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February details!

How exciting it is to be me in the month of love and history!

My month opens with a valentine making workshop! This workshop will be an easy and fun opportunity for you to create “happy Mail” for your friends and loved ones! It is offered through Rochester Oasis and the link is here: Valentine, Sweet Valentine

On February 1st I will be sharing my work at the Frederick Douglass Library!  This library is on South Avenue in Rochester, New York! I will be bringing some new work including a rather different piece for me! (Stay tuned!)

On February 3rd and 4th, I will be sharing my work in our main gallery @Central Creatives at Piano Works mall. Jacqueline Salsbury and I have teamed up to create a lovely weekend of mixed-media art for you! She is the most incredible jeweler! You won’t want to miss that!

On February 10th and 11th, I have been invited to share my art at Genrich’s in Irondequoit. Last year, Deborah Genrich invited me to do a Valentine’s pop up and this year she invited me again! I am pretty excited about that! 

As always, you are welcome to visit me at my studio – I would love to see you, show you my latest art, and of course the greeting cards! 

Sending you so much love!!

Susan

 

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Open House This Saturday!

This is my last formal open house! I hope you will consider supporting my small business!

I do not know how to express to you what a difference it makes when you support artists and other small businesses. I don’t want to whine about it being a difficult three years. (but it has) I don’t want to tell you that this year has been hard. (but it has)

I do want you to know that the art and other products I have to offer are made with love. Art, the creation of art, seems to be taking the best that I am and putting it into a card, a painting, or a scarf. It is carefully choosing the colors and images to create something wonderful. It is working on a painting until it feels finished. It is about bringing the best that I am to offer to you and to the world. This can be incredibly vulnerable, but also incredibly thrilling when you affirm that I am doing good work. This happens with your kind words, your purchases, and your encouragement. 

I hope to see you Saturday- 

thank you for your support!

Sending so much love, 

Susan

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Holiday sale, Black Friday & Small Business Saturday

Let the holidays begin! Find unique artisan gifts for everyone on your list. Cards, original art, prints, one-of-a-kind gifts, and so much more!

Current hours are by appointment-

Open house hours are Friday, November 25, 11 am until 4 pm, Saturday, November 26, 11 am until 4 pm, December 10, 11 am until 4 pm

(I’ve been working hard!)

I am located at 349 West Commercial Street – at the Piano Works Mall. Enter our building between the weaving shop and the golf pro shop, it is a red door- enter there, go down the hall to the elevator, take that to the second floor and Central Creatives (the group I am in) is right across the hall. Our suite number is 2795- my studio number is 12! 
I look forward to seeing you! 
 

 

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No Tricks, Just Treats- Pre- Holiday Sale!

Come visit for pre-season sales!

Just before the holidays begin, several at Central Creatives and I are having a studio sale! Watch our social media pages for details on what Treats will be offered! Original art, prints, and more!

located at 349 West Commercial Street – at the Piano Works Mall. Enter our building between the weaving shop and the golf pro shop, it is a red door- enter there, go down the hall to the elevator, take that to the second floor and Central Creatives (the group I am in) is right across the hall.
Our suite number is 2795- my studio number is 12! 
I look forward to seeing you! 
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Challenge Time!- Drawtober

October has been a time for many artists to find a way to draw daily. It seems like we have spent so much time doing businessy things over the summer that we need to shake the dust off and get back to creating. Since its beginning  Create Art 4 Good has facilitated workshops and other good things for all those creative, and this year I wanted to inspire a back-to-basics kind of challenge. Just like self-care, sometimes taking a moment to draw seems to happen too rarely. 

That said, I know there are many challenges this month, not the least of which is Inktober. I certainly respect what they are doing, but I don’t always love the topics. The “Drawtober” challenge I created is an effort to explore some of the basics again. Think about textures, shapes, and color. Make the ordinary extraordinary! Make it yours! 

I would love for you to share your drawings! Feel free to use whatever media makes you happy. Work for thirty minutes or less, and then post on social media! I’d love to see! Please use the hashtags #drawtober and #createart4good

Let the creation begin!

 

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A few of my favorite things!

