Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Monday, January 30, 2012


When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision,
then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.
Audre Lorde

This is the Year I finally Begin Art Journalling

I have wanted for so long to begin journaling in art rather than simply in words. But for some reason I could not simply begin. For me, I have an "excuse" to begin something new. And I got it. Desire and opportunity line up sometimes. a friend of mine invited me to participate in a art journal round robin.

So here are my entries for this round.  I am participating with 4 other women and our journals will travel twice to one another worldwide in the course of 2012.  So for now my heart is being put into "other people's" journals.  But it is pushing me to have one for my own.

Find more of my work CLICK HERE

Friday, January 27, 2012

You are Not alone

"But you are not alone in this, and you are not alone in this"
-Timshel, Mumford & Sons

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Artist Interview: Marsha Zimmerman

Name:  Marsha Zimmerman   
Name of Business:  paintingsbymz
Creative Influences: God’s Word and who He created us women to be
Preferred Medium of Creativity:  paint, canvas and God’s Word!

Brief Bio:
As most women wear many hats, I am a wife to a wonderful, supportive and loving husband, Chris, and mother to two beautiful and fun loving kids, Connor and Bailey as well as being an artist.  We live in North Little Rock, Arkansas and love spending time with our family, fishing, and playing together outside.     


What is one of your earliest creative memories?  

In fifth grade I decided, for some a reason I don’t remember, to draw the cover of Disney’s Beauty and the Beast.  Though not “creative,” it is at that moment that I realized that I had the ability to draw from what I saw.  My teacher even made copies for the class to color!  I was famous!!! 

How did you find your creative voice?

 A voice…that is something I have been searching for since I was a child.  To have the ability to speak up, unhindered by fear, doubt or insecurity is a treasure, a treasure the Lord is helping me to uncover bit by bit.  As my Jesus has brought me through many trials, rescued me from severe depression, preserved my life from many attempts by others to destroy it (including the ideas of suicide) and healed me completely (November 2007), He has revealed to me that I have a voice because I am His beloved and He is with me always.  He created me with a purpose and a plan and has great works for me (Ephesians 2:10).  It was this revelation that brought me from darkness into light that gave me hope and helped me to begin to accept and embrace who I am in Christ Jesus and the gifts God has given me.  Through this healing and new understanding that I am here on this earth on a mission for the Most High (Linda Slatton, Woman on a Mission), I have been able to surrender my life, that God may use me as He wills, and through this has come the revelation of my voice.  Over the last year, God has shown me how to put it onto canvas…what a journey!!! 

Did your creative habits make a smooth transition into your adult life?  What did the evolution look like?  

As a child I was always led in the direction of the medical field for that is what my dad knew and that is “where the money is.”  My gift was never encouraged, nor applauded or appreciated as far as I knew.  I did have an art teacher in high school, Ms McClain, that the Lord used to open my own eyes to the fact that I truly had a gift and also to encourage not only a pursuit in it but also in teaching art.    
“But what do you do with art?  Who would that help?” these were the questions I would always find coming at me the moment I would ever attempt to dream about the possibility of pursuing art.  I wrestled with this while in college.  I even joined the ROTC under a nursing scholarship, because I wanted to do something that mattered~ to everyone else.  But I have learned ~ the long and hard way~ after dropping out of college, and working other jobs since, that as long as you are trying to live or even function, differently than the way your Creator designed you to, you will never be at peace.  
Once you trust your Maker, that He knows your every passion, desire, need, your gifts, talents, all that stirs inside of you, that is when true peace comes, “For I will keep in perfect peace, him whose mind is steadfast because He trusts in me.” Isaiah 26:3.  This truth could never be more alive than right now, for in midst of the absolute unknown in regards to my artwork, my Jesus continues to pour out daily His love, grace, mercy and provision.  Most of the people in my world right now think I am out of my mind, staying at home and painting and only having (as far as they can SEE) my husband’s income.  And there have been times of doubt, times when I was ready to give up and just go get a “job,” but moments like those are what help to assure me even more that I am right where I am supposed to be.  God’s Word spoke to me back in September, during one of the most challenging times in the last year, “Stand firm,” “Obey God and not man (Acts 5:29).”  And over the last year, He has proven Himself over and over again as Jehovah-jireh, “The Lord will provide.” He is the Provider, and “…will supply all my needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus (Phil 4:19).” Any gift or ability we have is from God and to be used as a tool to spread the Gospel and bring glory to the Father!!!

