Your Creative Push

Your Creative Push is the podcast that pushes YOU to pursue your creative passion, even though you have a busy, full-time life. Twice a week, Youngman Brown interviews artists, musicians, writers, photographers, graphic designers, and other inspirational creative individuals in an attempt to get them to inspire you to put aside your excuses and START DOING WORK. Each artist opens up to YOU, revealing the things that hold THEM back on a daily basis, and how they FIGHT THROUGH IT. They then give you one final push, in an attempt to motivate you to start doing work as soon as the episode is over. If you have a full-time job or full-time responsibilities and WISH that you had the COURAGE and MOTIVATION to FINALLY do that thing that has been on your mind, this podcast is for you!
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Your Creative Push





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Now displaying: March, 2016
Mar 31, 2016

Brian D'Ostilio is a two-time Sports Emmy award winning associate producer for ESPN Films. His work includes documentaries like 30 for 30, 30 for 30 Shorts and SEC Storied as well as The ESPY Award Show each year. Brian recently produced "Believeland," a 30 for 30 that will premiere at the Cleveland Film Festival. Brian also happens to be one of Youngman Brown's best friends and former college roommate.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Brian discusses:

-His experience at a camp in which he first learned the basic skills to shoot, edit, and produce short films.

-How making his lacrosse team's highlight reels every year really jump-started his creative motivation.

-How the skills that he learned at that camp and in college have translated into his work at ESPN Films.

-The importance of being able to work in a collaborative effort.

-The things that go along with working for a corporation.

-How only you are the one who is going to know about the hardships that go into your creative work.

-The importance of being able to multitask and to take on new jobs or tasks as they come.

-The importance of being 100% accurate as a documentary filmmaker.

-His greatest inspirations are other filmmakers, especially the other filmmakers that he works with at ESPN.

Brian's Final Push will inspire you to just do it, no matter how many people are going to see it.



"That's what's great about filmmaking.  It's a collaborative effort.  You're able to bring your friends in and get ideas from them."

"That was really when I got into that creative mode.  I just stayed up late because I wanted to work on these things."

"Only 3o or 40 people saw them in the end but it was something I cared about and something I wanted to make great."

"I think those same core principles apply to what I do every day at ESPN."

"Even if it doesn't come out so well, you're going to learn from it.

Mar 30, 2016

Michael Vash makes his living by drawing funny cartoons, irreverent greeting cards to be more precise. Vash Designs officially began its foray into the greeting card business at the 2002 National Stationery Show in New York. Vash has found his niche in the mature humor market, servicing a retail demographic that is looking for something different opposed to the saccharin sweet Hallmark Card.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Michael discusses:

-How he started his greeting card company after getting laid off from his job and revisiting the idea of drawing things that make people laugh.

-How he is essentially a one-man operation and some of the struggles that go along with that.

-One of his earliest creative memories.

-What led him astray from a career in drawing.

-How he wasn't happy working at Disney even though it seemed like a dream job on paper.

-How laziness is one of the big things that holds him back from doing his work.

-How it can be very difficult to create work when there is no real deadline.

-His advice to just find one small thing that you can do to get ahead, and once you start doing work, you can get into a rhythm.

-The sense of relief that can come from doing the work that you hate first and getting it out of the way.

-How marijuana can sometimes help his creativity, especially if he is stuck in a creative rut, but the importance of treating it like a tool for certain types of work since it can also slow him down in other aspects.

-How when he draws, he tries to understand what he is drawing and how things are constructed and put together, like he is visually engineering.

-How we all have that inner critic in our head telling us that we aren't doing things properly, and the importance of shutting that critic up so that we can be alone with our art.

-The rewarding experience of being at trade shows and being able to watch people as they look at his art, seeing what works and what doesn't work.

-How his best creative moment ended up turning into his worst creative moment.

Michael's Final Push will inspire you to be persistent as you pursue your creative passion!


"I guess what sent me the other way is that you believe what the voices tell you, that art is a foolish endeavor."

"If you're a creative person, it's in your soul.  It's in your blood.  You have to find a way to be creative."

"You realize that you are not going to be happy with a traditional job.

"I guess it's laziness.  Even though you are doing something you love, doing nothing is easier."

"People who are great at their craft put the time in.  They put the hours in.  They put the work in.  Whether they want to or not."

"Persistence is better than talent."

Connect with Michael:

Website / Facebook / Instagram 


Mar 29, 2016

Bill Carman has worked as a designer, illustrator, and art director at universities, ad agencies, publishers, and large corporations. Since graduating with a BFA in visual communication/illustration and an MFA in painting he has always free-lanced and exhibited with ongoing national gallery representation in New York City, Las Vegas, New Orleans, and Los Angeles.

Bill is currently a professor, teaching illustration and drawing, and his new book, “Imagery From the Bird’s Home: The Art of Bill Carman” is currently available from Flesk Publications.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Bill discusses:

-His career path that brought him to the Boise State.

-How he has always done his "weird" stuff on the side.

-How teaching changed everything for him, not just for the financial stability, but because he was able to surround himself with a creative environment.

-For people who are thinking of starting to build a side career, how they have to ask themselves if they really want to do it and have to deal with the amounts of time and solitude that it requires.

-That doing your art for fame is a misguided goal.

-How all it takes to call yourself an artist is putting in the time and actively working towards becoming better.