I LOVE daisies, sharp Derwent Art colored pencils, microns with 005 tips, walking in the rain, water in general (lake, ocean, whatever!), tea, @goldenpaints, soup (it is the perfect food), mixed media art, fancy glasses (even if I am drinking lemonade out of them), cooking for people, and all things family.

What are your favorite things?

#marchmeetthemaker #favoritethings #sharethelove

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In the news!

Everyone loves a moment to be affirmed and a little proud of their accomplishments- This morning, Marketta Gregory shared a bit about my business and my mission! It is fun to see it in the newspaper- for sure!

I wrote a little about it on my Greetings4Good Site- Here is the article on Democrat and Chronicle’s website

It was nice to have such a lovely mention! 

Thanks, Marketta and the Democrat and Chronicle!

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Small Business Weekend Visit & Shop

I am so excited to invite you to my holiday open house! You are invited to shop small! Shop for Art, Cards, & gifts created for you and all the special people on your list! Several studios at the Central Creatives will be open for your shopping pleasure! Remember when you show small you support real people (in this case, a real artist doing her best) to spread love and joy this holiday season! Your purchases support the big magic!
Visit our building at the Piano Works Mall. 349 West Commercial Street (Suite #2795) East Rochester, NY 14445! Enter the building through the red door to the left of the Golf Pro shop. Proceed down the hall to the elevator or through the door to a set of stairs. Go to the second floor- you will see the Central Creatives doors there welcoming you to our little slice of heaven! 
 
Create Art 4 Good/Greetings 4 Good is in studio #12-585.210.3161 (gallery phone) Email Susan 
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In the right place…

Be sure you put your feet in the right place, then stand firm. A. Lincoln

I have had to ponder this for a bit, it all felt too jumbled emotionally to share. I honestly couldn’t decide if I was happy or sad or both. At this point, I feel the emotion just “was” and defining it ultimately served no real purpose. It was instead an opportunity to move through it and find a way to the other side. 

A few weeks ago, would have been my tenth anniversary having a studio at the Hungerford. I bring this up only because leaving the Hungerford marked a huge transition for me. I made note of the date literally the day before. As I said above, I wasn’t sure if I felt happy, sad, or otherwise. 

The Hungerford was my first “real” studio. I made a studio space into a gallery. I embraced the esthetic of not so long ago industrial and created my own real-world gallery.  I supported artists there. I had a new exhibit with a guest artist (or artists) every single month. I held workshops there. I held events that supported and reached out to the homeless, women in crisis, and those being treated for cancer. I held meetings to support small business Marketing, Artisan Socials, and more. 

I worked so hard there… I grew as an artist and a person there… I made some dear friends there… it was home. 

In January of 2020, I made the decision that it was time for a change. I love(d) what I was doing- but something in me knew it was time for a big change. I had a lot of time to think about this as I spontaneously drove to Florida by myself (after an invitation twelve hours earlier from my son and bonus daughter) to spend a week with them.  I did it! (If you only knew how out of character this was for me) 

When I got home about ten days later I knew that change was in the wind. It was happening, I just wasn’t sure how. ( The last time I felt this way I went back to college.)

Enter a Facebook post by Brandi Marino. Brandi shared about a new collective at the Piano Works Mall. I decided to go check it out. My original intention was to see it and if I liked it, consider opening a second site for Create Art 4 Good. Perhaps I would hold workshops there. 

Two days later, after seeing the space twice, I made the decision to move from the Hungerford to Central Creatives. (My husband was not pleased, but thankfully he was supportive) 

Somewhere in the back of my mind, I knew this wasn’t just about changing location. It was about changing the business altogether. 

The universe must have agreed because out of the thin air I had people volunteering to move me. SO many people! It was really quite amazing. (talk about grateful!) I moved in on February 23, and on February 29th, we as a collective had our first big opening. 

Then… the global pandemic hit, and we shut down. 

Why on earth am I telling you all this? Well… you see, I changed far more than location. I changed the business. While I still try to support my fellow artists, I do not have a new exhibit every month (who could in a pandemic?) This forced me to make some changes. I am certainly not suggesting that I love the pandemic, but as my mother would have said, “There’s always something to be grateful for.”

