*If you are unable to read the information below click here to view the Rachel Dickson enewsletter online

Rachel Dickson artist enewsletter

Issue: February 1, 2014       

The Uncomfort Zone?:


Greetings, Art Lovers!

The uncomfort zone, what?
Whenever I find myself caught in a mental tailspin, I reach for one of three little books (Choice, Renewal, and Purpose) I have propped up in the corner of my office next to my desk.  The Portable 7 Habits are little books written and presented in a fun, easy read, inspirational format, by Franklin Covey.

     Today I picked up Renewal and read, “Safety is the most unsafe spiritual path you can take. Safety keeps you numb and dead. People are caught by surprise when it is time to die. They have allowed themselves to live so little.”

     This quote by Stephen Levin, a poet, author and spiritual teacher, caught my attention because lately I’ve been pondering the topic of “comfort zone” (safety) and how often I find myself outside of mine.  As a basketball referee, naturally, you can guess how often.  On the basketball court surrounded by screaming fans and sometimes explosive coaches, it can get quite uncomfortable.

     I discovered early on in my basketball officiating career that you can’t be a people pleaser and referee.  You simply have to master the rules, be confident in your ability to apply, interpret and implement them and then make the call.  My experience has been that the people exhibiting the most fury over a call, don’t know the rule.  Granted…as officials we do make mistakes…of course…we’re human.  Needless to say, I’ve learned a lot about becoming comfortable out of my comfort zone.  Or maybe better said, expanding my comfort zone.

     Jennifer Louden, a best-selling author, life coach and social commentator said, "I define comfort as self-acceptance. When we finally learn that self-care begins and ends with ourselves, we no longer demand sustenance and happiness from others."

     Ahh, so my comfort zone is where I experience self-acceptance? Interesting.  And I can also say that my personal acceptance rate is higher in places I’ve previously experienced and excelled in.  I think that’s probably the case for most people…if you’ve been there and done that before…then you expect the same or similar results.

     Yet without taking that first step into unfamiliar territory nothing would ever change.  And let me tell you, having lived in unfamiliar territory…often…it stretches you, molds you, drives you to keep trying new things.  Pioneering new ground is scary on one side and satisfying on the other.  At any moment you can fail, but at any moment you can also succeed!  That’s the joy of trying.

     When I look to a few of the people I admire…

     General Dwight D. Eisenhower, "There is no victory at bargain basement prices."

     Amelia Earhart, "The most effective way to do it, is to do it."

     Eleanor Roosevelt, "Human beings have never been as fine as they should be except individually in great crises."

…I’m inspired by the mere fact that they didn’t set out to do great things. They simply lived who they were and greatness followed…but I suppose this depends on your perspective.

     It's too easy to settle into the ruts of same...and then complain about them. We all do it. But maybe we can kick ourselves out of this behavior of settling and staying small.  So long as we continue to take action…all will be well. I learned that lesson in the military. As a soon to be 2nd Lieutenant I was taught, "It not as important as to what decision you make, but rather that you MAKE a decision. You cannot allow yourself to be stunned into indecision and put your entire platoon in danger while they sit there waiting for you to lead."

Best selling author Victoria Holt said, "Never regret.  If it’s good, it’s wonderful. If it’s bad, it’s experience."




Abstracting snow?


From the Rooftop by artist Rachel DicksonCurrently this abstract is titled "From the Rooftop" and measures 5.5 inches by 5.75 inches and can be added to your art collection for only $35.00!

After the last few weeks, it may be more appropriately named "Drifting Snow Hell". Winter has been a harsh one this year and art is often a reflection of the things around us.

What title do you like best for it? Shoot me an email and let me know what YOU think to rachel (at) racheldickson dot com. I'd love to hear from you.

What's on Rachel's Bookshelf?


I LOVE to read!  But yes, I know, not everyone does.  So if you don't give two rips around reading...skip this section.  Otherwise, read on!

Just something about the written word!  Check 'em out.




The "Book of Awakening" is a daily read. Short, inspirational, daily insights that I have read over and over every year. Each entry is dated for every day of the year this one is a must have book!

