2017 Year in Review

Happy New Year!

I want to create a special post that sorta sums up my year for 2017. You know that although I had been blogging since 2016, I only got my own website in 2017. Boy have I been blessed with this outlet to share my creativity and inspire others to do something creative every day.  There are several things that I am going to discuss, to include my subscription to Sketchbox, My first Mandala Collection, Christmas Gifts I created and my favorite creations of the year. So grab your cup of coffee or your favorite beverage and lets get started!

SketchBox

For those of you that don’t know, Sketchbox is a monthly subscription box for artists to try out different mediums. I have really been excited by everything that I have been able to create using the products I have received through these boxes. Some of my favorite products include a watercolor sketchbook, a full sepia Copic fineliner set, and last but not least watercolor pencils, this is only to name a few. If you would like to go back and review my unboxing posts you can visit them by clicking on the links below.

May  

June

JulyJuly Grab box  

August

September

October

 November

December

Mandala Collection I

For me, this was a huge accomplishment.  I wanted to start a collection of the mandala that was similar and yet different at the same time. For this collection, I chose to draw my mandala on gradient paper with black fineliners and a white gel pen. I was so happy how each one came out so different than the ones before.  Prints of these will be available in my shop once I get it all online. Stay tuned for this special collection. Each one of these mandalas are so special to me. I wrote a different post for each one, which you can visit below:

Mandala #1

Mandala #2

Mandala #3

Mandala #4

Mandala #5

Personalized Gifts

One of my favorite things to do is create something beautiful and personal for my friends, family, and co-workers. I truly enjoy the look on their face when they realize it is not only an original, but there are no others like it in the world. I want to share these few gifts with you.

Personalized Parties

Every birthday that happens in my house is a reason to celebrate. With the birthdays spread throughout the year, we are able to party all year long! Starting in February with my two from my previous marriage celebrating, then moving to my youngest two in June, oldest two in July and 3rd oldest in November. Mix that in with all the holidays and we rarely don’t have a reason to bust out some exciting party decorations. But also, because we have so many celebrations, It’s important that we get creative with them all, most of the decorations were homemade. Check out the following posts about my under the sea themed party for my youngest two.

Under the Sea

Octopus Guard

Sea Sponges

Jellyfish Mood Lighting

Furniture Painting

The absolute highlight of my year was creating a beautiful work of art for my mother. She brought this table to me and gave me no restrictions other than she wanted a Charity Original painted on top. Painted?! I’ve never painted anything detailed like the creations I have made.  Check out how this table progressed by clicking on the links below:

Scallopped Table #1

Scallopped Table #2

There are several other projects that I completed this year for Christmas Gifts to include a 12×12 personalized mandala painting on canvas, a monogrammed lazy susan and a phoenix staff for my best guy friend. All of these projects were special in their own ways and were hard to keep a secret for as long as I could since I love to share my progress pictures with the special people that received these gifts.

My Favorites of the Year

 

Final Thoughts

I do want to send out a special thank you for all of you that have supported me this year. I couldn’t have done this without you cheering me on. Special thanks to my fiance’ who has stuck by my side while I have spent the long hours trying to make something out of nothing. I love each and every one of you and I can only hope that in 2018, we will see a lot more growth from CraftyArtistKC. Help me make this year a good one by sharing my site with your friends family and social media accounts. I can’t wait to see what comes next!

Let me know in the comments below, what was your favorite project or post from this year!

Showcase Sunday #18 – Herminia Chow

For this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would like to introduce Herminia Chow and her blog, aspiringwriter22. She offers her supreme services to assist other writers edit or write content for their blog. She also completes thorough book reviews that are pretty impressive. Her passion for writers is astounding. She offers a lot of free advice for those of you that want to get into blogging or writing. Please check her out and dive into the wealth of information she has put together on her blog for you. Before you do though, learn a little more about who she is by reading the interview below.


What made you get into blogging?

I created a blog because I was bored one evening after school. I’m so glad I did. At the time, it also seemed like the next logical step for me because I loved to write, and I wanted a platform to share my work with others. This might sound overdramatic, but I don’t know what I would have done with my life if I never took that first step four years ago.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

I write about writing and blog about blogging, so most of my posts come from personal experience or a quick search of the Web. I never had any formal education when I started. Currently, I’m doing a minor in Writing and Rhetoric at my university.

What is your favorite genre to write?

I mainly dabble in the contemporary young adult. Growing up, I read a lot of realistic fiction, so I generally base my stories on real life. I also feel like I don’t have what it takes to write a high fantasy or a complex mystery.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

For a while, I wasn’t being myself while blogging. From that, I’ve learned to stay true to who I am. I can’t please everyone, so I shouldn’t try to. What’s more, I’ve come to accept I’m not perfect. My posts won’t be either.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

The person who influenced me the most with my blog is Rachel at rachelpoli.com. She inspires me to create better content. Go check her out if you haven’t done so already.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

It varies but probably upwards of 7 hours. I try to publish a post every day, so I’m constantly writing or editing.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

As of right now, blogging is still a hobby. That being said, I want it to be my profession one day. I started my blog for fun in 2013. I never thought I’d still be blogging in 2017.

Do you have any other hobbies?

I enjoy watching baseball and playing video games by myself because who needs friends.

What is your passion?

I love reading, writing, and blogging. Stories keep me sane. When I’m not working with words, I like to dance.

How supportive are the people close to you of your blogging?

The people close to me are supportive of my blogging endeavors, even though they aren’t bloggers, and don’t know much about it. It goes without saying that the blogging community is amazing.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

To make a living doing what I love. That would likely entail becoming a professional writer or blogger, maybe even both. I wouldn’t complain.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

During my lifetime, I hope I can inspire others to read and write. Perhaps after I pass away, people will still read my work.

What piece of advice would you give someone wanting to start a blog?

Just start. You have nothing to lose but a lot to gain.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

I publish book reviews, poems, and stories on a regular basis. Every so often, I’ll share writing or blogging advice.

I’m working to make my blog better every day. I’d love for all of you to be a part of my journey.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next Sunday.

Showcase Sunday #17 – Joshua Schueler

For this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would like to introduce Joshua Schueler from Rollingblogger. There are several unique items to cover regarding his blog, but I will choose just a few. First of all, his blog title names are very witty. When I see each post pop up, it pulls me in to read just what each blog is about. Another thing to mention is his strong faith is evident in his posts. Both inspirational and uplifting, his messages to others are full of compassion and real life experiences. Be sure to check him out, but before you do, learn a little more about him from his interview below!


What made you get into blogging?

I have always had a passion for writing. I have wanted to write a book for a number of years, but it just never seems to come together. With a blog, I can satisfy my writing and get instant gratification.

What genre do you want to write your book about and what is holding you back?

I want to write an inspirational novel about overcoming obstacles. I had a working title for it once, but after much criticism, I took it off the stove. My book is not even on a burner or in the kitchen anymore.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

My blog subject is people and inspiration. I don’t think there really can be formal training in either of those. I just live life and write about it.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

I would say I have many great failures. The two I would actually mention is my divorce and failing out of school. Both involve relationships. My divorce was because I was young and we were just incompatible as anything more than friends.

With being a failure at school, I learned the hard way not everyone has your best interests at heart. They may seem like nice people, but eventually, they can lead you down the wrong path if you are not careful.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

I don’t think there is one specific person who has influenced my blog. Maybe, from a human standpoint, my editor. She always has good advice on what to leave, what to take away, what to change and what to stay.

Otherwise, if you read through my blog you will see God influences me a lot.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week? On any given week, I will spend between 20 and 30 hours either writing or following other bloggers and getting involved in their lives. That’s why we are here is to relate to one another.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

I wish it was a profession. I haven’t figured out how to monetize my blogging yet. I hope to one day, but for now, it’s a hobby.

What is your passion?

People are my passion.

What is the best way you have found to obtain a deeper connection with people?

One word. Listen.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

The ultimate goal for me is to have all people know Jesus Christ as lord and savior.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

I want to leave a legacy of love and dedication to my crafts. Writing and Djaying are my crafts.

What piece of advice do you have for new bloggers?

The advice I would have is to play around and have fun. Try new styles. Make your entire blog a smorgasbord of tales. It can be funny, whimsical, inspirational, serious, comical, sad, thought provoking. Anything you want. Write for the day. Write EVERY DAY!!

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

It is full of so many rabbit holes and inspiration, humor and humility, laughter and love. The only way to experience my blog is to dive in and read as much of it as you can. I have been a blogger for over 3 years now so there is a lot in there.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit his blog and let him know that you saw him here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, if you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next Sunday.

Showcase Sunday #16 – Gaby Garcia

In this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would like to introduce you to Gaby Garcia and her blog Iamcraftygirl. I was so blessed to come across her blog when I was going through one of my go-to websites for zentangle challenges. As soon as I saw her blog, I just knew I wanted her to be a part of this series. One of the amazing things about her is that she is very thorough and organized. But she isn’t just good at zentangle patterns, she will astound you with her other crafty skills. I know I can learn so much from her and plan to be back for sure. Be sure to check out her patterns for yourself to understand the true beauty behind her relaxation techniques. But before you jump over there, learn a little more about her from the interview below.

