I am a visual artist and Creativity Coach from Victoria, BC. I am passionate about helping artists to strengthen their creative resiliency, so that they can deepen their connection to their work and produce their most authentic and personal art.
I have been a working artist since 2004, when I graduated from a formal Fine Arts program. At that time what I was engaged with most in my work was critical thinking and looking at my work for its formal and conceptual aspects. While this served me well and is important to understand, it also left me with a huge gap in my understanding about what it takes to be an artist. I struggled – a lot, actually – and often felt completely overwhelmed by my internal dialogue, critical thoughts and judgements, feeling deeply locked in my own fear of failure. I found myself stalled, blocked and resistant to making my art.
This patterning prevented me from taking risks in my art and also made the process of creating new work almost unbearable at times. I began questioning why I was even making my art. What was my purpose? Maybe I’m just not good enough or even have any talent as an artist? How can I communicate what I feel inside? Does it really have to be this hard?
There were times when I felt completely lost and helpless, so stuck in my work and overwhelmed with fear. I began to search for solutions and answers, trying to understand what was wrong with me. I felt utterly alone with these feelings and like a complete fraud. My thoughts were negative, repetitive and unsupportive…and my inner critic had taken up full occupancy inside my head. I truly believed that “real” artists didn’t experience this kind of suffering and confusion…so I searched. And, I almost gave up.
Gratefully, as life does, I was pointed in a direction. In 2014 I undertook a 7 month mentorship program to study with the California painter, Nicholas Wilton. During this time I came to realize that my mindset was the greatest challenge I was facing in making my art, and just how powerful and necessary it was to cultivate a healthy and sustainable artist mindset.
I began to closely look at the ways I was derailing my own process and undermining my efforts. I listened to myself, dug deeply into my inner world and asked key questions that opened myself up to the truth about the creative process – my creative process. I was able to get out of my way and on my own side, and understood how my art-making could become a vehicle for change and self acceptance.
In 2016 I was invited to join Nicholas' team of coaches, assisting and supporting the hundreds of participants in his Art2life Creative Visionary Program and the Art2life Academy. This was a fully immersive experience and one I am deeply grateful to have had. I was able to work with so many talented artists, build my coaching skill set and bring my passion for nurturing the artist’s mindset to his coaching mix.
Alongside my art making, I have always had a strong interest in personal development and psychology. In 2001 I trained as a lay counsellor and then went-on to be a co-facilitator at a local counselling centre training program. This time not only helped me to grow and face some of my personal issues, but it also allowed me to develop skills and solution-focussed approaches that could assist my counselling clients.
I now work as a Creativity Coach, bringing my passion for art-making and personal development together, helping artists to discover how they can deepen their connection to themselves and trust the process of art-making. Through my work with my individual clients, and with the many members of the Creative Visionary Programs, I have come to truly understand how to best support an artist’s journey.
While we are all uniquely who we are, there are many common challenges that artists face when we engage with creating our most authentic work. Creativity Coaching can be the key to accessing what might be holding you back from making your very best work.