Pretty Please, Pick Me- Celebrate the Letter P

Image source from Facebook
Image source from Facebook

Let’s celebrate the letter “P” in this post today as we muddle through the tongue twister title: Pretty Please Pick Me.

Let’s face it, there are many times during the day that we raise our hand in service to others. Pretty please, pick me…I’ll do that task, project, volunteer job, etc. It’s all good…sometimes…

Quote

In all my days of creating custom jewelry, I have rarely declined a challenge to create an item. I can probably count the times that I have willingly passed on a custom request on one hand. One request that came across my path and comes to mind to share from a few years ago was a request for a glass project.

A person wanted to know if I would create a glass visor for them. You know, the kind that you wear on your head to protect you from the sun.  It also had the need to be shipped across the country.

Item: Agusta Sportswear visor
Item: Agusta Sportswear visor

Using my best judgment, I declined the job and passed on that challenge. I did not even have a suggestion to this person as to where they might inquire next for their service needs. For several reasons, the project was a huge risk in my mind and simply put, it sounded really stressful to attempt, let alone accomplish, no matter who the professional artist was.

My Red Light Warnings: 

1. I was not even sure it could be a functional item since it was going to be very fragile and heavy.

2. The technique to even consider creating a visor would be something that I am not equipped to do. Using a large ceramic kiln or even a glass blower’s fire kiln came to mind as a source for consideration to even heat, smelt or configure such an item. I had no idea how much time this project would have demanded.

3. It was going to be such a risk to mail an object like that. The insurance alone would be horrific in cost. I would be on edge from the minute it was created to the second it was to be delivered.

When sharing your creativity professionally, it is so important not to get over your head in tasks.  It is so helpful to know your own work ethic, so that you can manage time.  When fulfilling your delivery promises, it is important to be consistent and make sure you are satisfying the needs you are obligated to. And lastly, it only makes sense that you tackle the projects that will be worthy of your talents.

As Club Creative Studio strives to always place their best work forward, I humbly bow down when a project is not appealing for me to create a wonderful end product. Are you an artist that may have taken on such a challenge as my glass visor request? If so, I wish I would have saved the name of the person commissioning the visor art. 🙂 AND, I would have loved to see your final results.

Do you have a story to share about a custom request that an artist denied or are you a creative person that had to say “no” to a task too difficult, strange, or too costly in time or materials to make? Please feel free to share your experience.

 

 

 

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Keep Learning- Celebrate the Letters K and L

Club Creative Studio Bead Soup Challenge More than likely you have heard the phrases: keep your nose to the grindstone, keep on track and keep it simple. Let’s add Keep Learning to the bunch as well. All of these phrases combined to help me complete my latest beading challenge.

Club Creative Studio Bead Challenge Necklace

In celebration of the letters K and L, I title today’s post to begin with those phrases that are very important within the creative process, and explain how they pertained to my recent bead project. The 7th Bead Soup Challenge was a creative journey in which bead-makers across the world were paired up and agree to exchange and document their creations from the shared stash shared. Club Creative Studio Bead Soup Challenge My Bead Buddy Susan Sheehan, from New Hampshire supplied me with a collection of hand-made glass beads, crystals, findings and more.  It was easy to gain inspiration from the color palate that she sent me, the task at hand next was to keep my nose to the grindstone and work on completion in time for the big reveal date. danglefocalsneakpeekbeadchallenge I started out admiring the pile of beads for about a week before I started to sketch and decide where my visions were going in order to keep on track.

Club Creative Studio Bead Soup Challenge Earrings

The earrings were created from the remaining beads and fun paisley bopper charms I had on hand.  I wanted to use as many beads from the stash that I could, so I made a plan to divide the beads up to create three separate items. I completed two necklaces a short and long one and the dangle earrings, keeping it simple in the end. I feel the collection has a cohesive feeling and all can be worn together or separately. Club Creative Studio Bead Coup Challenge Necklace

Club Creative Studio 3 piece creations

As I keep learning more about how creativeness comes to fruition, I sure enjoy the journey and roads it leads me toward. Thank you, Susan for the wonderful path you placed in front of me. I hope you enjoy my end results as much as I do. I did wear the entire 3 piece collection already and received many compliments. You definitely inspire others in your art. And I hope we keep a continued friendship from this experience.

