The Tale of the Shamrock

 

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Today’s featured vendor is a very special lady, a talent extraordinaire, and a wonderful person, both inside and out. Anyone would be pleased to call her “friend.” Her work never ceases to amaze me and is always inspiring.  I am so pleased to feature, Ms. Demetra Turner. Enjoy her story!

Living the Dream,

Lynne

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Even though you express yourself through your art, our readers would love to know more about you.

  1. Tell us where you are from, if you are married, any children, grandchildren.

I was born in Salem, Virginia. I now reside in Waynesboro. I am divorced and I have two wonderful grown boys that live in Dallas, Texas.
I also have a special little 6 year old in my life. His name is Sean, and I’m his “Mimi” and he is my heart!

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  1. What is your special dream business and how did you get started in it? What’s your “story?” When did you first know that you had a special gift?

 From the age of 3 I was interested in art. I used to draw family members on my chalkboard that my family raved about, so I quickly became “the artist in the family.” My mom was very good at sketching, although she never took it seriously, but whenever we had to wait at the bus station or in a doctor’s office she would give me a pad and pencil and we would sketch together, to keep me occupied.
At the age of five or six, I loved watching “The Jon Gnagy Show,” on our black and white TV. I watched it every time it came on. I was enthralled with the drawings he did, so that year my parents surprised me with my very own Jon Gnagy drawing set! I also loved “I Dream of Jeanie,” so I drew her a lot!

When I was in high school, my classmates would get me to draw their pets or their boyfriends or girlfriends and sometimes ask me to illustrate a story from class. I charged $5.00 each for those drawings. My first sales!

When I got married and started a family my art went on the back burner until 1989 when a friend and I were asked to hand paint some sweatshirts and canvas bags for The Belle Grae Inn’s gift shop. We divided them up and started painting, but my friend couldn’t finish hers and went to bed, so I stayed up all night long and finished all of them! I was tired, but I was driven! We delivered them on time the next day and got a nice check in return! I think that was my first realization that people might actually pay money for my art! It was a good feeling!

 2.Tell us about the variety of products you work with and what is your favorite.

 After the family drawings and high school portraits, I continued painting canvas bags and shirts, and I sold them all. But then, I discovered gourds! I bought some at a yard sale. They were moldy but I thought I would clean them up and set them around the house for decoration. After they sat on my porch for six months, I decided to paint on one and I hated it. I didn’t like the way the paint felt on it at all so I left them alone again for another six months. Eventually, I tried again and this time it was magic!

I painted everything from farm scenes to Santas and I decided to take them to my friend’s workplace. The ladies in the office went crazy over them and I sold $165 worth that day alone!

I painted gourds exclusively for a few years and then added slate into the mix. I especially liked the irregular nature of slate. It was like I could see what needed to be painted on it, from it’s shape alone.

For five years, in the mid 90’s, I hosted a Christmas Open House at my home in Middlebrook. We lived in the old Shamrock Farm home, up on a hill. I sent out 95 invitations the first year and by the 5th year the list had grown to over 500 people! People came from far and wide to enjoy the ambiance, eat the delicious food that my friend, Sheila Ishee, catered and buy my artwork!

  1. This is not a full time job for you. Do you think some day it will be? Why or why not? What is the biggest obstacle/hurdle you have to pursuing this special dream of yours?

I continued painting and did several local shows for a time and then went through some personal valleys and didn’t paint much at all for about eight years. Fast forward to several years ago, I decided to get serious about my work. I had started making jewelry and was now doing mixed media incorporating fabric and paper into my paintings. I was doing some shows again. Lynne Breeden contacted me after seeing my art on Etsy and asked me to be a vendor at The MaDee Project benefit! I said “YES!”

I eventually came on board with LTD 7.

 My mission on this earthly journey is to take this gift I’ve been given and use it to the best of my ability. My desire is that I will, one day, be able to do this full time. In my mind it already is full time, because I’m constantly thinking and creating. It never stops.

  1. Where does your inspiration come from?

I get inspiration from everything…everywhere! I can get lost for days on Pinterest!