If you had a creative hiatus, what event/circumstance brought you back to your creative lifestyle?

Seven years ago, while working in my church’s daycare…, the children’s minister asked me if I could paint some canvases for her sons’ bedroom.  Then I did some work for a friend of hers…it was one of these pieces that was seen by a local gallery, August 2010, that led to an invitation to bring in some work~ work that I did not, at that time, have.  But the call came just at the time that I was leaving my overnight job from a hospital, just at the time when I was wondering what the next step God had for me (because taking the hospital job was an absolute “God thing” as was leaving the job). But honestly, painting is something I never liked, nor wanted to do, or thought I could even do well, but with the encouragement of my husband and being led by the Holy Spirit to do so, I set out on this adventure!  God has shown me how I can use it as a tool to spread the Gospel, and that it will be “provision” for the mission He has called me to (to minister to young women that have suffered from sexual abuse, depression, suicide attempts, fear, etc.).  By December of 2010 I had my first 7 pieces completed.  I did take them to the gallery but decided against this route which then led me to ETSY!!!

Is there one particular thing that you do that ushers you into a place of worship? 

Kneeling with my face down to the floor and praising my God, my Savior, and my Helper and Comforter, the Holy Spirit.

 CLICK HERE to purchase the e-book of this Interview series for $4.99

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Geography Lesson

 Your soul knows the geography of your destiny. Your soul alone has the map of your future, therefore you can trust this indirect, oblique side of yourself. If you do, it will take you where you need to go, but more important it will teach you a kindness of rhythm in your journey.

John O’Donohue

Monday, January 23, 2012

Self Portrait

 This exercise from Inner Excavation is definitely one I am going to attempt to take on once a month

 I realize that there are HUGE blocks of time in my life where I have ZERO pictures of myself

As my little girl begins to ask me questions about when I WAS LITTLE, I realize that I am doing her a HUGE disservice by not keeping good records.

A lot of this stems from when I was 14 years old and my mother made the decision to leave my father.  She basically left Michigan for Arizona with her 4 kids and one suitcase each.  I have no photographs of myself as a child.  Then for many years after I had a reckless way about my life so of course who wants that photographed?

It wasn't until I was about 20 and had my first child that I sporadically took pictures of him. There are not many pictures of me during that time either. Honestly it isn't until I started blogging in 2008 that I began to put myself in front of the camera.

Find more of my work CLICK HERE


Share your Work

Pretty incredible. A humble and talented artist with a message that will just light up your heart...

Friday, January 20, 2012

Hang On

Hope begins in the dark, the stubborn hope that if you just
show up and try to do the right thing, the dawn will come.
You wait and watch and work: you don’t give up.
Anne Lamott

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Life in FULL Color

So after watching this, I am SERIOUSLY considering taking on a photo project...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Artist Interview: April McCay

Name: april mccay
Name of business:Spread the Word 411
Preferred Medium of Creativity: anything metal

Brief Bio: My name is April McCay and I enjoy being creative. I currently specialize in handstamped and etched copper jewelry, mostly cuffs. I wanted something creative for my business name that combined what I do with what I believe in. Thus came Spread the Word. To me this title has two meanings: one I stamp words on copper jewelry and two, I believe we should spread the Word about Jesus to others. I know Jesus created me to be creative and I want to share it with others. 