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Michelangelo- A Constant Learner

Image credit: abcgallery.com
Image credit: abcgallery.com

Club Creative Studio- Creativity QuoteLearning is continual and constant and creative learning is an individual  journey.  What can we learn from the above quote from the great Michelangelo?  Whether you are an emerging leader or artist. If you are a seasoned veteran at your craft, there’s always more to learn and new ways to grow within that field . At 87 years old, Michelangelo said it well: Ancora imparo (“I’m still learning).

Club Creative Studio appreciates the learning curve and supports curious minds in pursuit of creative knowledge.  Like Michelangelo,  the continual association with learning can be a passion and a reality to get the know=how to become better at something. Learning opens doors to growth and opportunity.  What do you think that Michelangelo at age 87 meant when he said “I am still learning.”  Do you think that he meant to express that he did not know it all? Did he perhaps imply that there is so much to learn about so many topics in the span of a lifetime?

Thinking about this quote today, what do you think this quote would mean to you if you were near the age of 87 versus now at the age you are now? 

This quote is great for many reasons if you ask me. It gives me a sense of wonder that the love of learning is a gift at any age, as well as a part of our life at any stage.  We simply can’t know or experience everything in our life-time.  We are in a constant revolution of thoughts and learning episodes.  We learn from our own life and from each other’s journey. We face trial and error daily and we are on a vicious cycle to catch up with the new as we hold onto and learn from the past.

Michelangelo di Lodovico Buonarroti Simoni, known commonly as Michelangelo, was an Italian Renaissance Artist: sculptor, painter, architect, poet, and engineer who exerted unparalleled influences on the development of Western art.

This quote comes to mind for me whenever I attempt a new skill and I have much to learn.  Although we look at the list of talents Michelangelo shared with us, he had to have known that with each of his creative jumps, came a humbling thought that it was all  a learning process. 

My life and creative offerings take on a personal spin from what others have done on as well.  Each creative process brings me to the realization that I can be comfortable with my level of expertise but, I can also take notice that with each topic at hand, I have opportunities to learn even more.  Taking time as an example, to attend more art classes, workshops, seminars, teleseminars and hands-on lessons, I have gained a newfound love for learning once again.  I can take time to slow down for instruction from others.  I don’t have to learn it all by myself.  In this same light as Michelangelo, I can say today that I too am still learning. Still learning new techniques, skills, people, traits, still learning about history, present day events, creative expressions, and still learning the best way to learn.

As your learning adventure marches on, what can you share about the level of excitement of continual learning?  Share your comments below, we’d love to hear about your challenges, and success stories about learning something new that helped you grow creatively.

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Sharing Bead Soup

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Portion of the Bead Soup I sent to my beading challenge partner Susan,

Club Creative Studio is taking part in the Bead Soup Challenge #7.  It will be fun sharing Bead Soup.

Please review past posts regarding the details of this wonderful sharing and creating challenge for those making hand-made beads and jewelry from them. Since the arrival of my beads from my bead exchange partner, Susan I have had time to simmer the ideas I have and will soon begin my creative thought process and my design using the beads she sent me last week.  I am looking forward to the creative growth.

I have not gotten official word that my box has indeed arrived to New Hampshire however, it has had adequate time. With that in mind, I would like to go ahead and share what I included in my package of fun. The idea of sharing is to highlight some of your own hand-made beads and pair them with interesting items that can be utilized in a creative challenge for the artist on the receiving end to express in their own style.  Lori Anderson is the host and brain-child behind the organization of this particular bead challenge.  It is perfect “soup” , warming my soul on a cold winter day for me living in Philadelphia.  I welcome the challenge.

I included a variety of supplies and I hope she is inspired to do something fun and add her own components if she desires as well. I included items of stone, Czech glass, hand-rolled clay beads, hand-twisted wire worked beads, seed beads, ceramic, rhinestone and metal charm elements just to name a few.

