Creativity Coaching – Session 2: Overcoming Fear

Step 2 –  Overcoming Fear

There is one sure way to find your artistic voice, and that is to face fear head-on, and conquer it.

It never goes away entirely, but after a few successful fear-fights under your belt – especially the ones that leave you giddy with joy because you discovered something profoundly brilliant – you begin to develop your fear-fighting muscles. These will help you in many aspects of life – not just in your art.

If you took part in Creativity Coaching Session 1, you should have one or more paintings that you have started. (If you missed Session 1, I recommend you check it out).

It’s now time to take your Session 1 piece (or pieces) a step further towards being done, and if you’re at all like me, you’re a bit afraid to do anything to them.  Perhaps there are parts you like – and you don’t want to wreck.  Or perhaps they are so horrible you can hardly look at them.

The latter is an easier place to start, but I’m guessing that there is at least one section, no matter how small, that you are afraid to mess up.

Where do you start?

As your coach, I would suggest (no rules – just suggestions), that you start with the first idea that comes to you.

Don’t over-analyze.  When you look at the piece(s) in front of you, try to listen to your inner voice.

All you need to decide on the next step:  eg. I think I should put some more white in that area, or cover up that area because it’s so ugly, or enhance the (blue or green or red) a bit.

Once you have that ONE idea, act on it and don’t worry about knowing what to do next.

Dispense a bit (or a lot, if you like) of the colour(s) you want to use, and select the tool(s) you want to apply the colour(s) with.

Take a deep breath…….let it out slowly.   Do this 3 more times.

Then MAKE YOUR MARK (or marks).

Step back once you have applied some paint, and wait for the next idea to come.

Act on it (if it involves a different colour, put whatever you need on your palette and get to work).

Repeat the above steps until you have no more ideas about what to do, and then STOP!!!!

Put the painting aside, and if you have more time to paint, start another painting in the same fashion that you started your Step 1 piece(s).

Or if you started more than one piece in Step 1, you can move to Step 2 on one or more of those pieces.

Pictures of my Step 2 paintings:

Step 2 on Painting 1 & 2 (both started in Step 1)

Step 2 on Painting 3 & 4 (both started in Step 1)

Step 2 all 4 paintings started in Step 1.

Creativity Coaching – Session 1: Showing Up

I am excited to say that I’ve found something I’m passionate to blog about!

Last week I had an epiphany….  I’m a Creativity Coach.  What exactly does this mean?  I want to equip & inspire others to embrace creativity, as it has brought me so much joy, healing & passion!

I’m going to lay it all out on the line – real & raw – the good, the bad & the ugly.

Step 1 – Showing Up (aka Laying the Foundation for Brilliance)

A creative life is a joyful life

The first step is to show up

To show up means to be willing to fail, which is scary, unless you believe you learn more from your failures than your successes.  I firmly believe this, so let me coach you through your fear of failure.

In any area of life, it’s the challenges, obstacles, dead-ends, breakage, hurdles (anything that we label as ‘failure’), that makes us strong.

Strength gives depth to your life, and to your creative expression.

Nothing great is ever achieved (or created) without adversity.  Therefore, we as creatives need to embrace and make peace with adversity (ie, failure).

Today’s exercise is going to help you be stronger tomorrow.

Today we are going to lay the foundation for a masterpiece, and all you need to do is show up!

Do yourself a favour and expect that today you are going to create something brilliantly ugly.

Materials:            Painting surface of any size

Paint:  White (lots) & Black (a little bit)

2 other colours you love (I chose Quin. Nickel Azo Gold & Turquoise)

At least one paint brush (in case you decide to use it)

Gloves (you will be using your hands)

A mark-making tool (palette knife – kitchen utensil – a stick, etc…)

Here are photos of what I started with ….. feel free to use the same as me, or improvise by using what suits you.

10″ x 10″ wood cradle panel (selected because I had several kicking around the studio).

White (Gesso), Black, Quin Nickel Azo Gold, Turquoise (Phthlo)

Mark making tools

Start putting some paint on the canvas (or board). I used my fingers to start this one…..

Add a bit more colour….

and keep going….. Don’t worry if it’s ugly 🙂

Then if you’re feeling really brave, start another one!

and a 3rd….

