Wednesday, June 30, 2010

morning mayhem

Feeling inspired. My daughter slept until close to 7 a.m. So thankful for that!!!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Lately I have been finding my thoughts scattered across the web. Courageous bloggers sharing deep insights that I myself have been having. 
I have been reading posts and feeling like YES!! This is exactly how I feel! I guess it stems from the fact that we are all connected on a deeper level. And for me reading these posts and feeling so connected to the message (not to mention the blogger)  is so amazing  and comforting. I think sometimes we feel that we are the ONLY ones going through whatever it is and in reality that couldn't be further from the truth.

Like this post from Wini at artlovejoy titled A new journey. This was so brave. Here is a small excerpt:

"But I wasn't sure if I was good enough, and felt that there were so many others out there who are much better, and maybe no one would be interested in my work and I'd be a failure. But now my dream is starting to solidify, and although the fears are still there, I feel more confident and motivated to move forward with it." -Yes, Wini I am right there with you! 

And this post  from Michele Fauss title Afraid to paint. Wow!! I really could relate to the whole thing!!
Here is a bit:
"I'm afraid to finish the paintings.  

Does that make sense?  I'm actually scared of my own art.  You see each background I do, I have a plan for.  I know exactly what I want on it for the most part, but I'm afraid to start that part of the process because I'm afraid I'll mess it up.  I seem to moving into a new direction, and I am wanting and trying to draw and paint more in my work.

....I'm feeling a lot of the things we've talked about in class too.  Mainly, who do I think I am to think others will be interested in my art? and Will I be able to make enough money to make art my career?"

 And this post from Chrissy at cul*ti*vate titled on being honest with myself. A great post about hiding her art from the world. From her post:

"my problem is, i set out to sail on this vast sea of amazingly talented
women in the world, and all of a sudden i feel as though i am a little dingy boat and everyone around me are larger than life, multi million dollar cruise liners.
i feel insignificant.  i don.t say this to get pity. so don.t give it to me.
{you guys are nice that way!}  it just is what it is."

So yes, I have been feeling:

excited: for possibility
afraid to finish: what if I mess up?, I have been doing that alot lately. Starting, liking it then doing something and cringing. I hate to waste paper, paint, canvas and time. I have told myself that maybe I am this way because in my past career as a textile/surface designer I designed on a computer and when you did make a mistake it was very easy to undo. And of course with non digital materials it isn't so. Will I ever make something I love? This has been a HUGE one for me!! I am challenging myself to finish this collage. I like it so far. I just hope I don't mess it up. :)

a little unsure: will I measure up?

 I think most would agree these are things we just feel and go through. Sort of feel the fear and do it anyway.

Thank you to those courageous artists. You have helped a ton. 

p.s. Blogger isn't cooperating today. It is a bit wonky here. Not saving any changes. Hmmm..

Saturday, June 26, 2010


So I was browsing and I came across artist Thomas Campbell and I swear I fell in love. With his work that is.  Don't you love when that happens. I get so excited and want to share.
He has many artistic talents; painting, sewing, woodwork, silk-screening, bronze casting, and doodling.

LOVE his use of color. 
LOVE the sewing. 
LOVE the texture.

So here is his site.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Art Biz Mama: Amy Ambroult

An ARTIST, a MOM, a CREATIVE BIZ OWNER. What happens when you combine all three? 

Hello and welcome to my new series called Art Biz Mama. It is a series of inspirational interviews about being a mom, an artist and a creative biz owner. I am really excited about this!

In an effort to connect, share and get to know some of my favorite artists (and I am sure they are yours too) a bit better and because I am a mama who has creative biz visions myself (maybe you too?). I have asked for a sneak peek into their very busy lives. To share a bit about just what it means to juggle these roles and how it all really plays out.

I know this is a topic that has been discussed plenty but for me (and you) I need to hear these stories. To know there are others reaching for their dreams and maybe stumbling at times, all the while caring for themselves and their family.

I believe we will glean a bit of insight from these smart and talented women that can inspire us all.



First up is Amy Ambroult. We are so lucky to have Amy. She is an awesome jewelry designer and a beautiful light in this creative world. Amy is the hands–and heart–behind AG Ambroult and Elemental. She is a mother and a metalsmith, trying to make a living through her craft, while staying at home with her 2 kids. She designs and fabricates jewelry and small metal craft in copper, silver, and gold.

First, let me say a huge “Thank You” for taking the time to answer these questions. I know how busy you are so it really means a lot to all of us that you took the time to be here today!

So glad to be here, among so many like-minded folks.

So let me start by asking when did you make the decision to start your creative business?

