All of my favorite things!

Podcasts and newsletters

The Creativity Habit podcast
This is my all time favorite podcast, hosted by one of my all time fave humans Daphne Cohn.  Hope you love her heart filled interviews with all types of makers as much as I do.

Art for your Ear podcast
Hosted by the hilarious author and collage artist Danielle Krysa of the Jealous Curator, her guests are an astonishing array of exceptional artists talking about their "making it" journey.

Mr. Money Mustache newsletter
Ok, this isn’t an art site, but it has inspired me to simplify and prioritize my life, which starts with my finances. Love his philosophy of retiring early (before age 30) by making daily financial choices around what matters most. This simple philosphy inspired  me save every extra dime, which helped me to leave my full time day gig a decade sooner than planned.


Artists that inspire my art and art business

Kellee Wynne Conrad
Such an inspiring artist, both for her art courses and her business coaching. She just happens to be MY art biz coach, the best ever.

Ivy Newport
I have taken almost every one of Ivy's fabulous online workshops, and one in person too! So over the top inspirational in what she teaches, and how she teaches it.

Laly Mille
Oh my goodness I love the online mixed media classes by this amazing French teacher. I sign up for every one of them, and learn a ton of new techniques EACH time.

Donna Downey
If you want a GREAT source for in-person  workshops, look no further than Donna's fabulous retreat center in Lincolnton, NC, about 45 minutes from the Charlotte, NC airport. With all art supplies and lunch included, this is a bargain, and you can spend the night there if you live outside of Charlotte. Plus, she offers workshops in every medium, and every one I've taken has been fabulous.

Kelly Rae Roberts
Kelly is a shining star for other artists following in her inspiring footsteps.  A former social worker turned self-taught artist who is rocking the art world and making the saying "starving artist" obsolete.

Maggie Taylor
Oh my goodness yummy art. Absolutely love Maggies’ work. I took an art class from her years ago in Santa Fe, which forever changed my work.


Art coaches that made a HUGE difference

Kellee Wynne Conrad  Out of all the art biz coaches I've worked with, Kellee stands hands and shoulders above the rest.  She has walked the walk earning 6 figures annually, and knows how to help other artists repeat her success.

Betsy Cordes This amazing woman gave me the push to quit my day job.  She is an amazing business art coach, worth every dime of the investment.

Cory Huff Corry offers online courses focused on social media for beginning artists, which gave me the courage to jump into Facebook and Instagram.


One of my favorites pieces of art that I own is the one I purchased from you a few years ago in Venice, Florida, entitled, What I seek now seeks me. I am proud to be the owner of the original of this piece of art." - Jerry – Florida

Books that have supported my art biz

steallikeanartistshowyourworkSteal Like an Artist and Show Your Work by Austin Kleon. Wonderful quick and inspirational reads about how to get your work out there. Devoured each of them in a couple hours, and each left me feeling high and ready to put my work out into the world.
dailyritualsDaily Rituals by Mason Currey
When I was getting ready to start my own daily art ritual, I devoured this book for ideas on how to have a day gig and an art biz. Didn’t even get half way through before I knew what I needed to do.
birdbybirdBird by Bird by Anne Lamott
One of the first artist inspiration books I ever read, that I still quote today. Love her philosophy that you often have to start creating “shitty” art in order to get to the good stuff. This is what I often say to myself when I’m frozen and afraid that what I'm creating isn’t “good” enough to sell. My intention everyday is to "make shitty art", and see where it takes me, which often ends up with something extraordinary.

Fav art resources

What I cut paper with:
MSscissorsPrimarily use these Fiskars Scissors
xactoFor small holes and corners, I use a regular ole X-Acto knife
selfhealingmatWhen cutting with an exacto knife, a self-healing mat is a must!
epsonstylusBest printer, ever - Epson Stylus Pro 3800
Expensive, but worth EVERY penny if you want to create large archival prints. Ink isn’t cheap ($60 for each color cartridge) but much cheaper to operate than a Epson 2200 with smaller ink cartridges, which is the printer I started with.
epsonpaperMost of my prints and originals are printed onto Epson Ultra Premium Presentation Matte paper — archival quality of course!
Epson Perfection V33 Scanner – All of my collage elements get scanned using this wonderful gadget.
Computer – I use an iMac with a 25” screen when I'm in my home studio. For travel, my handy MacBook Pro turns any hotel room in an art studio.
Dropbox – This is an essential service for doing art on the road, allowing me to save my art to Dropbox when at home, and then pick it up on my laptop when working from a hotel room, or Starbucks, where I’m a frequent flyer!
Planoly - This Instagram service helps me efficiently manage my online presence by planning out my photo grid and comments at least 2 weeks in advance.  LOVE this service.
Floater frames - Best place to buy these types of frames at a fraction of the cost of anywhere else.
Cradled boards - Most of my smaller collages are mounted onto to these high quality boards.

