Day 3/29 Days of Giving is…

… would you like knowing you can double the odds of winning today?

ooo, i have your interest now don’t i? ….

…. but we’ll get to that later

right now i’m simply elated one of my favorite people is our guest today….

… so pull up a chair and sit a spell

afterall we’re nothing but  friends here ….

…. whenever i hear people refer to Bette Midler

instantly i think ‘the divine miss m’ ….

… whenever i hear the name of our special guest today

my lil’ mind takes me along those same lines….

though, i tend to think of the delightful vs. the divine …

but divine is ever-s0-fitting as well…

… i suppose it would sound better if i added her name there

rather than making you read these rather silly lines…

… how about a clue?

let me get my very best announcer voice on….

.. *cough*

Ladies, and probably under a handful of gentlemen …

… why aren’t more male readers here anyway?

sheesh! me & my tangents…

FINE i’ll get on with it already

I proudly present you with :


The Delightful, The Divine, The Talented –  Susan Tuttle!
( admit it, you’re now saying it in your mind, and possibly aloud in your best ringmaster voice too)

As many of you know, I won’t promote something I don’t believe in – not people, not books, not products.  Is it professionally wise? I dunno. Do people always like it? Nope. But it just  feels right and resonates deep down inside of me… at the end of the day – isn’t that what matters?  I simply just try to do whats right by me, by others, by the world. I don’t always accomplish it — but i strive to.  The older I become, the more important living an authentic,  genuine life is to me. A wise woman once told me that having the courage to be genuine – to be true to who you are – who you really are – is one of those mythical, magical keys to a happy and fulfilled life. I like happy. Happy is good. 

Anyway….I digress.

I could probably spend this entire post gushing over Susan; and admittedly I’d enjoy making her blush (but just a lil)… I was fortunate to spend time with her at the ZNE convenZioNE last August (where we were both instructing, and i dragged her on just a few *cough* starbucks runs) …  within minutes of meeting her I felt as if I’ve known her for years and years. I’m always that squirmy-kind-of-awkward when I first meet folks, but Susan is just.. well.. so damn darn open and authentic… i was instantly at ease. Not often that happens to me. Nope, not often at all. She’s one of those special folks – that know just how to touch your heart, and your life – merely by being who she is.

That is exactly why I am so pleased that she agreed to a short interview with us… where we discuss her new book, her vices.. and I shamelessly try to snag a piece of her original art. I think we’d all agree, her voice will be far more enjoyable to you than mine… so without further adieu… let me introduce you to the book, then on with the show as they say…

 Exhibition 36

 Exhibition 36: Mixed Media Demonstrations + Explorations
by Susan Tuttle

 Within the pages of Exhibition 36, readers will enter a virtual art exhibit featuring thirty-six mixed-media artists whose collage, digital, assemblage, altered and repurposed art adorn the walls and pedestals of this unique gallery. The artists are “present” throughout the exhibit, answering questions, sharing their thoughts, talking about their work and offering instruction. The tour is structured to provide insight into the creative process of the artists whose work is on display and the reader will be delighted with the plethora of inspiration, articles, techniques and general visual candy. As a final bonus, many artists featured in the book have contributed imagery as a gift to readers for attending the exhibit to reuse in their own creations. Possesses great crossover appeal for mixed-media artists of nearly every discipline, including jewelry makers, collage artists and more.

Readers will enter a “virtual tour” featuring art from a variety of contributing artists, including well-known crafters such as Claudine Hellmuth (Collage Discovery Workshop) and Suzanne Simanaitis (Kaleidoscope).Includes bonus collage imagery sheets for readers to use in their own art.

Gosh.. the day this came? I was not only bubbling over with joy for a friend, but so moved by her words that i jumped right between the gorgeous covers and a few days later re-emerged and reviewed it over at Amazon — I’ll let you see my personal thoughts on the book there… so we can move right along and have a delightful conversation with the divine Susan Tuttle now.

( um yeah, questions are mine … the answers?.. you guessed it.. Susan’s

Let’s just knock out the standard question first,(though common)- inquiring minds still want to know – what inspired you to take this approach to a book? What was your initial vision, and did it change as it came together?

My initial vision was to create a book that featured a large number of artists and their work, a variety of mediums and styles, flat work, 2-D and 3-D pieces, men and women alike — basically something for everyone. I struggled at first in trying to figure out what the premise of the book would be and how it would all come together in a unified way. I believe if we put our questions out there into the Universe, the answers always have a way of finding us, so I asked for help with the book. I woke up one morning, eyes opening slowly, looking out my window at a sunlit field — my answer came to me with such clarity, and in such a peaceful way. The answer had been with me all along actually, and from that moment on I knew the book was meant to be a virtual art exhibit — my dream art show, constructed from within the confines of my little home in the Maine woods.
You see, I grew up in a rural part of New Jersey but made frequent trips to New York City, and later settled down in Boston for many years. In the city, cultural life was right at my fingertips. My book is my attempt to re-create this kind of cultural mecca that is not as accessible to me in this remote, beautiful part of the country. This book would not have been possible without my access to the Internet and the variety of artists that I have made connections with through that venue.

Once I had this vision in place, it did not veer from the initial course, and I believe it went the way that it was meant to. In fact, sometimes I felt like the book was writing itself. Not to say that I didn’t work my arse off, but that things unfolded naturally. When it came time to divide the contributions into chapters, the chapter headings came to me with an unusual ease and the contributions miraculously divided themselves amongst the chapters in a very balanced way — true serendipity!  And I would be remiss if I did not give high praise and credit to my editor, Tonia Davenport, who gave me an incredible amount of creative freedom to realize my vision.

I fell in love with the diversity of art, contributors and styles within your book. How did interacting and collaborating with all these talented folks affect you?

 First and foremost I felt incredibly privileged to have been able to collaborate with all of the wonderful artists in the book. I felt extreme joy on many occasions and I felt blessed by the generosity of these artists as they shared their techniques and heartfelt, personal stories with me and all of us.

