Remembering Dixie

I can’t believe a year has gone by since the passing of Dixie Carter, my longtime childhood hero. She was a shining star when she was here and now she shines bright from above. I am glad you graced my life and I never will forget you. I miss you Dixie.

My apologies for probably breaking tons of copyright laws since this layout using many photos taken from the web that I have saved through the years.

The Martha Stewart Show

A year ago today my friends and I went to see a taping of The Martha Stewart Show and I just got around to documenting it. Even though it took a year to “scrap” this event the point is I did it. There are no time limits on scrapbooking the event in your life, sometimes I forget this and stress over it. So do whatever feels right for you and don’t feel pressured to get it all documented right away. I do however suggest journaling the details of events soon after so you don’t forget them, even if it’s just a few notes jotted down quickly.

Art Expo NYC 2011

Photo by Daniel Sroka

Last weekend we had the opportunity to help my brother-in-law, Dan from Daniel Sroka Botanical Abstracts set up his art show at the International Art Expo NYC. It was a long day setting up but so worth it in the end as the booth looked amazing and really showcased Dan’s fabulous work perfectly.

While setting up for the show it gave us a behind the scene look at how the artists set up their booths and displays. We even got to see a few of our favorite artists’ work, Ed Heck and Nelson De La Nuez. When we went back on Sunday Ed Heck was there and we got to say hello to him which was an added bonus. There were several mixed media artist who had some great and inspiring work. A funny and surprising highlight of the show was the food as the ArtExpo was catered by Butterfield Market. For the 2 days we were at the show we sampled a few of their sandwiches, salads and desserts and I tell you I’m in LOVE! Their logo and branding were very inspiring as well – additional blog post to come regarding that.

In the end we had a great time and are so proud of Dan and his successes from the show. He was even chosen as a Top Ten SOLO Artist from the show. Way to go and can’t wait for the next show!

Daniel Sroka is a fine art photographer who celebrates the physical and spiritual grace of the simplest elements of nature. Check out his website at danielsroka.com to view his work or to make a purchase.


When I Grow Up Scholarship

Anyone looking for a creative career jump start? If so you have to apply for the When I Grow Up Scholarship where you could win 12 coaching sessions (valued at $1516) FREE! Having worked with Michelle for months I can tell you she is AMAZING and will help you get your creative mojo flowing!! Hurry though applications submissions close in a few days!!!

Take Note: 2 Clowns


I have finally gotten back into scrapbooking and just in time to play with Michelle Underwood‘s new kit, Take Note.

My mom emailed me this photo recently and I thought it was a good memory to record of my Dad and I from the circus. I still can’t believe this was so long ago, time sure does march forward when you aren’t looking. And I’m not that particularity fond of clowns but I’ll make an exception here, as I hope you will too 🙂

Avoid the Burnout Blues

This article was previously published at the Pink Ink Studios blog last year but thought it was a good article worth sharing again. Even though it was geared for photographers and creatives there are some key ideas here that can translate to any career and profession.

Every photographer/artist now and again can experience burnout. It’s hard to avoid this feeling when you are so passionate about your art. According to the Mayo Clinic burnout is a state of physical, emotional and mental exhaustion caused by long-term exposure to demanding work situations. Burnout is the cumulative result of stress.

Since most photographers’ livelihoods depend on working all the time avoiding burnout is a key component of business. Here are a few tips and ideas to avoid or overcome the burnout blues.

  • The simple things to do first are slow down, cut back, set boundaries, talk to others, and make time for yourself. Making time for you sounds easy but by taking 1-2 days off a week if possible you can really rejuvenate yourself.
  • Blog! Instead of doing the work that causes you stress, take a break and blog about it. Blogging about tips, ideas and techniques is helpful to others and may help change your view on things. Don’t worry you don’t need to be an expert, just be yourself and have fun. You can either blog for your clients or for your peers. Blogging your experiences can be both beneficial as a learning tool to yourself as well as something that other photographers can use as reference.
  • Get on Facebook. Facebook is not just for catching up with old friends and playing games — it can also be used as a highly effective business tool. It’s great for marketing your products, landing jobs and connecting with your customers and other photographers. You never know who you will interact with or the opportunities that could present themselves just by logging on.
  • Teach or mentor someone else. Besides helping someone else who needs the help or encouragement you might learn something about yourself.
  • Think of fun and different ideas for your clients. Instead of offering your clients the “standard” photo package or ideas try to think outside of the box.
  • Hire an assistant or interns to help with the daily tasks to free up your time for the fun things you like to do while working.
    Join a professional organization in your area or online. Joining a professional organization will help you to stay on top of what’s happening in industry and it may also help to inspire ideas that in turn could grow your own business. Check out the Professional Photographers of America website for information on a group in your area.
  • Make sure you give yourself new and exciting challenges often. If you are a portrait photographer try shooting a landscape photo. By mixing up your subjects you can keep things fresh and fun. Challenging yourself brings out the passion, excitement and enthusiasm in yourself. It helps you to develop your talents and in the process you become a new person. A photographer I spoke to recently mentioned she “don’t necessarily get burnt out on photography but she can get burnt out on what she’s shooting.” She is a portrait/studio photographer but for fun she takes photos of wildlife as a hobby, which helps mix up the day to day work. Check out this link for a complete list of different types of photography options.
  • Try to have a hobby or interest that isn’t photography related. I know it sounds hard because everything you do is probably photo related but try to have something else for “fun”. Hobbies can ease your mind and relax you, so start a garden, collect stamps or go to the movies often. Sometimes you just need new experiences to break out of a rut.

There are lots of things you can do to avoid the burnout blues but you need to take the time to address them. Some time alone and reflection can help you think of creative ways to combat feeling like this. Keep an open mind, consider all your options and ask for help along the way if you need it. I hope some of these tips have helped you to think differently and will help you to stay on top of your professional game.

Happy Anniversary!

I’d like to wish my parents a wonderful 39th wedding anniversary today! It also would have been my grandparent’s 67th anniversary as well so in honor of them I decided to scrapbook their wedding photo. Sending happy anniversary wishes to my parents and thinking of fond memories of my Nannie and Poppie – miss you both so much!

On a side note, this layout took me forever! I haven’t scrapbooked in awhile as I have been designing other things and I felt rusty coming back to it. I guess I shouldn’t take such a long break from it next time.

Pink Ink Studios March Madness Sale

I’ve been designing up a storm lately in preparation for Pink Ink Studios’ March Madness sale. Hence why I’ve been MIA here lately.

So save 25% this week on ALL of my products at Pink Ink Studios! I have TONS of new products in stock which I’m very proud of if I do say so myself. Also be sure to check out all the other wonderful designs that Pink Ink Studios has to offer too!