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Wednesday, March 16, 2011
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I first found out about this week’s co-host after Taryn sent me an article about her in an article by Lyndsay Cayetana Bouchal on NJHerald.com, called, “Every Day’s an Adventure for Layton Woman” and thought she would be perfect for Creative Mojo.
Photo by Kelly Hill/New Jersey Herald
Waitressing at Everything Homemade, a cafe in Olde Lafayette Village, is one of Kim Brook’s new adventures. The Layton woman has pledged to do something new every day for one year. Above, Brook takes the breakfast order of Lori and John Scalers, of Sparta.
LAYTON — Bucket list: Base jump, hike Machu Picchu, backpack Southeast Asia, travel somewhere new, step outside my comfort zone. Try something different.
Most people’s bucket list is something they put off until they can make time for it, or muster enough courage to leap off of that building. But for 43-year-old Kim Brook, it’s all happening now as part of her pledge to do something new every day for one year.
“I decided to do it because I was in a transitional part of my life and because (the idea) was interesting, something different,” Brook said. “It was an adventure I wanted to try and it was also something I could do. I didn’t have to be a celebrity or rich to try it.”
The Layton resident said she was inspired by a woman she met over the summer, who had succeeded in trying something different each day for one year. Intrigued by the mission, Brook was determined to follow the same path. Two weeks later, she made the commitment.
On her birthday, Aug. 27, 2010, Brook embarked on her “Rosemary Year” in honor of her muse, Rosemary Corbin. On the first day, Brook dined at a new restaurant, attended art gallery open houses and competed against an 8-year-old in a hula hoop contest and lost.
On a smaller scale, Brook has challenged herself with non-fiction books, tested her taste buds with new foods and eateries or simply acknowledged that she was sporting a new skirt.
“If you were to try something new (that’s difficult or expensive to do) it would be too much of a chore to think of something on a grand level every day,” Brook said. “My goal was to keep it simple, keep it manageable and something that everybody could do. That’s what keeps it exciting, too.”
Because “money is always a factor”, Brook said she has a new appreciation for simplicity, has learned ways to be creative and budget for her larger projects.
Brook recently celebrated hitting the six-month mark of her Rosemary Year by participating in a charity polar bear plunge in Lake Mohawk at the end of February. She said it was one of the more outrageous things she’s done since she began her quest. That, and cooking a new stuffing on Thanksgiving, a very risky move, she insisted.
Tom Caines, a life coach from Stillwater, said trying new things is “absolutely beneficial.”
“If I change … I will see the world (and) myself differently, not better, but differently,” Caines said. “And that different perspective helps people grow.”
Tom Caines’ wife, Claire, a psychotherapist, agreed with her husband and the pursuit of trying new things.
“Even doing something as little as buttoning your shirt from the bottom up … can change your neuropathways, so you’re not stuck in a rut doing the same things,” Claire Caines said.
Brook said some of the larger goals she’s accomplished include taking a trip to Boston with her nephew, booking a four-day trip to New Orleans during Mardi Gras and getting a part-time job at Everything Homemade, a cafe in Olde Lafayette Village.
“My sister and I were going to a belly-dancing class as part of doing something new, but it was canceled, so we decided to eat (at Everything Homemade), somewhere I’d never eaten before.”
When her sister suggested that she work at the cafe, Brook jumped at the suggestion. She now works there part-time and part-time at the Sandyston-Walpack School as a cafeteria assistant.
While the overall experience has been positive, Brook confesses that trying some new things have been flops, like choosing the wrong dinner or old movie.
Brook keeps a daily log of her ventures by documenting them on Facebook, which she said keeps her motivated. “It doesn’t let you slack off,” she said.
Her Facebook posts list her first-ever karate class and learning to count to three in Japanese as among her daily new accomplishments.
Brook is most excited to try “the things that take me up in the air: Skydiving, riding in a glider plane, going on a plane to travel, going in a hot air balloon and parasailing.”
Giving a ceramics demonstration to high school students was one of the most rewarding and challenging things Brook has tackled in her initiative.
“It’s something I did beyond what I thought I could do and it was something of mine that I was sharing,” she said. “It was like paying it forward and that was really special.”
Brook was a ceramics major at the University of Kansas and she continues work on her craft today. Brook said a friend, a high school art teacher, had constantly approached her to teach a pottery class, but Brook always declined. However, when Brook pledged to step outside the ordinary, she said “yes.”
“When everything becomes standard — eating oatmeal every morning — it’s like Groundhog Day,” Tom Caines said. “This woman is going to wake up with the goal and the inspiration to do something different every day and that is going to change her tremendously. It will be transformative.”
Brook said she’s surprised that her journey has gone by so fast and has impacted her so immensely.
“When I first started, I thought it would change my life, maybe, but, as it progressed, it hasn’t changed my life as much as it’s changed my attitude,” Brook said.
Now, Brook tries more things she never would have in the past. She is more accepting of new ideas.
“I’m more aware that every day really is an event. I think that was the greatest impact,” she said.
CREATIVE MOJO WITH MARK LIPINSKI
is sponsored by
Now meet my guests!