From a technical perspective, my organizational skills were put to the test as you can well imagine, with managing a total of 35 contributions in addition to doing my own artwork and writing. I also got to exercise editing skills and learned a lot about editing another person’s writing, while at the same time maintaining their unique voice. 

It is rumored you have a sugar addiction while creating – is this true? What is your vice?

Ah yes, this is indeed true! My great-grandmother, whom I called Nana, owned a candy store, so having a sweet tooth definitely runs in the family. My vices tend to have a combination of sweet and tart flavors (Sweet Tarts, Sprees, Sour Patch Kids, Nerds, Pop Rocks and gummy bears). I can get a little bit more sophisticated though — lol — good chocolate is high on my list! I am also an icing lover — on cakes, cupcakes and cookies — the more gloppy, the better.

With so many mixed-media books out there right now – what sets yours apart? What do you hope people will take from Exhibition 36?

 I don’t know if there is necessarily anything that sets it apart from other mixed-media books, but the one thing I can say is that the book contains a plethora of artists, styles, mediums and techniques — I think that there is something for everyone. It was important to me that this book not just be a technique-based book, but that it would also include a more personal focus on the lives and artistic processes of the contributors. As I stated in the preface, it is my hope that the reader will find something within the pages that rings true for them — if I have done that, then I have done my job.

 You’ve been slaving for years on your book. Your advanced copy FINALLY arrives…. Did you scream? Call a loved one? Refresh Amazon 100x times a day to see how many sales? What was your first reaction?

Funny you should ask. It was Monday, Columbus Day, and I walked through the door of my house after being out for most of the day at an installation art exhibit. The kids were tired and hungry and falling apart at the seams, supportive hubby was cooking, and let’s just say, he needed a little help witheverything (as would I if the shoe were on the other foot). I saw a brown box on the floor, that looked about the size of my book, which I had been waiting for with fervent eagerness… only, the box was being used as a kind of base for one of the kid’s games — in fact, my son was jumping on it.  I rescued it immediately and looked at the address — from my publisher!  I actually had to put the package aside though, and help with the evening routine, before I could open it… but when I did, it was quite surreal! I sat down that night in front of the woodstove with a glass of red wine in hand and poured over the pages (not the wine… you know what I mean).  Although I was very excited, the book felt like a familiar friend to me — after all, I knew every last word like the back of my hand and had seen initial drafts. But most of all I felt grateful to the blessed people who made it possible and I felt quite peaceful, actually, knowing that I had fulfilled something I was meant to do in this lifetime.

Many of the talented contributors in the book really opened up to you, revealed their secrets, and shared glimpses of their soul. The ‘sitting-on-a porch-talking-with-an-old-friend’ feeling really shines through within these projects, stories and creative prompts. How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?

The first word that comes to mind is vital. I must create in order to feel whole and complete, and alive. The act of creating replenishes me, gives me new energy, and fills me up so that I have more to give back to myself, my family, friends and things I deem important. For me, the act of creating is about seeking truths and revealings. Often I don’t know what I am meant to learn until much later. I also find the process to be circular, where life becomes art during the creative process, and because I am left forever changed by the process, the art feeds back into my life.

In the book, you mention how music goes hand in hand with your creative process; what are some of your favorite songs at the moment?

Let’s take a peek at the ‘ol playlist — ah, some favorites:

  • Hymn 101 by Joe Pug
  • Radio Ballet by Eluvium
  • The Swell Season by Glen Hansard & Marketa Irglova
  • Saeglopur by Sigur Ros
  • Window by Guster
  • They by Jem
  • Lament by Balmorhea

I’m totally stealing a question you asked Claudine Hellmuth in Exhibition 36: tell us something most people do not know about you!

How about a few, ’cause I don’t know which to pick:
– I played my flute in Carnegie Hall
– I make miniatures with a haunted theme, and have a spooky dollhouse to put them in.
– I get little chills and cry easily when I witness things I think are beautiful.

Don’t you want to give me the piece shown on page 41 – ‘a bit goth’?  Granted, I could follow the instructions you gave us to make my own, but I must have that one! So, should I expect to see it in my mailbox anytime soon?

 Sure Chrysti, you can have it, no prob, right along with my first born and my wedding ring! – lol! oh, and I’ll also throw in the deed to my house! Now how’s that for an answer!?

I knew Susan was kind, but wow — how’s that for generous? Readers –you’re my witnesses – you heard her too right? – though my sarcasm scanner is going off the charts…  

Has anyone NOT figured out today’s fabulous giveaway yet? No, it’s not the painting I’m referring to… But a copy of her oh-so-incredibly-inspiring-you’ll-jump-in-the-studio-the-moment-your-hands-touch-it-book: Exhibition 36: Mixed Media Demonstrations + Explorations!

Ok lovely ladies and probably less than a handful of gentlemen – to enter today’s giveaway:

  • Leave a comment on this post, answering Susan’s question for you : How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?” and/or my question “Shouldn’t Susan give me her Original painting I mentioned?” or if you don’t want in the middle of that battle –admit you really did use the ringmaster voice. C’mon.
  • Do this by: Tuesday, December 9th. Winner will be announced then!
  • Double your chances of winning a copy! Susan’s giving away another copy at her blog as well – quick – go enter!

If you haven’t already be sure to enter the other giveaways here too! Day 1 is here, Day 2 is here, and a chance for a $100.00 Gift Certificate to my new site as well as a chance of your wish being granted go here… be sure to follow the instructions for that giveaway, and post a comment on each particular day to be eligible!

Whew! Enough of my babbling for a day eh?

Chrysti — who has a few wishes to go try and grant..


118 Responses

  1. “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?” I like to create little art pieces like ATCs, postcards, etc. So I have always some supplies hanging around on my desk and the “dining” table. I like to exchange them with others, so I’m often involved in swaps, looking forward to receiving other’s art in the mail.

  2. Here’s my answer!!!

    Art is life to me! I breathe it, think it, dream it, devour it and bask in it. If I can’t create I’m miserable. It’s so weaved into my physical, emotional and spiritual make up that I need to create to be happy. My poor husband is sometimes an art widower I feel bad but it’s who I am!!