What made you get into blogging?

I guess there were two reasons. First, I wanted to keep track of all my work with some kind of Art Journal instead of drawings spread all over drawers and shelves in my house. Secondly and most important, I wanted to share my work with the world, I felt that creating something just for myself didn’t really hold much meaning, but by releasing it to the world might inspire someone on their own work, or touch them in some way; that is what gives it a meaning.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

Not really, most of what I do I have learn from watching YouTube videos and tutorials, reading all sort of blogs in the subjects I like, and simply by looking at other artists work in Pinterest.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

My biggest regret would be that years ago I went to study Graphic Design, but after a few weeks into it I realized that most of the other students were already far more advanced than me, which made me doubt myself and quite honestly scared me, so I dropped out and went to study and graduated as a Psychologist. However Art kept coming back to me, until I understood that Art makes me happy and will always be a big part of me.  So I have learn to follow my heart and not compare it or myself to other Artists; I recognized that we are all simply at different levels of learning.

In other words I learn (and still working on it) to not let fear get in the way and stop me from doing what I love.  I keep reminding myself that all the masters started from the very basics just like you and me, they simply have had more time practicing and working on their craft.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

Adele Bruno with her blog and challenge “It’s a String Thing” (www.tickledtotangle.blogspot.ca), Lily Moon with her amazing Art in her blog “Lily’s Tangles” (www.zenlilymoon.blogstpot.com), and my husband with all his support and encouragement.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

I spend about an hour or two writing my Blog, plus around an hour or two creating each drawing, so it really depends on how many drawings I was able to do in that week. Most weeks I do a post with about two drawings.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

At the moment it is just a hobby; my family needs and work always come first.

What is your passion?

Besides my Family, Yoga and everything Art related.

What relaxation techniques do you use?

Drawing Zentangles always relaxes me, especially when I am repeating and repeating some of the easy tangles where I don’t really have to think anymore, like “Tipple”, Flux”, and “Printemps”. Coloring is another activity that helps me unwind since I was a little girl; and last but not least, I make an effort to  practice Yoga at least four days a week.

You mention your family a lot, Do you introduce them to the readers as well?

Not really. I am kind of a reserved person, so I try to keep my personal life private.

Have you ever designed or wanted to design a tangle?

Yes, I have a couple tangles I have designed. I have only published one so far  in my blog, it is called “Deco Scrolls”  you can find the post here (http://iamcraftygirl.weebly.com/blog/deco-scrolls-my-new-tangle-pattern)  I haven’t  had the time to add the other ones yet… but it is definitely in my to do list.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

To enjoy life at the fullest, to be a great Mom and Wife; to become more spiritual and compassionate, to see every day the beauty around me even in the most simple things; to be healthy and happy and to be able to touch other lives thru my work.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

I would love to be able to touch others thru my Art, to bring them a moment of joy, peace or love with it. If it inspire them even if for a moment it would be amazing.

Is there anything you would like the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

I would like to say that I am not an expert in the subject, in fact I think of myself as beginner; but I make an effort explaining which supplies I used and techniques so it can help anyone who is just starting.

Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #15 – Kathryn Costa

In this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would like to introduce you to Kathryn Costa, and her website 100mandalas.com.   She is the author of “The Mandala Guidebook: How to Draw, Paint, and Color Expressive Mandala Art” and the host of the “100 Mandalas Challenge.” I was blessed to meet Kathryn for the first time during one of her annual events called Mandalafest! It was a blast not only learning new things, but also participating in some of the most beautiful live videos she presented! I highly recommend attending her events, you won’t be disappointed! Before you jump over there, I would like for you to read her story and be as blessed as I am to know about her 100 mandala challenge.


Her Story!

I started blogging nine years ago and my blogging style has changed a lot over the years. My first blog was named Collage Diva named after my love for cutting and gluing paper to create collages. Those early posts were pretty simple with photos of my current projects and a few little details. Eventually, I connected up with other bloggers who shared my interest in art journaling. With each blog post, I began to develop more confidence as a writer. I found my voice as I shared the challenges of being a single mother. I became and still am so hooked on creating and connecting with people all over the world. The encouragement that I received from my new online friends kept the blog posts coming.

Ever since I started blogging, my hope was to make a living using my creativity and teaching skills. I had so many ideas for books and workshops, but it always seemed like someone else was already doing what I had in mind. My inner critic would speak up asking, “What do you have to offer that is unique?”


Finally, after six years of blogging, I found my focus! I decided to give myself the challenge to create 100 mandalas in 100 days and invite my online friends to join me. At the time of starting the challenge, I had an idea for a book that would become my first publication called, “The Mandala Guidebook: How to Draw, Paint, and Color Expressive Mandala Art.” I launched a new website dedicated to mandalas.


Today, my online presence is focused on creating workshops to teach others how to draw mandalas and on how to interpret the meaning of their mandalas. I also host community mandala projects where members of my online community contribute to a group mandala.


Working a full-time job to pay the bills has been the biggest challenge as it takes a lot of time and dedication to build a creative business. A day doesn’t go by when I’m not creating a new lesson, working up a video, or promoting my website. It is a ton of work, but I love every minute of it.

Her Interview:

What inspired you to get into blogging?

A friend of mine was blogging and encouraged me to give it a try.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

My current blog/website is all about mandalas. I completed the Mandala Certificate Program with Susanne Fincher which is focused on creating mandalas for insight and meaning.

What was your greatest challenge and how did you learn from it?

The greatest challenge is balancing the day job, that pays the bills and keeping up with all of the aspects of running my business. In the last three years, I’ve had a really clear focus, but it has taken the time to build the workshops and promote what I have to offer. I’m learning to be more patient and to trust that I’m on track.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

When I first started blogging nine years ago, I was following artist Michelle Ward. I love her teaching and artistic style as well as how she engages her audience.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

My time has really shifted to supporting members of my online community with weekly features, workshop lessons, webinars, etc. Unfortunately, I don’t have as much time for creating blog posts these days.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

Blogging started as a hobby but has turned into a marketing tool to help me promote my creative business.

What is your passion?

I’m crazy about creating and connecting with people all over the world. I think of myself as an instigator of creativity. The focus of my work has been teaching others the joys of creating mandalas. I love teaching and seeing students make discoveries and have fun with learning.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

Ultimate goal? That’s a tough one. I would say to live a creative and happy life and inspire others to do the same.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

My hope is that I will be remembered for my creativity, teachings, and positive outlook on life.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next Sunday.

 

Showcase Sunday #14 – Katie Logue

In this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would love to introduce you to Katie Logue and her blog, Perfectlyimperfect32wordpress. The first thing I noticed about her blog is her witty post titles such as Gone with the Rain and Into the Abyss. If her blog titles don’t draw you in close enough for a deeper look, than the fact that she is just an ordinary mom, like the rest of us should. Her posts are real, informative and just honest. All of those characteristics I respect deeply in a fellow bloggist. Before you run to go check her out, and believe me, you are missing out if you don’t, learn a little more about here in the interview below.


What made you get into blogging?

I never actually intended on blogging. In March of 2015, I submitted a piece for publication to Scarymommy.com. Much to my surprise and delight, they picked it up. Here is the link to the piece.Part of their publication process called for a link to my blog (that was non-existent), so I jumped online and created my blog,perfectlyimperfect32wordpress, on WordPress. The rest is history!

Have you ever been published anywhere else?

Yes, I have been published elsewhere. In addition to Scarymommy.com, my work has been featured on HerViewFromHome.com, EnigmaLife.com, and BlastingNews.com.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

I have a Bachelor of Arts Degree in English and a minor in Art History. My education has greatly helped me develop my skills as a writer and blogger.

Which is your favorite piece that you have written so far?

Wow, this is a hard question. I love each of my pieces for different reasons. If I had to pick one I would say, When Gastric Bypass Surgery Goes Horribly Wrong (http://herviewfromhome.com/when-gastric-bypass-surgery-goes-horribly-wrong/) is my favorite. I chose this piece as my favorite because of the information it contains and the potential it has to hopefully spare someone from the horrific experience I had.

What is your favorite genre to write?

My favorite genre to write is non-fiction. Poetry is a very close second.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

Honestly, I can’t identify my greatest failure. Of course, I’ve experienced failures in my life, but I am a firm believer that every life experience, good or bad, teaches us valuable lessons.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

My son, Jack, is my greatest source of inspiration for my blog. My life and life experiences are also great sources of inspiration to me.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

On average I spend between 3 and 5 hours blogging weekly

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

Blogging started as a hobby but is slowly developing into my profession

What is your passion?

Without a doubt, writing is and always has been my life’s passion.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

My ultimate goal in life is to write my memoir. I have started drafting my memoir. I do believe  I am ways away from completing it though. At only 33 years old, I have much more life to live before telling my story.

Have you ever started a piece for it to be finished by another author?