Meet Artist and Author
and KING of the Pop-Up Book
Here’s a little about Ray:
Ray Marshall began his paper-engineering career in his native England in 1979. Coercing friend and illustrator friend Korky Paul into working on their first pop-up book they embarked upon The Crocodile and The Dumpertruck: A Reptilian Guide To London. At breakneck speed they ended up at the 1979 Frankfurt Book Fair with literary agent Sheri Safran. By the end of the book fair Sheri had sold the rights for Crocodile to publishers around the world and went on to form Sadie Fields Productions. Deciding this was the right direction, Ray quit his job as an art director with Avon Cosmetics (that’s right, Avon) and left the glamor world to work at home designing pop-up books.
Ray and Korky collaborated on several other books after the publication of Crocodile including Action Cats, Doors, Nursery Pops and Math Pops.
In 1985 Ray won England’s Smarties Prize for Children’s Books Award for Watch It Work: The Car, the first in a series of interactive books, followed by Watch It Work: The Train, and Watch It Work: The Plane.
Between 1980 and 1990 Ray designed 24 interactive books for children. For a complete list of books from that period please see “Published Work.”
In 1986 Ray followed his true love to San Francisco and opened a company called Paper Creations specializing in pop-ups for advertising.
In 1991, distracted by the arrival of the Macintosh computer (thank you Apple!) Ray formed Ray Marshall Design and took a “brief 20 year break” from pop-ups to focus on graphic design.
Encouraged by his family to design another pop-up book, Ray set to work on The Castaway Pirates. The Castaway Pirates, published by Chronicle Books in 2008, is his twenty-fifth book, and the first one he has written.
Ray lives with his wife (same love) and their two daughters in the San Francisco Bay Area.
This is one of my favorite pop-up books by Ray and some examples of his pop-up work:
BUT that ain’t all . . . (here are more examples of Ray’s work)
To check out Ray’s website CLICK HERE
WHAT’S HOLDING YOU BACK?!?
Do you suffer from Creative Anxiety?
In his decades as a psychotherapist and creativity coach, Eric Maisel has found a common thread behind what often gets labeled “writer’s block,” “procrastination,” or “stage fright.” It’s the particular anxiety that, paradoxically, keeps creators from doing, completing, or sharing the work they are driven toward. This “creative anxiety” can take the form of avoiding the work, declaring it not good enough, or failing to market it — and it can cripple creators for decades, even lifetimes. But Maisel has learned what sets successful creators apart. He shares these strategies here, including artist-specific stress management; how to work despite bruised egos, day jobs, and other inevitable frustrations; and what not to do to deal with anxiety. Implementing these 24 lessons replaces the pain of not creating with the profound rewards of free artistic self-expression.
Dr. Eric Maisel is an author, family therapist and cultural observer and is widely regarded as America’s foremost creativity coach. His more than 30 books include Coaching the Artist Within, Creativity for Life, Creative Recovery, Fearless Creating and The Atheist’s Way. Dr. Maisel has written on a wide variety of subjects, from handling toxic criticism and performance anxiety to living the writing life in Paris and San Francisco, and his special interests are the classical existential themes of making meaning and taking personal responsibility. Dr. Maisel trains creativity coaches and meaning coaches, provides core trainings for the Creativity Coaching Association, and works with individual clients on issues of creativity and meaning.
Dr. Maisel holds degrees in philosophy (B.S.), psychology (B.A.), creative writing (M.A.), counseling (M.S.), and counseling psychology (PhD). He is a California licensed marriage and family therapist, hosts two shows on the Personal Life Media Network, and writes a monthly “Coaching the Artist Within” column for Art Calendar Magazine. He lectures and provides workshops nationally and internationally at venues like the Design Your Creative Life Conference in London, the New Shoes Creativity Day Conference in Antwerp, and the Paris Writers Workshop.
Dr. Maisel has presented on creativity issues and creativity coaching at venues like the American Psychological Association annual conference, the Romance Writers of America annual conference, the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, the American Conservatory Theater, the Writer’s Digest Writers Conference, the North Carolina School of the Arts, the Savannah College of Arts and Crafts, and many more. He has given the keynote address at the Arizona State University Arts & Letters Faculty Convocation, the Oklahoma Writers Federation Annual Conference, the Win-Win Writers Conference, the 25th Annual International Lettering Arts Conference, the Jack London Writers Conference, the 2005 Indiana Community Arts Conference, and many other venues.
Dr. Maisel, who was born in the Bronx, raised in Brooklyn, and attended Stuyvesant High School in Manhattan, now resides east of San Francisco in Walnut Creek, California. He has served as adjunct faculty at St. Mary’s College (Moraga, California) and founded and wrote Callboard Magazine’s “Staying Sane in the Theater” column.
To check out Eric Maisel’s website CLICK HERE
To purchase Eric Maisel’s book, Mastering Creative Anxiety, CLICK HERE
Here’s a little Eric Maisel video I found on YouTube:
I’ve been waiting for this interview!
BECAUSE I LOVE MARY KERR!
