Interview With Jennifer Lee (Author of Building Your Business The Right-Brain Way)


Jennifer Lee is the founder of Artizen Coaching and the author of Building Your Business the Right-Brain Way and the bestseller The Right-Brain Business Plan, which has helped tens of thousands of entrepreneurs around the world launch their creative businesses.

After spending 10 years climbing the corporate ladder and getting tired of living her dream “on-the-side,” she took the leap to pursue her passions full-time. Jennifer has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Entrepreneur, U.S. News & World Report, Whole Living, Family Circle, Cloth Paper Scissors Studios, and Choice.

She received her coaching certification and leadership training through the prestigious Coaches Training Institute. She is also a certified yoga instructor, a certified Expressive Arts Facilitator, and holds a B.A. in Communication Studies from UCLA and an M.A. in Communication Management from USC. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and sweet husky-lab mix.

How has your experience as an artist changed you? How has your personal vision for your life reflected through your business?

Being an artist helps me tap into my intuition and gives me an outlet for self-expression. Both of these things are key to how I live my life and run my business. My personal vision and values include creativity, authenticity, fun and play, connection, and self-care and all of these things and more show up in my work and my brand. My business is definitely a reflection of what’s important to me and what I’m passionate about.

When have you been unexpectedly vulnerable?

There have been times during my Right-Brainers in Business Video Summit when I’ve been deeply moved in the moment and trust that people will benefit from an authentic and raw sharing from the heart. For example, one year my dog went missing during the summit. Through teary eyes and a shaky voice I explained how I was willing to look stupid and go way outside of my comfort zone to make sure we got her back safely (thankfully we did) because I really wanted people to know how crucial it is for them to do what it takes to go after what they really want.

How do you start your day?

I’m not a morning person so it definitely takes me awhile to get my day started. I usually like to wake up to my own internal clock rather than to a blaring alarm. Sometimes I’ll listen to a guided meditation to help me get grounded and/or I’ll do some journaling. A couple days a week I go to a morning Pilates class. If I’m feeling really healthy, I’ll whip up a green smoothie!

The lesson in my life that keeps repeating?

The lesson that keeps repeating in my life is to create more space and embrace ease. I tend to have an ambitious and competitive streak that can compel me to take on too much or set ridiculously high expectations for myself. I can only keep that pace for so long before I get burnt out, exhausted, or start to have health issues. So I constantly am finding the balance between going after my big visions and finding the ease, simplicity, and spaciousness to make the forward movement sustainable.


How do you make space for play? What is your favorite form of play?

Play is one of my top core values and I like to infuse it into my work whenever I can whether that be through using a colorful visual or creative metaphor to explain a business concept or just to make things more fun. Also, my dog is a fantastic teacher of play and I love how she encourages me to frolic around with her. I also love to play with paints at my studio. I create these huge intuitive paintings that give me permission to make a mess, make ugly art, and just enjoy the process.

What does being brave look and feel like?

To me being brave is when you feel the fear but choose to move forward anyway because something bigger is calling to you. As for how it feels for me, it’s the mix of excitement, anxiousness (the butterflies in the stomach and sweaty palms) that comes from taking a risk and a feeling of groundedness when I know that I am on the right track and am taking inspired action in alignment with my big vision. Some examples of when I have to conjure up bravery are when I am taking the stage, when I’m trying something totally new, or when I need to say no and hold firm to my boundaries.

What is pulling you forward? Your motivation for what you do? What do you wish everyone to know?

What pulls me forward and motivates me to do what I do is my passion for creative self-expression. I want people to know that you get to “Be Uniquely You!” in your life and your business.

Describe a time when you walked through the doors of passage? What helped with the mending? Or how did you navigate this passage?

Leaving my day job after 10 years of climbing the corporate ladder was definitely a major passage for me. I had a cushy salary and a prestigious role that I worked hard for but the work was sucking the life out of me. I had known for a few years that I would eventually take the leap, but it took me awhile to gain the confidence to step out on my own. A few of the things that helped me navigate through the transition included developing a support network of other creative entrepreneurs, working with coaches, and trying out new things to help me find my own voice.

What lights you up? Turns you on? Makes your heart quicken? What are you saying a big YES to these days?

Creativity, beauty, and spaciousness are my big yeses right now. More time to play in my studio and connect with my inner muse.

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild precious life?

Live life in full color as authentically and creatively as I can.


Interview With Hillary Rain


This is a sister -whom my soul must have known many times. I read her words and am emerged into raw-loving truth space. I know this space. I know her. Somehow. She is magic and medicine. She is spirit and ground. She is a wise wild woman who claimed her Sacred Regal Presence on this earth and just by showing up invites us to do the same. This is a woman I want to know.