Perhaps she will blog about her experience. I plan to document my creative journey on the Club Creative Studio Facebook page with photos and within this blogging platform. I am happy to share the experience of the creative thought process and creative expression of this beading challenge by sharing my Bead Soup Challenges.

It is my hope that you find the steps that I take interesting and keep in touch as I share the trials and tribulations of this beading challenge. Please check back for future posts on this topic here and on the page: http://www.facebook.com/clubcreativestudio

Club Creative Studio Bead Soup Challenge 7 IMG_8220 IMG_8221 IMG_8222 IMG_8223 IMG_8227 IMG_8233

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Special Arrival: Box of Beautiful Beads

Hand-made Glass BeadsBead Soup 7 Challenge Beads 

Club Creative Studio’s post today highlights the special delivery from the mail this afternoon. My special arrival came today, it was a box of beautiful beads. The beads in my photograph were sent to me specifically for the Bead Challenge called:  Bead Soup Challenge & Blog Party, #7.

Susan Sheehan is my Bead Soup Bead Challenge Buddy.  We were paired from over 500 participants in Lori Anderson’s Bead Soup and Blog Party Challenge. She is from New Hampshire and works primarily in glass, creating wonderful beads, many with the floral motif theme (which is right up my alley). We exchanged boxes and I received mine today! She should get the box that I sent her by Monday.

The excitement starts to build the minute you are assigned your bead partner’s name and location. I had a chance to look on Susan’s website and read a few blogs once I knew she was assigned to me.  With exchanged contact information we are able to keep track and communicate along our creative journey.  It is wonderful that we have put together totally different packages to inspire each other.  She creates in her studio and can be found selling her art at: http://www.susansheehan.etsy.com  The challenge aspect comes next as we sit in front of the bead stash wondering what to create and how to use the elements in front of us.  I anticipate using a few of my own items as well, but, the majority of the supplies will come from the pile she has gifted me.

 What’s in her shared treasure box?

 

Admiring this selection, the first impression that I had was she has a great sense of color. The combinations are wonderful and I am inspired to create starting with a good color palate in front of me from the get-go. She included an array in styles of beads which will certainly make for an eclectic feel of whatever I end up creating from this collection of bead types. I am faced with working with a variety of shapes, sizes and weights of beads and that is a challenge unto itself.  I am not afraid of mixing metals so the copper-colored chain and the silver clasp and bead caps don’t frighten me.

Susan has challenged me to basically create using pink, turquoise, and brown. There are many larger beads all of which can combine to become focal beads or serve as a focal bead all alone. The obvious choice is using the large amber-colored glass round as the main focal bead.  It made me think immediately of using it as part of a center tassel, at first glance so I will see if that changes when I hit the design table or not.

The tube beads dotted with mini-seed beads and floral theme motif are about one inch long, there are four of those. Two brown rounds are not identical but have been made with the same feel. She included six interesting pink glass mosaic feel beads that shimmer in the light, those are cool as well.  With an interesting mixture of tiny crystals and Lucite, I can  imagine using them as little accents of color and dangle beads right now at first glance.

The highlight of her box are of course her hand-made glass floral beads. She has included ten for me to use in my creation.  They are dotted with spots of turquoise, pink, brown, orange and a little bit of purple. Wonderful!

After I let my  “soup” simmer overnight, I will think about what I want to create and then sit down and design, arrange and question.  I plan to document my creative thought process and share the development of my special arrival…my box of beautiful beads. Be sure to visit this blog again as well as the Club Creative Studio Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/clubcreativestudio for updates on my beading challenge process.

 

 

 

 

 

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Creativity is Expression

Club Creative Studio- Creating allows you to express yourself.

It is no secret that creativity is a form of expression.

Have you discovered the reasons why creativity allows you to express yourself?  There may be several reasons why allowing creative thoughts and actions into your life can benefit you. In today’s Club Creative Studio’s blog post I want to touch on  few aspects explaining how creativity can  help you define who you are.  While it is true that “you are you” as a unique being and you are capable of expressing your individuality in several ways, how you express your creativity is where being creative comes into play.  Being creative and allowing yourself to be true will give you the chance to express yourself to the fullest.

