Book Give Away From Artist Marylou Falstreau

by Tess

"Dance of All Dances"

"All true artists, whether they know it or not, create from a place of no-mind, from inner stillness."                                                               - Eckhart Tolle

Last month I visited the Georgia O'Keefe Museum for the fourth time. There is a photograph of O'Keefe (in her nineties) on the back of a motorcycle driven by a young man, Juan Hamilton. 

When I see this photo I tell myself, "That's how I want to age…having fun, fearing nothing…to the very end."

Art inspires me. It moves me to create something new in my own world. Today, my wish is to inspire you as well.

Today's interview 


Meet artist, Marylou Falstreau. Her art rocks! For me her paintings are fun, joyful and happy. When I came across Marylou's website I couldn't resist featuring her on The Bold Life!

Marylou describes her art work as, 'lively, spiritual, humorous, multi-layered, free, generous, complex, gentle and light hearted.'

I believe these very words describe Marylou as well!

Marylou has generously offered to give her book, "It's the Stories You Tell That Color Your Life,"  to the person who leaves the  most inspiring comment.

1.What inspires you to paint? How do you stay motivated? 

My inspiration comes from every thing in my life, it's not limited! People and relationships, nature, a growing spiritual awareness,all enable me to see the connection between living things, and everything is living!

The Bold Life: The next time we're stuck in a  rut, I believe we can reflect on our own relationships, nature and spiritual awareness in order to create something fresh, new and inspiring!

I never seem to have a lack of motivation. If I don't feel like painting I trust that as a sign to wait until inspiration appears. It also helps that I have several events out in the future that I must work towards. I think the most challenging aspect of what I do is to live a balanced life filled with creation but time to regenerate as well.

The Bold Life:  How different would our blogs be if we waited…trusted…until inspiration appeared rather than feeling like we have to stick to a blogging schedule?

2. You call your paintings "Free of Struggle Full of Joy," can you tell us about that?  

Sure, I only paint what I love, in a style that comes naturally to me. I don't paint realistically or in perspective because I'm not good at it. I paint in a way that is pleasing to me. That doesn't mean that there aren't challenges or problems to solve, but my goal is to have the final image look as if I was having a good time.

The Bold Life: It's easy to get caught up in what the 'gurus' are doing on their blogs. The question of the day is, "What comes natural to you?" Be inspired by successful bloggers but don't lose you in the process. Can you be full of joy in your own blogging process?

3. What has art taught you about life? 

It has taught me to keep going and to never give up. It has taught me (and is teaching me) to be unapologetic for what I have to offer to the world. It has taught me that there is a place for every interpretation, every style, every ONE. 

The Bold Life: Marylou's attitude is one of gratitude and abundance. Her authenticity comes through her art and invites us to live our own truth.

4.What advice would you give to people who don't think they are creative? 

I would say that you have been a powerful creator your whole life! You make creative choices when you dress in the morning, when you decorate your living space, when you choose a car that you like. Take that ability and direct it towards creating a drawing, painting or sculpture. During this process, take your eyes off other creators and follow your own heart. If you are interested enough, you will practice until see your creative self emerging. 

The Bold Life: What does following my own heart look like today? How can I share this with my readers?

5. What is the boldest thing you've done this year? 

I took a nap, when I felt there was no time for it! 

The Bold Life: I believe our best work comes from when we're rested. It's impossible to be in the flow when I feel anxious or rushed. What a wise example for the rest of us.

6. Tell me about the book, "It's The Stories You Tell that Color Your Life." How did it come about? 

Basically the book is a surprising collaboration between my husband, Alan and I, a collaboration we never expected in our wildest dreams!  It is a lovely, inspirational book that will help you become aware of the stories you tell and more importantly, how they affect your life.

"In a time when newscasters, friends and family tell stories that scare you, this book will help you tell stories of understanding, healing and joy." Crazy Ole Man 

6. You believe that there is a kindred spirit in the world in the form of a person who is meant to have a particular piece of your art. Do you try to imagine who that is when you paint the piece?

I used to try to imagine the person who might buy my paintings but I have been surprised more often than not. For example, sometimes a man will fall in love with a piece when in my mind it was intended for a woman. This is where miracles happen!

The Bold Life: Like our blogging community we were meant to find each other, to relate, share and create together. I think it's a miracle that out of the millions of blogs in the world we are drawn to one another's.

7. What would you do if you were 10 times bolder? 

I am already pretty bold-every day. I am stepping out in ways that surprise even me! Probably the biggest, boldest step I could take is to ask for help.  

Or maybe, I could move to Europe for several months, travel and paint with the locals. Now that would be a wonderfully, wild and bold move! 

