Month 2 of Elizabeth Gilbert’s giveaway for advanced copies of her new book, “The Signature of All Things” asks about our most transcendent moment in nature.

If you want in on the fun you can find the details in her newsletter here.

Salt Life

I grew up on the rocky shores of a cove within rock skipping distance of the ocean.

I love the salt life.  After living seven years in the land lock state of Tennessee a move to the Georgia Coast was just want I needed.

Across the road from my parents house

Across the road from my parents house

Transcendent Moment

Collecting sea glass and shells, digging for clams and swimming in the cold waters was a normal part of my childhood.  But it wasn’t until I left home that I realized how special these memories were.

The most profound and transcendent moment I had in nature was the first time I came come back to the cove after being away for a few years.

The land my grandfather owned had been sold.  His boat house torn down and acres of vegetable gardens completely taken back by the land.

As I made my way to the shore line I scratched up my legs on berry bushes that now grow wild.  I stood looking out over the water and could not see anything that told me my childhood stomping ground had held onto a memory of me.

It was humbling and inspiring.

In that moment I recognized how connected I was and how important it was to let go.  Just as the land I’m bound to had let go of me.

I’m here to tell my stories, of my time and space, and the land, she’ll tell hers.

Peace in,


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Leaving Savannah

Little Rossi and I snuck out of Savannah under a blanket of twinkling stars and a tide so high I thought it might just wash over highway 80 and prevent us from leaving…

We’re excited, but a little melancholy too.  Our original plan was to stay in Savannah a year.  But here we are packing up three years of memories, saying “see you later” to some dear friends and moving north to the Big Peach.

Savannah was a great place for me to expand my voice as an artist and I enjoyed exploring what I wanted to say through various mixed media.  Savannah with it’s own mixed media palette  presents itself in many layers of old and new, rich and poor, spiritual and haunted and it will always felt like home to me.

Leaving Savannah with memories

Greenwich Bridge, Bonaventure Cemetery, Savannah GA

The Greenwich Bridge

Feeling blessed and ready to work on a few pieces of my dear ole Savannah.  My first piece will be based on the Greenwich Bridge.   A similar image graces the cover of The Land I’m Bound To by the amazing Jack Leigh.

I’m excited to break into my new box of crayons and attempt a landscape.

All these years I’ve been visiting Bonaventure Cemetery and I had no idea the bridge was there.  Our friend Don Teuton took us on an epic tour of the cemetery before we left.  We braved a thunder and lighting storm to commune with the dead and I loved every minute of it.

This photo was taken with my iPhone during a break in the storm when the sun brightened up the dark grey skies just enough to make the bridge glow.

The Big Peach

Most of my adult life I have lived in a town with no family.  Great friends, but no family.  I was really struck as to why we made this move when I registered Peyton for school and could actually list emergency contacts.

We are in walking distance of a lot of restaurants and shopping and if ambitious could even walk to Bubba and Grampa’s house.  This is our new adventure.  City living…

We’re still making the most of apartment living, but I’m pleased to have a room of my own.

Virginia Woolf would be proud.

Making the most of my space...

A Room of My Own :)

I thought this post would be more about the headaches of moving.  We’re still unpacking and I’ll be making a trip to Savannah to pick up a few things that wouldn’t fit in the truck.  But now that we are here the headaches are gone, we’re  feeling settled and it’s time to start exploring.

If you have any places in Atlanta you’d like me to check out please don’t hesitate to share.

Peace in,


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Art school taught me that collaboration is the key to living an artistic life.

Art and collaboration

SCADemys 2013: Reel Tradition Wins Best Original Score

I was blessed to met Shelly Short, Writer and Director of Reel Tradition, at SCAD (Savannah College of Art and Design).  We soon became fast friends sisters.

When invited to work on her film I did not hesitate to jump on board!

I started as an assistant set designer working with the very talented Yolande Thame.

To create the fish shed / man cave we categorized and tagged every item we placed – organizing a space for the actor to settle into his role, but mindful we’d need room for the camera, dolly, lighting and a crew of 10.

Would you believe when we started this area was a blank slate.  Nothing but a window and counter space.

Collaboration of Set Design

Reel Traditions: Set Design

During the days of shooting I helped Yolande as much as I could and spent the day with our amazing camera crew (Whitney Hess & Zack Karmalegos) working as a script supervisor.  It suits my personality to monitor continuity.  Plus, since a lot of what we did was in a boat, I got to help out as 2nd assistant camera.

The point is, there’s a reason why there are so many names listed at the end of the movie.  It takes a village to raise a film.  Ask Neil Short, Shelly’s husband.  He’s currently directing a film he wrote and I’ve been lucky enough to be helping out there too.