Hillary Rain is the creator of Body Stories: The Embodied Alchemy of Breath + Bone (coming later in 2015), and the Soul Doula Sessions: intuitive holistic + spiritual mentorship for women guided by the wisdom of the body, heart, and spirit through sacred, creative arts. She is one-half of The Wild Mystics where she co-creates guided courses about spirituality and sensuality. Visit her at for gentle sermons on holistic living, sacred healing & spiritual awakening for writers, artists, & mystics.


Because I have to ask: What does regal presence really mean to you? Feel like? Taste like? Look like?

Ah, one of my core desired feelings! I combined these two words to encompass worlds upon worlds, these rich layers of an intricate life. Regal presence means empowerment, abundance, and holding my head high with deep, quiet faith. It means that I am here, I am home, that I am, I am, I am. Regal presence means living a sacred life grounded in truth and trust, rooted and rising, knowing that I am blessed with divine authority and wisdom; that I am loved, that I am love.

It feels like sultry vibrations of tibetan singing bowls in my root chakra, deep-toned and resonant. It feels like anointing oil on my skin, fragrant and warm. It feels like a pure no and a sacred, joyful yes. In fact, it tastes like yes in my mouth, like laughter, like honey on my lips, like salted caramel kisses and rich black coffee with lush swirls of cream. It tastes like joy even when I pant with want. It looks like strength and smiles and watchfulness, like queenly radiance, like compassion, like hands reaching out.

Body, embodied, sanctuary- all glory- all holy hallelujah! You are my Sacred Temple.
How do you worship? Dear one tell me what your breath would say in prayer?

My prayers go through seasons like I do: verdant and decadent, with poetry and rapture and ritual … followed by cracked-lipped whispers in the desert, one salty syllable at a time, or mostly silent. But I am most alive during what I call whole body prayer—reverent invocation through dance, through compassion, through breath, through passionate confessions and tearful nights when I clutch my own face because I am desperate to reach God. I say please and please and please and thank you, like all well-taught girls do, and I scream WHY a lot, enraged and entitled, and I grasp (and gasp!) for wisdom like I’m starved and alone. We are passionate ones, the Divine and me. And I worship through questions, dwelling in the liminal space between breaths, worshiping through this earthen body for I, too, am word made flesh. These bones of mine are secret passageways for deep calling deep at the sound of river-falls. My worship looks like my life, made of mystery, communion, and holy longing intermingled with raw, sweet grace. I call it bohemian spirituality; it is made of an unconventional faith—making peace with mystery.


What does Sacred mean to you? Where is your Sacred place and why?
Tell me how you rise up in fullness?

I consider Sacred anything indwelt with Spirit. The Sacred reflects eternal love. Whatever becomes sanctuary for all the tender things—birth and death and love, trembling, anything liminal—is holy. We (be)(hold) it and it is thus alchemized. This means that anywhere I am becomes sacred.

I also find that sacred spaces are story-keepers. Ancient landmarks witnessing the wild history of our lives on earth—a ley-line, a wise grandmother tree, or a vast hill. The quiet, nourishing witness of a soul doula. A glimmering blank page or one blessed with ink and tears. My own flesh, which holds every story I’ve ever lived and all the seeds for new ones. This is my embodiment, my fullness rising, my sacred space. Ironically, only empty things can fill, and so I become a space for rhythm and years, flowing in and emptying myself to fill once more.

How do spirituality and sexuality relate for you?

They are both deeply sacred to me. I am spiritual. I am sexual. I express both fully, with great passion and joy. I hold their presence within me, without duality. Imagine two vast oceans meeting, crashing into each other with arms open, entangling, embracing, creating a rich and luminous depth. I am ravished in that space between. I make love. I make art. I make tenderness.


What supports the true expression of your authentic self?

I give myself permission to wander (and wonder) freely. I write. I taste life. Tears fall; I fall, sometimes hard. I soften. I gather feathers and moonstone. I allow the both-and of my mystical approach to spirituality to be the field I dwell in, pressing bare feet to wild earth as I delight in this land of enchantment. I plant gardens here. I hang windchimes in the trees and sing loud and messy. I meet sojourners making their own wild way and we witness one another’s bravery. I gather stories on my skin. I drink deep from wells of mercy. Here I am naked and unashamed, returned to Eden, held. Always held.

What are you bow down kiss the ground grateful for?

My soul circle—the mad artists, the healers, the lovers who make their lives a work of art, who understand my gentle-stormy-self and provide sweet and spacious sanctuary. The ones who invite me to their rustic table, who don’t flinch at my mascara-stained cheeks but look at me and see art, see beauty. My husband, who grounds me when I’m off happily encircling the stars, who doesn’t always understand my bohemian ways, but keeps his arms warm and open—my home, my heart, my harbor. Beauty. Healing. Mercy.

What are you saying YES to these days?