I have never created a piece of writing that has been finished by another writer

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

I would like to leave a collection of my writings as my legacy, so that my work may live on infinitely

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

I would like readers to know that my blog is the truest, most honest, and raw expression of myself. I give my whole self; mind, body, and soul to the pieces I create for my blog.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #13 – Rachel Poli

In this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would like to introduce you to Rachel Poli who is the author of her blog found here. There are several key elements to her blog that I would love to point out. First off, she offers guest posts on her blog. This is crucial to helping out other bloggers who have a lot to say, but people just don’t know where to find them. I love that she is passionate about everything she does, from being a teacher’s aid to giving a loving home to all her pets, which she explains in her About Me page! You should definitely go check her out and see how talented she is in so many different ways. But before you rush over there, take a moment to learn a little more about her from our interview below!


What made you get into blogging?

I first started blogging in 2012. I hope to be a published author in the near future and I had heard that having a blog was a great way to get your name out there, show off your writing, and to also be a good author platform.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

Nope. My blog has grown and evolved a lot since I started five years ago. I’ve made mistakes, I haven’t blogged consistently the entire time, and the content hasn’t always been great. However, I’ve done research along the way and I’ve learned a lot from other bloggers.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

This is a hard one… And I’m not saying I don’t make mistakes, because I do, but when it comes to the blog it’s hard to think of something. I guess I’d have to say not taking blogging seriously from the get-go. When I started in 2012 I wrote about anything and everything. I didn’t have a posting schedule. I would go months without publishing anything. It wasn’t until 2015 I decided to blog seriously. I’ve seen a huge difference in my views and followers and overall interaction on my blog these last three years than the first two years combined. And it’s still growing.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

Other bloggers and YouTubers. I see cool things that they do on their blogs such as giveaways and interactive things with their readers. They’re good ideas and they work so I think to myself, “I can do that!” Honestly, I don’t think my blog would have made it this far otherwise.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

So much time! I spend two days a week working on my blogs (I have two and am working on a third). On those days I usually spend the majority of the day, like six to eight hours. The other days I end up working on my blogs for one to three hours. Now that I’m almost done with my day job, I’m sure I’ll be working on my blogs a lot more.

You mentioned ideas for 5 different blogs, why so many?

Simply because I love blogging and I have a lot of interests that I want to explore and share with everyone. I don’t know if half of these blogs will ever come to be, but it’s fun to think about them.

What is your favorite feature of your blog?

I currently have a lot of features on my blog and I’ve had a lot in the past that were retired… I’m going to choose two, because one is annual and one is all year round. I love my Short Story Sundays, every Sunday I post a short story or flash fiction. It gets my original writing out in the world and it challenges me to better my writing all the time. I also love Mystery Month, which happens every year during the month of June. Mystery is my favorite genre, so I write mystery flash fiction, post mystery book reviews, and write articles based on the genre.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

It started out as a hobby hoping to turn into much more. I do hope to make it a profession in the near future. My blog has already started down that path. It’s just a slow process and a lot of work.

What is your passion?

Anything creative. I have ideas for five different blogs, I’m working on a few novels I hope to get published soon, and I’ve most recently got into photography and filmmaking. Then, of course, video games.

What video game platform do you use (console or PC) and what are your favorite games?

I play any games on any platform, but my favorite are the consoles by Nintendo. I love the 3DS and I’m currently exploring the Switch. My all-time favorite games are anything Pokemon and The Legend of Zelda.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

My ultimate goal is to become a full-time writer. I want to be an author and blog all day long.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

I want to inspire the world with words and my journey. Like most people, I’ve had plenty of ups and downs in my life and I think they’re all learning and teachable moments. I think there are hidden messages and life lessons in everything we put our hearts into and I would love my books and blogs to be an inspiration. I want people to see what I do and say, “I can do that!”

What piece of advice would you offer new blogs that may also apply to veteran bloggers?

Have a schedule and work on your blog a little bit each day. When I first started, I didn’t realize how important a schedule was – not only to be consistent for your readers but also to get yourself into a routine. And I say to work on your blog each and every day because it’s a lot of work, more than you would think. Working on it every day keeps the blog fresh in your mind and you’re constantly thinking of new ideas and brainstorming posts so that you’ll never run out.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

Just that I put my heart and soul into my blog each and every day. I love connecting with other bloggers and talking to everyone through the comments and such. I’m amazed my blog has come so far in five years and I can’t wait to see what the future holds for it.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next Sunday.

Showcase Sunday #12 – Alyssa Kindred

In this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would love to introduce you to Alyssa Kindred and her blog, CrimsnMacchiato. I had the opportunity to visit her blog and I love the way that the blog is comforting and inviting. Her coffee cup collection is something to definitely be amazed by, check out her About page to see what I’m talking about. Her witty sense of humor and informative reviews will have you returning again and again. But before you jump over there to her blog, see what she has to say from our interview below.


What made you get into blogging?

I have always been passionate about writing. Growing up, I would write poetry and short stories. As I got older, I developed a love for health and fitness.  I always shared my thoughts, ideas, and secrets of success with my friends and coworkers. Every time I would try a new product, it was the same – I loved discussing it with everyone! I started writing on Hub-pages six years ago, and I would share some of my favorite papers, essays, and thoughts. It was a lot of fun and I dabbled with it on and off. I love inspiring people and putting positive energy out into the universe and so, in August of 2016, I made the decision to start an actual blog and write regularly.  

What is the story behind your blog name?

When I started in August, I named my blog SassyCatK. It was okay at the time, but I grew tired of it. The name just didn’t fit me, or the blog. I wanted a name that better reflected who I am and one that would set the tone for my writing. I’m known for my bright red hair, it’s my signature, and I love coffee.  I am always posting something on social media concerning my deep affection for the caffeinated beverage and I wanted a name to reflect all of that. Several weeks passed of me writing ideas down, trying to come up with something perfect. I had an idea that I loved, but that name was taken by a coffee shop, so I was essentially stuck.  One afternoon I was chatting with my husband about it. We had just visited Starbucks the day before, (this was in January) and when it’s cold, I always order a caramel macchiato. I had the holiday cups sitting on the counter next to my little notebook of ideas. Caramel Macchiato would be a great name, but I’m not a brunette and I had my heart set on using the word crimson in place of red. In that moment, my husband came up with crimson macchiato. I fell in love with the name – it was perfect! After a little research, I went to change my Twitter handle, but I had to drop the ‘o’ because there were too many characters. CrimsnMacchiato was born.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

Ah yes, The School of Hard Knocks. Ha! In all seriousness, I studied psychology, philosophy, the arts, and accounting in college. I also took courses related to health and fitness. But I draw a good portion of my content from personal experience.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

Hmm.. I’ve definitely made mistakes in life. Haven’t we all? I wouldn’t say any of them are worthy of the title, “Greatest Failure,” though. I am a firm believer in the idea that everything happens for a reason. From every mistake came a lesson learned, and a sense of clarity. For example, a few years ago, we were in the process of moving. I was at the old house, cleaning stuff up and organizing everything. I was cleaning up a chair that had been in the garage one evening. I must have moved wrong, somehow, because in an instant, I felt a twinge and a lot of pain in my lower back.  I managed to make it into the house and lay down on the hardwood floor, where I stayed for a few hours until I could get myself back up. I learned a few lessons from this occurrence. 1. Age doesn’t matter. (I was 26) 2. You are only as young as your spine. (I’ve had back pain off and on ever since.) 3. Be mindful of your movements. 4. Don’t take anything for granted.  5. Find humor in every situation. 6. Have gratitude for the things you can do. 7.Icy Hot is amazing.  

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

My family, for sure. My husband and my son are a constant source of support, inspiration, and love.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

Honestly, I feel like I’m always working on my blog, in one aspect or another. But, 20 hours- ish a week would be a good estimate. Ideas pop into my head at the most random times of the day and I have to jot them down or I’ll forget them completely.  And, I always have my camera at the ready because you never know when a photo-op will present itself. A beautiful or unique set of clouds?  A gorgeous sunset?  An interesting tree? Yes, I just have to snap a few photos!  

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

It’s has been a hobby that I have treated like a career for the past (almost) year. I would absolutely love to turn blogging into my actual, full-time profession. How cool would that be?

What is your passion?

Family. Writing, of course.  Coffee.  😉

Fitness. Tracy Anderson and Yoga are essentials for me. Dancing, and Music. I love all types of music, from Johnny Cash and Fleetwood Mac, to Ryan Adams and Britney Spears. And everything in between! I am always dancing and singing my heart out around the house and in the car, whether I know the lyrics or not. Ha! I love reading – I’m a huge Steven Berry, Ken Follett, and Natasha Mostert fan. And I love learning new things! I try to learn something new every day.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

There’s a quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson I have loved for many years that sums it up beautifully:

“To laugh often and much; To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”

What piece of advice have you found helpful that you would like to share with other bloggers?

