Surround Yourself with Creative People!

I didn’t come from a family who passed down words of wisdom from one generation to the next.  Where I grew up, it was graduate, get a job and stay at that job until you retire.  That’s what my grandfather’s did.  That’s what my dad did.  That’s what my brother’s doing now.

My uncle (a businessman who married into the family) was the only person who ever took me aside after I graduated from high school, and offered a few words of advice that actually changed my life.   He said, “If you want to be successful, surround yourself with successful people.”  And he was right.

You become who you identify with.  You are who you set your mind to be.  If you want to be an artist, hang out with artists.  If you want to be a writer, surround yourself with writers.  If you want to be a fabric or textile designer, seek out other designers and hang with them.   Surround yourself with whom you want to become!

Now, hooking in with those you admire isn’t as easy as it might seem.  Most of us who have “made it” in one career or another can smell an opportunist and a user a mile away.  You, too, have to be prepared to bring something to the party!  Don’t just become a sponge, become a giver, as well.  Learn through reading and class-taking and self-exploration what motivates you and what is new and cutting edge in the areas you are interested in.  Create blogs and tweets and Diggs and write articles and books, and produce simple YouTube videos that will attract the creative people you want to hang with to you.

No one makes it alone in any of the creative fields (no matter how much the successful ones would like you to believe that they have).  Relationships — solid, equal and sharing relationships, with those you admire and whose creative paths you hope to emulate, will bring you as much inspiration and artistic success, if not more, than a insular, nose-to-the-grindstone, all-work/no play crafter – who may have  a little, or even a lot of, creative talent.   And don’t sell yourself short.  Your unique spirit and new energy can be a welcome gift and revelation to the successful, “made it” creative as well!   Work it!

© Pickle Road Studio, LLC


Bev Rogan and Quilts for Japan

Fabric Painting with Cindy Walter

Wendy Johnson about her book, Wendy Knit’s Lace 

Colleen Exline with Bookkeeping for the artist and crafter! 

    I hope you enjoy my creative thoughts for hobbyists and crafters. I post new blog thought entries every Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. Wednesday’s are reserved for Creative Mojo with Mark Lipinski’s guests and new creative personalities that you’ll want to know and learn about. Of course, I sprinkle things happening on Pickle Road throughout the week.

I invite you to subscribe to this blog by clicking the button on the left side of this post. Also, why not share my posts with your creative friends and co-workers by clicking on any of the share links? If something really resonates with you, print it out and tack it to your bulletin board or tape it to the wall of your creative space, sewing or craft room as a gentle reminder that you can re-read!

As always, I love to hear about your creative life, wins and challenges! Leave a comment here or email me at Create and laugh through this week. And , as always, always do what you love! 

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11 Comments on “Surround Yourself with Creative People!”

  1. Cindie
    August 23, 2011 at 6:04 AM #

    Yet another incurably awesome post with some great ideas. Never thought of making YouTube videos of my work! Xo


  2. August 23, 2011 at 6:10 AM #

    Love the post, Mark. It’s so true. One of my favorite “philosophers” is the late Jim Rohn. He said, “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” It’s up to us!


  3. August 23, 2011 at 6:12 AM #

    I am always so inspired by the people at the Minnesota Contemporary Quilters guild. And I also hang with another little group of guild members who meet once a month. So many things going on with them artistically and creatively, and they’re always willing to share. Plus, we laugh a lot!


  4. August 23, 2011 at 6:35 AM #

    good one!


  5. August 23, 2011 at 7:57 AM #

    Mark, I agree that who you surround yourself with helps you achieve what you want whether it’s career success, loving people, creative people, you name it. It’s also true that if we surround ourselves with people who have negative aspects that we are influenced by that and I am so glad your blog and publishing ventures help us be encompassed by support, creativity and even affection. You are a blessing to many and I hope we return that gift.


  6. Maggie Magee
    August 23, 2011 at 1:16 PM #

    Good post!


  7. August 23, 2011 at 3:44 PM #

    Exactly, surround yourself with like minded people and we all GROW! EXCELLENT post Mark! Thanks!!!


  8. August 23, 2011 at 8:16 PM #

    What GREAT advice !!!! When can I come over to your house to play? I promise to bring my own crayons ! …and we can take turns wearing my tiara !!!!


  9. Sally Razz
    August 23, 2011 at 10:20 PM #

    I am energized when I am with my DQF’s…dear quilty friends. They inspire me, lift me up, help with decisions, etc. They’ve been with me in the happy times, and in hours of deepest sadness…dropped everything to be with me. I couldn’t ask for better or more loyal friends…


  10. August 24, 2011 at 6:23 AM #

    This was easy to do when I lived in a Metropolitan area- not so much when you live in a rural area. The virtual world has become all the more important to stay connected to creatives. I have used the physical “distance” to my benefit in attempting to take my creative life in a direction that is good for me and to find my voice that I want to share. The old saying of “bloom where you are planted” has shown me that I stiffled my own growth with so much creative interaction- and I have grown by leaps and bounds from this disconnect. Difficult at times- I yearn for that physical interaction. I do so enjoy your posts- and wonder how others that live in rural areas get thier fix…..


  11. Laura Nolte-Salter
    August 28, 2011 at 3:26 PM #

    Mark – loved Jeff Turner as your co-host! He needs a regular spot on the show!


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