    YES Chrysti you should get that original!


    Just being me!


  3. Art saves me from the parts of my life that crush my soul.

    Howz that for cheerful? ; P

    I’ve been waiting and waiting for Susan’s book to come out — it is #1 on my xmas list!

    P.S. And yes, I did do the “Ring Master” voice in my head.

  4. Art is a major stress reliever for me. I have a stressful job where I work 4 days a week and I own (now two) retail stores with my husband. Things are hectic. Art gives me a chance to relax, breathe and escape. Even if just for a few moments. It rejuvenates me and helps me keep going. My hope is that when all is going well and my husband and I are able to retire early art will play a larger role in my life. Well, art and travel!

  5. Art keeps me sane. It gets rid of the stress…I live it, especially my journals! I sort through life and figure things out. I love it.

  6. I always have done art since I was a child, then when my daughter was born I started to do more fabric art and needle work. Then I broke my back and my friends at work gave me money to buy my first set of oil paints. That was it for me, I was in heaven when I was painting. I could start right after I got home from work an next thing the birds outside would be singing their morning song. Then when I lost my daughter I couldn’t hold a paint brush in my hands without falling to pieces, Jennifer (my daughter) was a very big part of my art. She was my best supporter, she couldn’t wait till I finished a painting and she would want it hung in her room.
    For 10 years I couldn’t do any art, I would try and fall apart connecting so strongly with the loss of her and art, it just wouldn’t happen all the joy was lost.
    Then one day, and who knows how these things work I felt I could and I tried a different form of art that I had never tried before and it worked out good for me. Little by little more and more new mediums crept into my life and I began enjoying them. Then came the day that I have long awaited, I had a fan on flickr ask me to do an oil paining of one of my digital works and I didn’t hesitate but was anxious to say yes. I knew and looked forward to getting my canvas and brushes out and once again feeling that same excitement that I had felt 10 years before.
    What does art mean in my life, without it I doubt that there would be any joy. There is joy in my life now and it’s because of my art, it has kept me alive more than once.

  7. I try to work in my art journal every day – it helps keep me balanced. I’m a software engineer in a high-stress job, so working on art allows the other half of me to “escape”. Those days when I can’t get to it, I feel anxious and can’t wait to find some free time. I don’t do “high” art in my journal – just simple collages and quotes – but it’s what makes me happy, and that’s what matters, right?

  8. I will readily admit it, I used the ringmaster voice when I read that. In fact, everytime I read something with the ringmaster introduction ring to it, I find myself doing so in the ringmaster voice, whether out loud or even just in my head. It’s just mandatory, as far as I’m concerned. I’m psyched to have another opportunity to win this tasty morsel (I went right over and entered on Susan’s site the minute I saw she was giving one away)! I really enjoyed the interview – I ALSO get little chills and cry very easily whenever I witness something beautiful! And, lastly, I want to say that, Chrysti, you ROCK!


  9. Art is a huge stress release for me these days. My grown daughter moved home for the winter with a 1 year old and a 5 year old. My daughter works in retail, so needless to say, this time of year she is working 6 long days a week. I have gone from an empty nester with 1 year of retirement under my belt to a full time caregiver. I now remember why you are supposed to be young when you raise little ones. I am so pooped by the end of the day.

    And then I go into my art room and get my second wind. Art is saving my sanity and helping to dispel the depression of these short very gray days and the overwhelming responsibility.

    Love your blog.

  10. Art has always been part of my life. Recently I have done a series of painting of women and girls. They are deeply personal to me. My mother passed away two summers ago from cancer and these paintings have been helping me work through my thoughts and feelings of connection to the women in my life. I really love that I have found a personal connection to my creative process that has such deep meaning. They are little pieces of me and I love them.

    That being said I plan on giving away one of my originals as a christmas gift to my sister. She wanted to buy it, but I just want her to have it. So Susan should give the painting to you if that is what is in her heart.

  11. Yup. Ringmaster voice used (I mean, how could I avoid it? The set up was perfect!).

    Art fits into my personal life as a way to capture and process the journey I’m making as I live. It, also, figures in as a way to inspire, motivate, and move me. And, I can enjoy it just to enjoy it — without needing to run right out and create something myself. I think art is everywhere and in everything…it’s pretty hard to think of life without art.

    Now, I’m going to whimp out when it comes to statinga position between you, a piece of art, and the girl that created that art… Gettin’ involved there is just plain dangerous (heh-heh)!

  12. Okay, you caught me, I did use the ringmaster voice. My son says I’m weird. I don’t care.
    Art is very important to me. It didn’t use to be that way. 10 years ago I didn’t even know how to make anything resembling art. But now, I feel out of sorts if it’s been too many days without making something. It’s the process now that is important, not so much the result. Art relieves my stress, too. My husband moved to Florida with a new job and I won’t be there until school is out in June. My youngest started college and doesn’t drive yet, so 4 nights a week I drive 25 miles one way, sit and wait on him, grade papers, etc. and take him home. My oldest moved out and is struggling with life lessons. Art saves my sanity.
    Chrysti, don’t feel bad if you cry over beautiful or happy things. I do, too. I cry over commercials. I’ve seen “You’ve Got Mail” a thousand times and still cry every time. My sons used to laugh at me and when we were watching a movie, they would look over at me and ask if I’m was crying yet. I dreamed the other night that I had done a painting that was so beautiful I cried. Weird, huh?

  13. What is art’s part in my personal life….hmmmmm. Anymore I can’t really separate myself from art. It’s how I appreciate my surroundings. It’s why I save bits of paper, the insulating wrap on a hot drink. It’s why a trip to a museum can bring me to tears. It’s also why I had tears in my eyes when I first put Susan’s books in my hands and turned to see what my friend Brandie Butcher Isley had contributed to the book. Art moves me. It is who I am.
    And as for that piece of Susan’s work you are coveting – maybe she could make you a print? I understand the need to hold on to some of my own pieces & why others do the same.