What I am grateful for is that I have found a way to prioritize my own work. I have taken quite seriously my art, my greeting card company, and my mission. I still pay it forward with a portion of the profits going to charity. I still support other artists- I am a pretty good cheerleader, but also I have taken over Rochester Artisans started by the ever wonderful Stefani Tadio. This is a group that assists other artists with all things business. It gives me joy to facilitate that group. I even still do a workshop or two. During the height of the pandemic- zoom became a very handy tool. So the changes are there, but maybe it is more of a shift. Perhaps it was time. 

So, I might not be at the Hungerford. But I am celebrating a business that is twelve years old. I am celebrating my own personal and professional growth. I am celebrating surviving and even having moments of thriving in the pandemic world. I am grateful for the opportunity to take my own work more seriously, and the courage to do so. I am grateful for you.

(whew, this was a long one, wasn’t it?)

I believe, with my whole heart, I am in the right place.

The best is yet to be… 

Thanks for listening! With so much love, 

Susan

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Happy Anniversary, CA4G

Celebration Hugs to you!

Below is a blog post I wrote five years ago. It was a post to celebrate several years at Create Art 4 Good. It embraced the growth, the changes, and a big announcement. I am sitting here reflecting on this incredible journey that began over a decade ago, really appreciating all the lessons I have learned and the wisdom revealed. I am celebrating the fact that I have done what I set out to do. I am celebrating the incredible support I have been so blessed to receive. I am celebrating the revelation of my dreams. Each year seems to have brought growth and progress. Each year, the dreams became a little more refined. 

Five years ago, I announced that I would begin formally Greetings4Good. Little did I know at the time that the mission was finally revealed. It is certain to me that I was absolutely meant to begin Create Art 4 Good as I did.  I was blessed to support other artists, curate incredible exhibits, pay it forward with hosting charitable events, as well as financial contributions to local charities, facilitate countless workshops and other creative activities. This was all part of the process. I have learned so much, grown so much, and found perhaps a quieter mission. 

Today, while I celebrate all the business of Create Art 4 Good has taught me, I celebrate more the direction this has taken. When I moved from the Hungerford in 2020, I dedicated myself to a new path, or perhaps just a more specifically dedicated one. I wanted and needed to create more, to honor all those millions of ideas swimming in my head. I wanted and needed to work more diligently on my greeting card business. 

Greetings 4 Good has become my heart project. It IS my mission. Perhaps it sounds silly, but I have always needed to think I could change the world in some way. I feel that my “gift” is not necessarily art,  but the ability to love. I feel that my affection for the underdog, the lonely, the uncelebrated has been the bridge to this business. Cards, especially for no real obligation brighten someone’s day, remind them that they are cared for, and well, it is a simple way to do so. 

I have said for some time that I have been blessed to pick up tools and skills throughout my life that the purpose of which would later be revealed. When I went back to college for a graphic design degree, I thought it was to work on logos and business collateral for others. NOPE. It was so that I would have some sort of knowledge base to begin a card company. These skills coupled with my deep desire to paint and create seem to be the perfect marriage. 

So today- I celebrate Create Art 4 Good. While I still do my best to support other artists through mentoring as well as Rochester Artisans (thank you, Stefani Tadio!), I am keenly aware that this was the foundational business that brought me to the mission of my life.  I still support those in need through donations, the thoughtfulness project, and the 365 project. (in 2021 I set a goal of sending a card a day, and to date I have delivered/mailed/and otherwise nearly 940 cards to friends, family, and mostly complete strangers) I am completely determined to change the world… one greeting card at a time. 

Thank you for listening… thank you for celebrating with me. (below is the original announcement of my card company just for giggles) 

the best is yet to be. 

Sending you so much love!

Susan

Changing the world, one greeting card at a time!

 

 

 

The Big Announcement (August 9, 2016)

Today is my anniversary! Create Art 4 Good was launched on August 9th. It will always be a “day” for me. I remember when I began, it was a dream in the making. I diligently wrote and re-wrote the business plan SEVEN times. YEP, seven. For me, it was about ensuring the success of my dreams. Today, I am celebrating with awe my successes and jumping with vigor into the next dream!