These days find me saying yes to the unknown, for staying present in the tension of it when I’d rather numb myself to this existential ache. I’m saying “yes, okay!” to reinvention, to ever-expanding circles, to curiosity and delight. I am saying yes to soft spaces and looking at things from a freshly-washed inner gaze. I say yes to all the ways I can’t say yes. It’s harder than you’d think.


Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild precious life?

This answer is pouring out quite unexpectedly. I am surprised to say this, but I am all planned out. I am dream-weary. I have dream fatigue. Don’t misunderstand; I have an insatiable, wanton hunger to drink every sweet juicy drop life has to offer. I ache to soak up so much living that my skin smells like cardamom from Marrakesh and my hips serpentine-sway along the corridors of India and my lips kiss the bourbon off her moonlit mouth. I want to love wild and gather sacred experiences like mystical treasures in my gypsy bag. I am a wanderess. Magic is my middle name. I want to move others with beauty and fire and be a healing river of love wherever I go. I want to transform, transcend, and burn with feverish purpose.

But it’s almost too much. When is there ever enough? There will always be a new adventure, a fresh desire, an unrequited love. There will always be a new, life-changing social media status, a riveting new movie, a sensational new dish to savor. A fascinating artist to adore. A beautiful photo on Instagram where the light falls just so and I find myself weeping for the beauty of it. Sometimes life feels like an endless scrolling channel of everything ever and it’s all so amazing and wonderfully exotic, and think of all the stories waiting to be told and the luminous souls waiting to be loved! And each day brings a new ache, a new delight, a new discovery, a new must-see-before-I-die. (Did you know there is such a thing as singing rocks? On this magical mountain? You hit them with a hammer and they ring out, each with a different bell-like tone, and mysteriously, if you remove them from this place they no longer sing. Must. Visit. Singing. Rocks. With. Hammer.)

There will always be more. And in this always-moreness I become keenly aware of a lingering, haunting never-enoughness.

In the meantime, life quietly flows on, steady, present, here. My heart thrums her faithful, steady song. Inhale, exhale goes the breath. My husband just looked over at me and smiled. Lightning shivers outside my window and rain makes the glass sparkle like a cascade of polished diamonds. Tomorrow I will have a conversation with one of the people I love most in this world. I spooned up a creamy, organic vanilla yogurt this evening and it felt so smooth and delicious in my mouth. Candlelight dances on the stove. My favorite essential oils soak my skin. I got a surprise, happy text today that made me cry. I looked at my body naked in the mirror and I didn’t hate myself. In fact, I kind of liked what I saw. There are things that make my heart feel heavy and things that make me want to burst with joy and living and light. I have stories brewing inside of me. I have work to do.

This is my life. It is sacred. It is mundane. It is ravishing.

I want to love it—fully.
I want to honor life by bringing my whole-holy self to it.
I want to be true. Humble. Here.
I want to bless with it. Make art with it. Make beauty with it that is so otherworldly and transcendent that the only proper response is the river language of worship, of silence, of deep-calling-deep, of whole-body prayer.


Join Hillary Rain for Blushing Wild—A Sultry Embrace of Erotic Awakening by the Wild Mystics.

Beginning July 26th, this six week eCourse takes the natural pulse and rhythm that speaks to the wild rise and fall of sexuality for the blushing wild enchantress. Each week the lacy strap that sits upon her shoulder will slip a little further down her arm. Daily artful prompts and erotica fortunes will bring some enticement and synchronicity to the sultry exploration, and guest enchantresses will daringly expose their own blushing wild with us. Peeks into different mediums of erotica will stimulate the creative juices as we explore our psyches and ourSelves through soul work and chakras, erotic poetry and succulent rituals, meaningful movement and provocative stories. Weekly practices will invite you into your own hot skin and fan the flame of your own fiery life. Vulnerability never looked so good on you. Welcome to the blush! Read more and register at

Here are the singing rocks because how amazing?

Interview With Erin Faith Allen


Erin Faith Allen is the spirited, rich, raw creator of Call of the Wild Soul Art Retreats. These art retreats are as filled to the brim with heart and soul as she is.

Erin Faith Allen; I am an artist, filmmaker, and event creator who moves in many directions at one time.

Describe a time when you walked through the doors of passage? How has it transformed you?

Last summer when I decided to research my lineage, I had no idea the power that my ancestors were just waiting to pass through the ethers to me. What I have discovered has been nothing short of mindblowing – it’s like suddenly I am a complete picture, made up of fragments of so many people I’d never even heard of. To feel a belonging like I suddenly feel cannot be put into words … but I paint it every single day.

How has being female affected your spiritual journey?