  14. how does Art play a prominent role in my personal life?…Art’s not hear but Maggie is…hehe.

    welp, lets see, i wake up to a room full of pretties on the wall, hand made by me quilt, a hand made by me dollie on a bookshelf. the shower curtain is duck cloth painted by me. left overs in frig, made by me. turn around, and what might get in your way is over burdened shelving filled with art supplies, eat on the sofa cause ‘dining table’ is a art/craft table… goes on an on.

    and, oh yeh, the piece on page 41 has your name on it Christi

  15. Art plays a prominent role in my life, because, simply put, it is one of the few things that make me truly happy. I am happy either doing art or viewing it. Thanks for having this contest!

  16. I admit I used ringmasters voice…..hehe..

    Art plays an important part in my life. I use it to unwind and to keep me thinking about things that would upset me from my past…

    I love art, I can express myself. When I let myself go, I feel free and relaxed.


  17. Thanks for sharing your wonderful art & writing with us!

    “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?” Well, art supplies seem to be gathering on every horizontal surface in my house, for one thing! Like other commentors, I feel motivated and inspired by art I find all around me. And I create all the time, not only art for art’s sake, but also things like making a high quality report or presentation for work, or cooking a good meal, etc. All those tasks become artful if we let them, and that is a happy way to look at what some might call drudgery :)

  18. Art has always been my life. And I hope it will continue.

  19. I’ve always had my hand in art in many different forms. I’ve gotten distracted (lets say) in my life and gotten away from it here and there but then I have art withdrawals!! It’s part of me, It’s who I am and I’ll no longer pretend I don’t need art!
    Susan, you are one of my FAV artists! I’m so glad to see a book by you!

  20. Since I’m running a little short on time I’ll just admit that, yes, I did use my ringmaster voice. Which is suprisingly deep, even when I’m only saying it in my head and not aloud. Ok, I sound psycho now.
    Nice interview and I’d love to get my hands on that book!

  21. I love getting lost in making something however small after a long day at work. I have always done some kind of art way back to paint by number and cross stitch as a kid. It is so part of me

  22. well, art is apart of who i am. i see it all around me in the good and the bad. its a release.


  23. my studio is my haven. No one is allowed in there with thumbs (the fur children, therefore, can come and go as they please!) Although I don’t get to make art every day, sometimes I just go there and sit to get away from the rest of the house!


  24. Art is about sharing a part of myself with friends and family and people far and near. It’s an expression of love, anger, politics, history, heritage, and just fun. It’s an escape from reality, it’s reality, it’s perception and impression. It just happens sometimes, other times it doesn’t.

    Susan should give you the goth piece, just because, you know, a “pay it forward” kind of thing, and my ringmaster voice was running thru my head, not unlike the classroom crowd control voice of yesteryear.

  25. doing art is where i get to be me. as a live-in caretaker i spend a lot of time doing things that need to be done. it is gratifying to help others but it is so relaxing to be by myself and creating.

  26. Art is who I am, I am a creater of art and a great admirer of the creation of others. As Seneca said “Life is short but art is long.” Art is life!

  27. Wow now that is a question!
    Art heals me. In the worst days of my life, and there were many, it gave me a way to bring forth the beauty that was inside me. A place to escape and be myself without listening to any one judge me, belittle me, or try to steal my life away from me. My art…was a safety life line for me…I held on to it, nourished it, and allowed my soul to play when clearly I was tethered. It freed my soul, fed me, and made me believe that it could be a better day. And then it was.

    Every day I do art. Even at my job whether it is a brochure or flyer, I sneak the art in. I am free with art. And love and respect that feeling.

  28. Yes, I did use the ringmaster voice. AND it was so much fun that I did it twice!

  29. Art plays a relevant and prominent role in my life by allowing me to focus on the beauty that may be missed when not focusing on particular subjects in nature. It gives me great joy the freedom to express emotion and just play.

  30. Art is a my way of getting rid of stress most days . and its darn fun too LOLOLOL
    robin krieger

  31. ARt is a way I express myself. I love to surround myself with others art ( I understand why you want Susan’s orginal painting). It is a window to their soul.
    Some days art is work and others just pure play!

  32. “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?” – I’ve always loved art – every day I try to do something crafty. It’s so much easier with a 6 year old daughter around! We have so much fun and it’s great bonding time. Additionally, the creations we make are usually passed on to family and friends, so we share our love of art, and the recipients are usually excited to receive.

    “Shouldn’t Susan give me her Original painting I mentioned?” – that would be really cool — or she could PICK ME to be the recipient of her original painting! LOL!

    admit you really did use the ringmaster voice. C’mon. — not exactly – although I did *hear* the ringmaster voice in my head! Does that count?!! LOL!

    Thanks for the chance to win a great prize!

  33. Art is my personal retreat. It’s where I get to climb inside of myself…where there are no other voices and just create.

  34. Art is a stress reliever for me-I spend my days with special needs children and come home to my own three teenaged boys. I love to go into my special room and create for a short time each evening. It allows me to be a better teacher and mom.

  35. How does art play a part in my life? Oh my…art IS my life. I wake up thinking about it, I read about it, there are art supplies in every room of our house in case inspiration hits (yea, even the bathroom has a little journal and some markers in there, sad huh?)…it’s as though I have a HUGE creative driving force. I like to put MY touch on everything I own…adding to bought things, re-doing used things, re-vamping discarded things. I guess art is just my way of life.

    I am so excited about “Exhibition 36″…I love seeing new books in the mixed media genre. Especially good ones! YAY!

    Peace & Love,

  36. Art….it feeds my soul and fills my huge need to create. It is something I can share with my 17 yo daughter. It is something that makes me feel complete.

  37. I not only used the “Ringmaster Voice”, but I added an echo as a belloed out, so it sounded like I was in a red and white striped BigTop as the bejeweled elephants paraded by!

  38. Yeah, that ringmaster voice totally just popped into my head!
    Art is my life, even when I am not creating, my mind is still at full speed, planning and thinking, and picturing my next creative endeavor. Art is like breathing, necessary to my survival, and that is just the way I like it.