When I first started, I left a comment on the First Friday post on WordPress. Many people left encouraging feedback, but one lady gave me some advice on aesthetics that stuck with me. She left a comment about the layout of my blog. I love color, and at the time, I had a gray background with blue and white text. I thought it was fun, different, and would stand out. I didn’t realize that it might be hard on the eyes and distract from my writing. She essentially said that simple is best. A white background with black text is elegant and classic, and also easy on the eyes. After reading her comment, I changed my layout right away. I have fun with the text, changing up the font, but I am always mindful of keeping everything simple and readable. It’s easy to get caught up in design, it’s one of the most enjoyable parts of the blog, but can be overwhelming and time consuming. Keep it simple. I also think it’s important to read as much as you can about blogging, keep learning, keep improving. Read other blogs, leave thoughtful, genuine comments, and just have fun.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

This is a tough one. But for me, as a parent, there is no greater legacy than having my son grow up to be happy, successful, and a productive member of society.

Do you own a unique coffee mug collection?

I am actively working on building up a collection of fun, quirky coffee mugs. The Groot mug is my favorite; it was an early Valentine’s Day gift. I would love to have a Yoda mug! At the moment, I have the large purple one, four dark blue ones that I inherited, and two large white mugs from a parade.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

CrimsnMacchiato is a lifestyle blog. I post weekly inspiration, designed to help everyone live his or her best life (Suggestions are always welcome!) I share my fitness and lifestyle secrets, tips, and tricks; my favorite recipes; product reviews; highlights from my travels and so much more! –all with a dash of humor.  


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next Sunday.

Showcase Sunday #11 – Pauline King

In this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would love to introduce you to Pauline King from her blog The Contented Crafter. She has such a wonderful disposition and an amazing outlook on life. As I was reading through our interview, I realized just how much we had in common. From using mixed medias to just wanting to be the change we wish to see in the world.  She has so much to offer and I am proud that I have gotten the opportunity to introduce her to my readers. Before you rush off to visit her website, read what she has to say below:


What made you get into blogging?

I started blogging February 2013 simply to keep track of all my craft and art items that were being made and given away or sold with no trace left of my progress.  I thought if I started recording and photographing it would be a good incentive for me to keep creating.  I’m also notoriously sanguine in my creative pursuits and get bored easily – it’s good for me to be accountable to something.  

Around the same time I also changed up my lifestyle and took full responsibility for my health and wellbeing through changing my diet and applying myself in a more dedicated manner to pursuing a more contented lifestyle by choosing positive thoughts and actions as much as possible.  (Hence the name of my blog)  I didn’t intend to write about that, but a couple of posts in and there it was….

I didn’t really think anyone would read my posts so was quite surprised when I got ‘likes’.  I didn’t even know what that meant really  🙂   It didn’t take long and a growing community of like minded people began to find their way to me and the rest, as they say, is history.

You mentioned that you love to work with mixed media, which is your favorite currently?

I guess it’s having free range to use whatever takes my fancy in the moment…..  I’m a little in love with watercolour crayons and pencils and try to find an excuse to use them everywhere at the moment.  I recently copied the idea of having blind prompts for working in my art journal – I don’t know who first invented the idea, it’s been around for a few years I think and I just decided to give it a go as I am currently practising ‘freeing myself up’ in my artistic endeavours.   (I think I’m a little stiff)  So I got 100 tongue depressors and wrote a different instruction on each.  I did the first journal page just two days ago and it is vastly different to anything else I’ve ever done and was a real challenge – and really fun!  So I may try that technique on canvas at some point.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

No, I am a self taught mixed media artist and all round crafter and dabbler in anything that takes my fancy – a bit of a Jack-of-all-trades and dilettante.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

I don’t see life in  term of failures – everything that happens is a learning experience and a chance for us to grow and improve as human beings.  If life was always comfortable and easy we would never wake up, we would never learn who and what we are capable of being and we would never learn empathy or how to reach out and help our fellow human beings.  This philosophy can be applied in the art studio too.  

I find that making art offers many opportunities for ‘happy accidents’ to occur and opportunities to become more creative.   I think every work goes through an ‘ugly stage’ and recognising this has taught me to persevere and keep going, to never give up, because inevitably something better, different, or more exciting will appear.  I guess just like in life, you have to let go of control and be prepared to be surprised.   I’m constantly surprised  🙂

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

I think we are all constantly picking up thoughts and ideas from each other – nothing is unique or original when you trace it back.  So I would say that every blogger I read regularly would have had some influence on me.  

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

I have no idea.  I usually begin my day with a cup of coffee and a read of some of my favourite blogs that have come in overnight.  At this time I also respond to any comments left on my blog.  I guess I spend an hour to an hour and a half every morning at this activity.

If I get time to take a break in the  afternoon I might read some more posts then, or work on something I have in draft form.  Though mostly I write in the evenings, when I also catch up on the last of the blog posts in my reader.  I post on a random schedule, when I feel like I have something to say or show – or too much time has gone past and people have started to ask me if I’m alright  🙂  

So, maybe two plus hours every day.  Reading, writing, commenting and interacting.  That’s 14 hours a week, which seems like quite a lot!  

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

Blogging is my hobby.  I interact with other hobbyists – photographers, artists, crafters, writers and just plain folks who are really interesting and fun and good to spend a few moments with on a regular basis.  Many have become personal friends, it’s a great venue to meet up with like minded people.  Two years ago, I was invited by a group of bloggers who had become friends through additional meetings via Skype, facebook and emails to visit them in the US and we had a wonderful time together.  Four of those friends will come to my part of the world, New Zealand, early next year.  We are going to have a ball!!

What is your passion?

Now this is a good question!  Only one?  I have several….  As an ex-teacher I am passionate about promoting a return to the classical education that moves at the same rate as the students mental and emotional development and which covers language, mathematics, sciences, geography, history, art, movement and physical and life skills in a unified and holistic manner.   

As a person who believes I must be the change I hope to see in the world, I am still passionate about learning and practising the skills that make us conscious of our ability to be responsible for our lives and our experiences; for our relationships, our health and our desires.  I am aware there is a need for people to take hold of habitual thought patterns and to question the societal mores that we are surrounded with from birth to death.  I am passionate about our need to create a world where all people are equal members of the human race and where respect, empathy and openness are freely given to all members.  I am passionate about trying to live up to my ideals even though there is a daily shortfall  🙂  

Have you ever been trolled or had a bad review of something you were proud of? If not, how do you react normally to criticism, whether it is constructive or destructive.

No, I’ve never been trolled, though my Twitter account once got hacked and I wrote a post about that which gave us all a lot of laughs   https://thecontentedcrafter.com/2016/08/30/bottoms-up/

I’ve learned that the way criticism is delivered says more about the deliveree than me or whatever I’ve done that is being criticised.  That applies to both positive and negative criticism.    As an artist I value constructive criticism – it has never told me something I don’t already know on some level and the confirmation so often gives me a hint or direction to move forward in.   It can be extraordinarily helpful!  

What is your ultimate goal in life?

To leave it knowing I have travelled far, learnt well and always done my best.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

That people would smile when they thought of me.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

My blog is a mixture of random thoughts, activities and daily life mixed in with whatever artistic or crafty pursuit I am currently interested in.  I don’t philosophise much, that is more inclined to come out in the comments I leave on my own and my friends blogs.  I’m quietly fey and spiritual and ever so slightly ditzy, but don’t spread that about unnecessarily  🙂    


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #10 – PMu Ink

In this week’s Showcase Sunday, I want to introduce PMu Ink from Daily Doodle.  She has a wonderful doodle blog that is fun and is promoting and encouraging positive drawing habits. She also has a wonderful blog exchange where she introduces other blogs. Her blog is a wonderful way to share her gift with the world and cultivate the wonders of doodling. Before you hop over to view some of what she has to offer, get to know her in the interview below.


What made you get into blogging?

It was actually my friend Paul who convinced me.  I was doing a lot of drawing last year as part of processing a particularly nasty bout of depression, and during that time I felt like I found my voice as a doodler.  As I came through the other side of it I shared a few doodles with him and he gave me the encouragement to start the blog.  It’s also where the tag line came from, I always felt that art had to be incredibly deep oil painting, I had to tell myself that something didn’t have to be that ‘worthy’ in order to pluck up the courage to share something.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

Not really.  I have a GCSE in art, but anyone who has done that knows that half the course is copying other people’s work.  I actually really hated it, and after graduating it took me a few years to pick up the pencil again.  Studying really sucked the fun out of it for me.  I see drawing as more of a skill than a talent, literally anyone can do it they just need plenty of practice and some realistic expectations.  I will never be a sculptor, but I can nail a doodle a day and really enjoy it.  I have also found by cultivating some really positive drawing practices I have really improved over the last year.  I also now have a record of that learning which is really great.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

Every time I draw something I make a mistake or something doesn’t turn out how I picture it in my head.  For a long time I thought this meant I wasn’t very good, and I would start again or break out the rubber.  Now though I just try to go with it, or incorporate it into the design of what I’m doing.  Learning how to make the most out of my mistakes has been really freeing and if I could share any lesson with the secret doodlers out there, who have a ton of sketchbooks and pieces of paper stored somewhere in the bedrooms, it would be that.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

There is a book called Mindfulness and the Art of Drawing by Wendy Ann Greenhalgh which is really worth a read.  It’s an easy read, the illustrations are really stylish and it helps draw that line between an internal process and external expression.  Other than that it’s pretty varied.  I read a lot of sci-fi and folk tales, I watch a lot of documentaries about animals.  The hatch style that I have settled into was particularly inspired by old wood carvings and etchings.    

