Who and What I am into the Week: Mini Controversies

Well, if I were honest about what I am into this week…I spent an inordinate amount of time reading “threads” of controversial topics online. Martha Stewart and her “off sounding” sound bytes involving bloggers. Lisa Condon’s art being copied and then the photographers work she used to create her art being copied. Really? Who has time for all this??? Apparently, I do. Which in truth, I do not but I got sucked into some really long threads of sometimes thoughtful and sometimes uneducated interactions.

Responses and then peoples responses to responses. I KNOW better than to get sucked in. I have left  (supposedly professional) Linkedin groups for this very reason. It takes emotional energy. I remember getting caught in a thread once-OMG! Whatever you do DO NOT COMMENT or your day is shot-and then looking at the time and thinking does (insert industry leader’s name here) do this? Do they spend their time and precious energy responding to a response to get the responders up-to-date on the “real” controversy?

It’s not like I want to be an apathetic voter or anything. I do think that the vein in both cases had to do with copying. If you happened to listen closely, Martha doesn’t like having people copy recipes. Lisa doesn’t like being copied verbatim and people have some serious opinions about photos being copied. Not sure I heard photographers weigh in on that issue. I am sure they do though… way way down on the thread that I didn’t get to because I just had to STOP and give myself a SHAKE.

I went to the John Singer Sargent exhibit in Boston this week. I wonder if, back in his day, they talked and gossiped over dinner about copying? Was originality hoarded and guarded in fear of being copied? You know, they didn’t have secret Pinterest boards back then!


I  have been on a bit of a mission as of late to foster originality and uniqueness in the creative community. It needs to be done. Instead of wasting creative time and energy staring at mini train wrecks in our mini worlds, we should probably concentrate on our own originality. I know that comes in many different forms (no judging.) I also know that the word originality carries some Picasso type of weight to it but HEY, there is only ONE you! That means you are completely original. It also makes you an expert on you. There is nothing like seeing people realize how original they truly are. The style course has been crazy good because people are seeing themselves in a beautiful new light. Beautiful, that’s you too. Demand originality from yourself. Draw out what has made you into YOU. If that means you take time out of your life to find yourself, that’s okay. We’ll be right here when you get back.  And we will be so happy to see you and your unique, original ole self!




Sheila Meehan on outfitting your art licensing portfolio

Sheila Meehan from Meehan Design Group is my guest today! She has been in art licensing for YEARS! And she is sharing her experience with you, yippee! Not only is she an agent to some of today’s brightest artists (you know Cori Dantini is a fav of mine!) she also consults and is now teaching! She has a webinar coming up on putting together  your portfolio and presenting yourself to manufacturers.  Presentation is a biggie! It is on Nov 7th. If you attend live, you get the chance to ask her questions but if you book it and can’t attend, you can still get the recording. The info is on J’Net Smith’s page here. But you know me, I don’t let Sheila off the hook! I love to ask my “state of the industry” questions. I think it is always HELPFUL to get  the opinion of someone who has a large amount of experience and someone who is in the trenches selling art everyday! (When did selling art become a trench activity?!! Haha!) Tune in and hear what Sheila has to say!





Dreams, Plans, Goals

Khali Whatley is back! She has turned into such a lovely blessing in my life! All since starting the show! She tuned in, reached out to me and now I have a wonderful friend! Yeah!! We were making a special recording for the Smart Creative Style Course Q and A and we made one for you as well.   We are talking about business goals, why you need them and HOW to tackle them!  You might be surprised! This 10 minutes could CHANGE the way you operate in a POSITIVE way!!  Great stories packed into this short video (and a teary eyed Monica!)  It’s a good one! Tune in!



Who and What I am into this Week: Paul R. Williams


One of the interesting elements of the Smart Creative Style course was that I  realized what type of architecture I am drawn to. Through a series of exercises and clicks, I found the work of Paul R. Williams, an African American architect who began his work during the period of growth in Los Angeles in the 1920’s and 30’s.  I started reading up and on him and found a fascinating revelation that speaks to me as an artist.

I knew he had to deal with serious prejudice but he faced racism head on but how he dealt with it is incredible. Here is an excerpt from the book, Classic Hollywood Style:

” When it was inappropriate for him to lean across the shoulder of a white person, he learned to draw upside down. This enabled him to sit on the other side of the desk, with the clients firmly planted a safe distance away on the other side, and as he asked what you would like in your home, he sketched it upside down.”

 UPSIDE DOWN!!! He practiced this technique at night. This book was filled with his attention to detail and excellence in every image. I am awe struck by his story, his work and his dedication. He had an illustrious career and yet I can’t get this detailed part of his journey out of my head.

He figured out what he needed to do and did it.

No one was guiding him or telling him how to be a success in 3 easy steps. No one offered him a webinar to learn how he could  gain 10,000 followers in 6 weeks. He couldn’t google “how to deal with white clients.”  He figured out what he needed to do and he did it. I am truly inspired  by Paul R. Williams.





Emily McDowell’s amazing adventure


Emily McDowell is one to watch! She is fun. Wait! I meant she is FUNNY! Ok, she is fun and  funny!

She is making it happen. “It” being a rapidly growing stationery and gift company.  What has happened to her in the last year has turned into what she calls a learning curve-tastic-adventure. (Insert tune: THIS GIRL IS ON FIRE) Her art and her take-no-prisoner-sentiments have hit the pulse of a delighted and amused audience. Fast (read: meteoric) growth has been the result. Tune in as she gives advice and shares her story.



Marrying up your creative brain to your business brain

If you are anything like me, you may not have complete trust  in the left side of your brain. You may have not have made friends with your analytical side early on in grade school as you gleefully played with the creative or right side of your brain. It may be time to reintroduce them to each other! You are going to need all parts of yourself as a small business owner. Here is my advice on how you navigate this meeting!

PS Check out my cute scarf sent to me by Nikki Butler

PSS How about my new painting in the background from Jamie Derringer?

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Who and What I am into this Week: Donald Drawbertson on Instagram


donald_robertson One of my new favorite people to follow on instagram is Donald Drawbertson aka Donald Robertson. He is head of Creative Development at Bobbi Brown. His loose yet magnetic drawings simply delight me every time I see them in my feed. Oh, to be that loose with my art. Maybe he doesn’t drink as much coffee as I do so he never gets wound up? How does he manage to be so prolific? Is his desk at work piled high with markers?  Wouldn’t it be nice to have him on the show so I could ask him all this? My very favorites of his are the drawings he does of “multiples.”  Giraffes make me happy so multiples of giraffes make me very happy.


And how about these food-a-grams? Is this guy a hoot or what? I want my brain to be so creative that I start seeing things in my food! You can follow Donald here, he’s fun!


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