This is a big question. I get stuck on the word ‘spiritual’ because it’s become a bit of a buzz word, or a label, or a way of separating self from other. I suppose the same could be said about the word ‘female’ in some ways. :) For me, being human – whether spiritual, male, atheist, female, etc – is the real journey. Every day I deepen into a more profound relationship with human nature, only because I dig into myself and explore my own motivations and how I navigate interactions with others. I used to spend a lot of time thinking about femaleness and woman-ness, and while there is massive value in that, these days I’m all about settling into human connectivity and recognizing that underneath the skin we wear we are all just trying to experience love and acceptance; it’s an innate craving that is gender-less.

That said, there is definitely a massive power blast that moves through my art about the spectrum of experiences a woman has. For example, these days I am doing a lot of work about the concept of mothering – which is a female experience. I guess we are made up of slices: I am a human who is a woman who is a mother who is an artist who is hard-working who loves nutrition and CrossFit who loves sunshine and Los Angeles and also loves thunderstorms who loves the color red who is obsessed with genealogy who is an introvert who was born under a Scorpio full moon. After so many years of endeavoring to integrate aspects of myself it’s hard to separate the slices and isolate just one of them.


How do you show up? Who are you becoming? How do you rise up in your fullness?

I show up by showing up. I am becoming who I’ve always been. I rise up to my fullness by constantly falling down.

What is pulling you forward? What is your motivation?

Happiness and beauty. Happiness pulls me forward, and every day I am happier than I was the day before. Beauty, the enigmatic muse, is the road I walk to happiness.

What does being BRAVE look like these days? What does it feel like?

Being brave is something I do well … even though conversely, a lot of fear has passed down through my lineage and I spent many years being subconsciously governed by it. After being around the block a few times now, I like to think I eviscerate it every day. At least most days :)

Tell me about what you crave? What are you saying a big Holy YES to these days? Tell us the juicy details of what makes life GOOOOOOOOOD these days?

I crave solitude, hours of creating without interruption, and soaking in other people’s creations. I say a Holy YES to surrendering to the ‘tricky’ moments in life … sometimes after a little kicking and screaming. And the juicy details? I have a rare version of synaesthetic response to sound, color, texture, and line. I always knew I was acutely sensitive because the world has generally overwhelmed me. The more at peace I am within myself, the more pronounced the synaesthetic engagement with my surrounding becomes. It’s a blessing and a curse, it is beyond description, and I wouldn’t change it for the world.


Who are your heroes? What are their stories, myths? What did they teach you?

My heroines: Anais Nin, Sylvia Plath, Sally Mann, and myself. I’ve walked through, and subconciously masterminded, a lot of sh!* in my life, but I never fall down hard enough that I can’t get back up. My heroes: Cy Twombly, Walker Evans, Mozart, Klimt, Christian Dior. I am enlivened by people who are geniuses, who ‘see’ and ‘hear’ things nobody else does, who change history with their tenacity. Equally, any person who has ever crashed down into hell and kept on walking with their head high and heart open are my hero. I have a really big soft spot for the veterans of WW2. My grandfathers both served in that war, and I think all those men and women are absolute heroes. I went to the DDay celebrations in Normandy a couple years ago and I was cracked open. All the ‘old boys’ walking around in their medals, heads high, hearts open. They are an embodiment of the strength and fragility of humans. How we suffer, how we survive, and how our bodies carry our memories. It can sound so trite to say ‘they sacrificed so much’ … but they DID.

Tell me of myth? Of Magic? What they mean to you, how they show up in your work?

Oh goodness. They are so much a part of me and my process that I am not even sure how to articulate or express it. Symbols and subconscious urgings ARE my work. At the end of the day I’m just a person with chewed fingernails, food allergies, skin, bones, and blond hair who sits in front of an easel. The rest is magic.

What would you like everyone to know deep into their bones?

That our bones are literally made up of everyone who came before us. Our story, both present and past tense, isn’t just our personal story woven of tragedies and victories and all the spaces between. It belongs to every ancestor we’ve ever had. Their decisions pulsate through every thought, decision, action, and desire we’ve ever had. It’s breathtaking when you recognize this, life takes on a certain meaning that changes perspectives, patterns, and opens possibilities.

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild precious life?
Experience true, unabashed peace that permeates every cell of my body, every wisp of my soul, every root that takes hold in my mind.erinfaith5For more information about her art, upcoming retreats and classes visit:

Also check out her film series Art Shaker and Soul Shaker.

Artmaker Soulshaker: Orly Avineri – Trailer from Erin Faith Allen on Vimeo.

INterview With Kate Thompson

kate4To me Kate is an incredible woman, an example of how there really is no such thing as too late. It’s all connected. She is inspirational and I loved listening to her story unfolded of how she became an artist only a few years ago. 

