A few years ago, I did a gratitude art journal, which included photos of small moments of my day. The moments that made me feel grateful. It really helped me notice each moment. I slowed down and saw how many beautiful moments each day held, from a warm cup of coffee in the morning, to the sunshine on a walk, to a smile or mischievous glance or soft pillow to rest on at night. The experience helped me be still. It’s a hard habit to maintain. Which is one reason I admire today’s maker, Mary Jo Hoffman, MN artist, she maintains a creative habit as a part of life with ease.


Mary Jo Hoffman Inspires

When I recently discovered the artwork of Mary Jo Hoffman, it held, for me, the same sense of awe and gratitude for daily wonders that my photo taking did. I still recommend that each of us take a week a year to photograph the wee moments of our lives (even if we don’t think of ourselves as a photographer). If you need a fix the other 51 weeks of the year, follow Mary Jo’s blog Still or her Instagram.

Her work is simple and deep at the same time. Her art has a meditative vibe that I adore.


An Intentional Artist

Mary Jo takes just one image a day. Her images are mainly of natural objects found around her home in the woods, near a lake in Minnesota.

In her previous career, she was an aerospace engineer. She worked in the field because she was good at it, not because she loved it. Her intention was to retire into a creative career. I also admire that she has followed through on that intention.


Returning to Herself

Her nature photography brought her back to herself and her true passions in life. Running wild in nature and seeing it’s infinite beauty is a life long habit for Mary Jo. When she decided to do a one a day creative project and started looking around her home for what she loved, she realized she had always been a collector of rocks and feathers and bit of nature. Her photo a day project has turned into a life enhancing habit for her and for her audience as well. So Mary Jo Hoffman, MN artist was born


An Every Day Practice

By practicing her creativity every day for just a hour or two she has perfected her craft and amassed a large portfolio of images. Her images have found a wide and appreciative following because of their calm meditative quality and how they allow the viewer to feel connected to nature.


Creativity over Perfection

Mary Jo notes that this practice of attention and composition has led her to appreciate the imperfect examples of nature more than the perfect ones. She believes, as I do, that we are all creative beings and hopes to inspire others to spend a small amount of time each day in creative play.

All Images by Mary Jo Hoffman. For another favorite MN artist check out our blog on Charles Beck.  And afavorite glass artists Tom and Rebecca Maras.