Day 25: What's your favorite Christmas memory?

Sixteen Questions

Marci, over at Creativity{unbound} sent me a list of sixteen questions to answer when I was the November Featured Artist over there.  I thought I'd share my answers with you...


1. How did you get into scrapbooking? (or card making, paper crafting, etc.)

I was bored and stuck in Scranton, PA where I knew no one.  So, I wandered into an AC Moore, watched old episodes of DIY scrapbooking, and found inspiration!

2. What is your creative process?

I am a messy creator.  I take out everything.  I paint.  I draw.  I sew.  I have piles of fabric and paper and stuff everywhere.  I use what's on the top of those piles and then I go digging.  I'm always happiest when I start with a story I want to tell and a plan and then abandon it completely.  I feel that accidents are opportunities.  I like to experiment.  The only thing that remains constant about my process is its intensity.  I can sit and work on something for days at a time, staying up all night, restlessly sleeping for an hour or two, and then diving back in.  I have a driving need to complete things. (Can you tell I don't have kids, yet?)  I am obsessive!

3. Why do you create?

This sounds appallingly simple, but I create because I have to.  It's like asking me why I breathe.  I create in order to survive.  I strive to live a creative life.  It feeds my soul, my heart and my brain.

4. What is your favorite thing to do?

See question #3.

5. Do you have any favorite manufacturers?

So many!  Basic Grey paper rocks my world!  I love Maya Road chipboard!  Daisy D's has some really awesome paper these days too!  Love Fancy Pants stamps!  I'm a big fan of so many Making Memories supplies.  Technique Tuesday and Autumn Leaves also rock the stamps!  I love paper by My Mind's Eye.  I totally dig Ranger inks and paints.  Prima is every girl's favorite.  I like lots of the stuff from Creative Imaginations.  7gypsies is AWESOME across the board!  American Crafts D-ring albums are a current super fave!  I'm crazy about Collage Press papers these days too.  I certainly can't forget 2Daisies Designs and Sultane!  Hambly makes the world go round...Gosh.  I think I'm leaving out some very important names, but the truth is, there are so many things I adore!

6. What is currently your most favorite thing you have created?

A quilt I made about me.  It's a ton of individual mini art quilts held together by a network of beads and it's called "The Sum is Greater Than the Parts."

7. How has your style evolved?

Hmmmm....I think it has become more graphic, as I've learned more about design principles.  I've always been kind of freestyle.  I used to be a lot more so.  But, when I got into the whole publishing thing, I think I really pulled back and tried to make some commercial type stuff.  But, my great love and the stuff I like the best, can be described as Cultural Anthropology with a handmade look!

8. What do you think of how the scrapbook and paper crafts industry has boomed over the last few years? (OVER 2 Billion, a recent study released!)

I think it's fantastic!  Personally, I love the artistic outlet and feel that it's something everyone should try at least once!


1. Name

Julie Fei-Fan Balzer

2. Favorite color

In the world: blue; to wear: black; to scrapbook with: red

3. You have just won a $100.00 shopping spree to your favorite LSS. You have 15 minutes to use it. What do you get?

The expensive stuff!  Stamps, cute but impractical embellishments that I'll never use, albums (which are criminally expensive) and all the paper I can grab a hold of!  That's probably way more than $100, though!

4. It's your lucky day! You have just won another shopping spree! $1000! To Bass Pro Shops. What do you do with it?

I had to look up what Bass Pro Shops was in order to answer this, because I had never heard of it!  I'm such a New Yorker!  Well, I guess I'd buy some bullet cases, because I've heard that they're great to store alphabet stamps...and then maybe a GPS?  I don't know.  I'm not much of an outdoors person....

5. What is your Star Wars name? (First three letters of your 1st name, first two letters of your last name...)

Julba (sounds a little too much like Jabba the Hut for me!)

6. Your favorite band is doing a reunion tour, and they are coming to YOUR town...the last stop on their LAST TOUR ever. Your best friend has gifted you with tickets...front row, center stage, PLUS backstage passes! Your one chance to meet your idols. THEN....Lisa Bearnson calls and wants you to be her guest at an event. All expenses paid, lots of prizes. Pretty much a once in a lifetime chance. WHAT DO YOU DO?

This is too easy.  There isn't a band on earth that I idolize, so I'd head off with Lisa Bearnson.  Now, if you gave me the choice between Lisa and having a conversation with Jack O'Brien (a famous Tony award winning stage director), I'd be more torn!

7. You are stranded in a hotel conference room with 10 people who want to learn how to scrapbook. They are all men, ranging in age from 35-80. What do you do?

Teach them to scrapbook! I don't think the fact that they're men is an issue.  It's more an issue that all you've got is hotel conference type supplies.  I guess we'd focus on design principles and journaling.

8. The Burger King King or Ronald McDonald?

Ronald McDonald.  He takes care of sick kids and their families (The Ronald McDonald home)!