Kate Thompson works as a fiber artist. Working with fabric and fiber to create abstract 3-dimensional forms was her focus for many years. She started painting full time in 2009 focusing on portrait/figure work painting in acrylics, watercolors and mixed media. Fractured Angels is the continuous thread throughout her work. Kate Thompson’s art parallels her spiritual journey as she identifies with the flawed, cracked and fractured human yearning for peace and fulfillment.

“The older I get the stronger the pull to explore and express this theme in my work. Along the way I discovered I loved teaching. I find the creative process so incredibly interesting. My energy lies in that process and to share that with others has been the most fulfilling role of my life. The spiritual nature of the creative process is something that I think about a lot. The idea of constant practicing of my craft along with allowing myself to let go in moments of creating is the key to authentic art.” 

Tell me about spirituality being integrated with your work? Tell me the story of the Fractured Angelics:

My creative process is a direct reflection of my spiritual life. I can have a day of incredible flowing creativity. It is almost effortless and so joyful and I think to myself….”I figured it out, it is all going to come flowing out of me now”. I go to bed and wake up to another day in the studio and nothing goes right. I forget how to paint a face. The more I try and struggle, the worse it gets. What happened to that amazing flow?

What I realized is that my creativity, like my spiritual condition, is a day at a time. The discipline is to go to the studio everyday no matter how the work comes out.

The days I struggle, usually create a crack, that will eventually open me up to another level in my work….so I call myself a Fractured Angel and my work Fractured Angelics. There is a song by Leonard Cohen called Anthem and one of the lines in the song is “There is a crack, a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.” I found that so profound and so very true in my life. I never can rest on my laurels. I continue to be a student and will never stop growing and learning.


How has your experience as an artist changed you? How can or does this experience help others? 

My experience as an artist has changed me by giving me hope. No matter what is going on in my life, I always have my creative practice to look forward to. It is such a gift to have this. I can look out the window of my studio and watch the light hit the trees in such a magical way that I can run outside and capture that in a photograph which can lead to creating art. Being an artist makes my senses open to incredible visual experiences. If I didn’t create in my life I would be deeply depressed. I know that about myself. It is a gift to me to keep me content and each day I am so humbled and grateful to have this in my life. This experience has helped others through my teaching. I love the part of art that is the practice as well as allowing the spirit and the muse to take over. It is quite a dance to concentrate on the practice, then get out of the way and allow the spirit to take over. It goes back and forth, back and forth and I watch my students go through the same thing. I love to help them navigate through the process and to appreciate the struggle. Also important is to know when to let go and just let it rip…such surprising images show up! It is pure magic!

What is pulling you forward? What is your motivation?

Learning is my motivation. I never stop learning how to create. My challenge is to come up with a body of work that has my signature and at the same time is new and fresh. So often I find work I love and then I look at the body of work and it all starts to look the same to me. I know many artists fall into the situation of producing what is selling and therefore not spending that time to experiment to make the work into something fresh each time. It is a hard thing to do, especially when your income comes from your art. I have to maintain that enthusiasm involved in creating and at the same time, not always ‘reinvent the wheel’. To take all my experience and practice while creating but allow myself to be open to inspiration . I have always been a cautious person and never thought big about my life. That changed for me a couple of years ago and through hard work and incredible focus I have created the most amazing life.

I started painting 5 years ago and was not very good at first. I just kept practicing and taking online classes and became better. I was not born an artist, I had to work very hard at the craft of art and eventually all my hard work paid off. Anyone can learn to paint and draw if you just put in the time.


 How do you start you day? What is nourishing in your day?

I start my day with a cup of coffee and daily spiritual reading. I follow up with a 20 minute meditation. I then get dressed and go to my studio, catch up on emails and other social media. I am a pretty disciplined self employed artist. I treat my job as an artist like any other job by making sure I work in my studio 6-8 hours a day during the week on my classes and painting. Week ends are strictly for me with no other goal but to better my practice. What nourishes me during the day is good healthy meals and plenty of water. My studio has full windows on 3 walls overlooking my backyard. Now that it is spring I look forward to watching the birds come back to build their nests in one of our hanging plants as well as the porch light. I talk to them sometimes and sometimes they talk back. I love being a part of new family.

What have you placed in your nest(home) that comforts?

Things that bring you beauty. I have two Bengal cats that I just adore. My male was always very skittish and shy and over the years I have just loved him to death and he now sleeps in my arms every night. I am so glad that he finally feels safe! My patio in the back of our house is my comfy place. My boyfriend, John, is really the nester. He loves to decorate and build things, I am more of the bachelor but I really appreciate how he built this cozy patio right off of my studio with a really nice awning he built from scratch. We have a huge backyard and I get to watch all the activity with birds, rabbits and even deer. One day a little family of deer decided to hang out in our backyard. I love hanging out in my studio and John hung some nice lacey curtains which adds to my little Shabby Chic studio with my white xmas lights hung year round.

