Tell us about you and your art
Always upbeat and running life at 100 miles an hour, in one year 2016 my world turned upside down. I lost close loved ones, left my job, my husband lost his job and my daughter had a traumatic birth of our first grandchild, and I thought I might loose her too. As the main bread winner I needed to run another company or start one but I couldn’t, my world had turned grey and I was a shadow of my former self.
Fighting my way back was the hardest thing I’ve done and I realised this was a journey of discovering a new me, the old model was broken. I’ve always enjoyed learning so after some time I picked up a prospectus from the local college and it fell open on an art page, I remember liking art at school 34 years ago so signed up as this was for no other reason than to quiet my mind, time to think of something else.
That was 2017, I still do a course one morning a week because I like the group that go! I found art quickly focused my brain, I would try one picture in all different mediums at home to explore what I liked best and was hooked. Art has brought the colour back into my life, it has brought a peace, calm and additionally the joy of creating something that might make other people smile and that makes me happy.
My art expresses the joy and colour I see in animals and nature. I paint animals that stand out because of their unique look or have a cheeky expression that conveys something to the viewer.
My passion is oil on canvas and the palette knife but still persevere with watercolour every week. I have not marketed my art but have a small exhibition in our local library and will have a website shortly, one step at a time.
I now intend to live from my art but not at 100 miles an hour! Instead I want to share my joy and encourage others to find some peace and mindfulness through creativity: I’m going to travel in my motorhome and paint my way around the coast of England, selling art as I go to keep my husband and I in baked beans! At every place we stop will set up free art sessions on the beach for all to join. I don’t know what i’m doing but i’m following my heart and talking to the universe quite a bit! If it can deliver free materials along the way that would help as I haven’t earned money for so long now! My plan is to have an exhibition of everyones art and mine, all about wellbeing once back home. Then see where my life takes me.
What has been your biggest lesson?
Confidence in that there is an art for everyone, you just have to find your market. Finding your thread is so important so loved all that training.
Before the Hub…
Some of this is answered above. My world was grey, and I was desperate to get the colour back, art did that for me in every way.
What have you found most useful during your time in the Hub?
I am enjoying the 7 key ingredients and will finish it. I love the fact that the community give you constructive comments. I have left groups that tell artist their work is lovely when they clearly need help, we are all striving to improve so helpful advice is key
Where are you now compared to when you joined?
Still a fledgeling but learning to fly and feel safe in your community knowing I can ask a silly question because someone will have been there.
What has this made possible for you?
Being creative, learning to meditate, learning to put art first and practise practise practise. Listen to your whisper.
Did you have any hesitations about joining the Hub?
You have a natural talent in addressing your audience as a fellow artist, I felt your energy and although every penny counts knew I needed to join a community of like-minded people as an artist you are often alone.
Do you have a message for anyone thinking of joining us?
The content of the hub and what it brings is worth far more than what you pay to become a member so join before Michelle gets a business coach! The fact that you can dip in and out of the hub and the classes is so helpful as there is no pressure. The content is exactly what you need at every stage and Michelle is so attentive, you wont regret it.
If so, how has that perception changed now you are a member?
I take a step forward every day towards my goal and am a visual result driven person which doesn’t always allow me to take part in everything you do because I feel the need to create a finished piece in the free time I have during the week.
If you could send advice back to yourself 3 years, what would you tell yourself?
Art is the answer. Allow creativity into your life for no other reason than it feels good and believe in yourself, a new life is possible.