Always something to learn from Dr. Suess

Cooper's ChristmasHere I am on Christmas Day in the Aspen Valley Hospital.  My son broke his femur again.  As if the first time wasn’t enough the second time is just filled with heart break.  It happened on Monday.  I was finishing up the last strokes of my last commissions.  I had been up 1:30am for the last week finishing up painting after painting.  I was in an amazing creative zone.  That is always a little weird and exciting at the same time.  When I would come back to my new studio in the am – it was always an outer body experience to see what i produced the night before!

Monday 11:20, I had just 2 customers at my new store, I had my in-laws in to see what all my hard work had produced and to gather the troops to be with their cousins for Christmas!  All was great – i would have uninterrupted time to finish what i had to finish!  Then it came.  The call that makes you drop everything and walk out of your life.  ”Coop broke his femur again”   Grabbing my bag and locking the door behind me. I knew my phone, computer, ipad, paint brushes, store hours, and anything else that seemed to be the most important thing that ruled my life were behind that door and I was about to enter a bubble i was all too familiar with.  So here I am,  still in the hospital, making lemonade out of lemons for my son.  Making new holiday traditions with Skype and FaceTime.  And truly taking to heart the words of Dr. Suess.

And the Grinch, with his grinch-feet ice-cold in the snow,
Stood puzzling and puzzling: “How could it be so?
It came without ribbons! It came without tags!
“It came without packages, boxes or bags!”
And he puzzled three hours, `till his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before!
“Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store.
“Maybe Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!”

Merry Christmas to all!  Good-nite!

TORi

 

 

 

WHat Do You DO WHeN You DoN’T KNoW WHaT TO Do?

As a Mom, a Citizen and an Artist, I find that the world and its events affect me deeply on every emotional level.  Maybe I am just getting older of find that I want this world to be safe for my children.  Or as an artist – I try to find the best in every situation.  Some messy ones I can interpret with wit and humor, but how do you interpret violence in an optimistic way?  How can you make something so sad and disturbing -uplifting?  I really don’t have an answer- none of us do- So i just paint to see what comes out!

24x20 Oil on Panal

24×20
Oil on Panal

ReBiRTH

I have been creating my whole life. Until January, I had been struggling with my second life (my art) to keep it fresh, alive and sexy! But as of January, I have felt a ReBiRTH a new sense of excitement. What was the change? CoLLaBoRaTioN. A word I am not very good with. I was the loner who always did projects by myself. The one who was a little off in the sandbox! I was awkward an overtly nice—scared most always.

It was last fall that I stayed up too late surfing the web—when I realized that I was ready to endeavor on new project. My best and worst ideas come a little too impulsively! I was a little burned out on commission work and didn’t want my dream of using my images in merchandising applications to slip away. Now is the time, I convinced myself at midnight! I need to do it NOW! So I emailed my mentor Kelly Alford (GeNiuS!) right then and there. I did not know that that single click would change my life and make my world better.

I asked to pick her brain about SURTEX, a trade show for artists, graphic designers and surface designers, to show their portfolios for prospective licensing and partnering agreements. I knew she had attended and that made the most sense for my next move. She agreed and offered to help! Now with years of wisdom under my belt—plus four active kids, 7 dinners to cook, 8 loads of laundry, teacher conferences and more painting to do—I jumped at the chance to have someone else row the boat with me. She and her A-team are brilliant, smart and funny! It includes, Jennifer Slaughter, marketing/PR maven and humorist; as well as Brooke Serson, graphic artist techno queen! They have made me better, accountable, happier and more confident! Wow! I sound like an infomercial, but it is true. Sometimes collaboration can add structure and a path through a pile of good intentions!

Focus on what you do best and find great people who share your vision to bulldoze through minutia of the everyday to create results! Creation is me—it is my brush, my stroke. The business of art is more effective for me when I work with others! I found that one can only do the work of one—but three can do infinitely more! I always knew that “MoRe iS MoRe!”  I am soo grateful!

true collaboration!  My art – their applications !!!  I love it!!!

true collaboration! My art – their applications !!! I love it!!!

BRuSHSTRoKeS

I fortunately, or unfortunately, have always had a lot to say. Now I am told to write it down. I feel I am far better telling my stories behind a paintbrush where I can mask the bad with the cheerful, express my sarcasm with subtlety, and reveal my vitality -messy and bright and sometimes challenged – behind layers of wet paint!

rebirth