Archive for the ‘Role Models’ Category

creative role modelsThis is a series where I write about the people that inspire me to be more creative every day: the people who live and breathe creativity and are using their passion to make the world a better place. I've also written about Ray Bradbury, Miranda JulyNick Bantock, Jim Hensen, Lisa CongdonAmanda Palmer, and Elizabeth Gilbert.

Who is Lynda Barry?

A writer, cartoonist, and champion of drawing and creativity. She had a ground-breaking weekly comic strip (see some examples here) for 30 years and once print media started to dry up she turned to books, publishing graphic novels featuring characters from the comic strips, as well as a novel that was turned into an off-Broadway play. She has also published two books on how to write and draw called What It Is and Picture This (which I love!). She now teaches writing workshops and interdisciplinary university classes for everyone from undergrads to PhD students. You can follow along with her classes and see their homework on her blog, or read about them in her book Syllabus.

What’s so great about her?
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nela dunatoOne of my favourite ways to stay inspired is to read about how other people put their creativity into practice and learn to live creative lives. On the first Friday of each month I’ll be interviewing someone who is letting their creative light shine. Hopefully, these folks will inspire you as much as they inspire me. 

I kept seeing Nela's insightful comments on the blogs I was reading and when I checked out her website I was super impressed. Not only is she a talented artist and designer, but she also has a ton of wisdom to share about creativity and creative businesses. I'm excited that she's here to share some of that wisdom with you!

What sort of creative work do you do?

I’m a multi-passionate creative, but my two main things are visual art and design. I run my own design studio, and that’s what pays my bills. I create branding, web sites and other graphic design solutions for small businesses.

My other big passion is art. I work in a variety of media: traditional drawing and painting, as well as digital painting and mixed media. I occasionally do illustration commissions for books, and I’ve participated in art shows in the US and Europe, but mostly I make art just for my own enjoyment. (more…)

yuko mikiOne of my favourite ways to stay inspired is to read about how other people put their creativity into practice and learn to live creative lives. On the first Friday of each month I’ll be interviewing someone who is letting their creative light shine. Hopefully these folks will inspire you as much as they inspire me. 

I found Yuko on Instagram when she was in the middle of her 365 day "Happiness is" illustration challenge, which got me completely hooked on her feed. I loved her cheerful drawings of everyday pleasures and soon found my way to her blog where she shares super helpful insights into what she's learning on her journey as an illustrator. She recently quit her day job to draw full time and it's been inspiring watching her grow.

What sort of creative work do you do?

I'm mostly an illustrator and make simple and friendly drawings for stationery and wall art using pen and ink and watercolor.

Have you always thought of yourself as a creative person? Why or why not?

Not really! I guess I've always been interested in creative activities but didn't think I was "creative" per se. When I was little, I liked to draw. But I didn't do much to nurture my interest in the visual art then and moved on to drama and theater in my teenage years. But after high school, I didn't pursue any creative passion for many years. I guess I was being too busy being a college student and navigating the new phase of my life being away from my home and family for the first time! (more…)

creative role models

This is a series where I write about the people who have inspired my creative journey and become part of my creative DNA: the people who live and breathe creativity and are using their passion to make the world a more interesting place. I've also written about Nick Bantock, Jim Hensen, Lisa CongdonAmanda Palmer, Elizabeth Gilbert, and Miranda July

Who is Ray Bradbury?

A writer of short stories and novels who lived from 1920 to 2012. Known for books like Fahrenheit 451 and The Martian Chronicles. Called "the writer most responsible for bringing modern science fiction into the literary mainstream" by the New York Times.

What’s so great about him? (more…)

Breakfast jones

One of my favourite ways to stay inspired is to read about how other people put their creativity into practice and learn to live creative lives. On the first Friday of each month I'll be interviewing someone who is letting their creative light shine. Hopefully these folks will inspire you as much as they inspire me. 

I met Kendyl briefly at a meetup for entrepreneurs that I organized. She was only able to come to one meeting but she had plenty of wisdom to offer the group and I was a little sad when I learned that she was moving to Victoria, British Columbia. Thankfully I can still see her fun drawings and constant creativity - and her adorable dog, Breakfast - on a regular basis.

What sort of creative work do you do?

