There were about 100 creative women at the Michaels Makers Summit and I wanted to get to know everyone. It was a whirlwind and that didn't happen. But there were many I did connect with. They made an impression even if the visit was short.
I thought about how that works. How and why does one connect with someone else you just met? One reason stood out to me - people shared their story. Sometimes I didn't even remember someone's name but I could describe them by the adventure, drama or funny experience they shared. It didn't have to be a big story it just had to be their story, something that happened in their life circle.
Our stories help shape others stories. We remember them. Like these stories I heard this week...
@phyllisadventures - who's works for whole foods and teaches kids to create (and inspired a young boy excitedly venture into cooking) and is taking her first solo trip down (or up) the coast after Michaels Makers Summit
@gentrygygi - Her family watercolor business where they're all creative and she once traveled through my state and spontaneously stopped off at Missouri Star Quilt Company (near my town) and even though it was closed on Sunday just had to get out to walk around
@ucreateblog - hearing her tell of her fave movies/shows and how when each one came up her eyes would light up and she'd say *that* was her very fave, so fun
@melissmia - who loves her life and job of creating, traveling, having experiences all over and feels blessed that all of her loves (or at least heavy likes) came together
@amyrobisondesign telling of her getting a new Shilouette and becoming a design contributor but seeing her amazing gift to be able to strike up a conversation with anyone, ask all kinds of questions and jumping right in with the sharing
@kim_geiser_studios and her ready laugh, wanting to create poolside, her colorful bracelet and her awesome jewelry necklace stamped with "passion" that she seems to live by
@idknowhowshedoesit - being so lovely, talking about her family, her name (Gloribell) being a combination of her mother and grandmother's names and sharing how certain brands send certain products (and @kim_geiser_studios getting them shipped to her house) that you'd never want to blog about
@damasklove who shared her hiring story with HSN & American Crafts, how she works in the middle of the night, and seeing how she's a natural in front of the tv camera
@hissyfit_inc - giving out "makers gonna make" felt patches and @blendingbybetty giving out pins, mine says "dreams", both making their little gifts themselves
@crizza03 - how she encouraged Martha Forbes in class and helped set up her Instagram account (@theplaidlama)
@prettyprovidenceblog - shared a story of someone she knows (she might not want me to say who) accidentally left their gun (conceal carry permit holder) in their bag as they went through airport security and ended up in jail
@theartandsoulshop - being an admitted extrovert that was coming down with something and had to lay back (a hard thing for an extrovert) near the end
and @idknowhowshedoesit, @thedesignconfidential, and my artist/christian friend for listening that first night to my story (the one I didn't intend to share and ended up sharing a few times) about Leila dying and learning what creativity means to me.
So many more - @smiley_carolyn, @KsCraftShack etc etc etc but I must stop! All lovely women.
See. Stories stick. They touch people. We remember them. So, share vulnerable. Share bold. Share funny. Share hard. Just SHARE YOUR STORY.
Go big or don't bother. Well, not entirely true but I REALLY like painting large. It's just that there is not always a market for it. Like where would you but a baby this big?
But big makes such a, well......... BIG IMPACT. It's impressive. It demands to be noticed. It says I'm important and have an earnest message. And the message is usually some form of, "I'm larger than life."
Here's a painting that I did recently for an international art competition. One of the reasons this contest is so great is because it lets the artist go big, if they want. Most don't. It's usually a gallery space issue. And shipping. And stuff.
Most of my paintings end up too big to enter competitions. It's a problem but I usually just paint the size the content dictates. So sometimes, go big or don't bother, should be, go big and don't bother. But I still paint big anyways. I can't help myself.
Sketched Out (Linda Silvestri) did this illustration for a contest onTheyDrawAndCook.com where they have illustrated Christmas recipes. It's fun to see all the different styles and recipes. I really liked this one though it's not posted on the contest site yet. (Which means it might be a winner?) You can find out for yourself and see all the others here.