 My earliest creative memories were spent learning how to make potholders with my grandparents. It was so much fun learning on that loom to make those things. I still have several my grandpa made. Then as I got older I enjoyed drawing, writing, and photography. I have been making copper/aluminum cuffs for almost a year now. I kinda just stumbled into it and discovered a passion to write inspirational verses and quotes (whatever my heart desires). I always been better at writing down what I want to express as opposed to actually verbalizing it.  Plus as an added bonus, my husband has been creating a few pieces too!  It is fun working together.  We have been together for 19 years and I love him more each day!
From early on, God has been such an inspiration to me. In each piece I discover something new He reveals to me. He is what my life is all about. I wouldn't be where I am today without Him. It's hard not to be inspired by Him. Just look at all He has created. Even in the darkest places He has made something beautiful, we just have to see His light shine.

One thing that ushers me into a place of worship is music. I have to have some type of Christian music playing all the time. I catch glimpses of phrases in each song that is filled with so much meaning. Take for instance, Building 426's newest song (which I just have to get that cd, soon) "Where I Belong."  The chorus starts out, "take this world and give me Jesus" (you just have to hear it).  But the line that grabs my heartstrings each time is "I've got this blessed assurance holding me."  How great is that! Jesus is that blessed assurance and He's holding me.

Favorite quotes: 
(pretty much anything Mother Teresa or Corrie Ten Boom)
Corrie Ten Boom: "Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to a known God"
Mother Teresa: "Do ordinary things with extraordinary love"

 CLICK HERE to meet other inspiring creatives

 CLICK HERE to purchase the e-book of this Interview series for $4.99

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Lyrical Poets

Lyrical poets. I can't get enough of them. Here is an introduction of a few pretty fabulous ones. All for Jesus. Peek at this and then check out the YOUTUBE channel.

Monday, January 16, 2012

True Service

I slept and dreamt that life was joy.
I awoke and saw that life was service.
I acted and behold, service was joy.
Rabindranath Tagore

A Day in the Life...

It is 2012.   I feel like I need to have my creative space back online for me to explore where I am heading.  I have spent the last few years blogging about my business adventures on my blogs and as a guest on other blogs.  In 2011 I transitioned to devoting my blogging time solely to highlighting other Christian artists. But I was drawn back into tbe journey again by the Lovely Liz Lamoreux, author of the Book "Inner Excavation" and though I had completed a portion of the exercises before, I felt it was time to start again. With fresh eyes.

My mornings are filled with washing the previous day's dishes. I wash them by hand because our rental does not have a dishwasher.  Most mornings (when I am lucky) some journalling and reflection time occurs.  I just recently came back to writing in a physical journal about six months ago. I tend to do that in transition times to help me feel like I have some semblance of control of my situation.  I find that as I write I can purge the fear and open up to hope for a new day.

 I make it a point everyday to go into my "lady cave" and do a little doodling or crocheting or anything in between.  This is a therapeutic lifeline for me.

This particular "day" is during Christmas break.  At least once a day my girl and I have some sort of crafty time together.  We either work on a project or we work side by side on separate projects.  I LOVE that she enjoys this.

A new thing I tried towards the end of 2011 is zumba.  So funny that quite a few friends wanted me to try it before now but I "thought" I would be too uncoordinated.  But an investment in a Groupon when I first came to Green Mountain Falls, CO and what do you know? Another avenue that GOD has provided for me to release pent up stress.  This definitely was the catalyst for picking my word for 2012: DANCE

I am preparing eggs for tuna fish sandwiches. It is about 12:30pm.  I am recognizing as I reflect on these few pictures how FULL my life is.  The stress is definitely there. As I type this, we have been in Colorado for five months and my husband still has not been able to find a job.  We have learned to pray the Lord's prayer in a more meaningful way: Give us THIS DAY our daily bread.  And GOD has been faithful.