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

It really does vary depending on what I’m doing.  Some drawings like My Lovers Heart And Mind Are One 04 take no time at all and will only take an hour or so, others like Middles take days.  One of my favorite posts was the time-lapse video I did.  I was determined to record one of the larger A3 doodles, and in the video you can actually see the shadows move as time passes throughout the day.  I think I started at 10 in the morning and finished just before sunset, with two very short breaks in between.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

It started off as a hobby, and has actually become a bit of a profession,  although it’s not enough for me to give up my day job, it’s great to make money from something I enjoy so much.

What is your passion?

I love drawing, but I have a serious passion for watching cartoons and animations.  I don’t have the patience to actually make them, but I will often have something animated playing in the background as I work.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

I would like to find a way to make a living out of my doodles, but apart from that I try to keep my goals small.  At the moment I am working on a book project with my friend Paul, after that I’m not sure.  Continue with the commissions I have at the moment, and then maybe start gathering things together to get an art book printed.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

To lead a life that helps people in some way, to be kind and to be remembered when I die as someone who laughed a lot, felt things deeply and hopefully inspired others to do what they loved too.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

The only other thing I would like to share is to say again that anyone can draw.  No really, anyone.  It just takes practice and like any skill, practice is done little and often.  You will learn more from doodling in the margins of a notebook every day then spending a week in an artist retreat once a year, although if you can do both, great!  Also even if you don’t think something is very good, share it anyway.  You will be surprised what others like, some of the stuff that I have come seriously close to throwing into the fire is the stuff that gains the highest number of views.  Let other people judge your work and just enjoy the process.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”
As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next Sunday.

Showcase Sunday #9 – Kent Wayne

In this week’s Showcase Sunday, I want to introduce you to Kent Wayne from Dirty Sci-Fi Buddha. He is a brilliant writer with the ability to captivate his audience in a fantastical science fiction world. I had the opportunity to interview him and much to my surprise, He was very amusing with his answers. Before you run to check out his latest chapter in Echo, read more about him below.


What made you get into blogging?

I got into blogging as a way to promote my actual books.  I noticed that indie author and runaway success Hugh Howey had used a blog to promote his works, and I also saw it as a way to learn how to produce content in a consistent manner, as well as sharpen my writing skills.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

All training I’ve had in writing and philosophy has been a result of my independent pursuits—my own reading and experimentation.  I’ve known I was an overthinker since I was very young; writing has allowed me a constructive avenue with which to utilize my [curse/gift].

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

I won’t get into the specifics of my greatest failure, but it basically convinced me to switch my internal operating system from that of mindless persistence to one that’s focused on precision.  I used to glorify the aesthetic of just grinding away, always loyal to the same routines and habits.  I still use the discipline I’ve gained from that approach to tackle my projects, but now I’ve learned that I should always be looking for a more efficient way to put out better product.  Success is a relative concept—what was awesome 20 years ago is cliché today, so I always try to increase my “rev.”  The way I do this is I try and look deeper into the subjects that interest me at a faster pace than I did before.  When I do this right, I gain insights which can be funneled back into my writing and blogging, and I also gain an increase in capability; now I’m able to put stuff out at a speedier rate

When did you first start writing and when did you first publish?

I started writing around late 2014/early 2015.  I first published in March of 2015.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

I would say Bill Watterson—author of Calvin and Hobbes.  I like to use my blog as an informal way to express random observations and funny stories.

What is your favorite genre of writing? Is it different from your favorite genre to read?

My favorite genre of writing is hard to define—I guess I just like the fantastical, whether it’s sci-fi, fantasy, or modern-day life with an added edge of impossible.  My favorite genre to read…I don’t have a favorite genre, but my favorite book series firmly fits in the aforementioned category:  The Dark Tower, by Stephen King.  (I grew up loving the saying:  “There are other worlds than these.”)

Do you watch movies that are based on books you’ve read?

Yeah but not as a rule or anything.  If there’s a movie people praise then I’ll see it.  (Loved La La Land and I hate romances and I hate musicals even more lol)

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

I’d say blogging is like another job for me.  Even though I rarely sit down to blog for more than half an hour or an hour at a time, if you add it all up it probably comes out to around 20 hours a week.  I try to utilize observations I see in traffic patterns and specific kinds of content to maximize the “flow” and reader experience of my blog.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

Blogging is my hobby.  I’m just a freewheeling vet/college student that’s trying to avoid the Office Life.  If I have to work in an office then so be it, but at least I’ve learned a lot while I’m attending school and set up good systems which I can perpetuate if I have to transition into a real job.

What piece of advice would you give aspiring writers out there wanting to get into blogging?

I would say to aspiring writers that creativity is like a muscle.  Even if you’re short on time, write every day.  250 words takes five to fifteen minutes, and will give you a publishable length manuscript (80-100k) in one year’s time.  

Also, from what I’ve seen, there are two approaches to creativity—obsession or awareness.  Obsession is unhealthy—you focus on your work to the point that you achieve a meditative state, ignore everything else, and tap into some kind of universal truth. (think Steve Jobs).  The downsides to this approach are obvious—it’s very hard to balance the rest of your life and not spiral out of control.  

Awareness allows you to maintain a good work/life balance but it is EXTREMELY unpleasant—basically you need to question the viewpoints that make you “you” and not someone else.  My method is to use “what if”s to push up against personal boundaries.  So for example:  “What if the person you loved/respected most in your life is a villain?  What facts/anecdotes would you use to make that case?”  Or:  “What if the person you hated most in your life was a hero?  How would you make the case for that?”  

This is just the tip of the iceberg, but you can see how trying to understand multiple perspectives exposes where one might draw a mental line in the sand and refuse to explore any further.  Nevertheless, I feel it’s an essential tool for being able to illustrate theme and philosophy through a mosaic of different characters

Do you keep a daily journal? Are you more technological or physical?

No daily journal. I’m definitely more technological.  I write 3500 words a day 5x a week and that’s hard as balls on my wrists.  Writing would completely destroy my forearms, haha!

What is your passion?

My passion is physical activities.  My joints are too busted for me to do more than some rudimentary weight-lifting and biking, but one day, if I make enough money, I’d like to get some stem cell therapy and get back into martial arts.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

My ultimate goal in life is to entertain people and have my days completely to myself.  I’d like to live in a different place every 3-6 months without worrying about money and have a few dogs around to make me smile.  (My ex took mine in the divorce, but it’s okay ‘cos the studio I’m living in right now is too small for ’em).

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

I don’t know if I want to leave any legacy behind.  People tell me they enjoy my blog and my writing, and honestly that’s enough for me.  I feel privileged that anyone’s bought my books or liked any of my posts—and I feel FLATTERED that they leave good reviews or comments!  Just knowing that I contributed something that I made by myself—rather than just perpetuating a bureaucracy for the government or shareholders—feels amazing.  I think if my time on Earth was up at this moment, I would have no complaints.  I feel I’ve been given blessings beyond what I ever could have expected.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

I guess that if you took the core things in spirituality (we are pieces of an infinitely powerful being that chose to forget it was infinitely powerful so it could experience the joy of rediscovering itself) and science (we are short-lived specks hurling through space) and followed them to their logical ends, you would come to the same conclusion:  Enjoy the time you are here, because it will soon be over.  This doesn’t mean give in to hedonism—from what I understand, any form of addict is driven by compulsion more than enjoyment—but to foster whatever qualities you need to (discipline, creativity, knowledge, toughness) in order to drink as deeply as you can out of the well of life.  That’s the way I try to live.  I hope that everyone gets their full drought of their amazing experience as human beings.  That’s it.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit his blog and let him know that you saw him here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next Sunday.

Showcase Sunday #8

 

In this weeks’ Showcase Sunday, I would like to introduce you to Reed Buck from Journey into Writing.  I really enjoyed interviewing him because his answers actually made me laugh out loud. Not only did his interview make me laugh, but the way he writes his blog is also witty and unique. I love his writing style because it is different than most the others out there. He learns by doing and he is doing great in my book. Before you run to check him out though, get a taste of his personality in the interview below.


What made you get into blogging?

Well, I’ve been creative writing since I was a kid, and I never really thought much about any other type of writing until after college, when I decided I wanted to give it a shot as a career. That was when my brother suggested to me to try blogging as a way to practice writing skills while I was looking for jobs in communications. Once I’d started, I just kind of fell in love with it.

You mentioned that you fell in love with blogging, what is it that you love most?

