Creativity Talks: Jodi Paloni, Collaging Art and Life

I was connected with Jodi Paloni when I was searching for editorial expertise on a memoir I was writing. “You’ll love working with Jodi,” said our connection. “She is into the natural world, and relationships, and loss like you are.”

The more I worked with and learned about Jodi, the more I did, indeed, love working with her. She is a poet, a writer of a lauded book of fiction, a coach and a yoga practitioner. And, I discovered, a terrific collage artist.

I wanted to know how she came to making collages. Was the experience of writing similar to the experience of making a collage? Did she see a difference in the kinds of stories she writes and the kinds of stories her collages tell? And so much more…

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Creativity Talks: Sandi Goldman, Piecing Together Hope and Healing

I met Sandi Goldman in the Artists In Residence program at the Schar Cancer Institute where we both work with the arts to promote healing. I knew she was a quilter but didn’t know how astonishingly accomplished she is until she did this interview for my blog and talked to me about her work, her inspiration and process. And how quilting has helped cancer patients through their healing journeys.

I think Sandi must have more color and light receptors in her eyes than a bumblebee does. Her love of design, her strength in color and texture combine to make her quilts far more than “nice sofa pillows.”

She is a well-known quilt artist in the DC metro area, has shown her work at many exhibitions and won many awards for her quilts. Her quilts are layered with texture, color, pattern and meaning, all brought together as stories told by threads. The rhythm and beauty of her work expresses hope, healing, peace, and joy. Continue reading “Creativity Talks: Sandi Goldman, Piecing Together Hope and Healing”

Creativity Talks: Annie Thomas, At Home on the Range

D763EA48-0A0D-4FCF-AA9B-62ED8F7E4B69_1_201_aI met Annie Hosefros—now Annie Thomas—in the‘90s when we both worked at a small software firm in Northern California. Annie was in Marketing and wore cowboy boots. She was a buoyant, fun and funny colleague, adept at making lovely handmade books for friends, and hand-drawn cards for her friends.

She went to Montana to experience life and work on a friend of a friend’s ranch in the Boulder River valley for a summer, liked it, quit her software job in California, and moved the Montana in the summer of 1999 

Long story, short: Annie now lives outside McLeod, Montana with her husband, Tom. She has lived in Montana for over 20 years now–a feat for anyone moving to rural Montana from big cities with all their diversions and cultural activities.

I wanted to talk to her about the art of making a home–especially in the wilds where the nearest store in 30 minutes away, and about her many creative pursuits and how she keeps them going… Continue reading “Creativity Talks: Annie Thomas, At Home on the Range”

Creativity Talks: Cathaleen Curtiss, Storytelling in Felt

Cathaleen.NYC.I first met Cathaleen Curtiss at a programming class during my first few days working at America Online in 1997. We were being taught how to post content using AOL’s bespoke publishing system, Rainman. She was the company’s new Director of Photography, and would grow, and eventually run, a staff of 60 photo editors, setting the visual tone of the service. Continue reading “Creativity Talks: Cathaleen Curtiss, Storytelling in Felt”

Creativity Talks: Bowled Over, with Marty Carroll

B94E6E4F-3349-4DAA-B2D4-3AEE2D358B84Sometimes creativity “just happens.” A random spark igniting a flurry of experimentation and invention. Marty Carroll, full-time nurse and sometimes seamstress, talks about the inspiration and process of creating fabric bowls.

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Creativity Talks: Shelli Can–and Does–Make Things By Hand

shellican-58-resized.When I first met Shelli Martinez she was
knitting a pair of sweat pants.
Knitting them.
I was incredulous. “Is there actually
a pattern for knit sweatpants?”
Well, no, it turned out, unless I was talking about the pattern she made on graph paper after taking apart a pair of her favorite jeans to see how they were constructed.
I remember thinking,
“I have so much to learn
from this fearlessly creative woman.”

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Creativity Talks: Suzanne Kingsbury, Discovering the Genius Within

During our MFA residencies at the Bennington Writing Seminars, I often noticed a tall, radiant woman. She was in the fiction cohort, so I didn’t work with her, but I always noticed her because of her aura. I called her “The Siren,” because she seemed blessed with an unflagging, joyous spirit.
After graduation, Suzanne founded Gateless Writing, a national organization based on creative brain science and ancient Zen that supports writers to the point of publication and beyond.
I recently caught up with her to learn more about her inspiration for founding the organization, and about her creative process…
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Creativity Talks: The Art and Energy of Self-taught Painter, Matt Sesow

dogfish.sesowIn 2009, I heard about Matt Sesow, a D.C. artist who was described to me as “a modern-day Picasso.” I was skeptical (I tend to be skeptical about most things just-met dates tell me). But when I looked at Sesow’s website, I felt as though my fingers had just been stuck into an electric outlet: the paintings’ energy pulsated, jumped and vibrated. His colors burned.
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