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Design Spotlight: Cindy Johns

June 28, 2011
Today our Design Spotlight is on Cindy Johns at I Love Cuttables – Cindy, your story is inspiring!

The picture on my card is what you might call a visual metaphor.  But it needs a little background information for it to make sense.In 1999, I was treated for cancer with high doses of chemotherapy that left me with extremely debilitating memory-loss problems. I later found out that I was afflicted with a disorder referred to as chemo brain or chemo fog, but it threw me for a loop long before I knew what it was. I used to do Internet programming/consulting and I had created a widely used homeschool forum before the cancer. After the chemo, I became distraught by my forgetfulness and inability to focus. The Internet work overwhelmed me and I burned out and had to give it up.

A few years ago I learned the nature of chemo fog, and at that point it became easier to accept that I’d have to adjust to what I could and couldn’t do.  Things that required me to remember stuff or demanded my full attention had to fall by the wayside. I ventured into scrapbooking and card-making–using lots of die-cuts (which I love), and after creating hundreds of homemade cards, I considered selling them online. Then, in April of this year, I discovered GCU and immediately got hooked.  One of the biggest perks of that discovery is that I’m learning more than I ever could have imagined about digital art, promotional techniques, inside verses/humor & card categories from fellow artists.  Alas, I don’t remember nearly as much of it as I’d like, but it’s still fascinating.

When I was invited to submit a card for this Design Spotlight, I was very, VERY honored.  In the process of writing this (and re-writing it), I ended up doing some additional research on chemo fog and learned that A.D.D. medication might help with it (fingers crossed–my doctor just recently gave me a prescription). I hope that by talking about my own experience, I can shine some light on chemo fog and maybe help someone else along the way.

Anyhow—getting to my card. It uses a photo that I took outside of my home not long after being diagnosed with cancer, when I was looking for all the rainbows I could find.  This one was a lucky shot that seemed ideal for use on a carpooling card.  But since I took it so many years ago with a 1.5Megapixel camera it can’t be enlarged without losing quality and resolution. That’s why it’s such a small picture on the card.  But it is my favorite because it’s metaphorical for putting the cancer and chemo fog behind me while looking at what lays ahead—the beauty of art, and putting it on cards.  Plus, if I could carpool to work with my fellow GCU artists, I would.  🙂

14 Comments leave one →
  1. June 28, 2011 6:47 am

    Cindy, you and your cards are very inspirational. I’d carpool with you anytime, I was very moved by your post. Wonderful job. I recently added you to my blog for The Daily Card, this was before your design spotlight, so it’s clear your card is touching a lot of people. Hugs and Prayers.

    • June 28, 2011 3:13 pm

      Thank you so much, Janet! That means a lot to me. 🙂 And thank you to everyone else. It was such an honor to wake up this morning and see that Corrie had posted my card, and to read all of these kind comments from you all. I’m humbled beyond words, and it touches my heart so much to be a part of such an amazing and caring community.

  2. June 28, 2011 10:01 am

    Fantastic Interview, so very heart warming, your cards are amazing and the one above is just wonderful especially with the information and thaughts behind the card.

    Huge huge hugs
    Moonie xx

  3. Betsy permalink
    June 28, 2011 11:17 am

    What a great story Cindy, you certainly have been through alot and come out ahead shining! You are an inspiration. Love your work, keep it up!

  4. Rycky Creations permalink
    June 28, 2011 11:38 am

    Thanks for sharing your story, Cindy. It’s always interesting to find out the “story” of a particular card, and yours is very inspiring. I have enjoyed your blog in the past and it’s nice to get to know you a little better.


  5. June 28, 2011 11:58 am

    Cindy, Your cards are so unique and so are you. Thank you for sharing your story and inspiring message.
    Marie@Naquaiya’s Cards

  6. June 28, 2011 12:40 pm

    Dear Cindy, You shine! Thank you for sharing your inspirational story. Hugs, Lisa

  7. Gail Pepin permalink
    June 28, 2011 4:29 pm

    Cindy, you are a heroine to me! What you have dealt with and overcome shows how strong, brave, and courageous you are. Your design talent is amazing and you have found your niche in GCU. It’s a great place to be for us who have had our challenges and need a refuge. I’m so glad you are one of us now! Keep up the good work and know that you have tons of friends here at GCU.

  8. Lj Maxx permalink
    June 28, 2011 4:30 pm

    Wonderful interview to read. Best wishes for your continued success on GCU! ~ 🙂 Lj

  9. June 28, 2011 5:14 pm

    Great quote…an even better interview, thanks for sharing….things DO get better..

  10. June 29, 2011 12:57 pm

    What an inspiring piece. Good luck to you.

  11. June 29, 2011 3:30 pm

    Cindy, what an inspiring story! I’m so thrilled for you to find your voice again through digital art so you can share your spirit with the world!
    Doreen Erhardt

  12. June 29, 2011 11:34 pm

    Cindy, I knew there was more to you than met the eye! Your story is beyond inspirational and I know that you touch a lot of people on your daily journeys through life. Hugs from the Cockers and me!

  13. July 20, 2011 4:43 pm

    An inspirational article. Thank you for sharing this, Cindy 🙂

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