One thing I’d love to do this summer when I spend it abroad in Germany is to meet with artist and designer Sandra Monat of Herzenart and chat with her about her work. She’s only a few hours away by train from where I’ll be based, so perhaps I can arrange a visit… If I have time. There is so much work for me to do there this year — my head is spinning! I still cannot figure out so many things about furnishing a German apartment. It’s such a new, exciting, sometimes frustrating experience because here I know all the shops to hit for what I need and have my favorite eBay sellers and Craigslist standing by, and know where all the area flea markets are, and rely on places like Target, Anthropologie, Homegoods, the Boston Design Center, and most of the online shops I frequent (who won’t ship to Germany). Living in two parts of the world is completely new to me but I hope it will force me to learn more about my new country and Europe in general when it comes to the best places to find what I need to furnish an apartment from scratch. Currently sitting in my flat over there is our television and some of my design books, a few boxes of clothing, and china passed down to us from oma.
If you live in Germany and can suggest any online stores that would be lovely. Now on to Sandra because it’s not nice of me to talk about myself here in a post about lovely Ms. Monat now is it?
I’ve been watching this German artist since early ’06 (mentioned here), and I’m encouraged by the progress she’s made and the international exposure she now receives and for good reason, her handmade art toys are unique and extremely well made. One of many things that excite me about blogging is that after a few years at it, you start to notice change more — either some who fade away and move on to other goals or those like Sandra who experience steady growth and become successful small business owners through patience and a constant keeping at it. Much like the storybook most of us were raised reading, The Tortoise and the Hare, don’t you think?
(images from sandra monat)
I’m really enjoying BlueFlip Art lately, like I needed another place to find gorgeous prints, right? But seriously, it’s a wonderland of delightful work that I’m sure you’ll really enjoy peeking at and here’s why…
The sheer variety of affordable quality prints from artists located around the world is reason enough to visit Blueflip, but another perk is that each print you click on reveals a bio and the charity that the artist will donate a percentage of sales to if you purchase their print. Now that’s smart shopping!
(images provided by blueflip art)
Jen Renninger is someone that won’t let me forget her because she writes the most expressive and kind emails that really touch my heart. Beyond words, Jen is also a lady that I find impressive based on the talent she exhibits through the graphics she creates — I’d love to explore my own talent in the arts at some point and it’s ladies like Jen who give me a little push in that direction without even realizing it.
Jen said that she visits decor8 because the content reaches far beyond design, “Your blog is really about positive inspiration and creative joy,” she says. I think that she makes a good point because I’m constantly moved by the work I see from so many of the talented men and women that sharing it here comes so natural. I’m obsessed with decorating and all the elements that make a beautiful home, but I don’t blog because I’m obsessed with trends, shopping, and owning the latest finds, I write because the many projects that people work on truly make me happy and help me make sense out of all the bad things in the world that co-exists with the good. When I see beautiful art or fabric made from a person who put so much of themselves into it, I can’t help but be inspired by that level of talent and skill but also the determination that went into bringing the concept to reality.
I can’t imagine living in a world without creativity, without the ability to create things. Lately I’ve been a bit hard on myself because I haven’t been ‘making’ things that much. I’m pretty busy with other things that don’t involve sitting at my sewing machine or working on a fun DIY project, things that fuel me. I haven’t even taken on a new design client because my current schedule does not allow it at the moment. But then as I thought about how little I’ve spent on creating things I realized through Jen’s email that I do make things. I make words that promote the talent out there and that inspire each of you to continue on or to find your path. And after realizing that, I felt a lot better today. I think that a lot of writers suffer these feelings at times, if you are a writer perhaps you understand what I’m saying here. You can sometimes feel like a cheerleader who just wants to get out there and play ball.
Jen, an artist who just so happens to run a lovely etsy store Still Room Studio, has been working on a project this year called 365. It’s a blog showcasing a year of everyday images she posts that is the decor8 blog of the week. Some of her images are collages, others are paintings and drawings, and lately she’s been photographing the drawings with collages under them. The results are beautiful. Her sister, Raydel is another amazing talent that I’ve talked about here before but I wanted to point you to her work again today too. These sisters are fantastic!
Congratulations Jen on your new project and the way you are encouraging us all to be creative everyday whether through art, the way we handle a problem, how we prepare a meal, or the words we write — thank you for encouraging creativity in all its forms.
(images from jen renninger)