Hey there! I’m so glad you found my sparkly corner of the universe.
I’m Patty Palmer and before building Deep Space Sparkle, I taught elementary school art in Goleta, California. It was an absolute dream job: creative, impactful and let’s be honest, humbling.
Corralling 30 kids to create art in a specific amount of time is no easy task. But at the end of the day, while wiping down paint-splattered tables, cleaning the brushes and putting away the finished works of art– it hits you.
This is what kids are born to do.
Play. Create. Explore. Imagine.
And as an art teacher, I got to facilitate that.
Deep Space Sparkle — named after a Crayola crayon color — began as my way to share my student’s art experiences with their parents. Few parents were interested, but the blog drew attention from art teachers just like you looking for projects that engaged kids through happy colors, fun subjects and enriching art techniques.
I’ve shared hundreds of art projects and countless art teaching tips here on the blog and I truly hope they help you in some small way.
If you want to go deeper into our sparkly world, The Sparklers’ Club is a membership site just for art teachers that I founded in 2016. The membership has helped over 12K art teachers, artsy parents and classroom teachers explore art with their students by focusing on done-for-you art curriculums, assessable art projects and the support to teach with confidence.
We believe that every child is deserving of a happy art experience –not just once but every day – Patty Palmer
When I was contacted by Roost Books to write my first book, Draw, Paint, Sparkle: Creative Projects from an Elementary Art Teacher I decided to retire from teaching art.
I can’t even tell you how hard that decision was. I taught art to thousands of students in the Goleta School District and while I don’t remember everyone’s name, I remember every single piece of art. I would miss them and the joy we created together tremendously.
While I was writing the book, I knew that a membership was a way that I could still impact children by supporting the wonderful network of art teachers who were doing the important work of showing up and facilitating art for our children.
I didn’t set out to be an entrepreneur. It evolved organically. And slowly.
During my teacher days, I wrote blog posts and designed lesson plans in the evenings and on weekends, between softball games and homework. Then something happened. The Sparklers Club was a huge success right out of the gate. In the first month, we welcomed 1800 teachers into our membership. That’s when my husband, Neil (AKA Mister Sparkle) decided to quit his job as a computer engineer to help me out.
Now we work in a sun-splashed (and slightly messy) second floor studio in downtown Santa Barbara with our team of absolutely AMAZING creative and compassionate team members.
It’s a big leap from working in the corner of my bedroom to becoming a CEO. Some days I wonder what I got myself into. But those moments are rare and fleeting.
Most of the time, I’m grateful I still get to be a part of what art teachers do: inspire children.
Here are a few podcasts and articles that share my biz journey…
From Teacher to Entrepreneur in Forbes Magazine
Business Coach and Entrepreneur, James Wedmore interviews me on the Mind Your Business Podcast. I shares the lessons I learned as a creative business owner.
Listen to my story, Behind the Sparkly Curtain from my own podcast, Art Made Easy
This is an early insight on how I formed a membership site on The Sigrun Show