What are you saying a full bodied YES to?

Healthy living and exercise. I am 60 years old and have always been obsessed with fitness. I remember when I was very young thinking when I am 60 I will not worry about how I look and I can let myself go. It is true at 60 looks aren’t a priority but feeling good is!  I joined a running group and I am now up to 12 miles…very slow 12 miles but none the less, it is a big giant YES!


What does being BRAVE look like these days? What does it feel like?

Being BRAVE is allowing myself to be comfortable and to become familiar with not knowing how things are going to turn out. I am a control and security freak or so I thought. I always felt like I needed everything planned out. I worked full time as a print designer in the apparel business for 20 years and worked at three different companies . Security was a big priority and I stayed in those situations much longer than I should. Moving across the country and losing all my connections forced me to start over. Being self -employed is scary, especially for someone like me. I  can’t believe that I am making a living creating art and teaching. For someone who is shy and introverted, I find myself flying to new cities, meeting and teaching new people, accepting room and board from strangers and loving it. Before each trip, I always get nervous because so much can go wrong. Airports and flying can go very very wrong but I am up for the challenge. That is brave for me. I show up and live with the uncertainty.

What way of being is calling you?  Who are you becoming? or How do you rise up in your fullness?

I am drawn to people that have a sense of grace and gratitude about them. To be able to quietly sip a cup of tea and savor that moment. I have a very addictive nature and tend to rush past these powerful moments waiting for the next shiny object to come my way. I practice meditation to get me in touch with staying in the moment and to feel enough. I get glimpses of myself being this way but still have my addictive default mode I fall back on. I believe that will continue to be present in my life and maybe it is not so bad. It is my drive but I believe the balance between the two is probably my sweet spot.

What do you want everyone to know?

Well, I am planning my first overseas workshop in Orvieto, Italy in the Fall of 2016. I can’t tell you what a big deal this is. I have never been to Italy but I know my soul yearns to experience this beautiful country. When I first started this journey of teaching/painting in 2010, I dreamed of having this lifestyle of teaching all over the world and painting being my day job

The last three years I started teaching, learned how to film and edit myself painting to create online classes on my website, as well as teaching live. Don’t ever underestimate yourself. I did for many years and therefore didn’t grow. You can find out all about my online classes on my website as well as workshops I do on location at I am also a part of 21 Secrets Journaling Spring 2015 online class. You can read all about that on my blog

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild precious life?

To continue to connect with women all over the world with my teaching. I never had children and often felt I had nothing to contribute to the world. My teaching has given me this incredible purpose in life. That I can help another person by giving them a nudge to jump off and just see what happens. I never was taught how to teach and yet it feels so comfortable for me. I want to continue to travel all over the world and I think I will want to revisit Italy again and again!



INterview With Maya Rachel Stein


Hey sweet loves, we had this brilliant mind today. Have you heard of her, the Ninja Poet? She is pretty lovely take a gander at what she is up too.

Maya Rachel Stein: I am a Ninja poet, writing guide, and creative adventuress. I wrote my first poem, “Papa Tree and the Seasons,” when I was 9 years old. It told the story of the life cycle of leaves, honing specifically on the fate of one little leaf that is the last one clinging before winter comes. I bound this poem into a little book, filled it with color pencil drawings, and proudly offered it up to my parents one evening. I see now that this quite accurately represents the instincts behind most of my work to date – the desire to capture that which is most fleeting, to locate the heart of its beauty and power, sustain its life through language, and share that language with others. I have self-published four collections of writing, most recently “How We Are Not Alone,” a compilation of work from my poetry blog. Since 2005, I have also kept a weekly writing practice, “10-line Tuesday,” and my poems now reach more than 1,200 people each week. I lead “Feral Writing” workshops, both live and online, providing mentor-ship and guiding students through simple, often playful exercises and activities that help strengthen their creative instincts in order to develop a writing practice that sticks. Among my latest escapades are a 30-day tandem bicycle journey through the Midwest, a French crepe stand at a Massachusetts farmers market, a relocation from San Francisco to suburban New Jersey, a business collaboration— Food for the Soul Train — turning a vintage trailer into a mobile creative workshop space with my partner, and most recently, marriage and step-motherhood. My favorite body part is my left hand, as it has gifted me the ability to sink a nearly invincible hook shot and peel a whole apple without a break.


Today, right now what does your next breath wish to say?

Don’t rush what isn’t ready to become.

Ya I am asking it, what turns you on? Makes your heart quicken? Lights you up?


A genuine embrace.

The truth.


Homemade bread swiped with butter.

Fresh-squeezed anything.

Afternoon cocktails on a porch,

watching dusk advancing.

What supports the true expression of your authentic self?

A blank page.

