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Let's talk about growth. Growth as a human and artist. I think I can safely say most people on this planet didn't have the most perfect childhood or life. Being a human on this planet is a struggle for everyone. But it's also beautiful, exciting, wondrous, and ever-changing. What or who would you be without both the highs and lows of life? The struggles help us grow and appreciate the world around us. As a young girl I had a lot of feelings and to escape them I turned to paper and pencils and the world that was in my head. I have always drawn, I dont remember a time that I ever stopped.

My best ideas always came out when I was at my grandma's home. Even though all of the chores she had us do around the property, it felt like a magical place. Back in the day, my grandma bought her 10 acre property for what today we would consider stupidly cheap. It was my favorite place in the world. I remember sitting in an oval wicker swing chair with my drawing supplies imagining other worlds while the bugs, birds, and smells of my grandma's crazy garden surrounded me. The outside world could be chaotic and messy but this was my sanctuary, my escape. From this place came fairies. I was already influenced by the Disney moves, Frouds Fariys, and later on as a teenager, anime. These influences combined with my environment helped me draw and imagined many fairies. My

grandmother always read us books, which was also very important to me. The books that stood out the most were by the author Beatrix Potter. Even though it wasn't fairies it was still a very magical feeling, especially in the voice my grandmother would read them in.

As a teen, I would be still drawing these fairies. I loved showing them off to my mom and my grandma as they were so supportive and excited to see everything I created. Because of this, I got comfortable and started to show others but that resulted in criticism especially after I said I wanted to create art for a living. It is normal for a person to express their opinion and it's important to get criticism. This is something I dont think I fully understood or knew how to deal with.

I moved out at a very early age and fell into poverty. Despite this change, I was still determined to move away and go to art school. There was no social media at the time so this was the best option that I knew of to get me out of the situation I was in. My thoughts were if I got a job that paid me more money I could save up without starving myself ( which I was doing) an opportunity came up. A free construction course. So for a year, I was attending college to

upgrade my English and math while also working and attending this class so I could possibly make a decent living wage. But, I hit rock bottom, I was in an unsafe living situation, 100 lbs, and thinking awful thoughts. My then boyfriend, now husband, came home from basic training and found me thin, suffering, and in a shocking living space. We moved into a safer place together with the help of a family member signing a paper saying she was responsible for us as we were both under the age limit to rent. With the money I had just inherited from my great grandmother and the money I worked so hard to save, we bought a car and moved to Comox where there was a school we both attended. During that time I didn't create much but I didn't completely stop.

Art school was great in a way to help me make friends and develop my writing skills because before then I was pretty bad at it. It has turned out to be extremely important to me now. But as far as art making, once again I felt stifled, and not due to my living situation, but because of my intense self criticism, and art school wasnt really helping that. I was used to my mom and grandma praising me and I wanted that feeling again, but because I had that goal it affected the work I made.

About two or three years in with Kevin (my husband) finishing school and having what seemed like a stable job, we got pregnant with our first child liam. Kevin lost his job at the same time and we once again fell into a bad financial situation. This time we had help and we were able to pull through and find a place. Kevin found a new and better job (He builds small aircrafts for a living). I dropped out of school, it was far too expensive

for what we could afford and I chose not to work the two minimum jobs I had with having a baby at home. Daycare was more than I could bring in and I wanted to stay home with my kids. Instagram and Facebook were new at the time and I started seeing artists promoting their artwork and life. I made a couple of posts about my art and made a sale! So this made me decide I would paint and try and make this into a career. It hasn't been easy since, but it was nice to have bits of income to create more art. I spent the next 5 or 6 years raising my littles and developing my skills and doing a lot of research on how to promote myself as an artist. Once both my kids were in school I was able to spend more time on my art and getting to know the art community. I painted everything under the sun to really find out what I'm drawn to and to develop every skill possible.

In 2021 I decided to focus solely on landscapes and found my voice as an artist and a person. During all this time my fairies and figures always lived in my sketchbooks and usually came out when I had deep negative feelings. After healing my relationship with myself and after finding my artistic voice I have just started to put my fairies and figures to the canvas again. I am nervous about it as I have had voices in my ear saying that they will not sell and that is a scary financial decision but I want to prove those voices wrong. I have access to the world now and I'm determined to find the people who will love them. They are a part of my journey and deserve a chance to shine. They will go along nicely with my whimsical and colourful landscapes, florals, seascapes, and whatever else I'm inspired by. I feel like I have grown so much in the last three years and so has my art. I'm looking forward to experimenting more. I would love to try other mediums like sculpture and resin in the future.

I hope this shows a little insight into my journey and where my art comes from. This was way longer than I intended and a bit of my life story, which I also didn't intend lol. I am currently sick with a nasty cold and thought if I couldn't paint maybe I could write. Well, write I did haha. My blogs are definitely on the personal side, but I like it when I see others open up about their lives, it makes mine seem more normal and that life isn't cookie cutter perfect. I love seeing others' wins and what they struggled with to get to where they are. I find it inspiring. My husband and I have built a beautiful life and I'm so excited to see what I future has for us. Both the highs and lows come and go but we are always growing and learning. I hope your journey is taking you to exciting places and you are staying safe <3


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