Listen! Creative Mojo, June 8, 2011

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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

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my co-host

Children’s Book Author


About Loren . . .

A life-long animal lover, Loren Spiotta-DiMare has been writing about her favorite subject for over 30 years.  She’s had four adult books published, Macaws, Siamese Cats, The Sporting Spaniel Handbook, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel and Beyond The Finish Line:  Stories of Ex-Race Horses  as well as eight picture books for children including:  Hannah’s House Rabbit, Madeline’s Miracle, Rockwell:  A Boy And His Dog, Chelsea & The New Puppy, Daniel, Dog Camp Champ!  Norman To The Rescue and Caesar:  On Deaf Ears. 

 Recognized by the Dog Writers Association of America, Humane Society of the United States, Doris Day Animal Foundation and New Jersey Press Women, the author’s work been published both nationally and internationally.

A resident of Hunterdon County, New Jersey, Loren and her husband, Lou share their home with  several dogs and pet birds.   Loren’s equine companion lives nearby.

Just a few of Loren’s published books . . . .

CLICK HERE to buy Loren’s books on

CLICK HERE to visit Loren’s website, Loren’s Reading Room.

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Steampunk is a burgeoning counter-cultural movement; a genre, community, and artform. The Steampunk movement seeks to recapture the spirit of invention, adventure, and craftsmanship reminiscent of early-nineteenth century industrialization, in part, to restore a sense of wonder to a technology-jaded world.


Artist, Author, TV Personality


About Dr. Grymm (AKA Joey Marsocci) . . .

Proprietor of Dr. Grymm Laboratories
Lead Designer, Curator, & Steampunk Scientist

Dr. Grymm’s alter ego, Joey Marsocci has been a freelance designer of theme park attractions, toys, puppets, graphic marketing, film props, and private consignments for over 18 years. A graduate of California Institute of the Arts with a BFA in Film and Animation, Marsocci’s mix of Victorian elegance and dark science fiction styling through sculpture and design, gave him the natural advantage to design for the growing popularity of the world of Steampunk.

Dr. Grymm Laboratories currently provides custom mechanical props and contraptions, as well as conceptual production design for film, television and theater companies across the US. Dr. Grymm’s devices and sculptures have been seen in Steampunk exhibits and publications around the world, including the Steampunk Exhibit held at the Oxford University History of Science Museum in 2010.

In the Summer of 2009 Mr. Marsocci hosted and curated the first annual Steampunk Bizarre in Middletown, CT, which was an exhibit featuring the works of Dr. Grymm and some amazing local Steampunk artists. The show featured two of Dr. Grymm’s interactive “Brain Storm” Machines, and his world famous Steampunk “Eye Pod” Victrola which is currently on display along with several custom designed Steampunk contraptions as a permanent art installation at the Cosmopolitan  of Las Vegas.

The popularity of the exhibit prompted the Third Annual Steampunk Bizarre, held for 4 months at the Mark Twain House Museum in Hartford, CT October 2011 featuring the art of world renowned Steampunk Artists.  Currently Dr. Grymm has authored the book “1000: A Steampunk Collection” with Rockport Publishers and “How to Illustrate Steampunk” by Walter Foster Publishing. Dr. Grymm has also been featured on an upcoming segment for BBC America News and is the feature artist in the Documentary, “I Am Steampunk” by Neurotic Films.

Steampunk Amelia Earhart Navigational System by Dr. Grymm Laboratories

Take a look at Dr. Grymm’s book:

Packed with 1,000 color photographs, 1,000 Steampunk Creations features a showcase of stunning jewelry, fashion, accessories, headgear, artwork, home decorations, and curious contraptions.

CLICK HERE to purchase Dr. Grymm’s terrific new book:

1000 Steampunk Creations: Neo-Victorian Fashion, Gear & Art

CLICK HERE to visit Dr. Grymm’s website!

CLICK HERE to visit Dr. Grymm’s blog, Steampunk Bizarre!

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Feeling stuck?  Start an Accountability Group!


Author, Speaker, Television Personality,

& Huffington Post Blogger

Barbara Hannah Grufferman

About Barbara . . .

