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Why I’m OK Teaching a Creativity Workshop

If I had a dime for every time I heard, “Oh Shalagh you are so creative”, I’d at least have five bucks. This became one of those phrases that made me twitch perhaps because I didn’t think of myself as having any kind of creative superpowers which was obvious to them but not to me, until it finally was. I think perhaps what they meant was they wished they knew the secret creative permission spell too.Why I'm OK Teaching a Creativity Workshop on Shalavee.com

Fast forward to the past several years when I intentionally indulged myself in creative challenges to gain creative confidence. I followed many of my creative curiosities until I finally owned that I was an Uber-creative. And I am beginning to understand that I believe in creative living aka Creativism as a way of life, one that is at odds with the consume and destroy mode of existence I see all too much of.

So if there is a purpose to my life, one of the facets seems to be sharing my creativity with others so that they too have permission to create.  To this end, I am offering a creativity workshop locally this Fall because I believe that everyone can benefit, and perhaps heal, from increased creativity in their lives.Why I'm OK Teaching a Creativity Workshop on Shalavee.com

Each of us looks to understand ourselves based on our interaction with the world. The advertising propaganda would have us believe conformity and possession would be our best safe bet to easy existence. But in fact, we crave to understand our uniqueness through our interactions. We long to be carefree, to be unique and yet connected to our community at the same time. We want self-confidence that comes from owning our own uniqueness and perspective. Not only are these human needs, they are only a few of the many benefits of creativity.

Somehow, as we become older, we conform to the idea that creativity will get us outcast from the tribe. That we need to focus only on the earning of money and security for our family. My hope is that by opening up a conversation with people, and consequently they with themselves, the tantalizing benefits will begin to tickle people slightly out of their fear zones so that they may try creativity in small bursts in their lives. A little creativity in one’s life is better than none. And the money people can save by ceasing to try to find themselves by spending rather than creating will make it an even more enticing proposition.Why I'm OK Teaching a Creativity Workshop on Shalavee.com

My final realization is that I don’t have to a “professional” artist to legitimize my knowledge and experience around creativity. I can be a small “a” artist. I only need to acknowledge that I am creative and share what I feel and know to be my truth around this process as it relates to my growth and development as a more rounded human being. I can honestly say that the permission I have given myself to create has created a better happier more confident me. And that is a completely good thing.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your email box. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter or Pinterest  too. I am always practicing Intentional In-touchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

 

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My Creative October Thus Far

Having created daily for the last week in August and all of September, I rolled into October still with daily art making as my intention. At least to be creative for the first two weeks as there was one more round of Creativity Bootcamp with That Curious Love of Green.  I’m catching up with this post. I’m still showing up in one way or another to maintain my new title of “artist” which I finally earned/granted myself in that first week of September working on pastel still lives. I just did one again today in fact.

Here’s what you’ve missed if you do not follow along with my shenanigans on Facebook and Instagram, my social media(e) of choice.

 my creative october so far on Shalavee.comreat

 my creative october so far on Shalavee.comreat

Halloween pumpkin card on Shalavee.com

 my creative october so far on Shalavee.com

 my creative october so far on Shalavee.com

 my creative october so far on Shalavee.com

embroidered-pumpkin for my creative october so far on Shalavee.comreat

Tomato still life on Shalavee.com

Butterfly journal cover on Shalavee.com

purple and blue abstract collage on Shalavee.com

My writing and my arting are now on an even keel of importance and validation in my heart. And that’s just as I’d hoped. Like some sort of mathematical equation I had to work out, I now have proff of what I’m capable of. Now to screw up the courage to use it.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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Searching For Clues : Found Amanda Grace

I was perusing Facebook and had an aha moment. And then I lost where I found it. And then I went searching for it again. Always questions. About what I’m doing and why. Questions about what other people are doing and why. And sometimes worlds collide to provide a glimmer of understanding. This was one of those moments. Amanda Grace is an artist who bears her soul in her posts and her artistic journey and by doing this, she helps to give others permission to do so too. Hmmmmm….

I don’t truly know this woman or her work. I’m connected to her through a tribe of creatives. But when I read this post, I know the story she’s writing and sharing is one I need to listen to. Because I am her and she is me. Here’s what she said that grabbed my brain and held it tight.