  1. Is there a spiritual reference in your artwork?

 Many people don’t know this; I get asked frequently about the shamrock that I always put beside my name on my paintings. When all of this started with the gourds I was looking for a recognizable symbol that I could use, that would have a special meaning and would be easy to paint. I knew that the shamrock had been used in times past to explain the Trinity.  I wanted to give God the glory for blessing me, so every piece of art bears a tiny shamrock. It’s my way of recognizing His hand in all of this.


7. 
Tell us a story about the one item that a customer may have purchased or ordered that touched you in a way no other has.

There have been so many special moments with my products over the years! People come up to me all the time and tell me that they still hang my ornaments out each year or tell me a story where something I painted or created meant so much to them.

Just recently Anne Whitehouse, the manager at LTD 7.2, told me about a lady that came into the Rowe store and was looking a long time at one of my small mixed media paintings that had a quote on it. She told Anne that she had just come from burying her sister and with tears in her eyes said that quote reminded her of her sister so she bought the painting.  It’s moments like that that I’m most grateful for, knowing that the Lord is using this gift He’s given me to touch others lives. 

 8. How do you get your artwork out to various outlets? Do you have an agent, do you recommend another artist getting one and why?

 I think having an agent is certainly helpful for things like licensing but it’s not something that happens overnight and it’s not a “get rich quick” process, for sure! I think the exposure I get from having my work in LTD 7 and now, both locations of Absolutely Outer Banks in Nagshead, and Duck, North Carolina  makes me happy.

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My story of getting an agent goes like this: Mainline Art and Design, saw my art on Etsy, and they wanted to be my agent! Does this happen for real? I couldn’t believe it! I always thought this was something I had to pursue! I thought it was a hoax at first.

After I came down off my cloud and four long years later, I finally got a call from an international art licensing agency about a painting I had done of three witches around a cauldron. (I make canvas prints of it and have cards available at LTD 7). They wanted to mass produce that image and I was over the moon with excitement!

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They needed it to be a certain size and for some odd reason I could not send it to them in the size they needed! My agent tried, also unsuccessfully, and I even enlisted the help of a fellow vendor and her expertise-all to no avail.  I was beside myself. To make a very long story short, it didn’t work out and I was devastated. I had waited four long years for this and then nothing!

After I recovered from licking my wounds, I gave it all to the Lord. I realized that I had put way too much emphasis on that milestone and if it was going to happen, it would, when it was time. And wouldn’t you  know…the very next week my Frosty Friends snowman painting was licensed and was put on small and large garden flags and sold nationwide through Toland Home and Garden!

I learned a big lesson in that whole fiasco, and that was to keep my focus on what I’m supposed to be doing-creating-and the Lord will take care of the rest!

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I’ve since had another painting licensed by Manual Woodworkers and that image, Colorful Costa, was put on bedding, rugs and shower curtains.

 9. What is your favorite store for supplies?

 I’m always gathering supplies from Michaels, Hobby Lobby, Dick Blick, Etsy and even yard sales.

  1. What advice would you like to share with dreamers like you? What piece of wisdom or lesson learned would you say pushed you the furthest in your dream?

People tell me all the time that I’m so talented and they they don’t have any talent at all. I disagree! I believe the Lord gives all of us gifts. Your gift may not be artistic, but whatever it is,  it’s still a gift that’s just for you. If you have a passion in your heart for something, just do it! Even if it’s small or seems insignificant, just take that first step and don’t ever ever give up! Taking that step may just open up a world of possibility!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Kangaroo Jumps

“Every successful person in this world has jumped.”

                                                                     Steve Harvey

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“If you ever see someone soaring by you…they are likely pursuing their passion.” So says Steve Harvey in his latest YouTube video entitled, “Jump.” He discusses how we can take small actions to move in the direction of our passions and that’s what I like most about his message: our actions can be small!

We don’t have to quit our full time job in order to pursue our dreams. We can use the time we spend on our hobby (passion) and sign up for a class, or apply to be a one-time vendor at a craft show. We can sell a few of our pieces of our art or jewelry on Etsy or eBay. We can buy a book and read about the next step in reaching our goal.