The Bold Life: I invite everyone to ask for help this week. Please let me know if I can help you in anyway!

8.What do you know for sure? 

That there is no such thing as perfection from an earthly perspective? If you try to attain the illusion, you will be very, very, tired. 

The Bold Life: We often wait to make a video (me), write a book or create something new out of fear it won't be good enough. What would you do today if you could let go of perfection?

9. Is there anything else you would like us to know? 

Everything's going to be ok.   

Follow Marylou on Twitter or Facebook and visit her website to check out her art!

The Bold Life: If we really lived and breathed Marylou's message…how would our lives be different?

Please join The Bold Life for free and receive my free guide, Peace, Love, and Connection. Please share this post with a Tweet and a Like.


This course will show you how to face and erase fear in any difficult situation you face.

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    { 25 comments… read them below or add one }

    Tony Single April 13, 2010 at 4:08 pm

    “It has taught me that there is a place for every interpretation, every style, every ONE.”

    This. :)

    Thank you for the wonderful interview. It’s nice to be validated once in a while! :)
    .-= Tony Single´s last post…Alive in Hatey =-.


    Wilma Ham April 13, 2010 at 4:13 pm

    Hi Tess and Marylou.
    THAT was a superb interview. Great questions, wonderful answers and what an inspired idea to relate it to blogging.
    My biggest vision is NOT to keep retirement in mind but to keep living until I breath my last breath and knowing my life will still continue.
    So I am not living with an end in mind. That means I still aspire to build my business, to build a woman friendly sailing boat and go ocean sailing . I have been the only woman on the boat design forum holding my viewpoint and that has been enormous fun and very informative. Some men even got to understand my point despite initial ridicule and resistance, yeah!
    I still going to design and build my own home and continue to eat my own veggies and fruit.
    I will not succumb to the fear of old age, financial restrictions and general scaremongery. I still aspire a lot of things and feel more alive now than when I was in my twenties.
    I am bursting to still do a lot of things and I am doing them, ha.
    The biggest job is to keep my mind from making obstacles real and so far I am making progress in doing that.
    Thanks for asking that question, it is fun to declare my aspirations to wonderful supportive listening ears.
    And Tess, all I ask is to come and visit us here in New Zealand and keep being bold yourself.
    Hugs Wilma
    .-= Wilma Ham´s last post…Is martyrdom dead yet? =-.


    Evita April 13, 2010 at 6:04 pm

    Hi Tess

    What a beautiful interview and what great advice. I too believe we are all powerful creators and so many of us have untapped potential within for every arena of life – including creativity.

    I love the opening quote from Eckhart too Tess, as well as the beautiful art work.
    .-= Evita´s last post…The Simplicity of Healing =-.


    Megan "JoyGirl!" Bord April 13, 2010 at 6:11 pm

    Marylou, you have such a soft, gentle, yet uplifting energy to you. As I read this interview, I felt like I could hear you speaking to me directly.

    You’ve taught me, in this small space here today, that everything I do is artistic. I never really considered myself visually gifted, yet as I read your description of how when we dress ourselves, we’re being creative — well, you should have heard my inner critic! (“She doesn’t have a creative sense of style, Marylou…”) Yet I wonder now, compared to what?!! It’s MY style… It’s what I’ve created. And it doesn’t have to compare to anyone else’s. Funny how I can embrace that in other areas of my life, but not across the board.

    My favorite part of your interview was this: “I only paint what I love, in a style that comes naturally to me.” I’m tucking that line in my heart and carrying it with me for awhile to be applied to my writing life, so thank you.

    And Tess, your commentary throughout this interview was just wonderful. You know the direction I’m headed in life, so you can imagine just how much your words & advice touched me.

    Much love, joy, unwavering creativity and inner peace to both of you!


    Topi April 13, 2010 at 8:16 pm

    Thank you for reminding me that “Everything’s going to be ok. ” I truly believe that’s what blogs etc are for – to connect us all so that we can support and encourage each other, share our stories, celebrate our wins and comfort through our losses. It’s like an electronic critical mass of consciousness. I loved this interview, but what I really needed to hear today was your final message, so thank you sincerely for that!
    .-= Topi´s last post…Accountability =-.


    Patty - Why Not Start Now? April 13, 2010 at 10:39 pm

    Hi Tess and Marylou,

    What a glorious painting at the start of this post. Love the colors and the movement in it. I feel like I could step right into it and join the dance! And I can tell you are a born storyteller, Marylou, not just because you created a book about them, but because your imagery told me a story right off the bat: Come join us, dancing makes us bigger than life, dancing makes us soar.