Let’s say you are naturally a shy person. There is nothing wrong with having this quality at all, I am thinking of a word that has a reference to a characteristic many seem to want to overcome in some degree level.  Some people wish they were more outgoing, more brave and daring, louder, more showing of self-confidence.

Whatever the challenge we see as a potential shortcoming which by we identify with for any reason, I believe that by adding creativity into the mix, we  allow ourselves to tackle those challenges more readily.  Art therapists will probably be among the first of many to tell you that the use of art in many forms will free you of many things. I too believe in the power of art as a means of expression and a break through to many situational problems or concerns.  Letting out what is inside is a release of sort that can have a healing and revealing process associated with it. Do you know how being creative can benefit you?

 My Five Benefits to Being Creative

1.  Release.  Using creativity as a means of release can free you up of unwanted stress and tension. Free your mind of worries for a bit, or share what is considered over-load information in a different venue.

2.  Answers an Inner Need. Being creative allows you to be satisfied with the needs that you have to express what your imagination fosters. Do you have a need to be expressive and share your inner thoughts? No matter if a creative need is expressed to yourself in a private journal entry or sung out loud to the roof tops, creativity can call upon your inner needs and be filled.

3.  It’s Natural.  It may not seem that way sometimes but, we all have the potential to be highly creative. It is only when we become older that we lose sight of how easily creativity can flow because of all of our hang-ups. Being creative can become automatic and freeing we can appreciate the natural built-in drive to strive to be creative we already have, naturally. Creativity is natural and it is contagious. Creativity begets Creativity.

4.  It’s a Brain Game.  Looking at creativity growth as a personal challenge is a way to increase it with intended purpose. It takes practice to be creative without having to think about what you are doing.  The more times you are calling upon yourself to think or act on a creative thought or impulse, the faster those opportunities appear when you need them the most. Your out-of-the-box thinking concepts will become more frequent when you train yourself to be more expressive and imaginative every chance you can.  I believe being more creative can become a personal challenge and attainable goal.  Practice of anything will bring about a change.

5,  Shake It Up. Expressions of creativity shakes up our senses.  Adding a new view to a situation, a twist on a solution, or a vision of enlightenment stemming from a creative thought adds spice to life.  Even if you are not the one being creative but you are listening to a creative person or thought, their creative actions or words can inspire you to act in a creative manner as well.  Why not use creativity to shake up your world?  The world needs MORE creative thinkers. We need different solutions, we desire our days to be exciting and worth remembering. When creativity shakes up and changes something, we take notice.

If creativity or calling upon your creativity is not your strong suit, I guess I made this list for you in mind. If you can find one of the numbers helpful to inspire a creative spark and reason to be creative today, I’d love to hear about it by a comment below this post. Have a great day being “Creative Everyday”!

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Creativity: Where Is It?

Thomas Merton quote.
Thomas Merton quote.

Club Creative Studio has a few questions for you to ponder today.  Concerning CREATIVITY…do you know where it can take you?  Hopefully you do not have to look long or hard to find it. Creativity can be found within yourself or within others.  So knowing that; where is it? Do you know where to look or who to look at? Do you know what it can do for you? Where it will lead you?

Discovering creativity levels within yourself or others is a growing and learning process.  As the quote from Thomas Merton suggests, art  (or creativity in general) enables or allows us to find ourselves. We can discover what is deep within us or at the top of the surface.  Merton also goes on to say in the quote that we can also lose ourselves at the same time, meaning that we can set ourselves free and experience creativity at its fullest, not paying much mind of other things going on around us. Creativity never grows old or goes out of style. Creativity may grow stale but we can always revive it and relive it and improve.

Creativity Never Goes Out  of Style

One place to start looking is quite obvious. Merely look ALL AROUND! Yes! Creativity is all around us, I have always said this many times. Open your eyes to discover the unique qualities of life around you. How can you get lost in creativity and where will it lead you?