‘Here’s where I’m supposed to insert carefully crafted sales copy with emotionally charged reason for you to buy something… eh, no not my style. I don’t really know WHY you should buy anything, ever… other than you either need it or simply can’t help yourself.

But here’s the thing, I do know that the women who have bought my paintings so far have something in common. They have reached out to me to claim my work as a declaration to celebrate themselves and/or the women they love, honour, support and share special bonds with.

And that’s good, because without my ever having said so, this is also why I paint them… they are a celebration of me, my essence and spirit and that which I feel the need to bond with. To be ‘there for’ myself in spite of all my doubts and insecurities and struggles, of which there are MANY. To appreciate myself as a woman of value and worth in this world.

And for me this is a big thing, because I’m very good at forgetting who I am and letting the critical voices I carry around beat me down. BAD. These girls come into my studio when I am most in need of reminding that who I am is ME, lovable, sweet, sharp, sarcastic, sincere, sulky… whatever. It’s ok to be me. I don’t have to hide. As corny as it sounds, that’s the truth. I struggle with this shit, ok?

I paint these girls as I work through my life story… I excavate the good, bad and indifferent about me and my life. It’s not always easy, but I have to do it.. tell and tell again, until the story of me is brought up to date as a true and honest reflection of the best of me and not some fabrication from a condition that wants me to believe only the worst.

So.. if that resonates then great, I support you and you support me… we become bonded in our stories because we get that about each other. If that makes no sense to you then, what my girl says here is what you’ll have heard…. blah, blah, blah… ‘

Always, Amanda xoxo

http://www.amandagraceart.com/shop/

amanda-graces-daisy-jane-the-moon on Shalavee.com

Her words are my words, her story is mine and that feels like a little less lonely. And I understand more now what it is that I may be doing and what I may be gifting. And why people honoring and valuing what I am making and writing is a two way street that we all are digging a stroll down.

Amanda Grace’s about me on her website says this simply,

I believe everyone needs an outlet to express… to exorcise ourselves of our possessions, our demons. To connect with our wisdom. My creative practices are how I do that. I’ve been doing it all my life. My creative practices are how I do that. I’ve been doing it all my life.

Over the past decade, my practice has evolved and deepened… My inner parts have becomes allies by being afforded the freedom of expression.
They are extensions of each other. This process has become my compass, my companion, my confidante and the containers into which I spill my most authentic self.

Find her website , wisdom, and art at  http://www.amandagraceart.com/shop/.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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A Wrap Up of Our Creative September and a New Beginning

It all started with a creative week in August. I pulled out my pastels I’d always been intending to use and did a little dabbling. And a light went off in my head. Why couldn’t I put myself to a month of creativity straight, ask to be accountable to my online tribe and at the end I’d have a creative habit! Well let me tell you, I have a whole lot more than that. I have proof of Our Creative September!

Shannon's collage on the wrap up for our creative September on Shalavee.com

Shannon Faris-Parnell

Right as I was announcing that I was about to launch My creativity challenge September, I had a lovely lady as me if she could join in. Sure I said, thinking this would be cool to have company. And then another woman asked to join. Of course I said, do you think we need a hashtag?

Shannon's collage on the wrap up for our creative September on Shalavee.com

Shannon Faris-Parnell

What transpired after that was pure pagic as a small group of us gathered encouragement and inspiration from each other, creating daily under the hashtag #OurCreativeSeptember. So unexpected, so yummy, so community.

tracys-pottery on Our Ceative September on Shalavee.com

Tracy’s Pottery

tracys-pottery on Our Ceative September on Shalavee.com

Tracy’s pottery

As each week went by and I did my round-ups, I spoke of what it was that I had gotten out of the challenge thus far. The first week, this is what I said,”In making the practice non-negotiable, you begin to build a trust with yourself. Anxieties stand down and make room for you to express and devote to yourself through your challenge.” I began to be less critical and more open to what might happen.

