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Crafter October 2014

This month, we are featuring one of our very talented graphic designers, Lesa Marino.  Lesa has been a painter and artist since she was a child.  Eventually, her career led her to include graphic design in her portfolio.  She is also a mom of two and a wife.  She has designed more than 40 themes for Piece of Cake Parties - in so many different styles and themes.  We absolutely love Lesa!  She's not only talented but just a pleasure to work with.  We asked Lesa a few questions to learn a little more about her and what inspires her.


1.  What kind of art do you do?

I love creating art that is full of color and movement. For some reason, my eye seems to notice the patterns in everything from the sparkles on the ocean waves to the textures and shapes that make up the flowers in my garden. I love adding pattern and texture to my work and, sometimes go a little overboard with it. I have to be reminded to simplify things occasionally.


2.  How long have you been an artist?

I have been an artist as long as I can remember. It started with my crayons. I still look at that big box or 64 Crayola crayons and remember how thrilled I was with my first set.  The same goes for a large stack of colored paper. Just love it. Unfortunately, I did get a little obsessed. I remember yelling at my little brother all of the time because he couldn't color within the lines hahaha. I think I was pretty annoying that way! I still have to sit on my hands sometimes when I'm trying to show someone how to do something craft related. It's very hard to let a project go until it's a perfect as possible.  Even in High School, when all of my friends had to be out and about all the time, I could spend hours in my room drawing. I went to college near my home so I still spent a lot of time with the group of girls I grew up with. We would all get together and have our wine and cheese parties and I would always have my art supplies with me, working on some school project. 


3.  How did you get into art? What inspired you?

I don't think I got into art. It got into me!!! I always say it's the blessing and the curse. It's a blessing because I am always doing something I love but, it's the curse because, as difficult as it is to make a living at, I can't imagine doing anything else.


4.  Tell me a little about your family

I live with my husband and two daughters in a little house that is surrounded by woods. We are near a lot of things but, we all love the peace and tranquillity of our little space here. My older daughter has always wanted to work in the medical field and is in college going in that direction. My younger daughter is going to college for art education. She has be drawing since she first held a pencil just like me.  I grew up with 2 wonderful parents that always told me I was capable of doing anything I set my mind on. When I said I wanted to go to art school, they were completely supportive. My dad was a very creative person so he understood. When I was little, he decided to build his own airplane. He started in the basement and then moved it to the garage. After 14 years, he finished his 2 seater plane and then flew it all over New England. Watching him go for his dreams has always been my greatest inspiration. He was extremely talented with his hands. I have many beautiful pieces of furniture in my house that he built for me. I am a very lucky person.


5.  What do you like to do in your free time?

When I get any free time (which is very rare) I love going boating with my husband. I have also been going to a lot of classical concerts lately with my Mom and really enjoying it. I play the piano but am very rusty right now. Hopefully, when my life settles down, I can maybe take lessons again. That would be wonderful.


6.  Any work life balance advice/wisdom?

I really don't have a great handle on the work/life balance thing. Since my studio is in my home, work is always right in the next room. I have great difficulty just hanging around watching TV when I could be in my studio creating. It was such a blessing while my girls were growing up. I was always home and they learned how to talk professionally by listening to me talk to my clients. I hired neighborhood girls as mother's helpers so I could have a little help and get my work done. Even when I sent the girls to day care, it was two houses away so I could hear them playing with the other kids outside. This worked out perfect for a long time. Then I went stir crazy being home all of the time and got a job working a few nights at a local Inn. I love that because they have live music and I have a lot of laughs while I'm there and have met so many wonderful people of all ages. 


7.  Thoughts about Piece of Cake Parties?

Piece of Cake Parties is really a wonderful idea with so many adorable hand made things that could make any busy mom look great when she hosts a party. Very few of us have the time to put all of this stuff together ourselves so, it is very helpful. Also, a little girl or boy will be so excited and proud when they see just how great everything looks for their friends!