    Personally, I adore stories, they sustain us, they’re how we construct our worlds. And I was reminded of my own story when you said this: ” I think the most challenging aspect of what I do is to live a balanced life filled with creation but time to regenerate as well.” It took me right to the heart of two archetypal stories I’m living: my inner creator who sometimes gets so wound up that she wants to go forever, and my inner magician who wants to take the time for renewal and restoration. These two women sometimes get into heated battles! Lately I’ve been creating more of a bond between the two of them by giving myself over to purposelessness sometimes. And you know, I think it’s working.

    Thanks for the wonderful interview and art!
    .-= Patty – Why Not Start Now?´s last post…Meaning Mondays: The Stuck in the Mud Edition =-.


    Sarah Lulu April 14, 2010 at 6:09 am

    I am in the process of becoming bolder, more daring. I’ve not lived out my life like that until recent times. It’s so exciting I’m often torn between fear and joy. But I will not stop …forward ever braver. God willing.

    “Ever notice that ‘What the hell’ is always the right decision?” -Marilyn Monroe

    ….I never knew that …but I do now!
    .-= Sarah Lulu´s last post…Wishcasting Wednesday =-.


    suzen April 14, 2010 at 7:25 am

    Hi Tess! Brilliant interview! And Marylou – Hello and Wow! Love your art and your philosophies as well! I couldn’t agree with you more! We all have a divine creative power knocking and bashing at the walls to come out. I am most at peace at my easel because I let “the Source” do the painting, I’m only the instrument for my brush. Took me YEARS of lousy soul-less art to discover that but thank God I did! I’ve often wondered if it was actually “boldness” or just completely letting go – but then maybe it IS bold to really let go?

    Somehow or other, probably during the upheaval of menopause, I became fearless. Best thing that ever happened to me! I thought I had lived life pretty well up til then (attitude-wise) but wow, now it’s pure passion and joy!

    Thank you both! This was delightful!


    Roy April 14, 2010 at 11:07 am

    “I would say that you have been a powerful creator your whole life!”

    I didn’t realize this until just now. As someone who immersed herself in the sciences, I always felt that I lacked that “creative” gene. However, creativity can come in many forms, some people paint with colors. I paint with equations. Creativity is the holy grail of true success, in whatever form it may come.

    You have a beautiful perspective on “the stories that color your life.” =)



    Joy April 14, 2010 at 11:09 am

    Wow. *This* is exactly what I was meant to read today. I’m wanting a bit of reassurance from the Universe today, and you pegged it. Thank you!
    First, you are aging exactly as you expressed you’d like to! Having fun, fearing nothing..and inspiring us all to do the same.
    This interview was amazing. I will need to reread it and let it sink in. I encourage art in all forms in my own life and my children’s. When the kids went to school, their teachers commented they are talented at free art but not at structured art–ie. to make a house you make a square, triangle roof, windows..It was foreign for them to have someone tell them how to create. I kind of like that–my job as their mom is to supply the tools, all kinds of tools things they’ve never experienced or known existed as well as those that are familiar, and it is their job to experiment with them. That is how I see God and the Universe working with me…they supply, I work with it all….
    “Free of struggle, full of joy” is an awesome name for Life! An amazing answer for how was your day? Oh, free of struggle, full of joy!
    The thing about art is that as we create, we can each use the same materials and come up with completely different pieces, just as we can each view one piece and come up with completely different interpretations. As we create, we have one vision, but the more we apply ourselves our vision changes and the piece reflects that. It becomes multilayered as we become multilayered.
    Thank you for these words I needed to hear. Huge .
    .-= Joy´s last post…Transparent beauty….. =-.


    Peggy April 14, 2010 at 7:56 pm


    This is such a wonderful interview and I just love your commentary and questions that go along with it.

    For me, I’m starting to see the new miracles happening in my life – the work I’ve put into and continue to put into my own life transformation – things are happening. I am being bolder because as Marylou stated, “everything really will be ok…”

    .-= Peggy´s last post…Manifesting Miracles =-.


    Patricia April 14, 2010 at 8:45 pm

    Fun and creative…
    everything will be ok – I am sure of it.
    .-= Patricia´s last post…Vacationing Vicariously =-.


    Belinda Munoz + The Halfway Point April 14, 2010 at 9:05 pm

    What a beautiful interview. When I met Marylou on Twitter, I clicked on her site and was instantly taken by her art. I admire the bold femininity she conveys in her pieces and the colors are so vivid and alive. Thank you for introducing her to us, Tess!