Learning to communicate, trust, empower and collaborate creates incredible pieces of art.  I’m always shocked that we only require one communication class in liberal arts studies.  It’s one of the most important.  Learning to share and express an idea will open many doors.  You just can’t do it alone.

Stop, collaborate and listen” – Vanilla Ice

Gonna Catch A Big One

When Shelly and Whitney started talking about music for their film I suggested they get together with Jeff.  I knew he would create something perfect.

I was thrilled when it all came together and proud when the collaboration picked up a SCADemy for Best Original Score!


On Tuesday June 11th.  Shelly will be presenting Reel Tradition and giving a talk on collaboration in film at the Artel Gallery in Pensacola, Florida.

We create stories because we love to share them.  If you’re in the area please drop by and say hi!

Peace in,


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This week, thanks again to SoulPancake, I’ve been thinking about my Personal Philosophy.

The activity was to find someone with sidewalk chalk {check}, find some pavement {check} and share my philosophy with the world {check}.

Be Kind my Personal Philosophy

Chalking up the sidewalk with Little Rossi

I believe grace is found in acts of kindness.

I wish I could say I practice it always – I don’t.  I can be less than kind, even to my self, but when asked to sum up my personal philosophy I find myself here.

This is my simple religion.  No need for temples.  No need for complicated philosophy.
Your own mind, your own heart is the temple.  Your philosophy is simple kindness.

- Dalai Lama XIV


Kindness is more than an act or behavior.  It’s a discipline.  A way to view the world.  A way to participate.  A way to approach life.

Wayne Dyer recently spoke about the power of I AM.  He say’s we are raised in a world of I AM NOT…  and I agree with him.  We beat ourselves up with self talk that I am not smart, I am not capable, I am not pretty, etc.  This does not cultivate kindness.  Not with ourselves or with the people we are comparing ourselves to.

In full disclosure of my hypocrisy I readily admit that I am human and love self depreciating, off the wall humor as much as the next gal.

It is however my intention to be kind to myself and others.  To find the humor in life.  To smile more.

After all my mama taught me to:

“Kill them with kindness.”

Peace in,

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Vintage Postcard

When we started brainstorming about the look of Isle of Hope (Jefferson’s third album) my husband expressed interest in a design reminiscent of a well loved vintage Florida postcard.

I instantly got the image of a blue sky, just about sunset, when flamingo pink starts to play around the horizon.

Jeff knew he wanted to showcase the marshes and the Spanish moss of our dear ole Savannah.  He talked to our friend and photographer Charlie Ribbens and they came up with a list of no fewer than 5 locations to check out.  Jeff instantly felt connected to the trees that lined the old railway walking trail out to Tybee and knew it was the perfect location for the cover.



CD Graphic Design

Although I used Illustrator to create the CD graphic text and layout, I used Photoshop to grunge up the photo.  I found this great Photoshop Tutorial from Bloom Web Design that helped with a baseline for my workflow.

How I deviated from the tutorial:

Step 2 – When I added in the gradient map I reduced the opacity to 75%.  This helped balance the colors for printing.

Step 3 – Instead of just erasing the gradient map in areas to let the original color show through, this is where I added the blue (#5EA0B0) and pink (#D5A0B0) hues.  The colors are a bit bright, but when added to the sepia tones they end up showing as vintage.

Step 4 – I added the paper texture and only reduced the opacity to 60%.  Then I used an eraser to clean up the area when Jeff is standing.  I wanted his image to slightly pop from the distressed background.

Step 5 – I did not add another layer of paper.  I wanted to keep the brown tones to a minimum for printing purposes.

Step 6 – I repeated what I did using the paper texture with the metal texture reducing the opacity to 50%.

Step 7 – 10 – Again I did not add another layer of metal.  I liked the look of the image at the end of step 6 and used it to load into Illustrator.

Jeff had already picked out a font for Jefferson Ross.  (Always making my life easy!)  I think it’s called Showboat.  So I added something simple that I thought complimented the vintage feeling of the font he chose.

Jefferson Ross: Isle of Hope

Jefferson Ross: Isle of Hope


Photoshop Tutorial from Bloom Web Design

Old Paper Texture by

Metal Texture by

Isle of Hope

I have always loved the mixed media aspect of CD graphic design.  Listening to an album full of stories inspires a multitude of ideas and it’s a fun challenge to whittle them down into a few cohesive images.  And as always it’s fun to collaborate with my husband.

To pick up your own copy of Isle of Hope please visit Jeff’s website.

Peace in,


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