I left my job (as a graphic designer for a newspaper) when I had my second child. From that moment on I knew I would be making my move toward something a little more flexible, a little more creative, a little more "me." I had taken a few metalsmithing classes before and loved it so, as a way to get out of the house I signed up for another metals class. I had this amazing and inspirational teacher who didn't bat an eyelash when I started talking as if this was going to be the way I was going to make my living. Soon enough, it was.

How has having children affected your business and creativity?

Having children has affected my creativity in ways I couldn't have guessed. We have explored things I never thought I would or could with a 6 and 8 year old. And because I want to expose them to all kinds of mediums and styles, I have found myself rediscovering techniques and forms of expression I had forgotten all about . The kids are so open and receptive to it all, and they go about their art with such freedom and abandon. I try to follow their example, and to not be quite so rigid, but I definitely lack that confidence they have.

Would you please share what a “typical day” is like for you? Is there school or childcare, etc. while you are working on your biz?

A typical day goes like this: I wake early and park myself in front of the computer to get some work done. I respond to emails, send out inquiries, touch up and size photos, hang out on my etsy shop, take care of some other sites I am associated with, blog and read blogs etc....
Then I wake the girls up and get them off to school. I race home from dropping them off, in order to make hay while the sun shines. I have exactly 2 hours and 40 minutes to make as much as I can in my workshop (in my basement) until it's time to pick up my half-day kindergartner. The rest of the day is spent with her, and then her sister too, once she's out, but I do sneak peeks at my email throughout the day. Once they are in bed I either go back down to my workshop or get on the computer to do some more admin work and social networking stuff.
(but wait! this is all changing in September, when both my girls will be in all day school and I will get six hours in a row to work!)


How many hours do you give to your business each week? Are you working during the days/evenings/weekends?

I'd say I give my biz roughly 30 hours a week. This fluctuates with the seasons, and nearing the holidays that number jumps to about 60 hours a week. In the summer, when the girls are home all day with me, it's more like 15-20 hours.
And yes—days, nights, early mornings, weekends...whenever I can fit a task or two in, I do. 

I know this is a subject that is always being addressed but I need to bring up balance. Do you feel you have a healthy balance between your work life and your family life?

uh, no. The scale always seems to tip too much in one direction, and that direction changes constantly depending on the season (as mentioned above), what's going on at home, our collective health, school, sports, etc... The grass is always greener with me, it seems. Some days I pine to have more time with the kids, some days I am groveling for a few minutes in the workshop.
Somehow I don't feel  like I'm always walking around off-kilter, though. This might just be the way I function. 


Is there anything else that you would like to share with us today? Any words of wisdom for other artists/moms out there who wish to create a business out of their art?

Strive to change your definitions of "wife" "mother" and "artist" in order to make it all work for you and your family. Let go of unrealistic expectations and it will allow things fall back into place they way you need them to. If you are creative with your art, then be creative with the way you mother, the way you run your household, the way you go about being a wife....everything, including the way to run your business.

A little flexibility and humor will go a long way, too. (because when that guy places an order for a piece you have yet to fabricate, at 7pm for next day shipping, two days before Christmas,  you're gonna need it)

To learn and see more of Amy's beautiful work please visit her at:

Thank you so much Amy for an honest and inspiring look into your creative life!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Around here there has been lots of swimming, bubble blowing, swinging, bike riding and just general summer craziness. It is the last week of school so the summer fun (or craziness) should escalate soon. I haven't been creating much myself but have plans to tonight. Flying Lessons is keeping me on my toes, I have been reading a bunch on web sites, blogs, trying to set up a page on fb and sneaking back into twitter. I have been testing my scanner to see just how well it will work to scan art. I have done it in the past with some good and some bad results. Do I need a new one? Maybe. I have been playing around with Picnik a bunch and that can get really addicting.

So that is really it around here. Not so exciting I know,so sorry. I hope to be back soon with some of the playing I am going to do.


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

A short bit from my morning pages....
             Today order stretcher bars& mod podge, today sketch, today apply gesso to larger canvas (check), today look for cool papers for collage, create some with kids?, FOLLOW YOUR HEART, today declare ARTIST, today walk (check), today keep going, today say THANK YOU.

What will you do today?

Sunday, June 13, 2010

NYC part 2

 Here are some store snaps. I know, I know. Alot of pics but I couldn't help myself.

  hand carved stamps from abc carpet and home. that store is full of wonder.

 more stamps

love this store. lots of cute kitchen items.
aren't these great?
this super cool window display was made with all knitted or crocheted items. A tribute to Coney Island
love the door handles
yarn wall
need a sampling of yarn? 
LOVE these scarves. Great colors. I want one!
some small goodies I brought back
and as much as I love visiting the city I am so happy to come home to this. 