Wrap up of Our Creative September on Shalavee.com

Jax Blunt

Wrap up of Our Creative September on Shalavee.com

Jax Blunt

Week two, I was astonished at the change.”This daily arting endeavor is changing me. I knew it would. I just had to commit to allowing for it to change me. I used to use creativity as a thing to torture my inner child with mean “No you can’t go out and play until you eat your broccoli” kinda stuff. And my inner child was kept from her one true love, seeing what she could make. And then being proud of herself.”

latoya-burton from Our Creative September wrap up on Shalavee.com

latoyaburton_musing.
.
GATEWAYS
(to same path ~ many quests)

all seeking the same thing.
choosing different storylines to get there.
speaking different spells to create the experience.
all seeking the same thing.
all have a vision
a dream
all seeking the same thing
all on a mission to find the happiness + love we came here to remember

be wonderful

LaToya

Wrap up for Our Creative September on Shalavee.com

Fi Cooper

 

Wrap up for Our Creative September on Shalavee.com

Fi Cooper

Week three brought a larger ease to my everyday.”Having moved through the cloud of resistance, I am now stepping into create mode very quickly. As a given now, I don’t have to grapple with “if”. As for the when of the creating, I try to think and not think about it. Like if you talk about going to a movie too much, you’ll talk yourself right out of going. The creativity needs to be both slightly spontaneous and slightly planned.”

la-toya-burton

Latoya Burton

live-in-wonder-linzelle on Our Creative September on Shalavee.com

Lynzelle

As if these weren’t lessons enough, I also got the gift of camaraderie and company from all the other women who joined in. We had a ceramicist, collage artists, watercolorists, scrapbookers, and sketch artists. I developed a newfound confidence in my pastel work and started a mix medium series of watercolored encyclopedia pages with pasteled bugs that seems to be a community favorite. We were all finding our strides and our self pride and that was the Magic.

 

Our Creative September wrap up on Shalavee.com

Ilana Kapp

 

Our Creative September wrap up on Shalavee.com

Ilana Kapp

So we’ve decided to continue our daily creative efforts together with a new hashtag of #OurCreativeSelves on Instagram . If you were to search that tag there, you’d see what we’ve been up to and you could take an opportunity to cheer us on and be inspired. We’d like that.

Idylewild park bed on wrap up of our creative September on Shalavee.com

Shalagh Hogan

I thank all my fellow creatives and everyone who cheered us on during our month of making. We’ll continue onward in our heroic creative journeys knowing you get what it means.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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September 2016 : A 30 Day Creativity Challenge

My recent discovery that I had truly been standing in the way of my creativity had me shoving this self-created blockage out-of-the-way. I am beginning a daily creative practice. And what better way than a month along creativity challenge for the month of September. If I can do an Instagram photo a day, I can do a 5 minute art piece. Or 15 or 30 minute art piece. I am making art a non-negotiable.September 2016 will be a 31 day creativity challenge on Shalavee.com

And so I’m announcing my 31 Days of Creativity Challenge for the month of September. It’s my way of putting it out there and being accountable to myself by telling you. You are more than welcome to join me in creating for as many or as few of the days as you’d like. Or you can cheer silently from the sidelines.

This is about creating habits Y’all. They say the easiest way to do that is to couple the new habit with one you already have. I am not at all sure what that will mean in my day except perhaps my first thing coffee drinking. I am also still living by is no housework while I’m alone in the house. And I am following the “Do your work First” guidelines. Before you web surf or get your quip out in some forgettable online conversation, get your work done.

 

September 2016 will be a 31 day creativity challenge on Shalavee.com

So starting on Thursday, September 1st, I’ll be making art daily and posting it to my Shalavee Facebook page. I’ve done these challenges before most notably with The Curious Love of Green’s blog mistress Jane Barry. Read my summary of intentions for one here. There’ll be picture round-ups thrown in with my regular blog posting on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. And I’m still doing the live Facebook chat on my Shalavee FB page at noon every Friday. If you can’t join me, you can always drop by and watch later as they go to tape afterwards !

I appreciate your support and am thinking I’ll be doing an art give away in the middle of the month to share my love. Thank you lovely people and wish me luck and stealth.

And If you enjoyed what you read, subscribe, via the subscription box in the sidebar, to my thrice weekly posts via your emailbox. And visit me on Instagram to see my daily pictures, friend me or like my page on Facebook. Or come find me on Twitter orPinterest too. I am always practicing Intentional Intouchness so chat at me please. I live for conversations.

And, as always, Thanks to you for your visit.

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