Find more of my work CLICK HERE


Friday, January 13, 2012


Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember,
you have within you the strength, the patience, and the
passion to reach for the stars to change the world.
Harriet Tubman

Thursday, January 12, 2012


Take chances, make mistakes. That’s how you grow. Pain nourishes your courage.
You have to fail in order to practice being brave.
Mary Tyler Moore

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Artist Interview: Stephanie Amos

Name:  Stephanie Amos
Name of Business:  MuddyPotts
Creative Influences: nature, walks, art
Preferred Medium of Creativity: clay (at the moment)

Drawing was my first love, and then I discovered many doors that lead to endless creations of the imagination. It's the process that I am drawn to, whether it’s starting with a blank canvas, a ball of clay or a sheet of wax. Each medium I work in has its own unique process, and it's those differences that make it difficult for me to choose just one to work with. I have been painting abstracts since the early 90's. It wasn't until I went back to school that I started to explore other avenues. In 1999, I studied at NYU in Florence, Italy. It was there that sculpture and photography became my main interests and I developed a greater admiration for art history.

 What is one of your earliest creative memories?

 Besides drawing circles and calling it my grocery list? I remember sculpting a horse and cowboy out of play dough in preschool.

How did you find your creative voice?

Both of my parents are creative in their own ways, so I suppose tapping into creativity happened at an early age for me. I remember drawing when I was really young and it continued until I was in high school. Years later, I decided creating art was what I wanted to do with my life.

Did your creative habits make a smooth transition into your adult life?  What did the evolution look like?

Well, not at first. When I was nineteen, I ran off to Alaska to work in the commercial fishing industry. I was gone for quite some time and going through a period of finding myself. A big turning point was when I decided to return to school and major in art. It was then that creating became a burning desire and I’ve had the passion ever since. 

 If you had a creative hiatus, what event/circumstance brought you back to your creative lifestyle?
            I would have to say it was just after I met my husband. My life was changing from what I had known to a new beginning. Like the beginning of  a new chapter, only this was the beginning of my new life. It had been almost two years since I had created anything. It was a very sad time. But then when I picked up my brushes again, my work had evolved into the new life that I had. It was amazing!  And I am so grateful to GOD for bringing us together and for my husband for all his love and support.
 How has GOD been a part of your creative process/lifestyle?

            I remember as a child that I would stare up at the colorful sky thinking about GOD and what an amazing artist HE is. I think from that moment on, I have always felt his presence while working in my creative endeavors. 

Is there a particular moment where your creativity became infused into a spiritual practice?
            I think that when you are in the zone, it has become its own spiritual practice. At least for me.

CLICK HERE to meet other AMAZING artists

 CLICK HERE to purchase the e-book of this Interview series for $4.99

Monday, January 9, 2012

A Beautiful Mind

The need to take our thoughts captive and redirect them toward the light of who GOD says we are and who HE sees we are... despite our mistakes...IMPERATIVE.

Friday, January 6, 2012


Life is pure adventure, and the sooner we realize that,
the quicker we will be able to treat life as art.
Maya Angelou

Thursday, January 5, 2012


I have a confession to make. I have never connected with SARK. I mean I knew she was out there and that she wrote books and conducted workshops and conferences that many creatives flocked to.

But December 12, 2011 I met this woman through a TED video posted on my Facebook Wall. It was the perfect time for many reasons. One of them being I was SERIOUSLY doubting all the energy and effort I put into this little seed called "My Creative Peace." So I listened... and now I pass it on to you...

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Artist Interview: Sadee Schilling

Name: Sarah D. or "Sadee" Schilling   
Name of Business:  Sadee Schilling Studio-- www.SadeeSchillingStudio.etsy.com
"A Picturebook Life" (my blog) www.aPicturebookLife.blogspot.com

Creative Influences:  I grew up "antiquing" and crafting with my family.  My Grandma is a quilter, seamstress, cross-stitcher, painter and all-around crafter.  My mom was amazing at cross-stitch as well, and also a beautiful writer.  My sister inherited the design gene--she knows, just like my mom and Grandma, how to make even an ordinary day and space so special.  I think that everything I do and everything I make comes out of the way my creative spirit is loved and nurtured by these three amazing women.