While I was a classroom art teacher, everyday I would strive to stress in my students the importance of seeing creativity around us. Expressing it and experiencing creative venues gave our students the chance to see where creativity could take them.  Maybe they were introduced to a new concept. Maybe they found a new talent or practiced a new skill. Perhaps during our lessons, they grew appreciative of other’s creative efforts or served as inspiration to another as they expressed their own creative thoughts.  Taking extra steps to recognize where creativity is affords us the opportunity to search it out when we need it.

Where will creativity take you? The creative journey can be as long and as exciting as you make it out to be. It can be shared and appreciated.  A creative journey does in fact allow you to find yourself, express yourself and understand yourself. Creativity also lends the opportunity to get lost in the process, lose track of time and lose our inhibitions and fears about art or any other creative thought process or expression. Dance, prose, visual arts, theatrical arts etc., they all are expressions of creativity that take us to places we have never seen before. Relish in the creative process. Look around to gain it and foster it to grow it.

The aspect I love the most about being an artist is the fact that what I create can be shared and appreciated. While creating, as I continuously find myself and lose myself in art, I also get the thrill of giving and sharing art.  To view results of  my creativity, please take time to view creations on the website. The inventory is updated and evolving often.  The creative spirit is there to inspire, appreciate and best of all, purchase! Enjoy! http://www.clubcreativestudio.com

 

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Creativity Takes Courage

Creativity Does Takes Courage.
Creativity Does Takes Courage.

Creativity does take courage.

The Club Creative Studio blog today has a focus on five of the top reasons why I believe this is true. Can you think of anything to add to the list?

  1. Being creative demands that you “put yourself out there”.  It takes bravery to express yourself as an individual.
  2. Being creative explores unknown results.  Courage is needed to chart unfamiliar territories and step outside the box.
  3. Being creative requires a level of risk.  Creativity has a risk of failure and success.
  4. Creativity is a give and take experience.  Creativity gives satisfaction to self and others. Creativity also includes a part of the creator’s soul.
  5. Creativity has an element of investment.  Being creative uses invested supplies and a time commitment.

These are the very reasons among others, that I am dedicated to Being Creative Everyday!

It is not easy to be the one that always stands out in a crowd.  But, it is probably the most satisfying result of having courage to create.  Expressing uniqueness is something that anyone can learn to be comfortable with.  When a creative person sits down to focus on a task at hand, they do so with the thought that the results are going to be unpredictable.  I love knowing that my creative endeavors are all part of my wonderful journey.  The path can take on twists and turns as fast as the ideas spark.  The exciting part of creativity is that it can evolve and proceed in many new directions.

Being creative always as an element of risk involved.  I know that my success and failure rates are experienced in record amounts. Creativity is a learning process.  It is an expression as unique as the individual.  While any creative person dedicates a part of their soul to their art, creativity does not always take away from the creator. Creativity expressed and shared gives greatly to those willing to receive and reach out to connect with another’s creative ways. For me, Being Creative Everyday is not only my personal and business model canvas mantra, it is also a means to the end result of being the best I can be in creating art and sharing it with others.

My hope for you today is to find a way to be creative and thrive in your own level of creativity.  The spirit of creativity lives within you, find what it takes to spark it, and see what it can do for you!

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Creativity As Stress Buster

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Believe it or not, being more creative can allow you to also be less stressed.

Having a creative outlet opens your mind and eyes to new and exciting ways to distress.

What’s your creative stress buster?

I use the opportunity to be creative with art on a daily basis. In this TNT (This-N-That) Club Creative Studio post I’d like share ideas why creativity can come to the rescue in times of stress. My personal and business mantra is Be Creative Everyday!  Having this frame of mind has allowed me to use the arts as a means to be expressive and less stressed in my day.

Focus your mind and hands creatively and you are in for an escape (of sorts) of reality. Being creative takes my thought process to a different out-of-the-box, critical thinking stage.   It helps me forget about the other things that are stressors in my life.  When I am creative, my focus changes to thinking in nonconventional means and I allow myself to grant freedoms of imagination and growth from routine.

