Thursday, May 27, 2010

Words to Live By: Weeks 47, 48, & 49

My friend Jeanine is surviving and thriving after breast cancer.

Since the beginning of Jeanine's diagnosis, she has had to learn to do something that is outside of her comfort zone -- ask for help.  Although she is cancer free, she is still undergoing treatments that occasionally leave her feeling tired and less than her normal mover-and-shaker self.

Week 47
Week 47

She is a woman who is used to doing things on her own.  But, if anything, cancer has taught her that asking for help is not a weakness.  In fact, it takes strength to reach out and be vulnerable enough to let someone help you when you are in need.  It allows her to be a better woman, a better mother, and a better friend.

Week 48
Week 48

Jeanine is asking now for your help.  Help her achieve her dream of helping families deal with the reality of breast cancer.  To learn more about her vision, visit Little Pink Houses of Hope.  Spread the word and help Jeanine help others.  We're all so very proud of her and can't wait to see achieve this dream.

Week 49
Week 49

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Artsplosure in Raleigh

Yesterday, I attended Artsplosure, an arts festival that takes place in downtown Raleigh every year.  This was the first year I got to attend, and I was definitely up for some sun and inspiration.  Moore Square and the City Market area of downtown were blocked off completely.  All one could see were tents upon tents of artists and their work.  I was like a kid in a candy store.  It was a beautiful day, but it was so hot outside.  (Hard to believe that we're still in spring.)  But I didn't let the heat get me down.  How could I with so much local art to see and explore?

Jason's Rendition of Art

Jason's artistic shot of me and Jeanine

Raleigh Acorn!

Jeanine's artistic shot of me and Jason

Although much of the work that was on display was beautiful, only two artists really grabbed my attention.

The first artist was Eddie Maier of Eddie Spaghetti Art.  When I arrived at his booth, he was giving a demonstration of how to create an ink print using organic materials like a stem of grass.  (He even let me try my hand at it!)  His work consisted of single wood block prints and the use of reduction printing.  When I reviewed his portfolio of work, I was drawn to his ability to make earthy and organic drawings.  I've always been drawn to printing and would love to try it one day.

Eddie Spaghetti Art

Eddie Spaghetti Art

The second artist I encountered was Yvonne Miller of Four Footed Art.  Her booth was filled with so much color and texture that I just had to purchase a print!  Although she primarily paints pet portraits, her other work is just as vibrant and fun.  And did I mention she was super friendly as well?  A portion of the proceeds she makes from her art goes to the Atlanta Humane Society.

Four Footed Art

Yvonne Miller's Art

Yvonne Miller's Art 2

If you have the opportunity to go, make your way down to Artsplosure.  You never know what treasures you will find and which new artists you will come to adore.


"The artist's world is limitless.  It can be found anywhere, 
far from where he lives or a few feet away.  It is always on his doorstep." 
- Paul Strand

Thursday, May 13, 2010

An Artist in the Making

My love for drawing began when I was very young.  Some of my first memories were drawing and taping my masterpieces to the walls and doors of our home.  In a way, I was creating my own gallery of work.  Just being able to create gave me joy.

But somewhere along the way, I lost the desire to create.  I grew up and allowed myself to be convinced that it was nonsensical to be an artist.  I spent four years earning a degree in education only to abandon the profession altogether.  Now that I am in a different career, I still yearn for that dream of being a working artist, but something holds me back.  Sometimes, I feel like that feeling of regret, of not originally pursuing art in college, keeps me frozen with the fear of failure.  I make small, incremental steps toward being an artist -- but what about the things I need to do that go beyond just creating art?  You know, like promoting and actually selling my art, the not-so-creative-but-necessary part of it all?  Sometimes the pressure of making it real makes me feel like a deer stuck in headlights.  I know that I need to work on a plan and clarify what my goals really are.  But where do I start?

I thought about these things when I traveled home to Swansboro last weekend to visit my sister and my mother for Mother's Day.  (Sometimes a day with the ones you love can be the best medicine for what ails you.)  While back in my hometown, I got to spend some quality time with my niece, Lennox, who will be turning two this July.  Each time I see her, she becomes more and more independent, smart, and sassy -- exactly the kind of woman I want to be.

She's a take charge kind of gal, and, guess what?  She loves to draw.

Lennox Drawing

Watching Lennox take joy in drawing makes me think back to my childhood and how I felt when I would draw.  Whatever Lennox chooses to do in life, I hope she chooses to follow her passion.  And I know that there's still time for me to do the same.

Over the course of the next few months, I will be taking steps to reassess my goals so that I can be the kind of artist that I want to be.  I'm excited about the journey and am glad that you will be a part of it.


"Why not go out on a limb?  Isn't that where the fruit is?"
- Frank Scully

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Words to Live By: Weeks 44, 45, & 46

My friend Jeanine is surviving and thriving after breast cancer.

Jeanine was asked by her doctor to be interviewed in a video project that she is spearheading with another doctor in Miami.  The video will contain interviews with breast cancer survivors and their experiences since being diagnosed.  To prepare for the interview, Jeanine read back through journal entries she kept since being diagnosed with breast cancer.  In preparing for the interview, she was able to relive moments almost forgotten and re-cherish sacred moments anew.  It will a be a year in June since she was first diagnosed... can you believe it?  We are all so proud of her and can't wait to see her film debut.

Week 44
Week 44

Jeanine and Terry also celebrated 15 years of marriage on April 22nd.  Yay!

Week 45
Week 45

Terry is still recuperating from his surgery, so, Jason, being the nice brother that he is, drove down to Burlington to help Jeanine get the pool ready for summer among other things.  And he did all that for a cheeseburger and french fries.  What a guy!

Week 46
Week 46


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