29 Dec

Before the Creative Process

Hat’s Off to Johanna Spinks!

Behind every painting there is always a story.

This one began at a small shop in Glendale, Kentucky, set amongst the shade of very tall trees and bicycles festooned with flowers.

I’d wondered in there while visiting my sis Rhonda—we were more focused on catching up with each other than we were looking at the merchandise until… I spied the hat.

Now although I love hats, they usually don’t love me back– but on this day I found a hat that liked my head and so the kid in me decided I was not going to leave without that hat.
Part of me was the happy camper kid as I carried the hat out under my arm, the other “adult” part of me was doing the mental chastising of “you’ll never wear this and you shouldn’t have wasted your money on it”.
I carried the little hat home to the Dream.Love.Paint cottage thinking that if I never actually wore it, at least it could be used as a prop for future paintings and that is how I would justify it to that nagging adult voice.
And so it did make a very slight appearance in this 8 x 8 done at the end of one my long working days at the cottage.

But it wasn’t over for the little hat.   The day came when photographer Priscilla Baierlein showed up to do the shoot for Dream.Love.Paint website. It was sunny and hot and a hat was the perfect thing  up against the lavender wall that held the Emerson quote….
and it was at that moment that I was reminded of the importance of listening– not to the adult/practical voice inside but to that other voice that looked out from a place of wonder and JOY.
Of course the story of the hat didn’t end there for when I sent out my Nov. 6 email (click here to see that) it carried in it a black and white image of THE HAT.  Dear friend and gifted artist Johanna Spinks replied back, all the way from California, with a note that simply said…”I’d love to paint this!”
So I asked my other talented friend, Priscilla, if she was okay with having Johanna paint from her pic and she said, “Absolutely!”
And that is how the beautiful piece of art by Johanna came to be.  If I had overridden the part of me, that wiser portion that may be hidden in childish desires,  the story of the hat would have begun and ended in the little shop in Glendale.  As it is, I have a feeling it’s going to turn up in many a painting and probably on a few heads as well.

My takeaway from all of this?
Use your head (for hats) and listen to your heart!


"Dreama Dreaming" by Portrait Artist Johanna Spinks 18 x 24in Watercolor, Gouache, Pen & Ink

“Dreama Dreaming” by Portrait Artist Johanna Spinks 18 x 24in Watercolor, Gouache, Pen & Ink In the collection of Dreama Tolle Perry



I’ve been able to think of precious little else with the opening of Dream.Love.Paint only days away.  Like having a big party, there are always those last minute things that need to be “just right” before opening the doors to your guests 😉
Consumed would be an appropriate description of me at the moment, so having this beautiful piece of art work drop in my inbox from Johanna was delightful.  It has given me a good excuse (if one needs one) to share her work with you at this link and also a wonderful opportunity to link you to ‘Cilla’s work as well (click here).  Both of these women are living their loves and their passions and it shows up in their work.  I adore each of them and love having their energy in my life!
For the next couple of weeks I will be sending out more emails than normal–to remind, nudge and inspire you to escape with me to Dream.Love.Paint land.

So much work has gone into this–I want to make sure that everyone on the planet knows about it 😉

If you would share the Dream.Love.Paint emails with a creative friend and forgive me for being in your inbox more often than is normal  I will promise to love you forever 🙂 !
Always know, I could have never done any of this without you.  You ARE the cat’s pajamas!

Dreama Tolle Perry Log
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  1. Judith Hirtle

    Hi Dreama, Ive been so excited to do this – is the cost in US dollars? I assume so and thus with our dollar so low it makes it unattainable at this time. Ill have to wait to next time and hope the dollar picks up by then. I’m so. Wry disappointed but will keep dreaming along with you on your blog!

  2. June

    A lovely back story to accompany a lovely hat for a lovely person to love and wear and use as a still life model, as well.
    I’m much the same when it comes to hats…I love them, and I’ve got a bunch of them I’ve bought over the years, but sadly (for me) they don’t seem to be much impressed with me. I still keep hoping that one day, I will meet the perfect hat, that it will like me back, I will listen to my heart and wear it with much joy, and we’ll become best buddies. 🙂
    The portrait Johanna has done of you from the wonderful photo that Priscilla took of you wearing it at the cottage is beautiful, Dreama. Johanna definitely has captured that joyful essence of you, that happiness that emanates from within and expresses itself outwardly.
    I am indeed listening to my heart, and it’s telling me very, very clearly that the Dream.Love.Paint e-course is and will be a dream come true for me, after so long wishing I could paint with you. Soon, I will be able to do just that.
    Sending you lots of love on this first day of a new year…here’s to new beginnings, and to new dreams and new pages in the latest chapter of our lives.

  3. oh, i love the story of your hat! not many hats like my head either and this is a wonderful reminder to “let go” and just be happy ~ yes, i’ve purchased hats that I’ve never worn, but now I think I will wear them. thank you! And what a lovely artful gift you have been given ~ a great reminder of your words!

  4. Darlene Laursen

    You can tell the portrait is inspired. I can’t wait to be in the class. I’ve been sitting here with a broken leg since Nov. 13th and this class is just what I’m looking for.

  5. Johanna Spinks

    Behind every painting there is indeed a story, and in this case a remarkable, generous, and gifted artist/writer Dreama Tolle Perry who I am proud to know and be inspired by. Thank you my friend for sharing my portrait of you and this lovely story.

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