Small Steps and Big Leaps; the working artist's life

For me, Inspiration is a moment or message that gives you a glimpse of yourself and your world at its highest potential. It's a surge of energy that makes you want to take immediate action towards something bigger than your daily tasks. But it's the little steps that make the ultimate change in your life.

What Inspires you? Music? Literature? Beautiful rooms? Our great earth? Photography?

Who Inspires you? A family member? Leader? Artist? Friend? Poet?

Seek out inspiration, gather it around you, move towards it, do one small thing about it- and then another...

At the very  beginning of my painting career, I saw a beautiful photo in a book that inspired me to paint this wall. It's what I call my  first 'real solo'finish.

I sent this postcard of my creation to an Interior Designer who kept it in her "Decorative Painters" file for, no lie, 9 years until she needed an artist, reached in her file, and called me. And next you know, I was living in Napa for a month painting one of my biggest most challenging (in a good way) projects. I hired three artists who shared a guest cottage with me overlooking lavender and mustard fields watching parades by hot air balloons and wild turkeys every morning.

And even though, I would've made very different color, style, furniture, and art choices than the Designer on this project. I feel that I was meant to be here and happy to take on the creative challenges that she and the architecture provided me. I grew immensely and met some incredibly talented artists who I appreciate to this day. Here's a run down of the finishes we accomplished in this space...

[caption id="attachment_5096" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Hollow core doors were decorated with delicate trim before we applied three different finishes for a refined and elegant look"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_5084" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Mina tackling the rough caste fireplace. These are the bascoats before dark pewter metallic paint and antiqueing glazes go on"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_5089" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Teamwork is key to big projects. We mapped out tasks every morning and relied on each other all day"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_5085" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Sierra was charged with strie finishes on much of the trim in the house. Before she started this massive niche, she just had to take a break. Can you blame her?"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_5082" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Lunch break outside of the guest cottage. Ah, the life!"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_5088" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="You have to have a little fun even when you're sweating your buns off and totally committed to making the most difficult finishes consistent and beautiful- believe it or not, it is fun!"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_5091" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Tricia helping me work three colors at a time on all the walls."][/caption]

There were so many steps between the postcard and Napa, and so many between the Before and After of any project...

[caption id="attachment_9690" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="BEFORE- homeowners moving everything out so we could squeeze 12 foot long by 8 foot or so tall scaffolding in this space"][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_9685" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Progress takes planning; which sections to paint first, which layers, which artist will best execute each technique..."][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_9684" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="For every door in this house, we painted three different finishes taping off one section at a time."][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_9687" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Teamwork is awesome, so it working alone and just getting in that amazing zone."][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_9688" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="My fearless tireless crew: Tricia George (top), Sierra Helvey (left) and Mina Reimer (bottom). I couldn't have asked for a better group of artists."][/caption]

[caption id="attachment_5095" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Five finishes, beautifully executed, culminated in a soft but powerful look. Notice the crown molding has vertical stripes? See that? Aye, that was tough. Like I said, I wouldn't have chosen this, but it was totally cool figuring out how to accomplish it."][/caption]

Mural work painted by Carol Thosath

[caption id="attachment_9689" align="aligncenter" width="500" caption="Inspiring colors and breathtaking views made this project possible, so did the persistant efforts over years and years- it's so worth it."][/caption]


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