Contributing Editor: Quinn McDonald

Quinn McDonaldQuinn has made and kept journals for years, they are her art form. She’s a certified creativity coach, a writer, and workshop leader. Her book on Raw Art Journaling will be out in July of 2011. Quinn is also a monthly columnist on for the Creative Insights blog.

Q: What kind of art are you known for?
A: Writing, journaling, creativity coaching (yeah, it’s an art) building alternative journals.

Q: What are you working on right now?
A: Creating the projects for a Creative Master Mind Group.

Q: What’s your current favorite, can’t-live-without-it tool/supply/material/junkyard find?
A: Super silicone bone folder by Volcano Arts.

Q: What’s the best book you’ve read lately?
A: I read a lot, and a huge variety. A recent non-fiction book that I enjoyed was If The Buddha Got Stuck by Charlotte Kasl. It’s a handbook for change. In fiction, I’m reading books by Arizona authors or books about Arizona’s history, particularly the first nations. J.A. Jance is a mystery writer who writes about the Tohono O’doham history interwoven with modern-day crime stories.

Q: What’s the most inspiring trip you’ve ever taken or adventure you’ve ever had?
A: The most exotic place I’ve been is China, but the trips into my imagination are a lot more dangerous.

Q: What’s the last thing you cooked?
A: About half an hour ago—vegetable chowder. Yum.

Q: If you could surround yourself with only one color, what would it be?
A: I’m a lover of monochromes, I wear a lot of black, brown, navy. But I just changed my blog and websites to yellows and oranges. I can’t choose one color for the same reason I don’t have a tattoo—I can’t commit to one color or pattern forever.

Q: Do you have a talisman/power garment/ magical thing you wear?
A: I have several talismanic pieces of jewelry. I won’t leave the bedroom in the morning without one of them. I sleep with one of them under my pillow.

Q: What’s your favorite place in all the world?
A: Inside my imagination.

Q: What one thing do you want to do that you haven’t done yet?
A: Visit my brother in Switzerland. When it’s not cold.

Q: What’s the best day you’ve ever had?
A: Every day I wake up. Every day I get on my motorcycle. Every day I teach. Every day I read something inspiring. Every day I spend in the studio. Every day.

Q: What’s today’s Word to Live By?
A: I choose a word each year. In 2010 it was “light.” In 2011 it’s “wonder.” Both are verbs and nouns and are important.

Q: What is your guilty pleasure?
A: Free time. On the bike, in the pool, just sitting. Ahhhh.

Q: What do you listen to when you create?
A: Audiobooks.

Q: If you could have one superpower, what would it be?
A: Cutting straight lines. I never can, and I’d love to be able to cut even-sided squares.

Q: With whom would you love to spend one day making art?
A: A good friend.

Q: When is your favorite time of day?
A: Dawn. But I hate getting out of bed to experience it.

Q: Why do you make art?
A: Because I can’t not make art. It’s like breathing. Necessary to life.

Q: What is on your workspace right now (physical objects)?
A: Tons of paper of every sort—topped by a cat.

Q: If you could re-do a classic movie, what would you remake and how?
A: I don’t want to remake someone else’s creative vision, I want to create my own.

Q: What is your first memory?
A: My two older brothers pulling me around on a rug to polish a freshly waxed floor. I don’t think I was walking yet, but it felt like a magic carpet ride.

Q: What’s your best piece of advice for artists?
A: Don’t listen to advice, listen to your intuition.

Q:What is your least favorite technique that you still use anyway?
A: Anything fussy. I hate fussy. But sometimes fussy precision is (sigh) necessary.

Follow Quinn on her blog,
Learn more about Raw Art Journaling at

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About Julie

Crafter, editor, home chef and baker—I love to create in all aspects of life.
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