You see, it’s usually our hobbies that are our passions. If there’s already something in your life that fills you with excitement, joy, and self-worth, why not try turning that hobby or activity into a successful endeavor? Though it may scare you to make a big life change, if you know there’s something you already love, spend more time pursuing it to see if it’s really your passion and if it can be taken to the next level.

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Your hobby could be anything, from ceramics, painting, or poetry, to teaching yoga or screen printing. If you can’t make money with your passion (like running marathons, for example), then you can find a way to make that hobby the central passion of your life by getting involved in the running world in some other way.

You can transition slowly into spending more time doing your favorite hobby to see if it’s your passion. If you’re afraid to drop everything and devote yourself to this hobby full time, just take baby steps. Remember that you are not required to do something for a living to make it your passion.

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Once you know your passion, you are ready to take kangaroo jumps. You can research the business side of your dream. Just remember that there is no action in not taking action…let your desires and passions make you persistent in those needed steps and set a few deadlines and work towards them. The only way to soar is to jump. If you can start now, do so without hesitation!

Do the thing you’ve always dreamed about. No matter how gutsy, risky, or impractical that thing may be, you should work hard to make your dream a reality. Who knows – maybe you’ll try salsa dancing and will realize it’s not the thing for you, or you’ll travel to the Galapagos Islands and will feel uninspired. However, it is more likely that by being brave and doing the thing you’ve always dreamed about, you’ll be lighting that spark that ignites you.

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Don’t just dive into an instinct for a passion you have full force. Everything takes patience, careful planning, and a lot of dedication. Take kangaroo jumps-baby steps. Move towards your passion simply and calmly. A jump can be as simple as research, talking to people that are doing what you love, taking a class, opening a savings account or putting coins in a jar to save up for your dream.

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Be determined to pursue your dream, in spite of practical and financial constraints. Make a plan that allows you to try your dream out, even if it’s only for a little while. It could take a while to save up to pursue this dream or to make the proper arrangements, but it will be worth it.

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Put some action into your passion. Tell everyone about it and have a tremendous week!

Living the Dream,

Lynne

Sources:

http://www.wikihow.com/Find-Your-Passion

http://www.bing.com/videos/search?q=steve+harvey+jump&view=detail&mid=2C0A7B020E8D75B636C82C0A7B020E8D75B636C8&FORM=VIRE5

 

 

 

 

 

The “TRIPLE AAA” CLUB, ACRONYMS, ACTIVITIES AND ALERTS

 

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Before I get to the subject of this blog post and my thoughts for this week, let me take a few lines of text to update you on some of the great happenings at LTD 7.

On the Radar: Fall Porch Contest

There is only ONE DAY left to get your submissions and votes in for the Fall Porch contest. I have seen so many gorgeous walkways and decorations all over town and I would encourage you to enter and vote. Hurry! Here is my front porch:

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Have you signed up for a miniature landscapes class? These classes are so popular! Picture that dream locale and create a vision of it that you can take home right after class. We have a blast and our next one is Tuesday, Nov 11th. See our website for more information and to sign up.

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Have You Got Something to Paint?

Paint Couture classes meet every Thursday night with advance reservations. No previous experience required. Many different classes to choose from at affordable rates; Paint Couture 101, Paint Your Own Piece & Advanced.

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Don’t Miss our Fall Market!

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And last, but certainly not least, our huge Fall market is right around the corner on October 25th! That is the weekend after next and you will not want to miss it! Our vendors are clamoring for your business and we have so many surprises in store for you. Remember, the earlier you get started on purchasing gifts for teachers, friends, and family, the less stress you will have once the holidays roll around…not to mention the selection will be the best the earlier you shop. Please, please please, mark your calendars and join us.

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Remember these three letters…WIF. It’s an easy acronym for Web, Instagram and Facebook.

W-I-F which is one “e” shy of WIFE. It’s an easy way to remind you of our constant presence on the W-eb, I-nstagram and F-acebook. These online sites really are—short of coming into the store—the best way to keep abreast of all the events and news and equally new merchandise, not to mention sales that we are bringing to you.

Online, you will find advance notices, flash sales (they are wildly popular) and customer and vendor photos. You can also instantly interact with me and ask any questions about something you may want or have seen in the store or online.

