“Experimentation is what I thrive on,” says artist and designer Holly M. Clifton. “Sometimes throwing spaghetti at the wall makes a big, fat mess, but sometimes you end up with a lovely composition.”
Last year she launched OGHMC, a shop for her limited-edition enamel pins. With the help of the Kickstarter community, she’s created designs in the likeness of popular scientist Neil DeGrasse-Tyson, as well as a cheeky clean energy pin.
“With all the unrest going on in the world, [I decided] I should keep using my [design] skills to bring attention to these important causes,” she said.
Inspired by the 2017 news story about Senator Elizabeth Warren’s refusal to stop reading a letter written by Mrs. Coretta Scott King — even after being cut short on the Senate floor — Clifton created the “She Persisted” pin. Clifton called the phrase “a battle cry for women who have, through the ages, persisted against the patriarchy and what we now know as ‘toxic masculinity’ to rise above, to be free to live the lives we deem fit for ourselves.”
With this pin, and the others she makes, Clifton hopes to provide a way for people to wear the issues they care about most on their sleeves — literally.
Like Warren, Clifton’s not one to back down easily. “I got to this place in my life by being told ‘no’ hundreds, maybe even thousands, of times,” she says. “Then one day — after reading The Art of Happiness more than a few times — I woke up and decided I was going to live my life the way I wanted.”