    Yeah, Susan should really give you that piece, you deserve it for being so giving on here:) Maybe I will make you something and give it to you, my own personal blog candy just for Chrysti….how’s that?


  39. Oh my goodness!! Art is so critical to me. As a stay-at-home and homeschooling mother of two small boys, the stolen moments during naptime are precious and vital to my life. I would love a chance to win this book!

  40. I am choosing Susan’s question:
    “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?”

    After getting hurt on the job in 2005, I have had numerous infections and surgeries. I am now disabled and housebound, without a car and alone 90% of the time. ( after having to put my cat down yesterday…I am really alone)
    so after scrapbooking(which i have been doing for about 10 years) I got into making ATC’s and 4 X 4’s for chunky books. which is what I do now that I am stuck home it helps me vent and keeps me busy, not to mention that it is therapeutic. I used to do a lot of art, and arts n crafts when younger, but then life happened. I have become reacquainted with collage and such things, and LOVE it! I have done a few pieces of assemblage art also…so i am dabbling. One day I hope to oil paint again, which i used to do as a teen and in my early 20s.

  41. I never did art much before I found ATC’s. But they are so addictive that I love doing them. It gives me an “out” when things are going rough.

  42. I have been creative for as long as I can remember. And if I am not doing something, whether it be working on a piece or just painting backgrounds I start going stir crazy. It is also a stress reliever and the more stress in my life the more I create. Or maybe the more stress in my life the more I need to create.

  43. A busy schedule and an occassional fight of depression I find art to be very therapeautic for me~!

  44. art plays a prominent role in my life by having saved me when my husband was going to college and my son was in HS and needed to be ferried about and I couldn’t really go anywhere, so the Internet became my playground and art saved me and now defines who I am!

  45. art – whether it is writing or mixed media plays a huge role in my life. it is like breathing, it makes me happy, the process of making art isn’t always easy, it can be frustrating and hard but every time i create something it fullfills me. i love being surrounded by art and it is comforting to be creating something in my journals.

  46. I never used to think of making art as “art”. It was always crafting. As I got older, and through the www, I realized that I was crafting art. So many people think to analytically to even see the beauty in the process or the heart in the outcome.

    I surround myself in art. I make it a part of my life and my family’s life. I teach my children that everything they see and touch is the art of someone somewhere. From the wii dreamed up in someone’s imagination and created with components to the snowflakes falling from the sky created by a power greater than us.

    I suppose I don’t make art a part of my life, my life, all of our lives are art themselves.

    p.s. I am rooting for you getting the artwork Chrysti :) I just can’t help myself, LOL :)

  47. Hello Everyone!, It is so nice to share some time with all of you, even tho brief, and some of us (like me) know no one here, That does not lessen my wishes for a wonderful and creative holiday season for you all ! Susan’s question.. “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?” Since I was a very little girl (50 some years ago(!) ), I have been aware of the beauty in life, I have loved the colors and intricacies of flowers, trees, rocks, and you name its, I started drawing and coloring to express this fascination, over the years that fascination had developed to a desire to become a high school arts and crafts teacher.I never did achieve that goal, but I have done some art or craftwork nearly every day of my adult life, It is one of the basic needs in my life, to keep my sanity in these crazy times, to connect with my loved ones, to express myself, to share my thoughts, heart and soul without fear of judgment or rejection. Sincerely, Sharon

  48. “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?”

    It is my way to explore me and my life.
    It is a gift that there are so many possibilities to make art that I always find something that motivates me.
    The process of making art is the most important for me. I can get in flow and feel alive and authentic. So making art has very prominent role in my personal life.

  49. Art helps me to get out, what is inside my head. It’s not generally “pretty” but if I’m feeling that way inclined, that’s the way I’ll go. More often than not it’s an intuitive kind of thing, I’ll just play around with techniques and stuff on my table and let it just “become” whatever it wants to be. When I used to make cloth soft sculpture dolls, I had an idea in my head about how it was going to turn out a certain way with a particular look, but it never did. Art is the same, it has it’s own voice and it does whatever the heck it wants to do!

  50. When I met my husband he encourage that Creativity inside my head, more than anyone had ever done in my whole life. And in those first few months of our marriage I went through some medical things, and exploring art was a release for me. Whether it was painting a picture frame, a wooden garden character for the pot on my patio, or even the awesome glass paints he bought me to paint on my teapots – I felt FREE! Art has continued to give me that freedom for 8 years now. And adding paper, inks and stamps – well that has just made it all better!!! When I am in my room creating – I am FREE. So when the day gets to crazy or my head gets too full, I just go sit down at my table and play for a while – work on whatever is there – even if it is just cutting out a new set of stamps.

    Thanks for this chance – I am loving coming to your blog everyday!!!


    Art is just a part of my life… I work all day and can’t wait to get home and create… housework is second to my creating. I am thankful for a husband that isn’t real particular about a spic’n span house. I vacuum and dust, maybe not as often as I should HEHEHEHEHEHE. I share my creative space with my husband because we share a computer! We do spend some time together while I do my thing… It is good… Now I have to start parting with some of the things I create!!!

    THanks for sharing!

  52. my life is all about art! i can’t help it. even when i mow the lawns i do it in patterns and designs…
    …art is my meditation, my passion, my obsession

  53. Susan says art is vital to her. It replenishs her, fills her up and gives her energy to give more to family, friends, etc.

    Art for me is an outlet to this insane world. I must at least be reading what seems like 20 books at a time to develop my brain and learn more techniques and the latest in.

  54. As my everyday work is just something to earn the money I need to spend my life, making art is important for me to feel my real self every day. It´s much more satisfying than the work I´m paid for.
    And yes, maybe Susan should give her a piece of hers, LOL …
    Sounds like a great book, and I´d love to win it!