A quiet afternoon.

An open road.

A bicycle.

Summer rainstorms.

A mountain lake.

My hands.

My legs.

My nose,

both literal and figurative.

The words “What do you feel like doing today?”


What is your mantra, your words to live by?

How so much of the time, all it takes for a fantasy to become reality are two words: “Yes, please.”

 What does mystery taste like to you?

Tangerine sorbet. The sweetness punctuated by a hint of tart that wakes up the mouth and makes it pay attention.


What are your tools and teachers? What have you been learning from them personally?

Silence is powerful. When I allow myself to get quiet – and to still the other voices in the room – the landscape is a lot more navigable. And silence is hard to get to because it is a rare moment when there is nothing and no one clamoring for your time and attention, when your brain lies low for a little while. We are constantly anticipating and responding and reacting to the forces that present themselves to us. So part of the work of getting quiet is clearing that path. Parting the sea of cacophony so we can actually distinguish what we’re listening to.

Love is always an incredible teacher. The tests it takes of us. The test we take of it. Ultimately, if I can get to the place where I am doing things from a place of love and feeling loved, I am so much more flexible with what success looks like.

What are you saying YES to these days?

Frivolous projects. I love getting off the train of over-focused productivity. Play is an extremely important element in my work.

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild precious life?

Write good poems (though I’ll even take the bad ones). Love. Play. Do this as many times as I can, and with people who are open to joining me.



I list my current classes at At the moment, this includes Quick ‘n Dirty Poetry, a 20-day daily online writing class. I send out a choice of 3 prompts per day, and participants write for a maximum of 20 minutes, then send their work back to me. I read and respond to everything I receive, and once a week I provide extensive feedback on a piece that each participant chooses. The purpose of this class is to practice the level of accountability necessary to experience a sense of commitment to a writing practice, and to enjoy a sense of company and camaraderie along the way, since everyone has a chance to share their work in our online classroom.
Another exciting offering coming up in June, when my partner and I are hosting “Spoke & Word,” a 4-day, 5-night creativity and biking retreat in Vermont. We’ll be leading gentle daily rides, as well as art and writing activities inspired by our surroundings. It’ll be a wonderful chance for people to restore and reinvigorate themselves. More info and registration for that lives here:

INterview WIth Juliette Crane


I love Juliette’s work. It is playful, mythical and vibrant. Little worlds of magic. Juliette is abundantly of beautiful and full of artful knowledge. She shares so much of these attributes in the many e-courses she has created to inspire your artful living.

Juliette Crane: I’m an artist, teacher, storyteller and adventurer. As often as possible, I paint outside, mostly in the grass surrounded by flower gardens and the tallest trees.

I’m also an avid gardener and enthusiastic cook and would be delighted to have you over for dinner! When I’m not teaching, travelling, and painting in gardens around the world, I live with my bluegrass-singing husband in Madison, Wisconsin. I’m the creator of a series of online courses that encourage thousands around the world to get creative. From my art play mini course Backgrounds and Layers, to my How To Paint An Owl and How To Paint An Owl 2 courses, for bird and whimsy-lovers, to the mixed media workshops How To Paint A Girl and How To Create Whimsical Animals. My work has been published in, Glamour Magazine UK, Somerset Studio, Somerset Studio Gallery, Mingle, and Artful Blogging and on blogs including Crescendoh, My Owl Barn and Do What You Love just to name a few.

On your blog I found this lovely quote by Martin Gayford: “Drawing makes you see things clearer, and clearer, and clearer still.”

I wonder what was not so clear with how you viewed your artistic future or even how you viewed yourself at the onset of this career that drawing has helped define?

I have always been an artist. Whether it was coloring with crayons or fingerpainting as a little kid I always loved to create and had a wild imagination. But I went to college to study environmental biology. Yet I could not stay away from the art room. I didn’t know what to do with art and graduated with degrees in journalism and fine art. At first I went into arts journalism and worked at newspapers.

It took lots of different jobs as a journalist, graphic designer, web programmer and many more before I finally became a full-time artist. All of those different jobs in what seemed like mistakes at the time now help me to run my current business.


“My first blog was titled Inspired By The Little Things… and it is a notion I am really returning to these days.

I used to write weekly posts, sharing my inspirations.”

Oh indulge us please and share your inspirations these days? What are you saying a holy YES to?

These days I am all about clearing my schedule and saying no, so that I can have more time to create, relax and have fun. That way, my imagination and creativity has so many chances to go in new directions. Lately I have been inspired by flowers and trees. That led me to create floral backgrounds out of inks and acrylics instead of using so many layers and papers for my backgrounds. Then those new floral backgrounds inspired me to create flower girls. That seemed to open up a whole new door for my creativity. It inspired me to start sketching again.