Here’s a little Mary Kerr video I found on YouTube:
THERE’S SOMETHING ABOUT MARY:
Mary Kerr is an American Quilt Society certified appraiser and a long time quilter. She grew up in a family of quilters and has been teaching since 1987. She currently lectures and conduct workshops that focus on quilt history and the preservation of antique textiles.
In addition, she is the owner of Pieced of Olde, a small business that specializes in restoration and repair of antique textiles. She and her husband Ralph currently live outside of Washington DC with their three wonderful children and two small dogs.
Mary is an active member of the Professional Appraisers Association for Quilters Textiles (PAAQT), the American Quilt Study Group (AQSG), American Quilters Society, Cabin Branch Quilters, Quilters Unlimited, Mason Dixon QPN, the Virginia Quilt Consortium, the Quilt Professionals Network, MMS, and several quilt dating groups in my area. Mary is currently working with the DAR museum and conducting private research.
Here’s Mary’s latest book!
What would happen if sets of vintage quilt blocks were divided among a group of artists, and each was left to create new quilts from them in her own style? In answer, this book presents 117 quilts made from six sets of vintage blocks by 19 talented quilters. Be inspired to create your own quilt block challenge using the tips and guidelines provided.
To purchase Mary’s book, A Quilt Block Challenge Vintage Revisited, CLICK HERE
The Woman of 1000 EVERYTHING!
Sandra Salamony is an art director, writer, and artist living in Traverse City, Michigan. After studying graphic design at Massachusetts College of Art and New England School of Art & Design, she became the Publication Director at New England Conservatory, and then Creative Director for Sky Publishing (now New Track Media).
She is currently a freelance graphic designer and art director specializing in book and magazine design, and she occasionally writes books on popular topics in crafting. Her design work has won CASE and Folio awards, and her artwork and fine craft design have been featured in galleries, books, magazines, and on television.
As an artist, she mainly works in encaustics incorporating her photography. Her piece “Plan B” won first place in the All State / All Media juried exhibition held by the artcenter Traverse City in 2008. Other pieces have been featured in juried exhibitions around the country.
Asteroid 12780 was named in her honor for her work in bringing the science and hobby to the general public.
She also plays the banjo [insert banjo joke here].
Take a look at some of Sandra’s books:
A visual catalog for jewelry, bead artists and crafters who will relish the opportunity to have so many ideas at their fingertips to inspire their own projects
A showcase of stunning jewelry bits and pieces, “bling” and embellishments, this collection is made to feed the creative appetites of crafters and jewelry makers everywhere. The book offers color, sparkle, texture, dimension, and clever, creative use of materials. One piece of jewelry might have several points of interest to be highlighted: an antique clasp, textured lampwork beads, and intricate knots.
This stunning gallery-style volume includes some of the finest examples of contemporary textiles and fiber art being made today. The collection includes wearable art and couture, fashion accessories, soft furnishings and vessels, tapestries, display art, and quilts. A wide variety of techniques are featured, including hand and machine embroidery, decorative stitching, batik, dyeing, fabric painting, appliqué, felt, weaving, and all types of surface decoration. Full-color photography features both full views as well as close-ups that will allow readers to appreciate the finer details of many works.
A sugar-coated feast for the eyes and the imagination—this exciting 1,000 collection presents glorious full-color photographs of beautiful, outrageous, and deliciously decorated desserts, from extravagant wedding and birthday cakes to cupcakes and cookies that are miniature works of art.
Like all of the books in our 1,000 series, this is not an instructional book, rather, it is a visual showcase designed to provide endless inspiration for anyone who loves decorative baking and entertaining.
To check out Sandra’s website CLICK HERE
I just received the most remarkable book . . .
and I couldn’t wait to book the authour, Janice Vaine!
Master teacher Janice Vaine fashions a needlework garden book filled with exquisite, floral-themed blocks to instruct and inspire today s needle artists. Full-color photos, step-by-step instructions and accurate illustrations show how to create needleart flowers that will bloom for years to come. Over 100 6 in. and 8 in. applique blocks, 16 medallion block, embellished corner swag, 6 Needleturn appliquÃ© techniques, 62 Embroidery stitches, 20 Ribbonwork techniques, 8 Stumpwork techniques, 10 Fabric manipulation techniques. Book includes supply resources, suggested reading and index.
To purchase Jan’s simply fabulous new book, The Art of Elegant Hand Emroidery, Embellishment and Applique, CLICK HERE
To visit Jan’s website, CLICK HERE
Meet teacher, artist & author
Janice Vaine—seamstress, quilter, appliqué enthusiast, pattern designer, and teacher—enjoys sharing her love of needlearts with her students. Her teaching credentials include the past 5 years at The Elly Sienkiewicz Applique Academy, the International Quilt Festival, Texas quilt guilds, and quilt and sewing shops for over 20 years.
Jan finds joy studying the methods used by needle artists of antique quilts and vintage embroidery and how they interpreted their designs with elements of embroidery, stumpwork and ribbonwork. The exquisite handwork of treasured vintage pieces is the inspiration for her fresh new designs.
Here are a few of Janice’s patterns: