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Filtering by Tag: interviews

sprout goodness

liz lamoreux

I am delighted to share that the incredible Amanda Fall, editor and creator of Sprout magazine, has interviewed me in her current issue. This issue is all about Serenity, which is something I think we really have to create space for instead of just closing our eyes and wishing it will appear. I loved answering Amanda's questions in this interview and really felt like we had a beautiful, important conversation that I hope you will join in and become part of. 

I have been a fan of Sprout for a while. It is a gorgeous online magazine that is simply, truly full of goodness. There is artwork + photography alongside wisdom and whispered truths from women who are on their own paths of seeking the beauty and trueness of being present in their lives. (I see why Amanda said this issue was the one for me!) And there are poems throughout the pages. Yes. Poetry. I read several of the poems in this issue aloud quietly while my family slept down the hall and the words were like the blessings and balm I most needed right now. (I. Love. Poetry.) 

Each page of this issue is simply a reminder to breathe deeply, listen, and trust. I am downloading it to my iPad as I think it will be perfect for those nights my mind is having trouble resting and I need these reminders from other women who know and get it. Yes.

Learn more about Sprout and Amanda's mission of Persistent Green over here.

tea (or perhaps hot cocoa) + talk

liz lamoreux

hot cocoa kind of day

a hot cocoa and polka dot pjs sort of morning

the delightful melissa (of melissa loves) and the fantastic ez (of creature comforts) interviewed me for the tea & talk series melissa hosts on her blog each week. you can check it out here. thanks to you both for inviting me to tea & talk! i had such fun answering these questions.

it is snowing again here in the seattle/tacoma area. huge straight from my childhood sort of snowflakes. it makes me so very happy. (it so rarely snows here.) i knew i just had to have hot cocoa with marshmallows on a day like this. hope your world is filled with some happy today...

miss kelly "camp indigo soul" barton {an interview}

liz lamoreux

When I first started reading blogs, I remember noticing that this blogger Kelly left the warmest comments for people. I clicked through to her blog and found out that she lived in Indiana (where I grew up), so I, of course, began to read...I have been enjoying the authentic way she shares pieces of her world on her blog for a while now, and as she agreed to let me interview her, I am happy to be able to share some of her words with you today.

Along with being a blogger, Kelly is an artist and a graphic designer. You can find Kelly's delightful artwork at the happygirl shop (her etsy shop) and in her portfolio on her website.


Please share a little about you, your creative endeavors, and so on.

i think i might be considered a vagabond of art and design. my style seems to move all over the spectrum. and i am happy with that. that is what makes me — ME.

Describe your studio/creative space or the one you hope to have one day.

my studio rocks! i love it, but don’t all artists love being in their studio. i lose myself when i am in there; hours fly by and i am happy. soft green apple walls and fun stuff from ikea. oh and i can’t forget the sweetest thing of all — artwork from all my girls. i have prints from mati and kelly rae. i have two christine mason miller and penelope dullaghan originals. yes, yes, i know i am one lucky chickadee. and in october, a special someone will be traveling all the way from oakland to grace my walls: my first kelly rae original…yippie!

What is your favorite way to spend time in your studio/creative space? What do you do when you are just creating for you?

oh…i am drooling. how can you not — when you think of what you can do in the studio. i have so many interests, books everywhere, with all kinds of grand creative ideas flowing from the pages. i am happiest when i am creating. doesn’t really matter what i am working on, when i get to lose myself for hours in the studio…i am a happy chick. i love when i am blessed with a few hours to paint, but i also work on jewelry, notecards…oh, and the sound of cutting paper, how can you not love that sound?…sweet!

If you were to create an inspiration board today, what would it be filled with?

hmmmm…..no one will be shocked by this on. my board consists of postcards that came with my prints from the girls and andrea scher….supershero. have you ever seen her necklaces — they rock! i have cotton candy, but my sweet pooch tried to eat it, so at the moment, i need to send it to her for some fixing. i think i would also include images of my flowers and other photos i have snapped of my kids and a couple of very poignant quotes. i dig quotes.

Do you have a daily practice (like yoga, sketching, reading, afternoon naps, and so on)?

what….exercise — are you kidding me. i would rather sit and eat peanut butter m&ms. i love to take a nap, especially when it is raining and you can hear it hitting the windows and roof. that sound always relaxes me. i love to read, but if i read, then i don’t get to paint, and we can’t have that.

I am intrigued by the way that where we live often comes through when we create. As I am originally from "middle" Indiana myself, I am curious if you notice this in your own work?

it has taken me a very LONG time to get to this creative point. i never even considered i would be an artist one day. it makes me sad that i didn’t take art in high school. i know it would have made things easier academically. i found out last year i have a learning disability — similar to dyslexia. [i went to be tested for ADD ]. i am not shocked by this. i knew for years that my brain didn’t function like my friends did. i had to work hard to cover that up. school wasn’t easy for me. but i know that art has to be offered in our schools. kids are lucky to get to art class once a week. i can’t say that INDIANA comes out in my work. but my colorful mind truly does. i have fought myself for years, never allowing myself to truly embrace...ME. but since i have been [letting go], my paintings truly reflect who i am . that is how i came to paint [the girls]. each one is a reflection of my mind, my subconscious. as i have grown artistically, i have allowed myself to become more confident and put myself out there more, which is not an easy task for me.

You seem to bring in a lot of joy and play into your world. For example, your etsy shop is called "the happy girl shop." Can you share a little about what this sense of playfulness means to you?

i love the word happy…i dig it, i do. but this doesn’t mean i am a happy girl all the time. i laughed as i named it that. and i did it for that reason. it is a reminder of how i want to be. a gentle nudge of sorts, for those days when i am not feeling happy. and it does reflect my style of painting.
as you can see, i am a big fan of funky color. the walls of my house are the same. not that my husband comes home everyday and says “honey, i love the green apple and asparagus kitchen walls” [side note: you will never here him call me “honey”, but if he calls me “kell”, my heart melts].
i have an orange dining room too. oh, let me clarify, not tuscan orange or peach, but pantone 021 orange, with a zebra rug and ikea black and white floral print curtains. it is one of my favorite rooms…next to the studio.

As you reflect on where you are in your journey, can you think of a feeling/issue/fear/something else you had to let go of in order to follow your dreams? If yes, can you touch on how letting go of "it" changed you?

…sure, ME. i had to let go of holding myself back. i think it is hard for many girls to let go and believe they can do it. i was one of those, i still am some days. i work hard as a mom to teach my three kids that they are worthy.

Thinking back on your life so far, is there a pivotal or specific moment that led you to this place on your path?

my second pregnancy i began sewing and doing crafts. nothing like i do now, but i was staying at home and honestly bored and unhappy. i needed an outlet. that led to entry into the graphic design world and taking design and art at a local college. Then, when i went through my divorce [yuck, divorce stinks] i went back full time to get my degree and slowly ripened as an artist. i also married a swell guy.

Do you have a favorite quote and/or personal mantra?

i have so many…i will give you an old favorite:
[wake up and live!] — bob marley

i love to listen to bob marley, especially while driving in the summer, windows down, music loud…

and something new:
[freedom is what you do with what has been done to you] — jean-paul sartre
can we get an amen?! this is so true. and something i have had to listen to from deep inside. i found this through miz kelly rae, just to give credit where credit is due.

If you could have one superhero power, what would it be?

duh…x-ray vision!

Thanks for answering all these questions...Is there anything else you would like to add?

well thanks for including me in all the fun. i am a very blessed girl. i have been amazed at how giving everyone is. i couldn’t have done it without the girls i mentioned above and a few others too. if you visit my blog — you can see all of them there. and if anyone is reading this who is thinking, "i want to be an artist," here is what i have to say to that. that used to be me, i said that all the time — i still say it some days, but you are an artist. So go buys some paints and brushes [or whatever you want to use] begin. and don’t be silly thinking it isn’t worthy…of course it is, because it is yours.

oh…please, come and see me at camp indigo soul!


jennifer valentine {an interview}

liz lamoreux

Over the last few weeks, I have been slowing reading The Crafter's Companion to try to savor all that I am learning from it. It has me excited, motivated, and inspired! I was particularly drawn to the way the book is set up to give the reader a peek into the everyday lives of the artists/crafters within and insight into their inspirations and what they surround themselves with in their creative spaces. I didn't want those pages to end. It felt like sitting down to tea with some wicked cool crafty+artsy girls.

I have decided to continue those "tea dates" virtually through interviews every now and then with an artist who inspires me. And, along the way, I hope to introduce you to a few artists you might not yet know or if you do, give you some insight into their worlds in a new way. I plan to ask the questions that I think would come up over a cup of tea at a local cafe. I also want to ask enough questions to allow for a sense of who the artist is, what inspires her, and what has led her to this place on her path. I hope you will enjoy reading them.

The delightfully poetic and clever Jennifer Valentine of the blog Sacred Cake has agreed to be my first interviewee. When I first saw her piece "Flying Irony" (pictured below) last summer, I literally clapped my hands with delight. I love the way this girl looks at things. Read on...


I would like to start with a little bio about you. Tell me (and the folks who will be reading this) a little about you, your creative endeavors, and so on.

My love for forlorn, abandoned objects defines the nature of my art. Rescuing the discarded for the sake of creating something of intrinsic beauty first came to me when I was a little girl. Friends and I would scour the neighborhood on trash day for things that were no longer wanted. Thrift stores and yard sales have since taken the place of trash day, becoming my favorite haunts for the part of me that never grew up.

I have evolved into an assemblage and mixed-media artist. I am married to a remarkable poet and portrait painter, and in addition to being the mother of five amazing children, I am a graphic design student. To my great delight, Cloth Paper Scissors magazine recently featured my work in their May/June issue. Seeing my work published for the first time gave me a tremendous sense of accomplishment.

Poetry is another necessary aspect of my everyday life; whether I am writing about the aesthetic emptiness of housework or reading between the lines of a great poet, there lays a great sense of personal harmony. The path of self-discovery is a daily walk.

Paint us a picture of your studio/creative space or the one you hope to have one day.

I have a small studio that consists of shelves lined with (what may appear to the untrained eye as) trash! I am in love with things that most people would consider to be the unwanted remnants of everyday life: old postcards, cracked plates and pitchers chipped and stained. I have a shabby fabric collection, a growing stack of old window frames, and drawer bins filled with antiquated books, junky hardware, buttons, old radio and TV fuses; flashbulbs, antique silverware, and lots of ephemera. I keep quite a bit of things preserved in vintage suitcases as well. Old suitcases make excellent storage. In a beloved Samsonite, I have a collection of antique and vintage photographs that I love to look through. I feel a sense of connection with the faces I see there.


Someday I’d like to have a studio with a lot more working room—a place to envision and create much larger pieces. But for the time being, I must allow space to define only the size of my assemblages, certainly not the size of the creativity.

What is your favorite way to spend time in your studio/creative space? What do you do when you have some time to create with no deadlines and are just creating for you?

My favorite way to spend time in my creative space is to go through some of my bins and suitcases and shelves and find something I might have forgotten that excites me. I love to look at my old photographs, especially my collection of vintage photo booth pictures. Sometimes my eyes get accustomed to perusing all of the well acquainted objects (especially if I haven’t gotten anything new in awhile), so I have to “re-look” at what I own to become inspired.

Lucky for me I don’t have many deadlines, so creating “just for me” happens almost always.

If you find yourself in a creative rut, what do you do to shift things?

My creativity seems to come in waves, and at times I do recede into a dry spell. To remedy this predictable element of my creative spirit, I keep a favorite soundtrack nearby for just such an emergency. A favorite of mine, “City of Angels,” has been keeping me company for almost as long as I have been creating art. When I begin to feel the onset of a “dry” run, I listen to the music and soon I am reminded of more creative days. Then things start to flow again.

If you had an entire day to "fill up your creative well," what would you do?

I would spend the day immersed in art galleries and thrift stores with my husband...then I’d have uninterrupted time to explore in my studio and create with wild abandon.

Do you have a daily practice?

Having four children at home means that “me” time is hard to find. I like to get up very early and do some stretching and centering yoga, and then I have a cup of tea and do some journaling. I may even start a new piece and work on it when I get small breaks throughout the day.

Do you find inspiration in your town or in another town/city? If yes, what inspires you about the place?

I spent three wonderful years in the Seattle area, and I loved exploring the galleries there. That always inspired me to go beyond any creative boundaries.

As you reflect on where you are in your journey, can you think of a feeling/issue/fear/something else you had to let go of in order to follow your dreams? If yes, can you touch on how letting go of "it" changed you?

I had to let go of what I thought other people would think of my work. Honestly, I never thought anyone would be interested in my “junk” art until my friends urged me to show it off. I have become more confident as I experience people’s positive reactions to what I create.

Thinking back on your life so far, is there a pivotal or specific moment that led you to this place on your path?

There have been so many pivotal moments in my life, but there is one that really stands out. I began creating artwork for my own enjoyment and, after a few months, I began branching out. I really wanted to know what people thought of my work. So I gathered my courage, took a very deep breath, and called the local SoHo gallery and asked for some time with the curator. I packed up my work in a big plastic tote box, gathered my nerve, and went to see a Frenchman named Fabrice. He spread my work out on the floor and took his time to contemplate each piece. After a silence that seemed like forever, he said he liked my work and that he’d like to keep some for the gallery. He chose 5 pieces to display. A few weeks later, I sold my first piece. The gallery owner said it was to a woman who bought one of my winged hearts for a couple’s wedding gift. This was 8 years ago and I haven’t stopped creating since. It is an absolute joy.

"Flying Irony"

Do you feel a connection with mindfulness or intention when you create?

When I create, I feel a personal connection to the piece I am working with. The things I create with are forgotten and homeless until I give them a place in my heart. I’d like to feel that my work conveys the message of finding the sacred in the ordinary...that there is infinite potential in all of us.

Do you have a favorite shortcut or "trick" that you use when creating?

Glue... many kinds of glue! There is a glue for everything and if you don’t use the right kind, your project will go awry. I know this from experience! Know your glue!

What are some of your other inspirations? (Such as, movies, books, music, websites, artists, writers, blogs)

I really love Robert Rauschenberg’s work. One piece that sticks out in my mind is called “Bed” that he created in 1955; using a pillow, sheet, a quilt, and lots of paint. He inspires me to be more creative with my materials.

I am inspired by a small group of blogs that I read daily: my sister Kelly Rae, your blog, and Dana’s blog. Each one has its own unique and wonderful qualities. These blogs remind me to embrace myself and my creativity. When I read them I feel uplifted and centered.

Religious iconography is also an inspiration to me. It is a powerful example of an application of a simple idea in a work of art. It has an immediate effect on the viewer. This idea, for the most part, centers on the use of the halo or nimbus. With the use of a crescent or a full circle, the artist creates a universal symbol of sacredness.

I enjoy listening to Blues of all kinds, especially Robert Johnson and Muddy Waters. Something about a good Blues riff keeps me energized and focused.

Do you have a favorite quote and/or personal mantra?

“Seek the sacred in the ordinary.”
I also love the poem “The Journey” by Mary Oliver.

If you could have one superhero power, what would it be?

Let’s see, I would like to be able to fly for sure. I like to create wings for some of my pieces to covey the feeling or idea of flight and freedom.

"Magic Slippers"

Phew! Thanks for answering all these questions...Is there anything else you would like to add?

I’d like to do commissioned work...someone could send me a box of things, and I could create something magical with them. That would be a lot of fun!


Visit Jennifer's blog and etsy store to see her current creations. I am lucky enough to have one of her winged hearts watch over me each day in my little room.

Thank you Jennifer for sharing yourself by answering all these questions. Hopefully one day we can have that tea and I can see more of your pieces in person...