Those sketches reminded me of children’s books. So I’ve started putting together the sketches with some of my writing and am hoping to put everything together into a picture book. Once I started writing again, I went back to my mixed-media paintings and started creating new characters. Soon I realized that these new characters, more women with flowers on their heads, were characters that I could add to my books The novel I have been working on the last few years. That’s what I love so much about creativity is that if you continue to follow your intuition and go with whatever is inspiring you you never know where it might lead you.

“It’s become sort of a meditative process to add all of the lines and dots. Slowing down and really getting into the small embellishments and shading.”  

Has this slowing transferred to other aspects of life? What have you seen happen? Where is it evolving?

That slowing down is part of my new sketching process, which, I think, is strengthening my intuition, helping me to listen, pause before acting and to look at the why I am doing something rather than just rushing to get to an end result. I think that all has also helped me to follow my creativity without judgment.

I used to always finger paint very quickly and add lots of layers to my mixed-media paintings. Now that I have started sketching with a stabilo pencil which is water soluble, I am adding water to my lines and using a thin brush to create shading. It is also a very slow process because if I use too much water in the pan so will run all over the place.

That slowing down has really helped me to stay more present in my every day. And to appreciate and savor all of the little things.


Would you share with us a memory of a recent time you painted at the beach, what came of it? How did it feel?

A few years ago before I became a full-time artist I was part of an artist’s Way group where we went through the chapters of Julia Cameron’s book together. One of the questions we had to answer was what would we most desire? I said I just want to paint at the beach. That to me felt like complete freedom. And even though everyone in the group thought I was a little bit crazy, now, five years later, every winter I make time and go paint for weeks at the beach.

To me, painting at the beach is the most freeing and inspirational environment. I love to be outside and to listen and watch the waves and the sun. I always take just a few supplies with me when I go to paint at the beach. I have a little 8 x 8″ sketchbook, my stabilo pencil, a white and a neon pink paint pen, and a set of watercolors that I carry with me. I bring a blanket and lay out all of my supplies on the blanket and just paint. To me, it is a combination of two of my favorite things:

Being outside and creating. That combination is my bliss.

What are your tools and teachers? What have you been learning from them personally?

I am always most inspired by whatever it is that is around me. I try consistently to meet new people, listen to their stories, learn new things, and always experience. That keeps my imagination expanding. And it drives my creativity. I try and take everything I learn and experience and filter that into my artwork and stories. Then I love hearing how others perceive and are inspired by my artwork. Maybe they see a painting or take one of my classes and are inspired by a certain project and start to do that project like painting owls with their kids. That creates new experiences and connections for them. And then when they share those experiences with me I put that back into my artwork and what I share. That to me completes the circle.


How do you start your day?

I am super fortunate that I do not need to wake up with an alarm. I don’t have a set schedule during the day. But I definitely follow a morning routine. I start with a cup of warm water with lemon and Cayanne pepper. While I sip my lemon water I journal. I write down anything that is on my mind. Then I have a cup of coffee and check my email. After that, I always have a peanut butter and banana smoothie (unless we go out for breakfast… one of my favorite things).

Whats pulling you forward?

It took me a long time to have the confidence to share my creativity and imagination with the world. For years I thought my creativity was worthless. I saw it as a weakness. My hope is that in sharing what I create and continuing to follow my inspirations, adults and children are inspired to follow their own passions (whatever those may be). Hearing their stories and dreams helps to keep pushing me forward. And that then gets filtered into my artwork and keeps me creating.

What is it you want everyone to know?

I would like everyone to know that your story matters, that it is okay to have big dreams and to follow whatever it is that brings you joy.

Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild precious life? 

I intend to follow the things that bring me joy. To me that means creating as much as possible, being outside as much as possible and having tea with as many people as possible.


 This one has some amazing e-courses I particularly fell in love with this one: Serendipity: A year in mixed media.

“I wanted to create a class that would help you overcome creative blocks and strengthen your own unique style.”

I created this class in response to feedback I’ve gotten from my students. So many have said they want to develop their own style and whenever they learn from another artist they feel like they’re just copying. Well, in this class I’ll share with you how I strengthen and evolve my own style and take what I learn from classes and other inspirations in my every day and incorporate them all into my own paintings in a new and unique way.

Connect with her on her website, Facebook, Google+ . She also posts daily what is on her painting table Here, on Instagram.

Her newest online workshop is Happy Painting –mini e-course

In Happy Painting, she shares a variety of techniques and characters to help you overcome creative blocks and easily develop your own style.

By the end of class, you’ll have five gorgeous paintings and the painting template to get you started again and again, so you can keep creating in a style that is unique to YOU.


She is a published artist her first book: Inspired By The Little Things – Mixed Media Paintings and Stories, meant to help you stay positive and find beauty in the every day.