Sorry not sorry.

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Hand Written by @sheinthemaking