  55. Art is my life. There is no two ways about it. I have to create to be content. I have tried all kinds of creative projects but painting is the one I keep coming back to. Through art I have met all kinds of talented, wonderful, creative and generous people. My life would be less rich without it. As for the second question – how about you give her one of your pieces and she gives you hers :o)

  56. hi Chrysti….I love your give away, and I love you!!!! ( not in that order mind you) I’ve posted on susan’s blog and on my blog and now on your blog, which I think i already did, but more is often good, so here is my link and I hope I did it all right

    and my art answer from above….( well above on this post,…not up there, above)

    Art is about sharing a part of myself with friends and family and people far and near. It’s an expression of love, anger, politics, history, heritage, and just fun. It’s an escape from reality, it’s reality, it’s perception and impression. It just happens sometimes, other times it doesn’t.

    Susan should give you the goth piece, just because, you know, a “pay it forward” kind of thing, and my ringmaster voice was running thru my head, not unlike the classroom crowd control voice of yesteryear.

    I think I have my bases covered!!!!

  57. I was at Squam with Susan and it would be wonderful to get the book – sounds awesome.
    Art plays a huge role in my life now – it didnt used to, but now it is needed. From posting swaps on my blog, to the 80 books I have from the library right now, to the IKEA shelf crammed full of art supplies and another whole building (yeah) cough… full of antiques and flea market finds.
    Now to find time right?

  58. Art feeds my soul and fills me up. It makes me happy to create and therefore these feelings swell over into my personal life. My husband knows now after so many years that I need to be creative to be happy :)
    I have recently in the last 6 months found the world of mixed media and am learning all I can, I would love, love, love to have this book. It is already on my wish list :)

    Thanks for opportunity to enter your giveaways, this is so generous of you :)

  59. Art is my (almost) daily dose of meditation. Even the days where I can not find time to do art, thinking about it is giving me the same peace of heart and mind.
    I just loooooove looking at, thinking of, making ART!!!

  60. Art is in my thoughts constantly … sometimes in the forefront, sometimes bubbling around the edges of other concerns. It’s the one thing I do that is strictly for me … even if I am making something for someone else, I only make something I WANT to make, that makes ME happy to make it.

    As for Susan’s art piece … do you really want it that bad? It’s coming with a lot of baggage there (are you ready to take care of her child, her husband AND her house?! LOL!) Maybe it’d be easier to frame the page in her book instead …

  61. Art is very important in my life, although it’s hard to fit it in with all the other demands of daily living! I have learned, though, that I really need that creative outlet! It’s been a joy as well as solace when sorely needed. I’m thankful to have a family who understands and supports that need!

  62. I am my art. It lives within me. It helps me breathe. It helps me sleep. It helps me see my world in a creative and productive way. It is my medication for what ails me.

  63. art is my therapy. i find it helps me find a peace and calmness amidst the every day stresses of life. and i definitely think you should get the original!!

  64. What a gorgeous book. I LOVE art. I have trying to become a Life Artist as well as explore different artist mediums. I scrap and write but I feel the need in 2009 to branch out and try some of these other areas!!

  65. I’ve never heard of miss susan but the way that you gush over her makes me wish I did!

  66. As a full-time lab tech, I have a job that is scientific and very fact and detail-oriented. Things have to be done perfectly, orderly, and in a certain way. I guess I have a split personality because in one way this kind of job suits me, but then the rebellious artistic side of my brain craves an outlet. So art is the way this personality gets to have fun, ignore rules, get dirty, & do things out of order.

    In difficult times of my life, art has been the respite my brain and soul needed from having to deal with difficult issues even if just for a few minutes. By using the creative parts of my brain, the analytical part is forced to rest for a little while, enabling it to function better when play time is over and reality has to be dealt with again.

  67. Ever since I can remember, art has been deep within my soul. I haven’t been with you long as a reader but I have felt an instant bond with you as much of your story reads the same as mine. Wow! Thanks for being so open. Some of the first art that I did as a very young child came as what was the instruction of my preschool teacher. I did as she asked and painted blue over every inch of the paper with poster paint. I didn’t understand what she wanted but I knew I liked the color. I was told that I hadn’t done what she wanted and ever since I have followed the art in the “correct” hobby of the time be it the crocheted vests, cross stitching, tole painting, scrapbooking and on and on. This year my goal is to branch out to do what it is that moves my soul and to let that little girl find what was buried trying to get out. Thanks for giving me a place to explore and to vent. Love it.

  68. Life with out art would be no life at all. Bleak dark depressing void. Iv’e been there. During my darkest times . May they be few and far between , Art is life to me. My breath. My spirit. My soul.
    Brenda Moss

  69. Art is for the other person in me…and she feeds me with her enthusiasm and creativity. It is her life…her breath. Without her, I am an empty shell. She
    brings such zest to my life!! She and I are one! Personally, I think Bernie should get the book. She has lost and gained so much. She is a treasure!
    You are a treasure as well dear one!! Be well!! And I vote for you to receive Susan’s piece. It must surely belong to you already!!

  70. Art is life. Life is a journey. Art is my journey

  71. I feel alive when I work on my art! How is THAT for playing a prominent role?! Does that mean I feel dead the rest of the time?! :-) No, but I do feel overwhelmed, overworked, fatigued, and can’t keep up with “regular” life the rest of the time. And it gets worse the older I get. So, working on one of my many art projects is like taking a deep cleansing breath, going into another world, the time flies and I become totally relaxed. Every day I try to do something, even if it’s just cutting words, pictures, or maps out of magazines and old books for my collage files.

  72. Art is what keeps me centered and focused as I guide my two autistic children into adulthood and independence.
    I do ART for my own therapy ;)

  73. “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?”
    I think if i didn’t have art in my life – either making it or having it around me) I’d go crazy. There’s something about having a creative outlet that keeps me sane.

  74. “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?”

    Art is and has been my life,now living on my own more so than ever, it gets me through each day…….some days I think i just havent got a creative bone in my body,then wham,i find myself sitting and creating, either an ATC ,painting,or just altering something,I think to myself how did that happen ! I have to create something everyday its my life,how lucky am I to have it ! VERY LUCKY !

