Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Featured Artist: Jeani Musselman, j. musselman photography


Jeani Musselman, j. musselman photography

Name: Jeani Musselman
Name of Business: j. musselman photography
Type of Business: portrait photography
Web Site(s):
Email: info @

Who are you?
In my personal life, I’m a mother of two [almost grown] boys, a wife, and one of those eternally optimistic, “cup half-full” kind of gals. I adore children, love to read, and enjoy being outside. I have a degree in computer technology, so the blending of art and science [in the digital world] is a natural fit. Professionally, I’m a portrait artist with a desire to capture the essence of my subjects.

What do you create?
Contemporary portrait photography; specializing in maternity, infants, kids, and high school seniors.

Where do you make your creations?
Typically, I shoot in the studio, but will also travel to a client’s home or a favorite outdoor location.

What makes your creations special or unique?
Rather than just document how a person looks, I want my images to inspire a feeling. I approach each session with the mindset of, ‘wow, we’re creating a legacy for future generations of this family’ - it’s a powerful thought.

What inspired you to become an artist?
As a youngster, I remember being mesmerized with photographs, especially those from generations past. It was an epiphany to realize that photographs are the link to our memories, our history. When you look at [one of your own] photographs, you’re transported back to that moment in time. Regardless of what’s happening in the world, your children will continue to grow and change. And even though you can buy “things”, you can’t buy a memory, or turn back the clock. That’s why it’s so important to keep recording those precious moments – whether you’re capturing images with a point-and-shoot camera at home, or having portraits professionally made.

One of our goals for 2009 will be setting up incentives and monthly specials to help our clients save some of their hard-earned moolah while enjoying the benefits of studio photography.

What really gets you in the mood to be creative?
I look at what the music industry is doing with music videos (the cinematography can be amazing!); I love to check out the album cover work on new releases. I’m a magazine junkie, and love to spend a few hours [at least once a week] checking out fashion spreads and advertising layouts.

What do you do to unclog a creative block?
Since most of my ‘work’ is done on a computer, I basically have to unplug for a while, and step away from the keyboard. Doing something outside helps tremendously: taking a walk, tending my flowers, raking leaves [or gasp – shoveling snow].

What is your favorite time to work?
Mornings – after a cup of coffee!

What else are you into?
I’m currently working on a line of holiday cards and announcements that will be launched in ‘09. I’m also planning to roll out a new look for my website (including the new logo which is included as a sneak peek here!).

What is a challenge you’ve had to overcome as an artist?
Managing the ‘business’ side of running a business; its definitely more fun to create!

What are you most grateful for?
My amazing children, …and everything they’ve taught me.

What is something very few people know about your art?
My style of photography is strongly influenced by the rules of ‘formal’ portraiture; so while I’m creating a contemporary portrait, there are key elements that I try to incorporate into the shot. Seemingly little things, like hand placement or the angle of a person’s face can make a huge difference.

What would you do if you had all the money in the world?
Well, after ending world hunger and bringing peace and prosperity to all mankind, I’d relocate my studio to a warmer climate! My “dream” studio would be located in an old warehouse located in the historic district of a charming community near the water (where architecture and scenery meet in a fusion of visual splendor).

Click the logo below to visit the j. musselman photography studio today!


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Thursday, December 4, 2008

FEATURED ARTIST: Michelle Sinofsky Eshbaugh and Creative Curves Jewelry and Lampwork Glass Beads


Michelle Sinofsky Eshbaugh
Artist and owner at Creative Curves Jewelry & Lampwork Glass Beads

Artists Name: Michelle Sinofsky Eshbaugh
Name of Business: Creative Curves Jewelry & Lampwork Glass Beads
Type of Business: jewelry design and glass work
Web Site(s): and

Retail and Wholesale orders welcome!

First of all, do you have any special offers for your customers this holiday season?
Yes, click the image below for a FREE Lampwork Glass Bead Picture Frame Keychain with purchase! I am also offering customers the chance to win a $25 dollar gift certificate, so make sure you sign up too!


Current shows, exhibitions, or places selling your work:
This was my first full year of fine arts and craft shows. I have one more show in December in Northampton Massachusetts and hopefully a full 2009 season with many new additions. At this time I don’t have my work in many stores but would be interested in some accounts. I mostly sell my work through craft shows and on my websites.

What do you create?
I create one of kind pieces of jewelry using my own lampwork glass beads for the individualistic person.

Where do you make your creations?
In the comfort of my own home where I have a glass studio in my garage and an office where I put all my materials together to create works of art.

What makes your creations special or unique?
I pride myself on making pieces that are unique and different that catch people’s eye and often generate people to take a closer look. I put my heart and soul into my creations so with each piece the buyer gets my passion and love of creating it.

What inspired you to become an artist?
I have been creating since I was a little girl. Art has been in my family on both sides and it has always caught my attention. I would have to say my families support has become my biggest inspiration to become an artist.