Being creative sets my mind free from rules and places me in a state of experimentation.  Gifting the opportunity to ask and act upon questions like “what if”. Recently, I had the misfortune of having technical difficulties.  Within two days of each other , I discovered that I laundered my cell phone and the motherboard of my computer was fried. Talk about some bad luck. My technical difficulties were woes that I had to solved quickly so I could get back on track to where I needed to be personally and in my business. Those are stressful times, when you have to worry about a cost associated with a solution, as well as the time you are going to sacrifice to get back to your normal life when there is a challenge in your mist.

Creativity gave me comfort. Creativity was the sweet diversion from my problems.  Creativity gave me something else to concentrate on while I waited for the outsourced help. In this instance, I had gained time to be more creative because I was not directly involved with my main concerns. You can use creativity as a crutch to help you become stronger in critical thinking skills and thinking differently in general. I think that stress become less prominent if you inject some level of creativity into each situation. Creative thoughts sure take the routine out of the day,  allow your personality to shine, and gift others with alternative points of views. We were all meant to be indivuals and I can think of no better way to express uniqueness than to show your creative side. Give the gift of creativity to yourself or others today and find out if it will serve as a stress buster technique for you in the future.

What will you do to inc0rporate creativity into your life by thought and action? You may start by taking on a simple challenge as this: ask the question: “what if…”

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What Time is It?

What time is it?

Please don’t tell me that the clock last night was right when I finally went to sleep at 4:00 A.M.

Sleep deprivation is no joke.

Take time for the things you need- like sleep. But know when you can afford to work instead of sleep.
Take time for the things you need like sleep. But know when you can afford to work instead of sleep.

The clock was right, as it turned out, that I stayed up until 4:00 A.M. doing what I love to do… bead.  This is another curse of a creative mind. There are seemingly constant visual images, brain-storm ideas, “aha” thoughts just waiting to be tapped into. When the creative thoughts pile up, what do you do?

If you are like me, you act on the impulses and the mood.  While it is true that you can feel more creative at different times of the day, for me I can’t pass up the opportunity to act on the urge to be creative. The situation doesn’t seem to pass.  To suppress my creative urges end up rendering me just plain crabby.

No matter what the clock says, I have the luxury of making and maintaining my own work hours. So, if I happen to have a creative streak in the wee hours of the night, I just go with it. I have learned to just go with the flow.  Sometimes, if I pay heed to the clock and live by the tick-tick, I find myself stressed in other ways. I become tied to the feeling that I have to work in a specified time frame and I can’t explore at a relaxed pace.

 I have noticed for me that if I am working on something new or challenging, those are the times that I automatically and naturally lose track of time. When you are on a roll, you are on a roll! The time dedicated to art that I create in the middle of the night takes on a special meaning. My occasional late night or early morning work efforts are very intense and focused. I know that I could be (and maybe should be) asleep, so I am aware that what I am working on is worth my time away from getting my needed ZZ’s.

My rationalization for  giving into a work streak at odd hours is simple.  I can always take a power nap the following day if I need it.  That is my plan “A”. With that solution in my mind, I use the time that I feel the most creative to work, work , work.  Most times these bursts are very productive. It is a quiet time in my work space. No phone interruptions, no television, background noise, no radio, no foot traffic, no hunger or thirst issues, and working in the comfort of pajamas is a perk.

Whatever the underlying cause for sleeplessness, when I turn my time into productive creative time, I get a feeling of accomplishment at the start of the following day. How do you use your energy when you have a creative spurt in the wee hours? Is it worth it to you to lose valuable sleep in order to satisfy a creative urge? If you can’t sleep and can’t use your sleeplessness to a work advantage do you have a “plan B”?

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Today, I woke up to eight completed bracelet projects and four pin projects. I’d call that worth the lack of sleep I may have sacrificed. Feed your creative spirit. I fed mine a heaping  bowl of  “sleep” and I am still in a great mood and alert, ready to create again.

Learn how to manage your time so you can enjoy the occasional all-niter because you may never know when it will produce great things.  Wish me sweet dreams, because I will be ready to hibernate later tonight.

My words of advice: Pace your creativity, not the floors with sleeplessness.

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