    Tammy McLeod April 14, 2010 at 10:34 pm

    I really enjoyed this interview. The way you set it up in a pattern of question, Marylou, you was creative and really enticed me to read on. Your parallels between art and blogging were a lot of fun.


    Lana-{Daring Clarity} April 14, 2010 at 11:48 pm

    I LOVEd the interview! Very insightful and empowering. Thank you Tess and Marylou!
    .-= Lana-{Daring Clarity}´s last post…Sex and Money – Two Of The Most Powerful Tools For Conscious Growth …Are They? =-.


    Tess The Bold LIfe April 15, 2010 at 7:03 am

    I love that line as well…such wisdom!

    What a bold inspiration you are to everyone. I love the sailing the ocean plan and can see you in your natural setting with your garden. Life is grand and so are you! Nope no retirement in your our plan…we’ll go kicking and laughing until the last breathe we do part! woo hoo!

    I am digging up that untapped potential creativity included! I’ll be imagining 6 impossible things before breakfast daily like Alice in Wonderland.

    Creative Megan,
    I love your sense of style…so tell that inner critic to hush. It’s easy going and relaxed just like you. And your plan for your writing like Marylou’s art is a plan that speaks to me as well. Why do anything but???

    And thanks for the compliment on my interview. I think they were too impersonal before and one sided…unlike a good interview. And lots of love, joy and creativity to you as well. xo

    I feel the same way about what our blogging is for…it has a higher purpose… a critical mass of consciousness is just an awesome thought. We’re making the world a better place to be one post at a time and one comment at a time. Little love notes and kisses and hugs across the universe. I think I’ll do an article on that! Thanks so much for stopping by and inspiring me Topi! I appreciate you;)

    I felt the same way you did about Marylou’s art. It’s warm, inviting and celebrates women. What joy. And the poetry she adds is a bonus to what already is wonderful.
    I love helping women celebrate each other through art.

    Your inner magician and inner creator sound like they are at peace to me. And I love your word, ‘purposelessness.’ Thanks so much for adding your wisdom to our day and for taking time to share in our joy. I learn so much from you.

    I’ve never heard that Marilynn Monroe quote and love it. Because I’m getting much more serious with age. Yuk. And you were where you were suppose to be in the past and deciding and intending bold and daring is just Divine. Thanks for joining us on our journey. Welcome!

    Bashing at the walls…because it can’t be contained anymore…it’s now or never for us saging women. And that’s why I mention O’Keefe because she decided not to age in spirit and her work and play. I wish she was alive today even though I keep her alive in my heart or her spirit anyway! Thanks for sharing your wisdom disquised as humor.
    I hope your painting your cottage in bright bold colors this summer.

    I love that you’re creative in equations. My hubs is creative in accounting. He’s not the average dull accountant and people love that about him. He’s a joy and light hearted and makes clients feel good and safe. I’ve never seen such a soulful, insightful accountant. I should redo his website with his authentic qualities now that I think about it. Thanks for bringing that out in my thinking.

    OMG I think we should answer everyone who asks us how are day is going…free of strugle and full of joy. How about bumper stickers and t-shirts. Marylou can add her artwork to the tshirts and posters. Let’s get the word out…let go of weapons of all sorts from arms to tongues and pick up joy. I love the way you are raising your kids in simplicity on your boat. I’m soooo happy to know you and look forward to our future friendship. Hugs to Jay for me. xo

    It’s been a pleasure to watch you grow in Joy and thanks for sharing my work on your blogs. I’m inspired by you interest. We are on the same path and I’m loving it. I’m still planning on Vegas!

    Yes it will be and is! Don’t ya love it. How can it not be with us powerful women on the creative move! Holding you in the light with a lot of love;)

    Yes we all recogonize joyful and inspiring work when we see it. And to think she has only just begun! (15 years is not a long time) Thanks for sharing in our joy both Marylou’s and mine.

    We don’t think of blogging as our art but it is. We’re called on to keep our creativity going and our message fresh. I’m happy you’re here. Please stop by again.

    Thanks for your time and compliments. She’s very clear don’t ya think?!?


    Cheryl Paris April 15, 2010 at 8:14 am

    Hello Tess and Marylou,

    A huge thanks to Tess to interview Marylou and make it available to us.
    Very inspiring and motivating. Just love it.

    Bye for now,


    Kaushik April 15, 2010 at 8:43 am

    What a remarkable interview! Marylou has an open and present outlook. It’s all about releasing fear and Marylou seems to have done it with self-honesty. And I like that way you related her message for a wider audience.

    .-= Kaushik´s last post…Authenticity =-.


    Tess The Bold LIfe April 15, 2010 at 8:47 am

    Your very welcome. I’m happy to give you back some of the inspiration you share with all of us! Anytime girlfriend!