Barbara Hannah Grufferman is the author of “The Best of Everything After 50: The Experts’ Guide to Style, Sex, Health, Money and More,a resource book which addresses many of the concerns of women over fifty with the help of top experts in different fields, including Diane von Furstenberg, Frederic Fekkai, Dr. Patricia Wexler, and many others. She has a weekly column on Huffington Post (“Life After 50”) and blogs regularly for,, and other websites for women.

Since the launch of the book in early April 2010, Barbara has appeared on The Today Show, The Early Show, Good Morning America Health, and numerous radio and internet programs, including NPR, Dr. Oz Sirius Radio on the Oprah Channel, and Sirius Doctor Radio. She also travels around the country, speaking to groups on health, nutrition, career, fitness, sex and many other topics pertaining to being fit and fabulous after 50.

After attending St. John’s University, and then New York University for graduate studies in Social Anthropology, Barbara began her twenty-year career in magazine publishing.  Early on, she spotted a need for a magazine that would help make teenage girls strong and confident rather than playing to their insecurities, and created a new publication, which was later sold to a larger company.  She then joined a publishing company as Group Publisher, overseeing the operations of several well-known entertainment weeklies. Barbara has been profiled in the New York Times and many publishing journals.

Following her successful career in publishing, Barbara joined World Congress LLP—an international conference company which focused on infrastructure needs and projects in developing countries—as President.  In 1997, World Congress hosted the first major meeting in Hong Kong after the island’s historic return to China, and Barbara was featured in Hong Kong’s major newspapers, as well as on radio and television.

Barbara is a founding board member of RX Compassion, Inc., a not-for-profit corporation dedicated to building compassion in the health care field through education, programs and awareness.

A native New Yorker, Barbara lives in New York City with her husband, Howard, daughters Sarah and Elizabeth, and Gunther, a dog they recently rescued.

Best of Everything After 50 – NBC Today Show, January 2011

Take a look at Barbara’s book:

CLICK HERE to purchase Barbara’s terrific book:

The Best of Everything After 50

The Experts’ Guide to Style, Sex, Health, Money and More

CLICK HERE to visit Barbara’s blog, Best of Everything After 50!

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Author, Designer, Teacher & Lecturer

Susan Brubaker Knapp

About Susan  . . .

Susan Brubaker Knapp is a fiber artist, pattern designer and quilting teacher. Quilting started as her hobby, but has turned into a
passion and a business. She teaches for quilt groups and online, and markets a line of quilting patterns through her company, Blue Moon River. 

Susan calls herself a “multiple personality disorder quilter” because she loves traditional hand quilting and needleturn appliqué, but also embraces innovative machine techniques in her art quilts, which she started making in 2005. Her quilts have won national as well as local awards, and have been exhibited at national and international venues. She has won six Best of Show awards at three different quilting guilds, with five different quilts.

Susan’s work has been featured in several national magazines, and in the 2012, 2011, 2010 and 2009 Quilting Arts Calendars. She is the author of Applique Petal Party (C&T Publishing, 2009) and Point, Click, Quilt! Turn your photos into fabulous fabric art (which will be released by C&T Publishing in July 2011).

Susan has also produced two DVDs with Quilting Arts: “Master Machine Quilting: Free-Motion Stitching and Thread Sketching” (2009) and “Master Machine Stitching: Thread Sketching Beyond the Basics” (2010). Her series of six lessons on thread sketching ran in Quilting Arts magazine throughout 2010.

Susan grew up in Mt. Lebanon, Pa., a suburb of Pittsburgh, and earned her B.A. in English at Allegheny College (Meadville, Pa.) and her M.A. in journalism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She has worked in corporate communications and public relations, as a graphic designer, and as a journalist. Susan lives near Charlotte, N.C., with her husband, Rob, and two daughters.

CLICK HERE to visit Susan’s website, Blue Moon River!

Master Machine Quillting Preview with Susan!

Take a look at Susan’s book which will be available to pre-order on soon!

Here are some of Susan’s titles that you might be familiar with:

CLICK HERE to order Susan’s books and DVDs from!

Here are some examples of Susan’s beautiful work:

CLICK HERE to visit Susan’s blog!

CLICK HERE to visit Susan’s Facebook Page!

CLICK HERE to visit Susan’s Twitter!

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It’s All About Encaustic Painting!