Preferred Medium of Creativity:  A mixture of drawing and painting.  Previously I made acrylic/mixed-media works on canvas.  For the past 3-4 years I have painted exclusively with watercolor, colored pencil, and pen-and-ink on beautiful, delicate papers, but I want to start experimenting with acrylic and mixed-media again soon.
Brief Bio: I grew up in Oklahoma's "Green Country" in the humid Midwest.  Sunny Colorado is the adopted "home" of my heart, and I am making a new life with my family in a town near Hamburg, Germany. I studied art, literature and education in college and earned a Bachelor's and Masters degree in English and Teaching Arts.  I have worked as a copywriter and as a teacher, but now I mother my two little girls, paint and write about art and inspiration on my blog: www.aPicturebookLife.blogspot.com.

What is one of your earliest creative memories?
As a kid I would make these tiny little books (about 2 inches square) that I would use to write and illustrate a story and then carry around in my pockets to pull out to read when I got bored.  There was a series, actually: The Adventures of Super Cat.

How did you find your creative voice?
I always was good at drawing.  My mom enrolled me in after-school classes when I was in elementary school, and I took every art class I could in high school.  I even started college as an art major, but I think the problem was that I didn't have my own creative voice.  I loved art, and I loved to create.  But I mostly did it because it was fun and I was good at it.

It wasn't until I faced some heartache and uncertainty as an adult that art became a refuge for me.  Then, a year ago, my family moved to Germany.  And as God put me in a place where I have sometimes felt more alone than ever before, I have become more dependent upon Him in my minute-by-minute life--including my artistic inspiration--and I feel like I've finally found my creative voice.  Because art has been "therapy" for me in so many ways, I want tap into that comfort I have received and create work that serves as a comfort and encouragement for others.  

Did your creative habits make a smooth transition into your adult life?  What did the evolution look like?  If you had a creative hiatus, what event/circumstance brought you back to your creative lifestyle?

As an art major at University it became a "chore" to make art even when I was uninspired and when I was covered with papers to write for my other studies, so I quit.  I had planned to attend a proper art school after I finished my "practical" teaching degree.  Six years later I had two "practical" degrees and a prestigious teaching job--and I was very unhappy.  I felt stunted and trapped.  Plus, my mom had just passed away and between grad-school, my new job and taking over for some of the clients of my mom's PR firm, I simply left myself no room to process the grief.

Following a sudden prompting in our hearts, in 2006 my husband and I dropped everything and moved to beautiful, sunny Colorado.  It was an escape of sorts.  But now I know that more than that, it was a rescue.  

The only painting I had done in years was on the walls in the house my husband and I had purchased and renovated together, only to sell it when we moved to Colorado less than two years later.  I had also made a couple of simple little canvases as gifts for friends.  My work then wasn't amazing.  I was rusty after so much time away from painting and my imagination was inhibited by stress, but somehow art began to represent freedom for me--and a new life.  So once we got to Colorado, I painted for hours everyday in the basement of our friends' house where we lived for a time before we found work.  This is when I began to call myself "artist," and I have not gone long without a paintbrush in my hand in the last five years.

How has GOD been a part of your creative process/lifestyle?  Is there a particular moment where your creativity became infused into a spiritual practice?

When my mom passed away, I dealt with the grief (or, didn't deal with it) by making myself busy busy busy, with no room to think about it.  When I had a miscarriage 3 years later, God used painting to slow me down, face the heartache and reverse the damage all that stress had caused in my health and my emotions.  Because my return to art coincided with this intense time of healing, painting is still almost always spiritual for me--painting is how I work out things in my heart, and remains a way for me to slow down and listen for His voice.  
 CLICK HERE to get to know other creatives

CLICK HERE to purchase the e-book of this Interview series for $4.99

Monday, January 2, 2012


It’s not what you look at that matters, it’s what you see.
Henry David Thoreau