What really gets you in the mood to be creative?
So much of the world around me gets me in the mood to create. I often look to nature and fashion to get me in the mood.

What do you do to unclog a creative block?
Creative blocks …they do happen on occasion. I usually put aside what I am doing and often refresh my mind by standing in my backyard and looking at the world around me. Sometimes I start a different project in a different medium for fun and it often spurs another creative venture in the glass and jewelry medium.

What is your favorite time to work?
Anytime I get to work is my favorite time.

Do you have a “day job”?
I used to teach school full-time and was pursuing my hobby making jewelry part time. I had a life changing moment and realized as much as I loved teaching school that it was not my calling or my dream. So here I am and I couldn't be happier. Besides running my business I am also a full time stay at home mom.

What is a challenge you have had to overcome as an artist?
Being an artist is wonderful but defiantly has its challenges. There are a lot of talented people out there and the competition can be steep. My biggest challenge was finding the right path to my dream and the right time to pursue it. Even though I pursued my educational path not in the art field I found my way back to what runs in my soul.

Who/what inspired you to become an artist?
I would have to say my family has inspired me to become an artist. My mother and grandmother have been very supportive to my venture and my father was the one who used to encourage my growth by always surprising me with educational sources and positive encouragement.

What are you most grateful for?
I am most grateful to have a wonderful and supportive family who sticks by me through the good and bad times. I owe great thanks to their encouragement to keep creating and fulfilling my dream.

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Sunday, November 16, 2008

Artists can give and recieve with

I am sharing this because nobody, and I mean NOBODY...with the exception of teachers (and if you are and ART TEACHER, like I was, Lord help you!) has more "stuff" then artists!

I just came across this great website through business coach Charrise's blog Emergence Business Coaching.

She speaks in her post about the need to get get rid of things...something as someone who got rid of most of her possessions and sold her house 3 years ago to "free up" for a new life, can REALLY relate to. Stuff can be great...stuff can be a burden.

Giving to charities is awesome, and mostly what I did with my things, and provides another great way to connect with people who may really need what you've got! And, hey, when you are looking for something, what a great way to possibly find it for free.

I love this! Everybody wins! Check it out!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Freelancers Union: a great resource for artists

This is a great orginization that artists of all kinds should know about. I'll let them speak for themselves in terms of their member benefits:

Benefits of Membership

Becoming a Member of Freelancers Union Offers You Security,

Community, and Visibility.

Gain access to affordable health and dental insurance

Feel secure with term life and disability insurance

Attend professional seminars, workshops and networking events

Exchange services with other freelancers nationwide

Find new clients on our Gigs board

List your skills in our Member Directory

Get discounts from Staples, Zipcar, YMCA, and more

Membership in Freelancers Union is free.

Why Join Freelancers Union?
More People, More Pull.

By the simple act of joining Freelancers Union, you become an advocate for independent workers. You’re part of a group that’s working together toward the same goal.

By being a member, you tell policy makers that you believe in affordable health care, fair taxation, and access to a social safety net that includes unemployment insurance and unpaid wage claims.

Freelancers now make up 30% of the U.S. workforce. If we can unite on the issues, policy makers will take notice.

Check them out. They do good work to help professional artists make it on their own.

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Big Dreams for Artists...and never give them up.

Reach for the StarImage by `jonathan gill via Flickr

The Wellness Journey blog, by Traci Trainer, has another great post for artists. Especially if you need a little reminder to dream BIG, and NEVER give up! Check it out, here.

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Want to be nothing.

Seated Buddha, from the Chinese Tang dynasty, ...Image via Wikipedia

Some words of wisdom on the Zen of doing nothing, and how it can surprise you by being everything. Check out this great blog from Caroline...

The Zen In You: Day 12- Do NOTHING today

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Intuition an Artist's Best Friend

Image via Wikipedia

Intuition is such an potent part of the creative process. Health blogger Vanessa Smith, MA, CLC wrote some great words on this subject on her awesome blog, Let Your Life Bloom.


Let Your Life Bloom: Intuition: Your new best friend
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Friday, November 14, 2008

Banish Artistic Blocks with Rituals from Natalie Maisel and

Natalie Maisel and

Whether it's writer's block, painter's block, or stage fright, facing a creative block is one of the most challenging, and often reoccurring frustrations in any artist's life.

San Diego based yoga teacher, and ritual instructor, Natalie Maisel has developed a set of recorded rituals available for download on her website, that will help you free your inner demons, cast of old baggage, and refocus on your work with renewed insight and intention.

Each ritual explains the potential for power and transformation inherent in each phase of the moon, and then leads you on a journey to harness that energy through a grounding meditation, elemental invocations, circle casting, lore, guided meditation and ritual.

I have found these rituals extremely helpful in my own work. Check them out, and consider them as part of your positive gift giving during the holiday season.

Natalie Maisel can be contacted directly at, and you can view her blog, Fox's Notebook, here.