I love the honesty of it. I love that, because of anonymity, I can be a little more forward than I would normally be in exposing myself and the way I think to strangers. It’s been really gratifying to see that other people – not just my friends and family – are interested in hearing what I have to say.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

Er… no. And that’s especially awkward because my blog subject is writing. When I first started my blog, I was working for the UCLA Library doing odd jobs, and as I continued the blog, I was given the opportunity to try some communications writing, some copywriting, and some article writing, but before that the only experience I’d had in writing was my little dinky creative writing projects.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

Wow, getting philosophical, huh? I guess in regards to writing, I wrote a book series a while ago that I thought was really good, but I queried something like 80 different publishers and literary agencies and none of them so much as asked for the full manuscript. I also had to actually pay my alpha readers to read it for me. Interestingly enough, paying them was a great idea, because it gave me the courage to ask for the kind of in-depth, honest criticisms of certain aspects of my work that allowed me to hone in on what I was the worst at (which turned out to be pacing and character strength). That gave me a great place to start improving with my current writing project, which has turned out much better.

You also mentioned that you had written a book series before, have you revisited that series to resubmit or have you put it to the side for now? Also, have you written any book since?

I’ve put the series aside for now, although my girlfriend keeps bugging me to finish it. I’m working on a new project now – a single book which I’ve condensed down from what was originally going to be a trilogy – that I’ve written a lot about on my blog. I’ve completed the first third of it – I’m releasing it in parts to my alpha readers – and I expect the second and third parts to follow in the coming 2-3 months.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

Oh, wow. I honestly don’t know. I mean, my brother was the one who suggested I get into blogging, so I would probably say him, but since I take my blog to be an extension of my own eccentricity and honesty, I’d have to say anyone who influenced me as a person influenced my blog. Is that a cop-out? It sounds like a cop-out. Oh well.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

Well, I just recently decided to cut back – I was writing a post every day, which was about an hour every day, but I noticed I wasn’t getting as much readership when I did that, so I’ll be posting every weekday from now on and giving myself the weekends to work more on creative writing… and naps. So it’s usually about five hours a week – one hour a day, five days a week. Not too bad.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

Looooool. Yeah, no, nobody would pay me to put this on. I mean, if you ever want to Venmo me a few bucks, I’m not above that. But no, blogging is a hobby for me. Maybe someday I’ll get lucky and my creative writing will make me some money, but for now, all the writing I do is just a hobby for me.

What is your passion?

I have four passions (can you tell I’ve been asked this before?). I love music – especially thematic and game soundtracks that really move me and make great cadence to write to. I love writing (obviously) and reading science fiction and fantasy of all kinds, from children’s and middle-grade all the way up to adult epic fantasy. I love neuroscience – my undergrad major – and learning various little cool things about the ways our brains work. And I love Christopher Nolan movies.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

No pressure or anything. If I were to guess right now, without the benefits of age and wisdom, I would say my  goal in life is to love as many people as possible as often as possible, and to try to express that love and positivity out into the world. And I guess getting one of my books published would be nice, too.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

Honestly, I always kind of thought that legacy concept was kind of self-centered. I’d be okay just subsisting and being lost to history, if it just meant I left a few children behind who had good heads on their shoulders (or better than mine, at least). I guess that’s a sort of a legacy.

If you had one piece of advice that you could give other writers wanting to get into blogging, what would that be?

Oh, man, I’m not sure I’m the right one to ask about this. My success has consisted of (I think) 25 followers in like 4 months. But I guess I would say have a gameplan, and be open. Your gameplan is important because blogs are a huge chunk of the internet – if you don’t have something specific to write about that is unique to you, you’re not gonna get much viewership (like me). Being open is even more important, in my opinion, because people gravitate to someone who’s saying what they feel internally but are too afraid to express. But those are just my two cents, and they don’t go very far in this economy.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

It’s weird, and irreverent. I bounce back and forth between philosophy and writing tips and stream-of-consciousness writing like a pinball. But if you like my tone here, that’s more of what you’ll get at my blog. Thanks for checking it out!


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit his blog and let him know that you saw him here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #7

For this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would like to introduce you to Emily Guyton-Lange from Never Idly Dreaming She has some of the most beautiful writings available for your enjoyment on her blog. Her creative writing is something that could keep you captured for hours as you read through her blog, especially since it is also sprinkled with beautiful arts and crafts. The simple fact that her blog is so well rounded is a recipe for success. Before you run to check out her blog, learn a little more about her below in this week’s interview!


What made you get into blogging?

I’m an aspiring author who wanted to form connections with other writers and showcase some examples of my writing. The drive to create drives me in many areas outside of writing as well, such as crafting and academic work. The idea of sharing my thoughts with others on a regular basis seemed daunting at first, but the more I thought about it, the more I wanted to start. It has become a great place to share progress on my writing, as well as somewhere to celebrate my adventures in other crafts.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

Unless you count one or two online classes about creative writing or grammar, I would say no. I have learned most of what I know about writing through other blogs, books, and of course, lots of actual writing. That being said, I intend to major in English with a focus in creative writing when I attend college this Fall, so I’m certain more formal training is on the horizon. For my crafting, which is admittedly a smaller part of my blog, I am indebted to my grandmother for my original instruction and the rest of my family for their continued creativity. My grandmother gave me many foundational tools which I used to learn about other areas of crafting myself, while my family of artists always encouraged me to be creative in any way I chose.

What is your family’s creative history? You mention that they have helped you with your crafting, but how?

My mom is a painter who also loves to work with mixed media, colored pencil, and graphic design. She was an art teacher for almost fifteen years before going back to school for natural medicine. My dad is primarily a photographer, but he also does quite a bit of mixed media journal work and graphic design, along with jewelry making and turning our backyard into a Japanese garden. He’s also a photography professor. My younger brother is a talented musician, stop-motion animator, and currently wants to pursue a career as a director.

Aside from giving me a general appreciation for the arts, providing the supplies for an artistic childhood, and nurturing a lot of my creative growth through homeschooling, my family has always been incredibly supportive of my creative pursuits. You often hear stories of families who try to force their child to pursue the career which will bring in more money, not necessarily what they were passionate about. My parents always make sure I understand both the highlights and the pitfalls of whatever I choose, but they’ll always be with me no matter what I decide to do.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

I have a hard time answering this question because I feel like so many of my “failures” are merely setbacks which lead me to greater and better things. However, I am fairly young. I’m sure more setbacks and true failures are coming my way.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

Outside of my extremely supportive family, I would have to say, Ariel Hudnall. I took part in a Facebook-based class she led for writers who want to start blogs to promote their work or simply serve as an author platform. Ariel helped me learn my way around WordPress and gave many suggestions for how to run a successful blog as a writer. I adapted many of these suggestions for my own use, even in areas outside of writing such as my craft posts.

(Ariel’s blog: https://arielhudnall.com/)

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

I try to post consistently each Friday, as well as my Quote of the Day posts at the beginning of each month. During the academic year I probably spent two to four hours a week on blogging and related networking. During the summer I hope to prepare more Quote of the Day graphics and really focus in on networking, so that number may increase a little over time.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

I would say blogging is related to my chosen profession. I don’t realize profits from my blog and I don’t work on it full time. Perhaps it will become a larger aspect of my profession at a later date, but for now I suppose it’s more of a hobby and a way to get my creative voice into the world.

What is your passion?

Specifically, writing is my passion. It’s difficult, sometimes heartbreakingly so, but I cannot escape how I feel when all of my hard work falls into place and I just know what I’m doing is worthwhile. Writing also fits under a larger umbrella, as I am passionate about all sorts of creation. The act of making something which did not exist before and would not have existed without my work gives me immense satisfaction. This could apply to writing, crafting, and even cooking. All are things I enjoy because it is the act of creating which fuels my passion.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

Above all, I hope to be happy and healthy. I may not know exactly what that happiness will look like yet, but it is always a part of my list of goals. Ultimately, I would like to be a published author. As I mentioned before, writing is my passion, and the ability to focus on that passion while sharing it with others is one of my main goals.

What is the longest thing you’ve written? and what is your favorite genre to write?

Currently my longest piece is actually the first novel I completed for National Novel Writing Month, at just over 75,000 words. That particular project is on the shelf for now, though I may come back to it in the future. My current work in progress is looking like it will be about the same length or longer, I’m about halfway through at this point and it’s just under 45,000 words.

Most of my writing is young adult and falls under the fantasy or science fiction heading. I love the genre’s ability to examine current social issues in a new context and bring diversity into the media. Plus, dragons are awesome.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

I would like to leave behind a life well-lived, a life filled with passion and the fruits of my hard work. The legacy of a life lived in such a way so that my passions help others and their own passions to flourish. If one person is changed or comforted by something I write, that is enough for me.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

I’ve hinted at this with previous answers, but I don’t like being pigeonholed into a single subject! Never Idly Dreaming is primarily about my writing and writing goals, but if I only wrote about that I would have run out of ideas and interest long ago. My life has many facets, and I have many different creative outlets I’d love to share.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #6

For this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would like to introduce you to Emma from Puddleside Musings. Her blog is very amazing, especially if you enjoy making cards. She has a ton of free printables and her planners are just exquisite. You have to take a look at her blog and all the work she has put into putting all these creative outlets in one place. There is one section particularly that I relate to most and that is her snail mail. She posts about all the beautiful things she receives in the mail. I love that she is able to share such amazing things from all over the world. I was able to interview her below: before you run over to her blog, get to know her a little bit more below:


What made you get into blogging?

