Making art has taught me how to have a creator’s mindset when faced with adversity.
When you are making anything – a song, a painting, a novel, a meal, a performance, a sculpture – the creative process becomes a training ground. You’re embracing risk, creating and holding a vision, building resilience, developing discipline, finding and making your own meaning, and not just knowing your truth, but unashamedly embodying it and expressing it.
So when you take the magic you’ve learned from that process and apply it to other areas of your life, transformational shit happens. With that power to create you can shape your life into something that deeply resonates with what you hold dear and true, and light the way for others to do so too.
Having a creator’s mindset is vital, because ultimately, who you are and what you make of your life is your greatest masterpiece, and you will never know what you’re really made of, or capable of, if you shy away from the work. And let’s face it, we all know this world needs people willing to do this work.
Here, in this humble little slice of the internet, my aim is to share resources and inspiration that I hope will support you in using your creative power to make positive changes within yourself and in the world. But not only that – a chance to connect with a community of fellow meaning-makers on the same journey as you, working hard to embody the values they hold dear in the face of the everyday hustle.
This website is my very own weapon of mass creation – a place to share all I’m learning about creative empowerment, and what that actually looks like in the thick of living. My own way of learning to walk my talk (‘cos we teach what we most need to learn, right?). And I dearly hope that along the way, it helps other brave creators out there realise they’re not alone, and offers them something of value.
Here’s to bravely creating ourselves.
Get to know me better …
My name is Haley, and I spend most my time doing three things.
- Chasing around after my hurricane of a toddler as he and his daddy play fight, DSLR camera in one hand, wet wipe in the other, failing at housekeeping but winning at park days and most definitely love.
- Running the art + design technology department in an inner London secondary school (yes, teenagers), drowning in administrative tasks and educational pedagogy, surrounded by teenage banter (and dishing it out in return), and the most crazy-ass, inspirational staff team.
- Sitting at home on the sofa, deciding between throwing down some paint/tarot cards/building the motivation to do something productive, and ordering some sweet and sour king prawn and tucking into my Kindle.
The first two get the most of my time, as you can imagine.
I’m also known for being a nature-loving but crushed velvet and fairy hating pagan, my intense dislike of rom-coms and reality TV, singing really loudly and badly (especially to Disney songs), becoming too emotionally involved in my latest book, having a history of engaging in fist-fights more than is typically appropriate for a civilised lady, and being positively anal about my lesson PowerPoint’s (they are wicked though).
But what really drives me, that I consider to be my life’s lesson/mission/inane attempt at giving my time here on this planet purpose, is my aspiration to always act from a place of true strength when faced with adversity, and to constantly develop my understanding of what true strength is. And let me tell you this …
Creating and teaching art has taught me to hold onto beauty in what can be an ugly world, to never underestimate the potential of seemingly useless or broken things, that things don’t always go to plan but you gotta work with it, to never dismiss my own ability to effect positive change, to value process over perfection, and a million and one other things that have given me strength when I’ve been on my physical and metaphorical knees.
Don’t get it twisted, I’m hardly the paragon of empowered, enlightened living. It is TOUGH, especially when distracted by a Chinese takeout and a re-run of Game of Thrones is on the telly after a hard day’s slog at work. But I try, and I try, and I try. And sometimes (rarely), I get it right. But mostly, I just do my best, because even though it would be easier to live in Netflix induced apathy, that’s not what I want my life to be about. I point blank refuse to let that be my contribution to the world.
That’s why I’ve made this website. Not because I think that I’ve got this shit handled, but because I know most of the time I don’t – and I can’t be the only one. All I know is I will never give up on trying, and doing this despite every ounce of fear of looking stupid is my way of honouring what I find important, and honouring everyone else’s mission at the same time.
I hope to see you around ;).