"Fringe-ology" will appeal to anyone curious but cautious about reports of paranormal experiences, psychic phenomena, and other unexplainable events—and/or anyone who has ever wondered about the existence of an afterlife, near-death experiences, or the limits of extrasensory perception.
What originally caught my attention to read this book is the section on Lucid Dreaming. A very intriguing read!

"Purpose" is an easy desktop quote book that makes you look inward. An example is "You'll end up where you're headed if you don't watch out." I reach for this book when I'm seeking challenging inspiration just like "Renewal" above.

Got a book you like? Tell me about it!


The Art and Just-talking-about-daily-stuff Blog:


Click here to read Rachel Dickson's blog
Lately...it seems I've been doing my share of ranting about the winter weather on the daily blog. However, I do also chat about our chickens and turkeys and a sundry of other things. Not just about art.

You've probably noticed it's been nearly 6 months since I've sent out an enewsletter. (Shame on me for that!) Want to be more in-the-know about Rachel's adventurings and latest art projects? Check out the daily blog.

Go, Do, BE!

Click here to view Rachel's Blog


Joe COOL with a twist of pink:


Click here to view Leaping in Bounds I have a WHOLE new appreciation for pet portraits.  I wanted to paint this piece as a gift for my friend who has multiple Brussel Griffon's. It was a lot of fun to create and she suggested that I offer this service to other pet owners.
Want to purchase a pet painting as a gift for a friend or for your own collection? Shoot me an email and let's get started!

rachel (at) racheldickson dot com

Your pet in art!

This piece above measures about 5 inches by 5 inches. A painting this size up to 12 inches by 12 inches will likely run between $25 to $50 dollars depending upon the photograph you'd like me to work with.

Contact me and we'll get started on your pet portrait right away!

I wrote more about creating this piece on my blog.
Click here to read the entire entry.


Cool sharpie ART on Styrofoam CUPS:


Click to view video of artist Boey's styrofoam artI'm always looking to be inspired by cool people and cool art. Check this video out, just click the image on the right or on the link below. 3 minutes of inspiration is always good for anyone.

Cheeming Boey is a Malaysian Artist. Primarily known as Boey, he is best recognized by his illustrations on foam coffee cups, his daily webcomic I Am Boey, and the autographical novel When I was a Kid.

Boey began illustrating on foam cups in Southern California; first because he had no paper, and then out of appreciation for the results. In 2011, Sharpie took notice of Boey's cup art and featured him in their Start With Sharpie advertising campaign. Director Shal Ngo's Sharpie commercial, Sharpie: Coffee Cups to Canvas, featuring Boey and his cup art, was a recipient of the 2012 TED Ads Worth Spreading award.

 Click here to watch Boey create cool foam cup art.

To learn more about artist Cheeming Boey visit his website at


Short audio clips from Rachel:


Rachel's Audio BlogSo far, this has been a fun addition to racheldickson.com. I've been wanting to start working with audio again in an effort to create more substantial dialogue with art fans...and FINALLY it's HERE!

So far there are five episodes none of which is longer than five minutes. Feel free to share a topic you'd like to hear about. I'm always seeking fun material.

Click here to take a quick listen to the audio blurbs.




It's stupidly cold outside. And I'm sick of it. These words might just be the title of my next painting.

The art studio is in the basement and is cold COLD so painting is slow. About the speed the chickens are moving around in the barn right now too.

I hope reading through this enewsletter has warmed you up a bit, writing it has definitely helped me. Perspective is everything!

In the mean time, Valentine's Day is right around the corner. Might just be a good time to snuggle with the one you love or...to buy art.

Until next time...enjoy your life! After all...we are the ones creating it.



Questions? Comments? Snide Remarks?
email rachel at racheldickson.com



Home  |  About  |  Rachel's Art  |  Rachel's Blog  |  Women's  Outdoor Classes  |  Get Newsletter  |  Cool Friends  
| photo gallery | privacy policy  | cool books  cool stuff  | faq  |  sitemap  |  contact rachel | Rachel's Audio Blog
Copyright © 2014 Rachel Dickson, Delta, OH.  All Rights Reserved.
Web Hosting with Total Choice. Website Design by Rachel Dickson! yes, it was me.