Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Sue Jorgenson

It makes me appreciate the blessings so much more.
(I wouldn't have thought so back in the day!)

I was born deaf in 1956 and this was discovered when I was some four months old in early 1957 - and the first three years of a child's life are the most important in linguistic development, so that was a blessing. My first hearing aid and speech lessons came when I was 9 months old. Does that make me an early late bloomer?

I didn't get married until I was 35 and I became a mother ten months later, two weeks before I turned 36. But I had to put my own personal life on hold when I had to leave her father (with her at 21 months of age), and we were embroiled in a custody battle that lasted until his death fifteen years later. In the midst of all that, I also had to care for my parents, particularly my mother, who passed away early this year. After her estate was settled, I faced a huge void in my life - who was I, really? What did I want to do with my life? Or just simply DO?
One of my saving graces was that I got fired in December 2010 and I knew that I never wanted to work for someone else. Not ever.  Three months later a friend said to me, "I believe in what you're doing. How much do you need to start your business?"  Having my own business has helped me to stay steady in dealing with that huge void. 

I took Liv Lane's blogging e-course (Building a Blog You Truly Love) and early on in the e-course, some Very Important Questions were asked. What did I want to do? What did I want my blog to be about? Who would be the ideal readers? This was the first time I was able to sit down and actually think through such questions and come up with honest answers. Had I had such questions in my 20s or 30s, I truly don't think I would have known or been honest enough with myself. But because I had been kicked to the curb and then some, I was able to tackle the questions with clarity. 

Well, good golly, Miss Molly! Answering them triggered off this crazy-awesome domino effect! I realized that I don't always have the patience to be an artist with pencils, paints, etc. but I always had wanted to do photography. That led me to upgrading a loved-to-death camera and then signing up for a photography workshop in the Eastern Sierras in October...and then...the opportunity presented itself for me to attend a photography workshop chasing the aurora borealis in Iceland! Of all places! In February.

The other thing about being a late bloomer is that I am more secure and confident with who I am. One of the hats I wear is that of astrologer (over 40 years), tarot reading (nearly 30 years) and medium (going on 13 years). It is part and parcel of me.   Everyone has their beliefs, and I respect them for their beliefs (as long as no one is harmed), and I have learned to ask that they respect me for my beliefs as well. The playground of Life is big enough for all of us!

My life is literally beginning anew at 55 and I have a lot of goals to fulfill - owning my own residence, being with the right-for-me man, growing my business, traveling, and so much more. And I know I can achieve them all!

You can keep track of my late-bloomin' journey at

Monday, September 24, 2012

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Suzanne McRae

My journey through creativity…

My creative life started when I was about 12 years old. At that time I learned how to do embroidery and sewing at a 4-H club and shortly after that I learned how to knit and crochet. And at age 14 an elderly neighbor decided to show me how to quilt.
For the next three decades I did sew some clothing for our children and I sewed a beautiful flower-girl dress for our daughter that I was very proud of. I did a bit of quilting, smocking, and needlepoint

I took a tole painting class and made a small project. I was hooked. During those years, creativity was mostly done in little spurts here and there, never seeming to be a priority for me since there never seemed to be enough time. For a couple of decades, I have been a stay-at-home mom. Our son, who is the youngest, has autism. My life revolved mostly in the world of autism, researching and learning everything I possibly could… until last year... when I felt an urgent need to do something for myself.

and this is how I re-discovered the creative spark that was still within me…

In the fall of 2011 at age 53, I decided to hire a career coach to help me discover what I could do in this next phase of my life. It had to be something that I was passionate about and that would nourish and fulfill me in many ways while still being able to stay home to help support our son. Writing and creativity were two things that kept coming up constantly while doing the coaching. So I began by knitting dishcloths for myself, then I made a granny-square afghan for our daughter for Christmas. In February 2012 I opened my Etsy shop online, and since April I have my own website and am writing and figuring out all that I want to share about. I love having these two places that are mine.
I also enjoy genealogy and presently am working on a family book that includes over 6 generations of photos and stories. I want to start scrapbooking again, because anything that has to do with preserving memories for the next generations is very important to me. I have done a bit of painting and would love to explore the many different techniques that exist. I have also taken an interest in photography and love to travel with my family.

In the last decade I studied energy healing and have become quite passionate about learning several different types (Karuna, Reiki, Sphe-Re, Reiki Crystal Healing, and EFT). I am a firm believer in Heilkunst therapy and essential oils. Spirituality and personal growth are a big part of my life.

Come and check out what I am writing about and
what I am having a great time creating in my life.

Monday, September 17, 2012

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Denise Mulligan

Creative late bloomers have an artist

living inside them as a seed.

I'm 49 years old and I'm a creative late bloomer. The reason it took me so long to become an artist is that I had to stop believing the lies that our society tells us. The lies that tell us "you're too young and not good enough." Later on we're told we've missed the boat."You're too old, you should have begun early in life." Creative late bloomers have an artist living inside them as a seed. This creativity lies dormant until you decide to pay attention and nurture it. If you do nothing it dies. I was an artist as a child and all through high school. After high school I abandoned art because I believed the lies.