"I love browsing through Catherine's art. When I saw "Begin Again," it was so timely to the situation I was in and so inspiring, that I felt compelled to buy it for my office. There are so many symbolic visuals I found in this collage that spoke to me, starting with the outer curtains drawn back implying intimacy and a "peak" into this world of the two people's relationships. I think about … these things when I look at this piece, and it makes me smile, reminding me of its significance to my own complex, multidimensional relationship to my fiancé. You continue to be an inspiration for me to keep working on my own art!” - Melissa - Charleston, SC

Favorite magazines to rip up for collage material

Architectural Digest
Coastal Living
House Beautiful
Travel and Leisure
Real Simple
Martha Stewart Living

Plus any other magazine I can find that has high gloss photos. I never bother with magazines like People, Lady’s Home Journal or US. I also have a large library of old art, map, plant books that I get pictures from.

My website

Designed by the oh so talented Evan Leah Quinn with SixteenJuly. She also designed for Kelly Rae Roberts, which is how I found her.

Photography is mostly by Laura Tompkins, who specializes in branding women entrepreneurs. Totally over the top pro for business owners in the Carolinas.

Mailing list is managed through, which also hosts my online workshops.

Other non-art Favorites

Books that feed my soul



It's not your money by Tosha Silver
The book that has made the most difference in my life. After I experienced a live workshop with her at the Omega Institute, she is my go to for spiritual healing and growth.


surrenderexperimentThe Surrender Experiment by Michael Singer
My new favorite book, one that has finally gotten me to implement the ideas in my second favorite book, listed next!
untetheredcoverThe Untethered Soul by Michael Singer
I’ve read this at least 7 times, and am reading it again! LOVE LOVE LOVE this book and how it has quieted my mind, and showed me how to live in my higher self more often than not.
anewearthThe New Earth by Eckerd Tolle
Was my favorite book for many years, until replaced by the above. Sorry Eckerd, I still love your book too.
thepowerofnowstillnessspeaksPracticing the Power of Now and Stillness Speaks by Eckerd Tolle
Condensed versions of Eckerd Tolle’s philosophy that I have read MANY times, and given as a gift to most of my friends.
lovingwhatisLoving What Is by Byron Katie
Love her practical way of working through negative thoughts by accepting everything as a blessing. Participated in a 9-day retreat with her that healed my wounded soul.
creativevisualizationCreative Visualization by Shatki Gawain
A most beloved book by one of my first spiritual teachers. After reading this, I manifested the most amazing day gig, and then did it again 10 years later.
outnonalimbOut on a Limb by Shirley MacLaine
The book that literally woke me up and began my life long spiritual journey when I was 25.

One of my very favorite things, and part of my morning ritual

5yeardiaryMy 5 Year Diary I write in this EVERY day. So much fun to look back at what I was doing 2 years ago while I'm writing what just happened yesterday. Sweet and easy way to track my personal growth.

Some of my very favorite fiction reads

These are the ones that I recommend to a good friend when she/he is looking for a sure fire winner. Therefore, the book has to knock my socks off to make this selective list, and I’m always looking for ones to add.

islandbenaththeseaIsland Beneath the Sea by Isabel Allende
memoirsofageishaMemoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
belcantoBel Canto by Ann Patchett
eatprayloveEat, Pray, Love by Elizabeth Gilbert
spendingSpending by Mary Gordan (cool novel about an artist)
glasscastleThe Glass Castle by Jeannette Walls
      Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

What fiction am I reading right NOW?

by Min Jin Lee

LOVE this book!

Favorite U.S. cities

When I meet people on the road, I’m often asked where I like to travel to the most. I haven’t been everywhere in our blessed country, but I’ve visited most major cities for my day gig. From the last 10 years of business adventures, here are my favorites:

Top Three:
New York City

South Beach Miami (closest thing to Europe in the U.S.)

Chicago (my darlin’s home town)


Other places I LOVE to travel to:
Paris (not U.S. obviously, but over the top amazing)

Madison, WIAnn Arbor, MI

New Bern, NC

Boston, MA

Washington, D.C. (where I grew up)

Higgins Beach, Maine

San Diego

Santa Fe



Charleston, SC

Savannah, GA

Cities get added to this list all the time as I discover a new treasure, or find a reason to love a city that I’ve been too many times but had under appreciated in the past.

Clothing brands that fill my closest

Lucky, Ann Taylor/Loft, Banana Republic, Max Studio, Free People
In addition to any cool bargain that can be found on sale or at TJMaxx, where I love spending hours hunting for "hidden treasures", similar to how I search for collage material in magazines!

Now you know more about me than even my family does!

Anything I missed?
Feel free to send me an email. Would love to connect and find out about you too!

All artwork is the sole property of Catherine Rains and is held under copyright, even after purchase.The images, artwork, and contents of this website may not be copied, collected, or used for personal or professional gain without the written permission from Catherine Rains. Images on this website taken by Laura Thompkins or Catherine Rains.