Photos by Chase Evert of Chase Chapters
Hannah Stelter is an artist and entrepreneur based in Fargo, ND. She creates art with the intention to inspire others to embrace imperfection and celebrate self-love and body positivity. Most known for her “Scribble Ladies”—her signature portraiture style—she is now recognized as “the Scribble Lady.”
Hannah does all her work with a pen made out of glass, and in 2021, she released her own glass pen kit. That kit has since inspired her to launch an entire art supply line—her new company Scribble
Lady. This art supply and gift shop opened in November 2022 and is now located in the heart of downtown at 408 Broadway N.
Aside from her art, Hannah is an advocate for embracing oneself in more ways than just physical art. She is an aerial artist in her free time and competes in national pole-sport competitions, dabbles in sewing her own clothes, loves exploring the fashion limits, and has a deep love for traveling—she can be found on the road or in a plane quite often. She inspires others to be their authentic self, embrace their differences, and shout it proudly to the world.
Just last month, Hannah Stelter and her team moved their Scribble Lady shop to Unglued’s old location on Broadway, when Unglued moved their store into Brewhalla. They’ve completely revamped the space to fit the business’s personality and plan to continue to make the store their own. Visit Scribble Lady’s new location downtown at 408 Broadway!
Hannah’s Favorite Annual Events & Activities
To take part in around Fargo-Moorhead
The I F*@%ING LOVE MYSELF Event
“Of course, my first favorite annual event is my own event. This is a self-love celebration that I host every April in honor of my ‘art birthday.’ Since my message as an artist is self-love, and April is when I officially made the leap to pursue sharing my message full-time, throwing a massive self-love birthday party seemed like the perfect thing to do. Every year, the event has a boudoir photographer doing empowering photo sessions in a private room, self-love activities such as a paint-your-own-affirmation station, mystery performances about knowing your worth and loving yourself, a red carpet, dancing, and so much more.”
The Unglued Craft Fest
“This event, which takes place in March, is special to me because the first year that I was a vendor at this show, I made enough money to have the confidence to pursue art full-time, and the day after the show finished, I quit my job. Besides that, I have always enjoyed attending this event and seeing all the cool things local artists have for sale. It’s the perfect place to buy gifts or to treat yourself to some unique pieces. They also have workshops and DJs; the whole event is just so incredible.”
The Zero Gravity POLEtergeist Halloween Showcase at the Windbreak
“I guarantee this is like nothing you’ve ever been to at the Windbreak. It’s hosted by my aerial art gym Zero Gravity Alternative Fitness every October. There are 10-15 performers on a variety of apparatuses from Pole, Lollipop, Lyra, and Silks, and also there have also been belly dancing, twerking, and hula hooping performances. I personally perform in this show with so many other talented aerialists in the area and it’s always so incredible to see the talent. From zombies to cowboys to magicians, the Halloween showcase has the most fun-themed performances. They also host a spring showcase in April with themes like Outer Space, 80s Extravaganza, Enchanted, etc.”
“Hosted by Folkways every November, this is such a fun magical weekend inspired by the European holiday markets. I have sold my art at this in the past, but I also LOVE attending with my friends, watching the performances, roasting marshmallows under the snow falling, and just soaking up all the holiday vibes. Folkways also hosts monthly Night Bazaars downtown that are like a mini summer version of this that I also 10/10 recommend.”
Unglued Summer Camp
“This adult summer camp is hosted by the local business Unglued, but it takes place at the YMCA’s Camp Cormorant. If you like art, crafts, making things for fun, and trying new hobbies, you need to attend. It is held during the last weekend of August and the first weekend of September. Get ready for the adult version of your nostalgic summer camp memories, and if you never attended camp as a kid, there is no better time than now to start.”
“We CANNOT forget about FM Pride in August! From the parade to Pride in the Park to the block party, FM Pride is definitely something to look forward to every year (and rumor has it that Scribble Lady and I are planning some totally awesome pride events as well).”
HANNAH’S Entertainment Recommendations
1. Scribble Nights with Scribble Lady
“I used to go to weekly live figure-drawing events when I lived in Berlin and I found them to be my favorite part of the week, so I am super pumped to be bringing them to Fargo! Our first event was May 18th at Marge’s Bar and our model wore/posed for a space theme! Bring your own art supplies and come hang out and practice drawing with me!”
2. Start-Up Brew
“This weekly Wednesday morning event is hosted by Emerging Prairie and is such a fun and inspiring way to start the day, and there is free coffee! It’s such an amazing networking opportunity and a cool way to see what kind of inspiring entrepreneurs Fargo has.”
One of our other trendsetters in this issue, Jenny Sheets, is the Director of Startup programs at Emerging Prairie and is heavily involved in StartupBREW. Read more about Jenny on page 82!
3. Creative Mornings
“This is a monthly event, similar to StartupBREW but more focused on creatives. I just recently heard about it and will be a regular attendee for sure. It is hosted at the Jasper Hotel, and there is free coffee and free breakfast snacks!”
After taking some time away during COVID, Creative Mornings are back in 2023! The event always takes place on a Friday, and registration opens the Monday before the event. Keep up to date on upcoming speakers at creativemornings.com/cities/far
4. Downtown Markets
“Both the Red River Market and Night Bazaar are hosted at Broadway Square downtown and are a must for me in the summer. A free activity to get out of the house, see some cool performances, and, yes, maybe buy a few things if you want. Supporting local and just having a fun evening— what’s not to love?”
