Getting to know the art of Mariam Paré and Alana Tillman and important work of MFPA

MFPA, Mariam Paré, Alana Tillman

For 60 years, the Mouth and Foot Painting Artists (MFPA) has helped gifted artists make a living primarily through the sales of their artistic creations. This organization celebrates self-reliance and creative expression and includes more than 800 artists from more than 80 countries around the globe. About 70 of these artists are located in the United States.

One of the ways in which these artists showcase their work that is easily accessible to art lovers is through the sales of Christmas cards. These cards are high-quality reproductions of the original work from artists connected to MFPA.

Mariam Paré had always been interested in art. One may think that her dreams of working as an artist would have been dashed after she was shot in the back when she was 20, which left her a quadriplegic, but that is not what happened. Through passion, practice and perseverance Paré is an accomplished artists who uses her mouth to make some fascinating and beautiful works of art. She even got to meet Pierce Brosnan after she painted a portrait of him.

Mariam Paré Pierce Brosnan
Mariam Paré with Pierce Brosnan

Alana Tillman was born without the use of her hands and arms.Not wanting to suppress her creativity, she learned how to paint with her mouth. She takes pride in her work and “wants to be judged by the quality of her work, rather than the way she creates it.”  However, she wants the world to know about the good work done by MFPA.

Alana Tillman Painting
Alana Tillman making art

Artists Mariam Paré and Alana Tillman spoke with Michelle Tompkins for about their personal journeys, why MFPA is important, their advice for people who are stuck in a rut, how self-reliance and positivity are important, how they define quality of life, where they draw their creative inspiration, what they like to do for fun and more.

Learn more about Mariam Paré, Alana Tillman and other artists, as well as check out all available cards for the 2017 holiday season by visiting

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Michelle Tompkins

Michelle Tompkins is an award-winning media, PR and crisis communications professional with more than ten years experience with coverage in virtually every traditional and new media outlet. She is currently a communications and media strategist and writer, as well as the author of College Prowler: Guidebook for Columbia University. She served as the Media Relations Manager for the Girl Scouts of the USA where she managed all media and talking points, created social media strategy, trained executives and donors and served as the organization’s primary spokesperson, participating in daily interviews with local, regional, and national media outlets. She managed the media for the Let Me Know internet safety and Cyberbullying prevention campaign with Microsoft, as well as Girl Scouts’ centennial Year of the Girl To Get Her There celebration in 2012, which yielded more than 800 million earned media impressions. In addition to her extensive media experience, Michelle worked as a talent agent in Los Angeles, California, as well contracting as a digital content developer and her writing has appeared in newspapers and online. She is passionate about television, theater, classic movies, all things food and in-home entertaining. While she has lived and worked in NYC for more than a decade, she is from suburban Sacramento and gets back there often to watch the San Francisco Giants on TV with her family.

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