Art can be tricky. There is a social myth that artists have an innate talent. This may be true to a certain extent. You may have an ability as a child or even just pick it up and are really good at it. However, it's not often publicized that this is rare. Art can be taught. You can get better with practice. For some reason the myth remains and we want to believe this. We want to believe we are special that we have an inner genius. I got caught up in comparisons and never gave myself a chance to explore, experiment and practice. Believing that I was pretty good at art since childhood, I assumed I should be able to pick up a brush and create master pieces. I wasn't thinking of all the great masters who were apprentices to other artists and spent years practicing to become masters themselves. I didn't practice very much so I never got very good.

After I married and had children, mothering two little boys became my life. I never took much time for myself. I had a few episodes of taking art classes but they were short lived. When the class finished I put away my paints.

I longed for a time when I could relax and feel like an individual again. I moved further and further away from who I truly was. Shoving my dreams in a drawer didn't make them go away. My lack of creating art festered inside of me making me angry and depressed. I felt like a failure. Then, in September 2010 I started my own blog. Blogging was the key that unlocked my creativity. While blogging I I found an online mixed media art class. It was something that I could do while my kids were at school. It was easy in that you didn't have to draw or paint perfectly. Creating layers of paint was fun and the art came out really well. It was something I was proud of and it restored my self esteem. I became interested in reading art blogs as well. I used my blog as an online journal, expressing my feelings on the page. I got brave and started posting my art as well. I started making art on a daily basis. I found that my anger disappeared. I stopped comparing myself to others and enjoyed the process. I now experiment in all kinds of art making. I allow myself to learn and make mistakes. I allow myself to practice art.

Oil painting has become my passion. I balance my life of being a wife and mother with oil painting . I work part-time so when I'm not working and the kids are in school, I paint. Or I paint at night in the living room with my family while they watch television. When I'm not painting, I'm writing blog posts or taking photographs. I'm living my dream, I'm who I was meant to artist.

Whether you paint, write, bake, or are an entrepreneur you are creative and can consider yourself an artist. Creatives are people who make something from nothing. Creatives are the innovators in our world that invent, explore, beautify and make our world a better place. It's never too late, nurture the seed, become a creative late bloomer.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Susan Porter

...I never truly knew what it was to be an artist until I painted away my grief

Last year the universe whacked me upside the head with a reality check.  It does that sometimes. First my mother died, then my dog. Within a matter of weeks the two old ladies I'd nursed throughout their final months, days, hours were gone. And left me all sorts of empty. I didn't know what to do with myself and questioned everything about life. And purpose.  Grief does that to you.

Seven years earlier I'd packed up my paints and moved Mama into what had been my studio, a small cottage on our property. My son was at war, Mama wasn't happy in the retirement home and I was too stressed to paint anyway. Giving up my studio didn't seem like a sacrifice at the time, it seemed like the natural thing to do. I was still teaching art, I just wasn't making any. I didn't even know what my artistic voice was anymore.

Then I discovered Judy Wise, Stephanie Lee, and their amazing Plaster Workshop. I'd never taken an on-line class before but it looked interesting. Before long it changed my life. I discovered how much fun plaster could be. I loved scraping it, carving it, taking a torch to it. I loved the way it soaked up the paint. But mostly I loved the joy that comes from art with no expectations. Making art because it made me happy.  And to my surprise, I was happy.  Every day I woke up eager to go into the studio and play. After the plaster class I took Judy's Hot Wax class. Then I began playing with cold wax and oils, because I could. And then I rediscovered acrylics through Flora Bowley's on-line workshop. I took the best from everyone and rediscovered my creative self.
Understand, I have a degree in art and have worked as an artist in one capacity or another all my professional life. Worked, but I never truly knew what it was to be an artist until I painted away my grief this past year. Painted with passion, from the gut, ego checked at the door.

As my creativity blossomed I decided to blog about it. I taught myself Wordpress and built a website, OoLaLa, Living the Arty Life. Then I built another just for my art, SLPorter . I created a FaceBook group, Random Acts of Art, that encourages people to anonymously leave little arty bits and bobs out and about for strangers to discover. As if that wasn't enough, a few weeks ago I woke up knowing I had to write yet another blog, one that would empower women...or men... to say YES!!! to their dreams and their life. Big Bold Beautiful YES!!! is the result. It's blog that truly touches my heart. And apparently the hearts of others, judging by the comments.
I look back at this past year and can't believe where I've come from...and where I'm going to. I'm at the age where I could be thinking of retirement in a few years. Instead, I find myself becoming an entrepreneur. I have two blogs with plans for a third, each one totally different from the next. I've publicly committed to finishing a novel, I'm developing e-classes, have plans for some e-books. Have had one art show with another in the works. I'm painting like I never have before. And now I have a beautiful new studio, built by my husband, financed by the inheritance from my mother. A most special place infused with the love of my man and my mom. How can I help but make amazing magic in that space?

I'm saying YES!!! to life and loving every minute of it.

Monday, September 3, 2012