I could go on and on about how much I have learned, and that is completely true. I could share the changes that have occurred in the last few years, (not the least of which is celebrating my dream of a gallery at the Hungerford)- which is also true.

But.

For me, this is a gigantic celebration that isn’t just about celebrating the success I feel in growing a small business. It is about the opportunity that I am jumping into with my everything. It is about the bubbling pure joy that is overflowing in my heart as I write this.

Let me give you the background information.

When I was little, my mom used to say when my father was feeling a bit grumpy he’d go to the hardware store. He would wander around and sort out his thoughts among the nuts and bolts and shiny new tools. When he returned, he was usually in much better spirits. As an adult, I recognize that this was sort of his time out. He didn’t have to talk to anyone, he just found himself in “the zone”- his zone.

I have a similar “thing”, however usually at a stationery store. I wander around, look and let go. My terrible mood usually turns into something proactive, I buy a card or two (or ten) not usually because I need them, but because I have thought of someone who seems to be going through something or someone who needs to be celebrated. My favorite opportunities are the ones that are not required. An encouragement, a thank you, or just a little bit of love.

Why am I telling you all this? In life we are given many messages, if we pay attention it seems that everything is revealed at the perfect time. My love of pretty stationery, beautiful cards, and fine papers isn’t just an artist thing, I would suggest perhaps it’s a vocation. (more honestly NOT just a vocation but a passion… maybe even obsession?!) I fully embrace the art of thoughtfulness. It gives me life and more importantly seems to positively affect those to who I send them.

One of the things that bothers me about our very fast-paced world is that we forget to take notice, to pause, to appreciate, to recognize. We don’t send cards as often as in the past.  A recent survey that I posted on social media indicates that we don’t send as many cards, as we want to (which inspires guilt), we LOVE getting cards, AND we appreciate cards that are unique, and beautiful. The message is clear -it is vital to pause, to notice, to appreciate each other.

As an artist, it is a natural extension to make cards from the artwork I create. It is affordable for those who appreciate your work and it is a lovely way to share creativity. I have been honored by those who mention to me after sending some of my cards that they were not only proud to send my greetings, but the recipient was delighted as well. One person shares with me that she sends my cards to her “special people” because she likes to send beautiful art.  I love it when I hear from someone I was inspired to send a card to sends me a message that my card positively changed their day, made them feel important or truly loved. I will admit, it is a bit of an ego boost when someone tells you that they exclusively send your images for every reason there is to send a card.

I have listened- and my next step has been revealed.

It is with great honor I announce the birth of GREETINGS 4 GOOD.

Greetings 4 Good sq

Greetings 4 Good will flourish under the parent company, Create Art 4 Good. It will use fine art images to create gorgeous stationery, greeting cards, and other inspiring products. Each week(from now until October) I will reveal the product line piece by piece. I want these images to be your very favorites, so I will humbling ask for your help in deciding which images should go to print! I will invite you to join Greetings 4 Good– which will have some really nifty perks! (free cards, promotions & special offers)

Are you in?

SAVE THE DATE! The official launch date for Greetings 4 Good will be October 7th, 2016 at my gallery – Create Art 4 Good. That night you will see the original images I have created married to the poetry I write to bloom into beautiful and unique cards for you. You will have the opportunity to view and purchase greeting cards that give back (just like with Create Art 4 Good- a donation is made with each sale) and help you to send a little bit of love to those you cherish. This opening will be the gala of a lifetime of making art and poetry and celebrating the bloom of thoughtfulness.

Thank you for celebrating my anniversary, your support of my work sustains me in ways you could never imagine. I appreciate your love and faithfulness.

with great joy, love & peace,

Susan

p.s. send someone a card today- for no reason- JUST BECAUSE – you will both be happy you did!

p.p.s. Starting in October, send a Greetings4Good card (just because you will send a beautiful art card- and make many people happy!)

Hope

All images and writings are by Susan Carmen-Duffy © 2016.                                           The use of any content from this site without written permission from the author/artist is prohibited.

(Please be nice! The universe appreciates your kindness and honor and so do I!)