Wednesday, November 08, 2006
My Creative Story: Violette Clark
SURREY, BRITISH COLUMBIA, CANADA
Violette “a creative spirit who lives in a magic cottage, drives a glittergirl van, teaches classes and creates art!” She was born in Morocco and is Spanish so her penchant for glitter and colour can be traced to her exotic roots. Here is what she says:
“I came across your website from Creativity Portal....I have an interview on there as well as several craft projects....also I contribute to the Creativity Portal newsletter once a month and saw your request there so of course I had to respond! …Thanks for the opportunity to share with your readers.”
What does creativity mean to you?
Creativity to me encompasses all of life, it's the way you make a soup, the manner in which you dress and embellish yourself. Of course we naturally think it only has to do with the creation of art or writing but it is much, much more. Being creative is a way of life. When you are mindful of being a creative person you seem to attract more opportunities to express yourself uniquely.
What is your creative passion? How do you approach it?
My creative passion is encouraging and inspiring people to embrace their authenticity. I do this by encouraging people to be creative, also I have an online blog and art tips section that folks can follow to see how a creative spirit lives their life. My art and writing have appeared in numerous magazines and ‘zines spreading my message.
Describe the feeling you have when heavily into a creative activity you love.
The "ME" actually disappears when I'm in the act of creating...especially a piece of art which becomes all engrossing. It's as if I leave, I'm an empty vessel and something, some force greater than myself takes over. IT is an exhilarating feeling!
What does the creative process do you, or for, you?
The creative process allows me to live because without it I would surely die. I live and breathe to be creative. It gives me my reason for living; it gives me a focus to keep on keeping on.
How have you fulfilled your own creative urges?
I've fulfilled my creative urges by giving myself permission to experiment...try different things and go out on a limb when other people my age (51) would not. An example is painting and glittering my van...appearing on a show about art cars...participating in art car parades etc. Also painting and embellishing my magic cottage is another example. My online blog which is meant to encourage others to be more creative and to delve into personal self-exploration is another.
What do you do to satisfy your soul?
I paint, I draw, I decorate, I dance, I sing. I breathe. I surround myself with loving, supportive people.
How are you creative in your life?
I'm pretty much creative in every aspect of my life: dress, decor, artistic expression, writing.
Who has inspired you in your life to achieve your potential? How?
I have been blessed to have had a couple of wonderful mentors in my life who have helped me develop my art and marketing materials and polish myself a little bit artistically. My friends whom I dub my "bohemian tribe" are instrumental in accepting me and encouraging my artistic growth. It is paramount to surround yourself with people of all ages and all walks of life who believe in you and who love you for who you are.
Share you inspiring story about why you love what you do, how it is creative and how you got to do it.
My life changed when I turned 40... I left my 20 year marriage and surrounded myself with positive supportive people. I call them my bohemian tribe.
It is essential to surround yourself with people who believe in you when you are starting out. Do not hang with negative naysayers ...they just bring you down.
I'm 51 now and my life has radically changed! I live in a very funky magic cottage, drive a whimsically painted art car and have lots of creative wacky friends.
Colour has featured prominently in my life. I have given myself permission to do what speaks to my heart - just like I encourage you to do.
For me it started out with my art, moved on to my house and then my van. It kind of grew organically. And of course I attracted media attention, was on several shows, etc. It has been great because people have been inspired - people I will never meet, but maybe they might just change their life in a minute way: maybe decide to go with a bright orange room, or take up art, or paint their van, or refuse to listen to people who tell them to forget about their unrealistic dreams...
I'm grateful that I have had the opportunity to touch people in some small way!!
In what way(s) are you creative-thinking in your private or professional life?
Well I think creatively all the time. It's not something you can switch off no matter what you are doing. For example, while wallpapering I might devise a system to paste several strips of wallpaper at a time and rig up a shelf on the step-ladder to prevent myself from getting up each time to grab a new strip of wallpaper.
When I see a problem such as two rejections in a row in one day, rather than allowing the self-defeating inner critic to take over and force me back to bed, I think "What can I do to generate more interest in what I have to offer?" I think that surely there is someone out there that can appreciate my work/expertise. From this line of thinking I approached via e-mail a coach and asked her if she would like a personalized magnet design to promote her business. She consented and hired me on the spot!!
I manage to transcend disappointments by thinking creatively. Not too long ago I had to attend a special function and had no appropriate shoes to wear. So I took an old pair of brown leather shoes and proceeded to paint them with acrylic paints and glitter!
What creative interests or projects have you been involved with lately?
A paint company, Benjamin Moore, is hiring me to create creative magnets as give-aways for one of their company functions. I was interviewed by Cloth Paper Scissors, supplied them with a design and photographs which will be featured in their October addition. I'm creating a brochure for my Visual Journaling classes to present to various women's centres in British Columbia.
How might you define the term 'Creative X-SpotTM'?
I'd like to think there is a button on my body which I press and "Voila! I'm creative" but, alas, there exists no such button.
I do, however, have some things I do when the well runs dry: I go for a walk in nature, I look at inspiring magazines such as Cloth Paper Scissors, Somerset Studios, Artists Sketchbook, etc. Doing these things re-juices me!
Another idea is to create a Shrine for Creativity so that you light a candle in front of the shrine which is supposed to act as a trigger to get you into a creative mode.
Describe any coincidences, serendipitous and synchronistic experiences you have had.
If you read my blog, you'll see me talk about being on Mt. Shasta recently with two girlfriends meditating and asking spirit for help and guidance. A half hour later, as we were heading back to our car, a Native Indian woman approaches us, says nothing and proceeds to give each of us a healing. She later explained that she was meditating and spirit told her there were three women who needed help.
I have precognitive dreams where I'm given information which turns out to be true. Sometimes I know that someone is going to die and then I show up before it's too late (you can ask me for details if you like). Sometimes I pray to the universe for help that very day since I am desperate and, like angels, the right people show up (this has to do with needing help for a Community art project). There are many, many more, too numerous to mention.
Describe how you followed a 'hunch' to successful creative conclusion.
I had a dream one day about 6 years ago that I was to paint doors. So I woke up and painted my first door in my studio. After that I painted every door in my home with artistic creations! Some of the doors even sported 3-d items like papier maché, broken mirrors and jewels. I captured the attention of the TV show “Weird Homes” (Life Network and Discovery Channel) because of my painted doors. Appearing on this show garnered me much more media attention, which has just kept escalating since then.
And to think it all came about because my dream told me to paint doors!
Visit Violette’s website at www.violette.ca. She can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted by Nellie Jacobs at 4:39 p.m.