Peer pressure? I started my first blog when I was around 16 and at the time having a blog was just the thing to do. Not the greatest reason I know but I’ve found better reasons since then to blog! I started with just writing about things in my life but that didn’t interest me very much. At some point I just started using my blog for posting pictures of my art and that’s really what kept me blogging. That was with my old blog but the same thing happened with my current blog, Puddleside Musings – it started as things about my life and morphed into a blog about crafts, planners and snail mail – so I guess what gets me into blogging usually isn’t what keeps me at it.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

None at all! The only training I’ve had is tangentially related. I did do art for my Leaving Cert. but that was all about drawing people and objects so not craft related at all, and I have a degree in English literature but I can’t say that’s influenced my snail mail at all other than to encourage me to be very wordy.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

Dropping out of my Master’s degree. I started a part time online master’s degree in World Heritage Conservation but I dropped out after only two months. I do kind of see it as a failure on my part because I’ve typically always been really good at academic stuff but with the master’s degree, even though I really liked the subject, I just felt constantly overwhelmed and anxious to the point where it was affecting my health. I have learned from that experience though and since then I’ve been trying to pay more attention to my feelings so that I don’t push myself too far just because I think people expect it of me.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

You know, I don’t think I can name any one or two people in particular for having influenced me and my blog the most. I don’t know, I think I try to more inspired than influenced by people and I’m inspired by a lot of people!

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

Writing up posts takes me a few hours because I post three times a week on Puddleside Musings and twice a week on my art blog, Idle Spot. I’d say it could take me up to four hours to write my blog posts for the week because I’m slow at writing things and also I have to edit photos for them too. If you think about it though, blogging takes a lot longer than that because in order to have something to blog about, I have to make things which is increases that time drastically!

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

It’s just a hobby for me, though I would love if I could make it my profession.

What is your passion?

I guess my passion is for making and creating things – good thing that’s what my blog is about!

What is your ultimate goal in life?

I really wish I had a goal in life but at the moment I don’t really have one. I’m still figuring things out so maybe I should just say my goal is to be happy. That and live in a hobbit hole…which would make me happy indeed.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

A hoard of bulging notebooks filled with drawings and crafts.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #5

For this weeks Showcase Sunday, I want to introduce you to John Bloodworth the Gentleman Crafter. I came across his blog a while ago and immediately fell in love with the ideas he presented. He makes a really good point in his blog that offers the suggestion to revisit the archives. There is a lot of great content out there, you just have to be willing to look for it. I know that I revisit my own blog posts from the beginning. Sometimes information changes and I always want the correct information on my blog. So, be sure to check out his blog, but before you do, learn a little bit about him by reading the interview below.


What made you get into blogging?

It was a bit of an accidental entry to be honest. At the time I hadn’t any inclination to blog however a couple of work colleagues kept on saying that I should do it as I had a lot to say about craft and that people would be interested – 3 years in and I love my little corner of the internet!

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

I have had a personal interest in arts and crafts since I was a boy, some 30+ years ago. I completed various further education qualifications in art and design and then, later in my career, I began working at Create and Craft TV and then began learning about arts and crafts as a hobby – so I guess that you could say that I have.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

I’m not sure that I would count anything as a failure as that’s quite a negative way at looking at the learning process. All ‘mistakes’ can count as experiments and all successes can count as the lessons learnt from the experiments. So I guess you could say that learning to look at failure positively was one thing that I picked up.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

The blog visitors, especially those that leave comments, are the ones that influence and inspire me the most when I’m sat writing the blog posts. A few of them have been following the blog since it began and it is always lovely when they read and comment because it shows me that it was worthwhile doing.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

That varies a good deal. Some weeks I just don’t get the chance, others I will be creating, photographing and writing every day.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

Although the blog often refers to what I do professionally it is actually something that I do in my spare time – when I have some.

What is your passion?

My passion is creativity. I enjoy all aspects of it from concept to construction and completion. The creative journey is often more exciting than the finished result for me.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

To own a creative studio by the coast!

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

Inspiration.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?  

Folk don’t often realise that all of the previous posts are still available – it’s certainly worth checking out the archives.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit his blog and let him know that you saw him here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #4

For this weeks Showcase Sunday, I want to introduce Roberta Pimentel. Her blog was the first that I came in contact with that had guest blogs, and she even allowed me to be one of those guests which you can find here. Some of the other things that I love about her blog is how down to earth it is. It is funny and informative. She truly does capture the audience right away and I want you to check her out. But before you do, read the interview below:


What made you get into blogging?

Well, in 2010 I got in touch with a girl who was blogging and it appeared very fun to me. I started a blog for fun but from 2010 I have begun over and over again. Last year I decided to start a blog with my own domain and just go step by step. Additionally, I give others the opportunity to write guest posts on my blog.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

I have only read other famous blogs in Norway and around the globe. However, for a few months ago I attended a blogging course where I paid a few dollars but to be honest, I have not learned anything that I did not know from before, but I think many, especially beginners, can get some insights by taking a course.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

Believing that I could do everything on my own without any help from others, but I learned quickly that it is not possible to go through life without having backups from good friends and family.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

To be honest it is too many who has influenced me on my journey. If I would write a list it would go one forever and that is why I choose to not write names.

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

Well, before I did not have a job so I spent like all day long on blogging, but now I don’t use more than an hour a day since the time doesn’t let me. I hope I can start using at least two hours a day when I’m done with my studies.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

Absolutely just a hobby. Blog consumes a lot of time and I don’t have the time to have it as a job since it doesn’t pay my bills. However, no one knows what the future will bring. In the blogging industry, you must meet the right people at the right time.

What is your passion?

Dancing, working out, inspire others and networking.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

For a few years ago I went through a very tough life crisis where I messed up my economy. This has caused some consequences in my life today so I would say that my ultimate goal, for now, is to pay off all my debt. I am working on it and I cannot wait till I am done. When I am done my boyfriend and I want to buy ourselves a house/apartment and I would love to be able to help my family in Brazil as well. I do have many goals and the above-mentioned goals are just some of them haha…

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

Changing other people’s lives is the greatest gift one can get so I would like people to know me as someone who cares for others.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

Right now life is pretty busy and I don’t have time to blog every day, but I give people the chance to write a guest post and if someone of your readers wants to participate they can send me an email at email@robertapimentel.com.

Visit my blog at www.robertapimentel.com


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #3

Welcome to Sunday Showcase #3! For this week I want to introduce you to Katie Morton. I have the pleasure of knowing this amazing lady in real life and I wanted to share with the world her passion. She is such a giving and thoughtful person and this all rings true with her teaching aids on her blog. I had the opportunity to interview her below.

One of the things I love most about her blog is that it is a unique way to teach kids. She works with a Montessori School and has really tried her best to design her lessons that adapts to all her kids. Read the interview below then go and check out her site.


What made you get into blogging?

        I started my blog mostly as a place to store and upload files so that they can be added to my Pinterest board. A lot of teachers use Pinterest to share ideas. I knew that I had a lot of ideas that I wanted to share, so I thought, I need to get my stuff on Pinterest. But then I realized, Pinterest is really just a fancy way to link to something, so I decided to start the blog so I would have that something to link to. My plan is to only upload and share my own work, things that I have made myself for the children in my classroom.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

        Yes. My blog is all about preschool Montessori work. I have a bachelor’s degree in elementary education and I am currently working on finishing my Montessori certification through a Montessori organization called MEPI (Montessori Educational Programs International). MEPI is just one of many different Montessori organizations that offer certification in Montessori.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

        This question is hard for me, not because I don’t fail, I fail as often as most people I suspect, but I try to never look at failures in a negative way. A failure is just one step on the way to a success. Maria Montessori thought that teachers should think more like scientists, that they should think of their classroom as a place to run experiments. So each time I make a new piece of work for the classroom, I am running an experiment. I have my hypothesis, which is usually along the lines of “These children will like to do this work that I am going to make.” Then I make the work and put it out for the children to try. Sometimes my hypothesis was right and the children love what I have made and are instantly engaged, but other times, I was wrong. They didn’t engage with the work I made or I presented it to a child that wasn’t quite ready for that lesson. When this happens, I make note of what to change (save this lesson for later, change how the lesson was given) and then I try again the next day.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

        In a way, Maria Montessori would be the most logical answer, because if I wasn’t a Montessori teacher, in a Montessori classroom, I wouldn’t be making Montessori work and I wouldn’t have started the blog. I have seen some great Montessori blogs over the years though, mostly by mom’s using Montessori in the home. Some of my favorites have been Counting Coconuts (http://countingcoconuts.blogspot.com/), Carrots are Orange (http://carrotsareorange.com/), and Chasing Cheerios (http://chasingcheerios.blogspot.ca/).

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

        Well, I’m not sure yet. I uploaded all of the work that I found on my computer that I have made in the past. I usually make at least one new piece of work for the shelf a month, but sometimes I use other downloads instead (a lot less work for me!) So I think I will just have to see how it goes. When I make something new, it will get added to the blog.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

        Just a hobby, but a way to keep track of the things that I have made professionally. I love the school that I work at now and I can’t imagine leaving, but if something happened and I left, I’m glad to know that I have all this work backed up in a place I can access anywhere.

