Terri Littlefield - Artist Extraordinaire

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

I've said it over and over and over again these past two years blogging.......this blog has introduced me to the nicest people!  Over and over again, God has directed our path directly into the businesses and arms of some of the warmest and kindest people.  Last weekend was no exception - first when He brought us to the Dirty Bird Antiques & Uniques and again while we were there.  As we wandered through the 200+ year old barn shooting photos, my eyes and my heart were drawn to the artwork of one particular artist........Terri Littlefield.  Her painting is simply beautiful and a little reminiscent (a little) of the kind of painting I used to do a long time ago, although I was never nearly as good.  When I mentioned to Judi, Dirty Bird's owner, how much I loved Terri's work, she responded, "Oh she's on her way here now with some new pieces!!!"  Well by golly, today was my lucky day!  We didn't have to hang around long before Terri and her husband Daniel arrived and we had a chance to visit.

Having done tole painting (that's the old fashioned term) in my day, I know first hand how difficult it is.  I know it not only takes practice and many years to become good at it, and I also know that some people are just gifted and I can tell you, Terri is gifted.  It doesn't take an amateur or professional painter to know that.  She is just authentically gifted and talented, both in her imagination and in her ability to put that imagination into action.  Whether it be using paint on a variety of surfaces (old surfaces are her favorite) or using needle and thread on her needlework, Terri is able to see beauty and transfer it onto a tangible surface.  It's no wonder her work is recognizable and sought after.

Terri lives with her husband Daniel in Catskill, NY although she was born and raised in Maine.  She has two beautiful daughters and two beautiful grandbabies. Terri says although she is a self-taught artist, her talent is genetic - coming from her mom and aunt.  She's always loved to dabble in crafts of all sorts from making rag baskets, dolls, Santa's and more.  She creates her own patterns and throws her patterns away at the end of each season so as to keep her work unique and one-of-a-kind.  Besides painting, her other passion is stitching (which she got from her mom).  Terri stitches free-hand and her husband makes the frames for her needlework!

Terri spent years doing craft fairs, mostly during the holiday season, to make money for Christmas gifts.  Along the way she met a great woman and friend, Colleen Macmillan, who Terri says was the first person who convinced her that she had a talent that might be marketable.  Colleen was right! She sure does!   Terri says that from that point on, her love for junking was born.  To be able to take a beat up, cracked, weathered, dented piece of pretty much anything from wood to tin and turn it into something one of a kind and unique is still her favorite thing to do.  I can see why......

In 2011 life brought Terri to Catskill.  Life was very tough her first year and a half here.  She says she was a country girl with a very Maine accent peddling door to door to any shop owners she could get to hear her out and look at what she was selling.  She had a lot of rejection before she gained any headway with anyone.  Teddi from Teddi's Florist on Main Street in Catskill finally gave her a chance and soon after Tina from Mahalo's, also on Main Street in Catskill.  Terri says that she did countless craft shows before she met people who loved her work and what she was painting on, who wanted her work in their shops.  That's not a problem these days.....Terri's work can be found at Dirty Bird Antiques & Uniques in Schodack, Crow Cottage in Chatham, Country Treasures in Coxsackie, Kraftique in Kingston and Country Clutter in Saugerties.  Last year Terri & Dan started doing the Stormville Flea Market.   In case you're wondering, as I was, Terri's art is a full-time job.

Unlike her passion for her work......Terri is pretty humble about her talent.  When I asked her if I could feature her in my blog, she shyly agreed.  Anyone in business today is familiar with the term "branding" and Terri seems to have successfully branded herself in the country collectible world.  Her snowmen are recognizable to many and customers regularly come up to her saying they knew a piece was hers because of her unique eyes.  I think people would say the same about her needlework - so unique, yet so uniquely Terri Littlefield!  Terri wrapped up her self description with this......"Like the bumper sticker reads....I love NY".   She truly believes "Everything happens for a reason".   I think so too and I am thankful that I found myself at the Dirty Bird on the same day that Terri Littlefield was there.  I feel honored not just to have met her, but to be the proud owner of not one, but two of her pieces.  I'll tell you more about how I acquired my second of her pieces in my next post!  Stay tuned.

Here's more of Terri's beautiful work:

LOVE this!!!!

This will sit proudly in my garden this year!

This door was painted on both sides - two different seasonal paintings!

This gorgeous cabinet was built by Terri's husband Daniel!   Ummm.....can we just agree this is gorgeous?   

Bought this - had to have it!
Don't you just adore her work??  I know I do!  Surprisingly, Terri does not have a website, nor a dedicated Facebook page......not surprisingly she is too busy for such stuff.  After all when you are selling your artwork in a bunch of shops and a big show, there's not much time left for the internet. Terri does do custom orders (yay)  and says if you contact her on her personal Facebook page, she will answer.  The link for that is: https://www.facebook.com/terri.littlefield.3?fref=ts

Terri also sells her work in Maine at Berryvines in Machias, Creative Blooms in Lincoln, Gracie's Aunt's Emporium in Millinocket, and A Maine Farmhouse in N. Anson.  Terri says this is a great bunch of ladies who have been a huge help to her.

Thank you Terri for sharing your talent with us and for letting me shed a little light on you here on the blog.  I have a long wish list for your stuff, so I know we'll be friends for a long, long time!

Thanks for reading.  Come back soon to Life As I See It where I'll be sharing another post on an amazing shop - one that people have been recommending for over a year!  I finally caved and boy am I glad I did.  Stay tuned!  Don't forget, if you love this post, consider signing up to receive posts in your email and be sure to share this blog with your friends!  You can also follow me on Facebook where I always share my posts and my photography!  https://www.facebook.com/GAWelter/

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