  75. How does art play a prominent role in my life?

    its cheaper than prozac and more effective than drugs and alcohol lol… helps me wind down and destress… I can potter around in the studio happily for hours but couldnt sit still and watch a movie vbg.

  76. Art is my Healer. Its the therapy that I finally found through years of searching. It brings Life.

  77. I simply would not want to live if I wasn’t able to be creative. How’s that for an answer? It does sound dire, but I think it’s true, at least for me. My day is never complete unless I have hand stitched or sewn something and I become a bear to live with if I don’t.
    Loved the interview and would really like to win!

  78. I have filled my house with art, my own and other people’s. Some of this art was made by people I know, I some I have no idea who made it. It’s a pretty eclectic mix. Beyond this, there is potentially art in everything. I am a teacher, and I definitely feel there is art in my teaching. There is potentially art in everything, and so art is a way of looking at the world more than anything else.

  79. “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?” There are several answers to this one. For me, art has been therapeutic-having suffered with chronic pain for over 5 years (things are looking much better right now, though) “arting” was one of the few things that took my mind off of the pain, which I found to be quite amazing. Being able to create something that can be called art, makes me stretch my creative muscles, think outside the box, look at everything in life differently, and makes me better at problem solving in trying to figure out how to do whatever it is that I’m attempting. Never being one to take the easy route, like following directions, once I get that problem solved, it’s a real high for me. And last but not least, Art, with a capital “A”, has enriched my life and has become my life-I can’t even imagine a life without art, without having that opportunity to express myself, constantly pushing the boundaries & doing things that I never in a million years thought I could do, meeting so many other like minded souls & just feeling at home with them all. It’s as important to my survival as air or water, that’s Art!

  80. Art in my personal life…. being “MOM!” all the time is very hard. Art gives me a chance to “escape from it all”, after a hard day at the office (laundry, dishes, butts and noses, bathrooms, vacuuming oh and the dh … ) – it truly is my away time (even if I have to do it between the hours of 8:00pm and 2:00am). I don’t have the time for it that I would like and I tend to be a dabbler for this reason, but I just LOVE the out that it provides me with – creativity hasn’t been in my life for long but I plan to have it around for a very long time!

  81. Art is like breathing
    life unfolding
    understanding angst
    expression of self
    each moment a mystery

  82. […] Giveaways Still Open: Day 1/29   Day 2/29  Day 3/29 […]

  83. Art is freedom. Art is joy. Art is sadness. Art is an extention of what you are and what you want to become. Art is a journey and that journey is exciting and unpredicable. Art for me is always about the journey not the destination.

  84. I have to create something at least every three or four days or I’ll explode. Some people might not call what I create art…but my friends do. :)

  85. Well this is one of the easier questions! Art plays a prominent role in my private life by allowing me to have the tools to make lots of paper dolls, which gives me someone to talk to – and lessens my therapy bill.

    Actually, art allows me to express all the things I can’t get out verbally. I have to do something to get all that unexpressed stuff out. Dancing didn’t cut it for me – I just broke a few limbs and scared small children. As for trying to cook as my expression overload…well, lets just say dancing was a safer endeavor. For me and those around me. :)

    Life just doesn’t feel right if I’m not creating. Something. Anything. Even if I don’t ever choose to show it to anyone – knowing I made something fun or cool that I feel adds beauty to my little spot in the world, is so satisfying to me.

    And yes, I think Susan *should* give you the original. Along with everything else she was kind enough to offer!

    Katherine :)

  86. When I make Art I am busy with my hands and I am out of my head, I can not without it! It’s a way of living;o)
    When I am not making something every day I get restless

  87. Everyday that I write on my blog I feel that I am creating art with my words. Because in those words, on any given day, I am pouring out my life. Art is the imitation of life.

    Renee Khan

  88. I am only recently realising how important it is for me to be creative. I have a seemingly never-ending story with illness and depression – when I’m creating something, I’m not focussed on my physical and/or emotional suffering, and just simply focussed on the LOVE of what I’m creating. And I know that the love I create with is passed onto the recipients of my creations.

  89. I do my art to help me just get focussed on creating, nothing else. It helps me like when in June, my best friend passed away. I started creating ATC cards and it helps me work through my pain. I was doing art last night and thinking you know you can see a persons, Joy, sorrow, their personality, just about everything through their work? That’s awesome. Art makes new friends. HUGS

  90. Admit I used the ringmaster voice… why yes, I’ll admit it because it’s not the first time. I use it frequently throughout the day, “LADIES and GENNULMUN…. now entering the RING with her first cup of COFFEE, the amazing, the brilliant, the sleep-encrusted LIZZZZZZZZBEEEEEEEEEETTHHHHHHHHH”

    Yep. All the time.

  91. But of COURSE I did the Ringmaster voice – out loud, even!!

    As for art – it keeps me happy! Creating faeries from sweet little faces of yesterday – brings them back to life – that’s good. :)

  92. Howdy again, girl!

    Here’s the question:

    “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?”

    Since I “have no life,” the computer art I referred to in my last answer is what I do. All day, every day. I can’t draw myself away from it. Especially when I am challenged. (Today your challenge is: use this template and make something pretty! as an example.)

    Here’s the question:

    “Shouldn’t Susan give me her Original painting I mentioned?”

    Well…. I dunno, really. Well, maybe so. You’re letting us all know about her art and how fabulous she is. Maybe she owes you something!! LOL!!

    Here’s the challenge:

    admit you really did use the ringmaster voice.

    I admit that I did not. Sowwy!!!

    and/or my question “Shouldn’t Susan give me her Original painting I mentioned?” or if you don’t want in the middle of that battle -admit you really did use the ringmaster voice.

  93. Yikes! I can’t edit my comment! I’m mortified! :oops:

  94. If I didn’t have beauty surrounding me, I would shrivel up and die. How art plays a prominent role in my life? It feeds me, sustains me, entertains me, challenges me, stimulates me, inspires me and brings me peace.