What is your passion?

        Teaching! Few things are better than being a witness to a child’s “ah-ha!” moment. I am also very passionate about finding ways to use technology in the classroom to either improve my teaching or to improve the child’s learning. I am so lucky to be at a company that embraces technology and has the means to provide it to the teachers and the children.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

        To be near the people I love and experience as many things as possible. I want to try everything, go everywhere, see everything. I am a lifelong learner. I get very excited by ideas and new information and experiences. I think a happy life is one with a great balance of trying new things and returning to enjoy and savor the pervious experiences you love.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

        The legacy of a woman who impacted the lives of many and never said no to a new experience.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

        Montessori education is AMAZING. Many people don’t know anything about it and I really hope that any parents, especially those with preschool age children, do some more reading about it and maybe search out a Montessori school in their area to visit.


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #2

For this week’s Showcase Sunday, I would like to introduce Shridevi from www.Personalogues.com I had the pleasure of being introduced to her when she followed my blog and sent me an email. After getting to know her a little more through email, I began following her blog. I love that she has so many interesting topics, including Zentangle, which is a recent find in my life as well.

I love how you can look at each blog and see the growth and learning from the previous experiences in her life. She has even taken steps, I was too afraid to take. One of them specifically being her “Tangle Thursday” which inspired me to also make a weekday themed post. Because we follow some of the same blogs, I am always interested to see her take and understanding of the challenges presented. You won’t be disappointed with her serene blog that takes relaxation to the max.

Below is the interview conducted with her, Enjoy!


What made you get into blogging?

>> A few years ago, I used to write product reviews for a leading Indian beauty blog. It was then that I realized how much I love the whole process of writing and connecting with people through posts. Gradually, the rules for posting on that blog got more and more stringent. I felt the need for freedom in writing. So I started my own blog. But I couldn’t stick to it for long. This happened with a couple of blogs before I finally stuck to Personalogues. You can read the whole story here

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

>> No I don’t have any formal training in blogging or the subjects that I blog about. Personalogues was started as a personal blog covering several topics including personal experiences,random thoughts and perspectives, book reviews, travel and mainly my journey of learning Zentangle Art. I did learn the basics of Zentangle art from a certified teacher a couple of years ago, but that was just one session and I took it further from there by myself.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

>> I think my greatest failure has been been my inability to do certain things just out of fear of making mistakes. I had that fear even when I started this blog. After I purchased the domain, I was too scared to make the first post. No post seemed perfect enough. Good enough to be seen on my blog. It took me almost a year to get over this fear. I joined a 30 day blogging challenge and through that I gradually learnt that my best is good enough and obsessing over perfection will take me nowhere.  

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

>> I would like to give credit to Sarah Arrow of Sark eMedia for this. It was through her 30 day blogging challenge that I learnt so much about technicalities of blogging, gained confidence and grew my blog bit by bit.  

Tell us more about the 30-day blogging challenge you mentioned.

>> Here is a link to the Facebook Page – https://www.facebook.com/groups/30DayBloggingChallenge/

and here is the link to the registration link – https://www.sarkemedia.com/blogging-challenges-traffic/ You get daily emails when you register on this email. Each email has something new to learn about blogging and at the end of each email there is a ‘To-Do’ activity for your blog. I also did a post on why one should take up this blogging challenge here http://personalogues.com/30-day-blogging-challenge-sarah-arrow/

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

>> On an average I spend about 5 hours a week on blogging. However, there are times when I have spent up to 5 hours a day as well on my blog.

How much time do you spend on the content of your blog, such as art pieces, reading or experiences shared?

>> I try to draw every single day, and spend about 30 minutes to an hour on my art pieces. It doesn’t necessarily have to be one continuous sitting. Sometimes I do it in bits and pieces. Like if I have about 10 minutes to spare, I complete whatever I can in those 10 minutes. Sometimes I just practice the patterns before actually implementing them on the main piece of art.

Similarly for reading, most of the time, I don’t read at a stretch. I read as and when I get time during the day. However, if the book is really good and I can’t put it down, I stay awake through the night to read.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

>> As of now, blogging is just a hobby or rather a platform to showcase my hobbies – drawing (Zentangle Art), reading and travelling mainly.

What is your passion?

>> I am passionate about

Parenting – Most of my energies and thoughts go towards bringing up my daughter

Reading – I have always been called a bookworm

Zentangle Art – Since about a year or so. It is so very relaxing and calming

( If I make a pie chart of all the three above, parenting would take up about 85%)

Do you include a lot of personal experiences on your blog, such as pictures with your family or daughter? Why or why not?

>> I don’t include too many personal experiences on the blog, just the ones worth sharing. Like if I enjoyed an outing or a vacation or seen a movie that I really liked or hated I post about it. I refrain from posting a lot of details or pictures about my family. This holds true not only for my blog, but also social media. I barely post any personal pictures on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, because I am not comfortable doing so.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

>> I want to live my life to the fullest without any regrets.

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

>>Not really. However, I would just like to mention that this is my first ever ‘interview’ by a blogger and I feel like a sort of a celebrity. To the readers of this post – Do stop by my blog and say Hi, would love to hear from you!


Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sunday #1

For this first Showcase Sunday, I want to introduce Jenn Coulbeck. You can find her blog at www.Jenncoulbeck.com. The first thing I noticed about her blog is how unique her art is. I love how she organizes her blog into easy to search previews. Her art is something I admire. I feel like she has the touch to bring her drawings to life by adding color and faces to what may seem completely abstract.  

I had an opportunity to ask her some questions about her blog in an email interview, shown below. Please enjoy and learn something from this amazing blogger and artist.

What made you get into blogging?

I’ve had an on again, off again affair with blogging since around 2002. My first blog was called ‘The Tragedy of a Beautiful Night’ and was hosted on blogger. I’ve used several platforms including Livejournal, Deadjournal, My Trending Stories, Blogger and DeviantArt before finally settling down to WordPress, which is my favourite of the lot.

I was originally inspired to blog by online friends after seeing their amazing blogs.

Have you ever had any formal training or education in your blog subject?

I do have a degree in Illustration from The University of Lincoln, but my work back then was nothing like what I am doing now, so… yes and no. I try to apply what I was taught during my degree to my work now, but they don’t relate all that much other than being art.

What was your greatest failure and how did you learn from it?

I once presented some work to a lecturer at university and was basically told, I can’t draw realism – their words – so I took my work in the direction it’s going now, working more of that abstract elements and different ways of mark making.

Who has influenced you the most with your blog?

It’s hard to say, actually. It’s a new blog in the grand scheme of things and it’s really just starting to take its own steps. Bloggers that inspire me are Leonie Dawson, while we’re not as ‘hippy-woo-woo’ as one another and nor am I selling anything, I admire her candid way of writing that reflects her personality.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve received?

I’ve never really been given any advice personally about blogs, but there are a plethora of people that will give it out freely if you go looking. There is one piece that has stuck in my mind recently, only because for a long time I was rather stubborn about implementing it! That’s stick to a single topic for your blog. For a long time I posted about anything and everything that popped into my head and was left scratching my noggin over why I wasn’t getting any followers. Since creating my dedicated art blog, I’ve not ran into this problem!

How much time do you spend blogging in any given week?

It really does vary depending on how much time my son sleeps a day! I tend to try and keep a decent schedule going on behind the scenes in case he decides to only sleep for 10 minutes.

Is blogging your profession or just a hobby?

Despite my background, it’s just a hobby. If I sell a print through my Society6 store or get someone subscribed to my Patreon account I’ll be over the moon, but it’s not what is driving me to create artwork and blog about it.

What is your passion?

I love easy walks with the dog (nothing too stressful like mountains) and I am an avid reader of books, but my real passion is art and creativity. I love seeing and reading about people’s art projects – especially if they bleed enthusiasm- which is why I love WordPress over other platforms, there’s this whole community of bloggers behind it to connect with.

What is your ultimate goal in life?

Happiness.

What legacy would you like to leave behind?

The biggest collection of marker pens and coloured pencils anyone has ever seen

Is there anything you want the readers to know about your blog we haven’t covered?

I am always looking for feedback on both my blog and the content of my posts. As well as new faces to network with. So don’t be shy, say hi!

Don’t just take my word for it, please visit her blog and let her know that you saw her here on “Sunday Showcase.”

As always, If you would like your blog to be featured on here, please do not hesitate to email me at craftyartistkc@gmail.com and I would love to feature you next sunday.

Showcase Sundays!

I would like to begin to showcase blogs that have been inspirational to me. By sharing each other’s blogs we are able to help each other out with traffic. So, how do I get my blog showcased you ask? Its simple. Email me, and I will conduct an interview about your blog and then I will post the interview, showcasing your blog and what you have to offer.

All blogs are welcome. Just email me! craftyartistkc@gmail.com

I can’t wait to hear from you and schedule your showcase!