OSUIT staff member nurtures creative spirit through her small business

OSUIT staff member nurtures creative spirit through her small business

OSUIT staff member nurtures creative spirit through her small business

Patricia McDonald, OSU Institute of Technology staff, has many talents outside of her everyday job on campus. Although she carries the title of executive administrative assistant in the Office of Academic Affairs, McDonald holds many titles, including the owner of a small business.

She is self-described as a child of the Universe, daughter, sister, mom, Meemaw, friend, initiated priestess, creative soul, diva and life-long learner.

Originally from North Carolina, McDonald has called Okmulgee home for 18 months.

“It has truly become home to me,” she said. “I’ve created a life that I enjoy and a community I feel deeply connected to.”

Life events set McDonald out on a five-month expedition with God, where she embraced freedom and her creative, entrepreneurial spirit. She explored the outer banks of North Carolina and the rolling hills of Oklahoma while focusing on personal healing and her new venture into Art Consulting.

In 2019 she launched her business AyoDara+Co. The name is derived from a beautiful combination of what is important to her and where she draws her inspiration. These inspirations include her Yoruba Lukumí faith and influential people in her life.

“As far back as I can remember, my creative spirit kept me drawing, coloring, writing, reciting poetry, painting, reading, singing at the top of my voice in church or making a Papier-mâché of Strawberry Shortcake & her friends in the 6th grade.”

AyoDara+Co.’s mission is to bring joy through art and creativity of handcrafted notecards, stationery and invitations, mixed media art and all things created with paper.

Growing up, art class was her favorite class of the day, and paper has always been her preferred material. McDonald credits this to a lesson in faith that her father, a preacher, would use to demonstrate his testimony using a single sheet of paper.

She believes her talents and gifts were given to her to share with the world, and her beautiful, handmade pieces are just one example of how she does this. As a life-long learner, McDonald recently began sewing, crocheting, and photographing and has plans to expand into interior designing. She is also pursuing a Bachelor of Technology in Applied Technical Leadership at OSUIT.

She will be displaying her art in the upcoming Spring Fling Craft Fair on March 12, 2022, at Okmulgee High School in the Brock Gym.

Her signature cards with lined envelopes, journals, paper purses and decorative boxes will be available at the craft fair. McDonald’s art can be viewed prior to the event at ayodara.com, where you can also learn more about her background and shop online.

“I am continuing to create the life of my dreams, walk the path of self-mastery, question everything and explore with curiosity so I can live as I have imagined.”