Creative Entrepreneurship


When we Rochester Artisans held our first exhibit “Blue” at the now-closed Dryer House Gallery in Victor, my partner Steve attended the opening with me. He said the thing he was most taken by, was the passion that we artists feel about our work. “The same passion that you have,” he said to me. It almost surprised me, because I already knew that and possibly take it for granted. But how cool that that passion comes through to others, especially non-artists. Makes me kind of goosebumpy.

I’m getting that same feeling as I read the Interviews that are being submitted for the Get to Know series I started on this blog a few days ago. I am little surprised and extra happy that everyone has been able to answer the question about what their dream project is. And some are big dreams – I love that!

I’ve had the notion to do these interviews in the back of my mind for a little while and one day on my lunch hour at my day job, decided to Just Do It. Knowing it’s easier to tweak some existing thing than start from scratch, I started Googling for questions to ask in the interview. Everything I found was too cliche or too deep or too ridiculous. But I copied and pasted a set of questions into a Word document, as a place to start.

I didn’t use a single one of those questions and the moment I started typing, the questions that I wanted to ask flew out of my fingers. I think some of them came from my experience at shows, what my customers ask me, too.

The response has been good so I’ve decided to spread the interviews out over time – maybe every few days. I don’t want to lock myself into “every Monday” or anything – we’re going to just let it flow.

One of the questions I kept reading in my Google search was, “What inspires you?” I could be wrong but from everything I’ve read from artists, anywhere, anytime, ever, everyone says they are inspired by the world around them. No shit, Sherlock. How could that even be avoided?

This past Christmas season I was in Target and looked up at a decoration that blew my mind. Thank goodness for cameras on our phones, a feature I once thought unnecessary.

Ignore the quality – it’s enough to remind me of what I saw, if I ever figure out how I want to interpret this into my art.

Under the category of too much information, this is my sister’s bathroom linoleum floor, older than the hills. I’ve only seen this floor umpteen times but the day I took this photo (sorry for that visual!), for some reason, it called to me.

I’ve caught myself, ignoring the conversation in a TV show, because I’m so focused on the round, symmetrical wall art in the background. That’s what rewind is for!

What I want to know about is the process artists take. I love just about any craft or DIY show on TV. I often joke the TV in my studio is only capable of getting HGTV or the Food Network. I have zero desire to make a super-fancy cake but I love watching those shows too!

I think it’s funny that people think the tiny, delicate stitching I do for my paper art is mind-numbingly tedious. I can’t imagine not doing it! And I find myself thinking, “Wow, you photographers have to traipse around the planet, hoping to find something interesting to photograph?” Or “Seriously, you potters and fused glass artists – have to fire your pieces one or more times? Where’s the instant gratification in that??” I remember when a friend who makes machine embroidered towels mentioned ironing the towels before packaging them. I had never considered she had to do that and could only think, “Kill me now if I have to iron for a living.”


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