Thanks for coming along for the ride.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


this is my day to day environment.

I have relaxed tremendously since the other day when overwhelm was setting in. I absorbed ALOT and told myself not everything can be done right away.

Friday was my first trip in NYC in nearly 5 years! It was the best! I highly recommend getting out of your  normal day to day environment if you can. If you live in the city go visit the country and if you live in the country go visit a city. It shakes things up. You get inspired and clears out the cobwebs a bit if you know what I mean.

I took alot of photos and I am going to share some now and the rest another day.

more day to day views

The Flatiron building. Certainly not my day to day. So pretty. I almost walked right past but turned around for some reason and looked up.

An art exhibition titled "Inner Landscape" by artist Haixin Wang on display at Citibank.

A cute kitty on the street in front of a florist. I just loved the kitty and his personality. The color combo I thought was fantastic.

Flowers from the flower district. The best plants and flowers! I was in love.

I will leave you with a shot of the Empire State Building. One of my favorite spots! I will be back soon to share some store shots with you.

Wednesday, June 09, 2010


Do you need any strength? We are in the second week of flying lessons and I could use some strength right about now. My head is swirling with all of the info we are learning. Websites, blogs (considering a template), facebook(just made a fan page here), twitter (do you tweet?). And it is only the second week! This class really is great but I am going to need some time to digest it all. Many small steps to be taken. I know that is just the way it has to be but somehow I feel like I have to do it all. And that doesn't even include making any art. :) I am still trying to update my side bar! ha. I will get there I will!

Friday I am going into the city. NYC. It is has been close to 5 yrs. since I have been. Having 2 kids in those 5 yrs. didn't allow for such a trip. We aren't so far in miles but I like to take public transportation in and that isn't so convenient. But I am really excited to get inspired with stops at some great shops and of course just from the vibe on the street. I will come back over the weekend with some photos.

Enjoy the rest of your week!

P.S. Thank you so much to those that chose to follow again! 

Sunday, June 06, 2010

Letting go of FEAR

We are all the same. We all have fears. Some big, some small. The list is endless don't you think? Spiders, being alone, heights, failure, success, public speaking. The list goes on and on. The point is we ALL deal with some fear at some point or another. Fear can often be portrayed as something bad. Something we need to overcome. And yes, very often we do. Some of my fears I am o.k. with keeping around a bit (sorry mice, I will never feel cozy around you). Other times fear can push you and make you grow (a little one I am trying to work on, riding a bike again).

This past week in Flying Lessons we had a lesson on fear and many tools were given to help realize the fears and let them go. The above pics are me letting some really pesky fears go. The fear of not being good enough ( a huge one for many of us ), the fear of who do you think you are?, the fear that I won't be a good mom/wife if I reach for my dreams, the fear of who will really want anything I have to offer anyway?.

So I jotted them down quickly ( it was a spur of the moment decision ) and released them. It felt a bit strange and freeing at the same time.

I came away from this lesson in fear with a clearer head and heart. I am sure these feelings will pop back in but I am ready to deal with them when they do. Kelly Rae gave us many more fear busters to work with. So great!

   I have posted this before but I wanted to post this again because I find it inspiring. A true lesson in letting go.

Saturday, June 05, 2010

Cross Post

 If you are reading this well, then you found me! :)

It is a semi long story but I have decided to drop the create share inspire space and now I am now going to be posting here.  I am hoping to use for a future website and I wanted to create some cohesion which is why I switched.. If you followed before would you mind following again here? Switching caused me to lose all of my followers.

I am learning so much on this blogging journey. Don't you love the above tape and paper. Here is the link where you can download them for free! Pugly Pixel.  People are so generous with their knowledge and expertise. Thank you!!! You can really learn it all by just a simple google search.

And that is exactly what I am going to be doing for a bit. Learning how to spruce this space up a little.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!!


Wednesday, June 02, 2010


Geraniums snapped in the early morning light.

Kiddos with a really big frog!

Declarations made, it's true. Inspired by Kelly Rae to be courageous. Flying lessons just started on Sunday and let me just say calling it great wouldn't do it justice. I am REALLY loving it! I am delving into it and I will share more soon I promise.

Trying out some things on a brown bag. I put on my headphones connected to my antique walkman and painted away to Natalie Merchant.

I am feeling tempted to sign up for one of these embroidery classes offered by Susan Sorrell but I think it will have to wait until fall. I already have a full plate and I really hope I can keep up. And don't forget to sign up for Creativity Boot Camp. Starts June 6. And it is free!