  95. How does art play a prominent role in my life? I feel as though I live, eat, breathe and dream art. I love art. Heck, I was raised by Methodist missionaries who gave up a normal life for Methodism. I never understood that until I now realize I may have done something very similar for art! I love it!

  96. So many good comments. I must admit along with a lot of other I did use my ringmasters voice. hehe
    Art to me is my release. I have some health issues and it is now just my DH and me. So art is my way of getting away from the suffering. I can go in to my little room and get lost for hours. If I am not creatating myself I am surfing the web looking at all the talent that is out there.

  97. Yay! I love Susan Tuttle. Her blog is gorgeous just like her and her personality. What a fun giveaway! I would love to have a copy of this book.

    I definitely think she should swap the painting for a piece of your artwork. How about that? Also, without art, I would be so fidgety. I love art and the whole creative process. I need to creat. I cannot imagine how bleak life would be without art. :D

  98. Well, I TRIED to use my ringmaster voice, BUT my voice is not working right at the moment (pharyngitis)….I’ll try again next week ;)

    My art journal is very special to me, it allows me to voice and create my most personal soul felt thoughts and feelings. It’s very therapeutic. My life is sooo busy, but I cherish the time in my studio so very much. I also LOVE trying different techniques and ideas I read about on blogs of people like you!

  99. […] time to enter these giveaways too! Day 0, Day 1, Day 2, Day 3, & Day 4 Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)chrysti « Art By ChrystiPics […]

  100. Since I do not have my Art studio right now, it has not been prominent and I hate it! I am missing all my supplies! I can’t wait until I have my own space again!
    Artful Blessings,

  101. Creating art is a calming therapy for me…and it is as necessary as breathing. I simply must create.

  102. Art has become so important to me…for years I had been held back by my own expectations…and then altered books came along and it was like a damn of creative spirit was let loose…I’ve moved on to other things now but I still love that feeling I get when I have created something and it still looks good in my own eyes a week later…I can tell myself that I am an artist without feeling like I’m lying

  103. Art saves my life!
    Happy days,

  104. Hi Sweetie, Crafts of all kinds are my life…it was a good life…slowly the description of what I can do is growing very narrow.

    But I am a happy GREAT GRANDMA now…

    Until later


  105. Loved this post…soo inspiring with what you wrote and what Susan shared! Really love to read/hear about what inspires talented people, what they think about and feel while or before they create their art. Could read and re-read this piece…and your wit is just the BEST really!!

    My response to the “art” question is…I create my art (clothing/accessories design) because I have no other choice but to let out what keeps getting all backlogged up inside me or else take it out on my family . Really sounds awful but I have to have that release of all of the nonstop endless ideas that semingly take me hostage til they are brought to fruition. It is just a very necessary part of every single day and whether each idea comes out successfully or not the important thing at the end of the day is I have made a bit of space to allow the night and sleep to fill my mind up again with lots more ideas and inspirations. :)

  106. “How does art play a prominent role in your personal life?”
    I could probably write a book about this. To keep it short – which I must – I find art to be extremely healing. I’ve been through many, huge challenges. I’ve lived with diabetes for over 47 years. I suffer from depression. The list goes on and on. Can’t forget to say I’m a mother of a teenager. ART helps me to survive. Without it I think I might be totally lost.
    Gotta go – I still haven’t entered Susan’s giveaway for the book

  107. art is not just a part of my life, it has become my life through the years…i consider art as prayer and i try to live every moment in prayerful joy…art making materials are always with me even as i travel…i keep a tiny journal in my pocket at all times for recording things as they come to me…to stop creating would be to stop living for me…blessings, rebecca

  108. I get unsettled after a few days without doing something creative, I just need that to let my mind flow.
    And yes, i just the ringmaster voice in my head after your introduction *lol*

  109. The role art plays in my life –
    I’m in the middle of starting up an art-based business, which takes a lot of my time and energy. So, I feel surrounded by it in once sense and impoverished in another – because I find it difficult to balance art-business with art-pleasure. My own projects have been neglected, but I’m constantly trying to find that balance. I’m confident I will … soon. :)

  110. Thank you so much for sharing your art with us!
    Art is a total stress reliever for me. In fact, it is more than that! It has become my life since I basically have become housebound due to my illness. All the art I have seen today makes me happy! Thanks so much for your generosity with these giveaways!

  111. art gives me an escape from the tedious chores of life

  112. I never thought myself as an artsy person compared to my sisters who are very creative. One of them is a well known potter in my city. I just plug along with my crafting and I realize that I am….unquely so, and just for me and my kids, scrapbooking is a gift of love I hope will be passed on for decades and generations.

  113. I live in a rural area, and am somewhat reclusive. I seldom have an opportunity to exchange ideas or converse with others. I can’t say why art is so important to me, and I rarely create anything, but my room is filled with beautiful, stimulating things creating a haven for me.

  114. Art plays a prominent role in my daily life by looking
    at the things around me and seeing the beauty
    in mundane things and beautiful things – like the
    garden – and better yet viewing a wonderful art
    exhibit at a museum or gallery.

    Yes, I have to admit using that voice but only in
    my head.

  115. How does art play a prominent role in your personal life? Let me count the ways… As I’ve given art a prominent role IN my life it has changed me and my life a lot, and continues to be my favorite activity. This year I’ve made a daily art card, being creative almost every day is a great way to nudge your self into doing something and feeling good! I love it. It is my comforter, my soul food and my meditation practice!

    Great interview by the way!

  116. Having just retired and moved to a new house I now have my own studio; now I have to spend time catching up in the art world and I’m enjoying it so much.
    Of course she should give your her Original! You deserve it!
    Her new book has me very interested…I’d love to win a copy.
    Thanks for your 29 days of giving.


  117. well I am a scrapbooker, so art I am thinking effects me in everyway even when I take the simplest picture thought or just journaling little stuff plays a role in my total art life book.

  118. Hi all!

    My name is Dean and I’m new here [url=]:)[/url]. So far this is an incredible source of information and Ive spent a ton of time reading. Look forward to hearing from you!

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