5. Clay Your Way
“Clay Your Way is one of my favorite activities to do when the weather isn’t so nice but you want to get out. They have a huge selection of premade ceramics and you get to paint them however you like. They will then fire them and send you a message when your art is ready to pick up! I will literally go here alone it’s so fun.”
Hannah’s Favorite Bars and Restaurants
1. Marge’s Bar
“Marge’s Bar is my number one favorite bar in Fargo. First of all, it’s underground in Robert’s Alley, hidden down by the Boiler Room, which in general just feels fun. The vibes in there are immaculate, with unique decorations, a cozy seating area, and an intimate feel. This bar is my favorite place to go for a fancy cocktail and a great conversation with friends. I end up here for most celebratory occasions because it’s not usually too packed or too loud, but the energy is amazing. And they have great cocktails.”
2. Front Street Taproom
“Front Street Taproom is another downtown gem that is close to home. I used to live right by there and would frequent it on many occasions. They host open mic nights, DJs, and trivia on a regular basis, and also have an underground comedy cellar. Also, they have a cute little upstairs mezzanine which is perfect for an afternoon tap and workspace during the day, and in the evening bodes well for conversation. They even have a kind of hidden patio in the back alley which is gorgeous in the summer.”
3. Harold’s Bar On Main
“Harold’s on Main is another gem of a bar located in Moorhead. With their huge patio, this is one of my favorite places for a drink in the summertime (and they also host karaoke). The décor is gorgeous, even down to the bathroom details.”
4. Thai Orchid
“Thai Orchid in Moorhead is by far my favorite Thai place. It’s always so calm inside, which makes it the perfect spot for dinner. Can you tell I am not big on places that are overwhelmingly loud? If I am being honest, I most frequently order pickup and enjoy their food from the comfort of my couch after a long day’s work.”
5. Cellar 624
“This new venue is also kind of hidden and happens to be right next to my art studio. In the basement of the Delendricies building, this venue hosts so many events like wine tastings and Wine and Paint classes that I teach. They also hosted the first annual ‘I F*@%ING LOVE MYSELF’ event. They have a whole wall displaying some of my larger Scribble Lady Portraits, too. On Wine Wednesdays, they have a happy hour that is open to the public with different featured wines every week, and they have delicious cheese plates to compliment them as well.”
Hannah’s Top Tools for Aspiring Artists
“There are no must-have items to create art. You can use what you have if you are low on budget, and sometimes that can make the work even cooler. Paint with coffee. Get free partially used house paint at the hazardous waste facility. Use your phone camera for photography until you can upgrade. That being said, here are some of my personal favorite tools as an artist.”
- My Sketchbook
- My glass dip pen – it is 100% the most therapeutic art supply I have ever used and allows me to sit and draw for hours.
- Watercolor paints – I love that they are portable and easy to travel with.
- A squeeze bottle – for applying paint
- Paint markers – they are easy to use, and way less messy than paint with a similar effect.
“And because being an artist also means you are a business owner, my other favorite tools are:”
- Quickbooks – to keep my finances straight.
- My accountant – because we are artists, we don’t need to be stressing over numbers.
- A mini microphone – for my phone so my video voiceovers sound crisp.
- Profit First this book is my holy grail for money management as an artist.
- My phone to document my process, share photos, and social media.
- Shopify my website platform.
- YouTube there is no better place to learn for absolutely free.
“As a writer, I second this idea. Traveling can be inspiring for all kinds of creative endeavors!– Sam Kise, Editor
Hannah’s Creative Inspiration Tips & Tricks
“Looking for inspiration? Here are some things I like to do to get inspired.”
1. Draw Your Surroundings
“Sit at a coffee shop and draw my surroundings, people, etc.”
“Whether it’s a short road trip or an overseas flight, taking a trip is one of my favorite ways to get inspired. I always find myself renewed with ideas upon returning.”
3. Be Active
“From Yuj Yoga to Zero Gravity, I find inspiration in the beautiful shapes of yoga and aerial arts that I love to work into my pieces.”
4. Go To Events
“Go to events like the night bazaar, art syndicate events, and crafting events with Unglued.”
5. Go To Art Meet-Ups
“I get together with my art friends frequently to talk about art, the art business, and so much more. We inspire and bounce ideas off each other and I always leave with fresh ideas.”
“Since Fargo is a smaller city, it can sometimes feel like there isn’t enough going on, or there are more or cooler things to do in a bigger city. My advice? If there is something you wish Fargo had, find a way to start it or make it happen! There is a really good chance others will be just as excited as you!”
Hannah’s Local Artists Recommendations
1. Kary Janousek
Photography at Old School Collodion
“Does very beautiful tintype portraiture using an authentic process and the coolest old camera? She has walk-in days every once in a while, so pop in and get your vintage dream photo taken!”
2. Elizabeth Moore
E. Moore Art Studio
“One of my art besties. She does amazing digital fan art full-time and even has a store at E. Moore Art Studio. She works in the convention space and has been killing it since I met her.
3. Chase Evert
Chase Chapters LLC
“Chase is another of my art besties and is a photographer. He focuses on cowboy/Midwestern photography and it is so stunning.”
4. Ashley Strachan
Beyond Love & Light Work
“Ashley makes adorable polymer clay earrings and I’m totally obsessed. I sell her earrings in Scribble Lady and she just released her PRIDE collection. She also makes boob earrings and they are literally incredible.”
5. Christina Lang
See Land Design
“Christina is a quilling artist and illustrator. Her work is intricate and beautiful and I absolutely adore the piece of hers that I have.”