I was having so much fun – and I still had paint on my palette, so I started 4 🙂

One hour later, and I’ve started 4 paintings that will create a series. I don’t love them yet, but I’m excited to see where they go from here! See how easy it can be if you just show up and let go of expectations? Step 2 will be coming soon! xo

My Marks ….. Workshop in January, etc…

I am a different person since returning from my week-long artist retreat in New Mexico.  I have had some amazing breakthroughs in my ability to let go in the studio (and even in other areas of my life).  So far the results have been embraced by collectors (new & old), and I’m very inspired 🙂

A Table For Two 48×48

Are We On The Same Page 24×18

I’m planning my next workshop in January, 2018 (Sat. Jan. 27 & Sat. Feb. 3rd, 2018 in Cloverdale).  It’s going to be the best workshop yet, and even if you have attended one before, there will be lots of new things I’ll be sharing!).

Email or phone me to reserve a spot (I only have a few spots left).

Landmark I 24×48

Happy Halloween 🙂

xo Jenn

 

 

I love grilled onions!

Happy September friends!

I’ve been very negligent (again) about blogging.  I have a million reasons that I won’t bore you with.  I am working very hard at building a new website, painting for 3 Galleries, preparing for a solo show in Feb. 2018, and amid all of this, I have dropped a few balls.  My blog is one of them.

I’m super excited about a workshop I am taking in New Mexico in a few weeks.  I can’t wait to spend 5 days in a magical place painting with other passionate artists and a great instructor!  I am committed to doing something every 2 years that takes me out of my comfort zone and stretches me.  I know I will return with lots of inspiration and a few new tools in my belt.  I can’t wait to share them with you!

I’ve been trying to plan some workshops for late Fall or Winter, but I’m having a hard time securing a venue for the dates that work.  I’ll keep looking though, as I know some of you are anxious to sign up.  Thanks for your patience!

And the onion thing……well, this Summer I discovered that I absolutely love grilled onions – on almost anything!  That and I couldn’t come up with a captivating title for this blog post so I thought what the heck! 🙂

What’s an art blog without some art?  Here are a few thumbnails of paintings I have available.  There are lots more to see in my studio, if you’d like to come for a visit.  I do love commissions, and now is the time to start thinking about Christmas……….

Hugs,    Jenn

Reflections II 40×40

 

Out of the Blue 20×24

 

Seascape 36×48

Jenn’s Art at Whistler Gallery

I am thrilled to announce that some of my landscape paintings are available at the Art Junction Gallery in Whistler, BC.  I have spent part of every Summer and most Winters in Whistler since I was a very young girl, and it feels like a second home to me.

To be represented by a Gallery in such a beautiful place is truly an honour.   As stated on Art Junction’s home page “art junction is an inspiring, Canadian contemporary art gallery in Whistler BC. For over 18 years, art junction has sought to discover some of the regions top emerging artists. Nestled amongst the beautiful Coastal Mountains, the gallery features a diverse collection of art ranging from classic oil landscapes and figurative work, to unique sculptures and mixed media abstracts.

I hope you will take a minute to view Art Junction Gallery’s  site.  Here is a link to my profile, and you can peruse works by other artists represented by this wonderful Gallery I am proud to be represented by.

Jenn’s paintings at Art Junction Gallery, Whistler BC

New works on UGallery…..

I’ve had a busy few months in the studio, and here are some of the new paintings I’ve recently uploaded to UGallery…..

I’d love to hear from you if you are looking for a custom piece for your home.  I’ll be accepting any Christmas commissions between now and October 1st.  No down–payment required!

Just send me an email or give me a call.   jennwill@shaw.ca   604-825-7579.   I hope you’re having a wonderful Summer 🙂

Golden Oasis 24×48 Acrylic on Canvas

 

Abstract Landscape 24×48 Acrylic on Canvas

 

 

 

On he Other Side 14×24 Acrylic on Canvas

Abstract Landscape 30×36 Acrylic on Canvas

My Soul is Free 18×36 Acrylic on Canvas

An amazing workshop in Parksville!

Once again I was blessed to teach an amazing group of artists on Vancouver Island.  The McMillan Arts Centre in Parksville is such a perfect venue for classes.

We had a lot of fun, and everyone worked so hard.  There were many exciting breakthroughs & I can’t wait to come back for a follow-up class.