    Yes let us all have releasing fear on the top of our to do list! Thanks for the compliment.
    .-= Tess The Bold LIfe´s last post…Book Give Away From Artist Marylou Falstreau =-.


    Marylou Falstreau April 15, 2010 at 9:18 am

    Good morning, every one! I’m here!! I have been in Stockton, California visiting with my 87 year old mother for the past several days. What a gift to wake up to all of these wonderful comments this morning. I am blown away! I will take more time today to read through them and soak up the wisdom, love and the knowledge that we are all participating in this “growing time” of life. What an adventure we are on…and we get to choose what kind of experience we are going to have! Isn’t that an awesome reality ?!
    After spending time with my mother, I could see very clearly that she has created the life of her dreams. She has had her challenges, of course, but ultimately her dreams have come true! She lives in a house she purchased on her own, she has retirement funds and good health, and all of her children are good citizens ( her words.)Even though she would tell you she is not creative, all one has to to do is look at her home, her friends and her activities, and see that she has been choosing the “colors” of her life all along.
    I am inspired by all of you and will continue with my “Women and The Hourglass Series”…I have three new images in the works. I am getting ready for upcoming shows and have several new canvases in process. One 4′x 5′ painting has a woman floating downstream, as the central image. She is lovely, as we are! Let’s all continue floating down stream, free of struggle, free of fear,and full of trust. It is our “calling” during this important time in history…and this important time in our lives. We are not alone… and it really is going to be ok. Believe it!
    Thankyou ,Tess, for this terrific opportunity to be a part of your “Blog”. I too love the format of the “questions and answers “and feel proud to be part of your creation. You are a wise and wonderful and bold creator…a gift to all of us!
    I will decide who receives a copy of Alan’s and my book ( a tough decision!) and be in touch by tomorrow, at the latest.
    Love to all of you! I hope to meet you in person one day!
    All the best,


    Tess The Bold LIfe April 15, 2010 at 9:22 am

    Hi Marylou,
    Oh I’ve had so much fun with your interview and it’s the first time I’ve had a painter and author combined with a crazy ole man. Please do keep us informed about your shows and work. If I don’t respond right away it’s because I’m away for the next several weeks visiting my nearly 90 mom, grandkiddos and friends. But we will get that winner and the gift in the mail. Grateful, Tess
    .-= Tess The Bold LIfe´s last post…Book Give Away From Artist Marylou Falstreau =-.


    Mark April 15, 2010 at 9:52 am

    Great interview Tess! Thanks for turning me on to this artist. I will enjoy her art even more knowing more about who she is and where her art comes from. Thank-you.
    .-= Mark´s last post…Teachable Moments =-.


    Greg Blencoe April 15, 2010 at 11:15 am

    Hi Tess,

    Thanks for introducing me to Marylou and her work. She has a really interesting, unique style which is very cool.

    I really enjoyed the creative way you did this interview with both answers from Marylou and comments from you. I hope you will continue to do this in the future.

    Here was my favorite comment that you wrote:

    “The Bold Life: How different would our blogs be if we waited…trusted…until inspiration appeared rather than feeling like we have to stick to a blogging schedule?”

    While I know others are different and we each have to do what works for us, I am very big on not having a blogging schedule. I guess I don’t like feeling forced to create. Therefore, I tend to go with the flow until I get inspired.

    And here was my favorite comment from Marylou:

    “5. What is the boldest thing you’ve done this year?

    I took a nap, when I felt there was no time for it!”

    This response gave me a good laugh, but I think there is a lot of wisdom in it, too.
    .-= Greg Blencoe´s last post…How to get your ideal boyfriend/girlfriend =-.


    Liara Covert April 15, 2010 at 1:33 pm

    Love how Marylou encourages people to feel how everything is fine right now. It is not a matter of working toward feeling great, its a question of accepting you already do. Its not a matter of pursing creative pleasure, its about raising awarenes of what enables you to feel good and consciously choosing to do that. The basic message that comes though is to stop making excuses that block you from sensing who you are. Just be it, do it and love it every moment!
    .-= Liara Covert´s last post…What if you feel torn? =-.


    Karl Staib - Work Happy Now April 15, 2010 at 2:36 pm

    I love that she took a nap as being bold. Most people want to take that question and impress the audience. She used that question to show that every day decisions can be bold.

    Loved it.

    The stories that we tell just ourselves defines how we look at life. When we create positive stories we are creating a positive outlook.
    .-= Karl Staib – Work Happy Now´s last post…7 Ways to Bring More Positivity to Your Career =-.


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