Well, I feel like I do everything... if I can get my hands on it, I do it. I draw, paint, cut things, crochet, ink, design, sculpt, stitch, make whatever I can find. As a profession, I'm a freelance artist. The most common work I do is caricature and character design. (more…)

creative role models

This is a series where I write about the people that inspire me to be more creative every day: the people who live and breathe creativity and are using their passion to make the world a better place. I've also written about Nick Bantock, Jim Hensen, Lisa CongdonAmanda Palmer, and Elizabeth Gilbert.

Who is Miranda July?

A multi-talented, multi-passionate artist who is known for her bold, unconventional choices. She started out in performance art, made a couple of feature films (Me and You and Everyone We Know and The Future), published a short story collection, helped start a massive group art project, wrote a book while she was procrastinating writing a screenplay, sent her famous friends' emails to a hundred thousand subscribers (I was one of them), created an app that lets you send someone to deliver your messages in person, designed a handbag, and published a novel, among a myriad of other projects.

What’s so great about her? (more…)

creative living

One of my favourite ways to stay inspired is to read about how other people put their creativity into practice and learn to live creative lives. On the first Friday of each month I'll be interviewing someone who is letting their creative light shine. Hopefully these folks will inspire you as much as they inspire me. 

Artist and illustrator Gloria Ho was introduced to me by a mutual friend who thought we might get along since we were both artists and Royal Bison vendors. Did we ever! From the first day we met we've had so much to talk about. Gloria's watercolours paintings are distinctive and she's so good at capturing the whimsy and delicate beauty of the animals and people that she paints.

What sort of creative work do you do?

I'm a watercolour painter and I specialize in animals and people. I sell my work at art markets around Edmonton and Calgary and also do custom commissions and freelance editorial work.  (more…)

creative livingOne of my favourite ways to stay inspired is to read about how other people put their creativity into practice and learn to live creative lives. On the first Friday of each month I'll be interviewing someone who is letting their creative light shine. Hopefully these folks will inspire you as much as they inspire me. 

I met Tatiana in an online business course and was captivated by her passion for movement. We've shared plenty of creative struggles over early bird specials at the Sugar Bowl here in Edmonton and I always learn plenty from our talks.

What sort of creative work do you do?

I'm a choreographer and a dance teacher, but I get up to many different things in the realm of dance. I work both independently and with a dance studio in the Edmonton area. My specialization is in contemporary dance, but I also have training in musical theatre, Ukrainian dance, and various other styles of dance that tend to show up in my work when I least expect it! (more…)

creative living

Photo by Alex Tran

One of my favourite ways to stay inspired is to read about how other people put their creativity into practice and learn to live creative lives. On the first Friday of each month (and sometimes more often!) I'll be interviewing someone who is letting their creative light shine. Hopefully these folks will inspire you as much as they inspire me. 

Meags Fitzgerald is one of the hardest working creative people I've met. She's incredibly prolific, in all kinds of media, and is the only person I know who has published a book - with another one on the way. I've known her literally her whole life, as our parents were good friends when we were kids, and I've always been inspired by her dedication to living a creative life.

What sort of creative work do you do?

I work (and play) in a lot of disciplines. At the core, most of my interests are about combining images and stories. By trade I’m an illustrator, a lot of my jobs are t-shirt and poster designs. However, I’m best known for my work as a graphic novelist; I write and draw non-fiction stories. I’ve also made sculptures and photographs that I’ve exhibited, as well as stop-motion animations that have screened at film festivals. I really enjoy crafting, specifically sewing, crochet and embroidery. On the performance side of things, I do live storytelling and work as an improv theatre teacher. More recently I’ve been getting involved with circus arts, primarily exploring aerial silks and contortion. (more…)

creative living

Photo by Cory Johnn

One of my favourite ways to stay inspired is to read about how other people put their creativity into practice and learn to live creative lives. On the first Friday of each month I'll be interviewing someone who is letting their creative light shine. Hopefully these folks will inspire you as much as they inspire me. 

This week I sent my questions to local designer and metalsmith, Kristine MacDonald. Her Alberta-inspired jewellery is unique and recognizable, and is making a big splash here in Edmonton. We met on a dragon boating team 3 years ago and I've loved watching her business and artistry grow.

What sort of creative work do you do? 

I work with copper to design and create custom jewelery and accessories. I am also a freelance web and graphic designer. (more…)