Parksville workshop May 27 & 28, 2017

Workshop demo …. start to finish

At my workshop in Surrey last month, I started a demo of an intuitive landscape painting.  I promised my students that I would post photos of the painting “after” I had time to work on it.  Here are the results, before, during & after:

 

This is the demo painting without any editing…..not the best demo I’ve done by far!

 

Here are some ‘during’ photos (work in progress):

Almost done!

 

 

 

 

Done!

The Anorexic Perfectionist….

Every once in a while, I miss my ‘old self’.  The one who, in my 20’s, was an anorexic perfectionist.  Days like today – when I put on a t-shirt and see that my arms are much  less toned than I would like.  But the feeling is fleeting.  In part because my husband is making pizza for dinner 🙂   Even more because I love life now.  Not every day though.  There are many days I wonder if I made the biggest mistake ever in deciding to become a professional artist.

It’s not an easy journey.  From the outside looking in, I expect it seems magical to be an Artist.  And in many ways it is!  I wouldn’t change it for anything.  But it is definitely not easy.  I can’t speak for every artist out there, but I do have many friends/connections in the art world.  It seems that the struggle is not just mine.

So today I am being more transparent than usual, and that is because I’m bored with my blog and Facebook postings.  I haven’t done either in quite a while.

I don’t want to say anything if I’m not passionate about it.

I am passionate about art.  I’m grateful for the healing it has brought me.  I want to share that with anyone who might benefit from hearing my story.  I don’t have it all figured out – that is for sure.  But I do have a great deal of personal experience in digging deep and being vulnerable.

I am also passionate about sharing anything I can to help others in their journey.  I don’t know whether to call it a ‘creative journey’ or a ‘healing journey’…….I think the two go hand in hand.  They certainly have for me.

On the ‘business end’ of things, it’s way past time for me to create a new website.  I’m not looking forward to doing it, but my current site is not ‘responsive’ (ie, not mobile friendly), and it has reached the point that I am tired of apologising for it.

One of the things I LEAST like to do is photograph my paintings.  I am not very good at it, to begin with, and the editing part (cropping and adjusting exposure) is very tedious.  Recently when I was looking at my website gallery I was not impressed with how my paintings looked on my computer screen.  When I looked at them on my phone, they looked a bit better, but many of them didn’t display at all (due to the non-responsive website).

Ahhhhh – so many things to deal with that have very little to do with actually painting!

Part of the reason I’m inspired to improve my website is that I have sold several paintings online lately.  I always look forward to hearing from my Collectors once they receive their painting – I know if they liked it when they saw a photo, they will LOVE it so much more when they see it in person.  These two paintings recently went to a Collector in Virginia.

Season of Reflection IV Brighter_web

Season of Reflection IV 36×48

Seascape - Black & White 24x30

Seascape – Black & White 24×30

Thanks for your interest and support. I would love to hear from you!

Jenn

New York Show & Workshop … UGallery Top Artist … Recent Sales!

I am a bit of a hermit over Chrismas / New Years.  I tend to hibernate and close myself off from the outside world at this time of year.  Emails, phone calls, Facebook messages are all low priority in comparison to family time.  We had a wonderful Christmas & New Years, and I hope you did too!

I had both my boys home, and I rediscovered my love of knitting 🙂  I have created some very artistic & funky pillows that I’m pretty excited about.

Online art sales have been booming!!  I applied to be a “UGallery” artist about 6 months ago and was accepted (even though they don’t normally showcase Canadian artists).  What an honour!

Since my work was published onUGallery’s website just before Christmas, I have already had 2 sales.  If you are interested in checking out the pieces that I have for sale with UGallery, the best way to do that is to go to their website, and in the search bar at the top – right, type in my name (Jenn Williamson), or click on the link I have added here:

UGallery Jenn Williamson

It’s going to be a busy year!  I have 6 commissions to paint, and a Gallery Show and Workshop in New York (details TBA).

2016 was the best year ever, and I can’t wait to see what will come in 2017.

Thanks for joining me on this crazy journey………..you will always be near & dear as the ups and downs of being an artist require support and encouragement 🙂   You are all a huge encouragement to me – thank you!!

Pictures of my recent sales & soon to follow some pics of new works that I am going to photograph ASAP.   If you would like to come & see them in person, just let me know.  I am in my studio most days and would love to connect.

Recent Sales www.jennwilliamson.com

 

 

Much love,
Jenn xo 🙂

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