In recent decades, this wonderully luscious medium is experiencing a resurgence, as more and more artists discover its versatility.  It is an ancient technique, which literally means “to burn or heat”.  Appropriate, as each stage of encaustic painting involves heat.  The wax is melted, mixed with pigment, and then each layer is fused with heat.  The fusing can be done with a blow torch, heat gun, iron, or light bulb, depending on the effect desired.  Being a collage artist for many years, it was a natural fit for me to include found objects and collage of all sorts in the wax (encaustic medium).

Meet Encaustic Painter

Andrea Bird

A little about Andrea Bird . . .

I approach art-making intuitively, following my inclination into new territory with each piece telling me where it needs to go. The route can be effortless or challenging – either way I am pulled along, fascinated by the process.I fell in love with encaustic several years ago, using beeswax hardened with damar resin and mixed with oil paint. This luscious, engaging medium fits for me, as it allows for a dialogue to take place between myself and the wax. This ‘back and forth’ nature of painting with wax opens me to the mystery of what cannot be known – but only glimpsed at. I let go of attachment which for me is an on-going loosening of expectation.

Ontario Encaustic Artist Andrea Bird
Encaustic Collage Artist
Andrea Bird

‘Holding loosely’ is a theme that inspires much of my work. It allows for a spontaneous response to what happens during the process – drips can be fused into the piece, or gouged off, ‘mistakes’ lead to new ways of pushing the medium. I have created different series that incorporate found objects, clothing/fabric, birds’ nests, prayer flags, roots (organic materials), original photo transfers of trees – and each is connected to the source inspiration of ‘holding loosely’. It is an on-going learning for me to let go, to fall without fear.

Encaustic, by its nature, is made up of layers – and I incorporate collage elements in the wax, sometimes revealed, sometimes not. I use a blow torch, heat gun and iron when fusing each piece, creating a richly textured depth. This vibrant, translucent surface (often with a loose grid in the composition) pulls viewers close. People tell me that each time they look closely at a painting, there is something new to discover. Building up layers, and gouging down to reveal what is below creates an opportunity for the unexpected to reveal itself. The unfolding of mystery reveals the inherent beauty in the piece. This is what pulls me forward, leads me into the unknown, embracing and/or grappling with whatever comes up.

Encaustic Fusing Tools with Andrea Bird

Take a look at some of Andrea’s recent work:

CLICK HERE to visit Andrea’s website!

CLICK HERE to order you Encaustic Painting Supplies

CLICK HERE to visit Andrea’s encaustic school (a long-held dream), gallery and studio called ‘the hive’at the Alton Mill

* * * * * *

Wild Fermentation

We’ve got the cure!


Author &

Fermentation Fetishist

Sandor Katz

About Sandor Katz . . .

Sandor Ellix Katz, a self-taught fermentation experimentalist, wrote Wild Fermentation: The Flavor, Nutrition, and Craft of Live-Culture Foods in order to share the fermentation wisdom he had learned, and demystify home fermentation. Since the book’s publication in 2003, Sandor has taught hundreds of fermentation workshops across North America and beyond, taking on a role he describes as a “fermentation revivalist.” Through these workshops, Sandor met many different food activists—varied in their specific projects but united by a passion to bring food back to earth—who inspired him to write The Revolution Will Not Be Microwaved: Inside America’s Underground Food Movements. Newsweek recently called Wild Fermentation “the fermenting bible,” while the New Yorker wrote that Sandor’s books “have become manifestos and how-to manuals for a generation of underground food activists.”

Fermenting Vegetables with Sandor Katz

Take a look a few of Sandor’s books:

CLICK HERE to visit Amazon’s Complete Selection of Sandor Katz Books!

CLICK HERE to visit Sandor’s website  (and for more information on fermentation and his workshops)


If you’ve never used Auriful Thread. . .

. . .  then you haven’t really sewn!

Why not start off with my BASICS ?



When you purchase of any Aurifil Thread Collection from!

Go to my web site to order YOUR collection — CLICK HERE TO GET STARTED.

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One Comment on “Listen! Creative Mojo, June 8, 2011”

  1. June 18, 2011 at 6:02 AM #

    At 53, was dragged into the Steam Punk by my daughter to create clothes
    (do I even say costume?) I am on my road to a second outfit for her- a Scotish Steam punk and am trying to talk her into an explorers outfir, utilizing parts of a Star Wars Sith outfit that I had made for her about 4 years ago! Wgat fun to hear more about it.


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