Remember, we are selling in an online store in addition to our Facebook sales twice weekly. We also post our store news and items that have just come in and that you may not know are at the Antique Market or downtown.

Did You Miss a Facebook Sale?

Remember, if you miss a Facebook sale on Monday or Thursday night, check back in online as we keep items up for twenty-four hours and you can still order even though the sale is over.

Our aim is to make LTD 7 as accessible as you need it to be with your busy lives.

Are You a WAHM?

And speaking of busy lives…here’s another term I thought a lot about this week: WAHM…Work At Home Mom. Are you one? Do you work at home? Of course you do! Of course you are! We all are, in one way or another, V-E-R-Y busy and torn in about a hundred trillion directions each day. Whether we work in the home, outside the home, do our blogging or take care of loved ones, we are all WAHMs of one type or another.

The Trick is to Find BALANCE

I think most everyone of us gets up of a morning and has an idea of the things we want to do, or get accomplished in the brand new day ahead of us. Here’s where it gets tricky for me now that I am doing more of my work for LTD 7 at home: I am constantly thrown in ten different directions. I feel like a clown at Ringling Brothers Circus juggling balls in the air…and I drop A LOT of them! I’m just glad they aren’t glass plates twirling on a stick!

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I (let myself) get interrupted. Do you know what I mean? I plan to take a walk with Mo, but then the phone rings and I answer it and thirty minutes later I realize I have to get ready for a dentist appointment. There goes my exercise and the dog’s walk as well…completely by the wayside.

Or, I plan to place orders for LTD 7 during the morning and attend an online webinar at noon on a subject I am interested in for the store. I have signed up and it starts in an hour. But then I decide that I really need to get the laundry started and clean up last night’s crafting session and that leads to mopping the floor of dog water drippings and the next thing I know I have to pick Erika up and take her to a friend’s house and the webinar starts in sixteen minutes and the postman stops to chat a bit and I haven’t eaten since last night and my hair needs curling and I’m not sure where the black shirt is I wanted to wear and Mo just piddled on the floor (because we didn’t walk) and I am going to be LATE for everything I set up for the afternoon if I don’t get going. Ugh! WHEW! Another morning gone! Now I add today’s jobs to tomorrow’s list!

Do you ever have one of these days…or many of these days? Does this sound like you? Does this picture look a bit like you (minus the suit)?

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How long is your WAHM list? What is a woman to do?

It’s not as easy as it looks to work at home and from my vantage point it’s certainly not glamorous. Did I mention that walk I planned with Mo was in my workout gear and that I needed a shower? That takes time! I don’t want to put makeup on a used canvas, if you get my drift, but I have “things to do and places to go and people to see….”

What can one person, one WAHM do? What are the experts recommending for those of us who work inside and outside the home 24-7 and don’t know how to do much more than “put out fires?” I am checking my work emails at bedtime! We all know that kind of behavior isn’t conducive to relaxing sleep.

Ideas for Finding Balance

 But how do we turn all these “to do’s” off? How do we set up our lives in such a way that we achieve balance in our very busy lives? Some of the experts recommend making appointments with ourselves. They advise that the work we want to do should be scheduled and “mom” is not available during that time to answer the phone, walk the dog, run to the park or stop for a coffee. When we are at work, wherever we may be, we are at work.

Others in the blogosphere recommend we set up an office, even if it is in a closet. We go there to work. Still others remind us to turn off the constant emails and designate a time each evening for rest and relaxation, devoid of interruption. Perhaps a late evening stroll. Perhaps a cup of warm (decaf) coffee or a steamy cup of hot chocolate and ten minutes of motivational reading or light stretching or mediation.

Here is one manifesto I found online. See if you agree.

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 What works for you? What are some of the things you do to quiet the madness of a busy Fall day? I would love to hear your ideas!

Because…after all…Living the Dream isn’t about working 24-7 or putting out fires. Living the Dream isn’t about being exhausted or pulled in fifty million directions. Living the Dream is about sharing what is in our hearts and souls; it’s about focusing on what is alive in our hearts. It’s about making our dreams a reality and still being balanced enough to enjoy them!photo

Have a wonderful week, everyone. Strive for balance and nourish your dreams. I will try to do the same.

Living the Dream,

Lynne

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