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Saturday, October 25, 2008

Featured Artist: Warmlings Hats and More from Jeannine Baron



Yoga teacher, artist and creator of "Warmlings", toasty warm hats as unique as the noggins that wear them. And when I say warm, I mean MAINE woods warm.

Here's a picture of me wearing my very favorite Warmling (notice the TEAL yarn, yes indeed, perfect for me!) I love this hat. I swear it doesn't just keep my head warm, it does something really good to my brain. Must be the goooooood yoga energy Jeannine puts into everything she does. Her work is her meditation, so when you buy one you know you are bringing something special into your life. Her craftsmanship is superb, and her color combinations are out of this world. I have to keep myself from ordering them ten at a time!

Scroll down to see lots more WARMLINGS hats, and Jeannine's special offer for readers!

Jeannine also makes knitted BUNNIES!!!

::BEWARE:: if you get a bunny, sometimes late at night...they take on a life of their own...

She also makes gorgeous felted bags and many, many more beautiful items.

And she is a painter on canvas, and multi-media surfaces (furniture, frames, etc.

I interviewed Jeannie for the Teal Designs Art Studio Blog so that you could get to know a little more about her. Here's what she had to say:

Your Name:
Jeannine Baron
Name of Business: Warmlings
Type of Business: knit design etc.
Web Site(s): Facebook (for now)
Current shows, exhibitions, or places selling your work: Water Lilly Imports, Portland,ME; Water Monkey, Portsmouth, NH

Who are you?

I am someone who has an intense desire to create things with my hands. Whether it be art, clothing, food, etc. I have a need for texture, color, any visual stimuli.

I’ve always loved all things artistic and creative, and could think of nothing else I’d like to fill my days.

I studied art and design at the University of Southern Maine.

What do you create?

I learned how to sew at an early age, and even had a brief desire to get into fashion design. Knitting was something that I wanted to learn for quite some time, it seemed a good next step. I love the design process, so I began to break away from patterns as soon as I understood what the yarn was going to do.

My hats are now my trademark, and having sold them for three years, I’ve gotten very good reviews, and some repeat customers. I’ve custom knit sweaters for some native Mainers who know wool is the only thing that will keep them warm in the harsh winter.

I started to branch out this year, and added felted bags to my collection. I have used locally spun yarn from the Hope Spinnery in the Midcoast Maine area. I try to keep the organic feel of the natural dyes, and add natural buttons, and wide contrast stitching.

I also had some experience during my early college years painting furniture, and I sold my designs through two different galleries in southern Maine.

I still paint decorative frames and custom furniture , as well as for my own enjoyment.
Keeping with my theme of always needing to create, I’ve been known to dabble in fine art with the classic oil on canvas- whenever I feel inspired.

Where do you make your creations?

I generally take my knitting with me everywhere. Everything else tends to stay with me at home.

What makes your creations special or unique?

My color combinations (for all media).

My hats are a particular weight and pattern that fits many different heads, they are also like snowflakes, in that no two are alike. You’ll never see anyone wearing the same hat as you. The same goes for the felted bags. I make the pattern up as I go, so I don’t even know how they’ll turn out.

As for my painted things, I think I’ve developed a particular style that has a distinctive appearance. COLOR!! I love color. Period.

What inspired you to become an artist?

I’ve always been an artist. I’ve always been encouraged to be creative (both parents were artists, so it was only fitting).

What really gets you in the mood to be creative?

Many things: music, a sunset, a walk in the woods, a magazine or news article, or a trip to a museum or gallery

What do you do to unclog a creative block?

(see above)

What is your favorite time to work?

Any time, I usually get to the peak of my project right about the time I have to leave for work.

What else are you into?

YOGA. Nature, music, dancing around like crazy, fine wine (when I have the budget), gourmet vegetarian cooking.

Do you have a “day job”?

Yep. That ranges depending on the season. I cook, Paint houses, clean; whatever pays the bills.

What is a challenge you’ve had to overcome as an artist?

Not being able to live on my art.

Who/what inspired you to become an artist?

My parents, my elementary school art teacher, and many others I’m sure

What are you most grateful for?

My five senses, the four elements, love, kindness, and support from those I love.

What is the craziest thing related to art you’ve ever done?

I walked up three flights of stairs, and down a looooong hallway at Portland Hall (my dorm at USM) with a rather large (bulky, not heavy) chest of drawers. My first painted furniture piece.

What is something very few people know about your art?

It’s my meditation.

What would you do if you had all the money in the world?

Yoga and art. I’d live somewhere in the woods, surrounded by nature, and do nothing but yoga and art.…and have the occasional bottle of really expensive wine, to share with friends at gourmet vegetarian dinner parties.

Do you have any special offers for those reading this interview?

25% off all hats and bags ordered through my facebook account.
I’ll do any custom hat colors, for the same price.

Is there anything that you need help with, that people reading this interview may be able to give (i.e. advice, mentoring, a service, etc?

I’d really love some help with a website.

You can find details on all of these hats, bunnies and more from Jeannine Baron on Facebook, here. Or email her at:


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