-How you have to make sure that you fill yourself up as much as you are letting your stuff out through your art.

-How you can learn how to do virtually anything on the Internet and how easy it is to connect with other artists of potential clients.

-Where his unique style came from and how he developed it.

-How he worries about tutorials because of copycats that don't have a voice of their own.

-The concept of carrying a sketchbook (or even just using your phone) and getting in the habit of continually working on your craft whenever you can find the time.

-The story behind his book.

Bill's Final Push will make you realize that you CAN do your art every day, and you can even turn it into your sole means of income.


"I was always doing my weird stuff on the side."

"I don't know any illustrator that doesn't do their own thing in the wee hours of the night when it is dark and no one is looking."

"That's the secret.  I get that question a lot: 'How do I get good? What are your tools?  What are you using?'  And the secret is time."

"For me, there's no other place I'd rather be than my studio."

"That's the key with art.  You have to face yourself."

"For me it's not only about making pretty pictures and selling my work, but do I still have something to say that means anything?"

"It keeps me on my toes seeing all of these wonderful young people doing this great stuff.  It keeps me excited about the whole thing."

"All of my spare time was spent on finding this strange voice that was in me."

"That voice is there to be found but you also have to have the skill to realize it."

"Carve out more and more and more time, and if you get better at it and if you enjoy, you carve out more time."

Links mentioned:

Imagery From the Bird’s Home: The Art of Bill Carman

James C. Christensen


Connect with Bill:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Deluxe Version of Bill's book

Mar 28, 2016

Joel is a 31 conceptual and fine art photographer from Canada, currently living in the United Kingdom.  He has been creating and sharing his conceptual portraiture work for the last 7 years, and his interest in storytelling and self-expression through art is what motivates him to create and share his work with people around the world.

Through his photography workshops, he has instructed over 200 students in 7 countries to build their creative portfolios and also set up a photography business and social media presence.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Joel discusses:

-How he fell into photography as a hobby and then went along for the ride in the last seven years.

-His experience working for Coca-Cola and FIFA for the Wold Cup Trophy tour, and how he got to fly around the world taking photographs of celebrities and football players.

-How when he started taking his conceptual photographs, it was like a secret hobby.

-The reason why he is the subject of many of his photographs.

-How self-portraiture was and still is very therapeutic for him and has taught him so much about himself that he might not have learned any other way.

-How he, like Youngman Brown, gets flustered when someone watches him doing work or when he thinks about the amount of people that see his work.

-His advice for artists or creative people who freeze up when they think about the number of people who are looking at their work.

-How important it is to find your specific audience.

-To find your voice that is different than everyone else.

-To utilize social media to communicate back and forth with your audience as opposed to just at them.

-One of this earliest memories as a kid when he wanted to be an animator for Disney.

-How an experiment with an image of him being lifted up by balloons brought him back to the feelings of excitement he had when he was creating as a kid.

-His recommendation of doing a 365-day project, not only to force you to do the work, but to create bad work and understand why you think it is bad.

-How to deal with the imaginary naysayers. 

-How opening yourself up emotionally can allow your viewers/listeners/readers to tap into themselves in a way that they never imagined.


"It was never my goal when I started to turn it into a business."

"I just try to enjoy what I have in the moment and share it with the people around me."

"It just changed my whole life."

"I could never have dreamed up a better job."

"When I first started taking photos it was like a secret hobby of mine."

"It's almost like a secret identity."

"You have to do it for yourself before anyone else.  You can make the most amazing cake in the whole-wide-world, and you can give it to ten people and they might just hate chocolate cake.  There's nothing you could have done any different.  You're just giving it to the wrong crowd of people."

"Social media can never be a great barometer for talent."

"Find what voice you have that is different from everyone else."

"If I do this every day, I have no option but to get better somehow."

Links mentioned:

Create Your Self - A Creative Work Book by Joel Robison

Connect with Joel:

Website / Blog / Facebook


Mar 25, 2016

Nathan Carson aka "Streetarthustle" is a talented artist who has taken fate into his own hands by being creative on his own terms, vowing to fulfill all of his creative desires and never do anything he doesn't want to again.  He is documenting this journey for all to see via his Periscope account, allowing other people to be inspired as well as learn from his mistakes.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Nathan discusses:

-How he was laid off from one of the largest creative agencies, and how he is now just making it work with his "street art hustle."

-The story about his podcast and what people can expect to hear from it.

-How his podcast morphed into a Periscope adventure.

-The differences between Periscope and podcasting.

-His love for painting Warhammer miniatures and how he never let himself explore that in his free time because of the notion of getting to the top of the mountain.

-How the more niche and strange your idea is, the easier it is for you to rise to the top of that category.

-How he feels as a person now in comparison to how he felt when he had his job.

-He reads a piece that he wrote inspired by his being laid off and a Bukowski quote.

-A fun synchronicity that happens during the episode.

-His advice for someone who is thinking about taking the leap and quitting their job to pursue their creative passion.

-All the secretarial work that is involved with being your own boss.


"I decided that I would never do anything I didn't want to do ever again."

"It's straight-up patronage for the arts because all I do is draw and paint."

"Right now, just sheer terror is motivating me to keep going."

"The thing that I loved was so outrageously stupid that you're not allowed to do it for a living."

"I didn't allow myself to do the thing that I enjoyed."

"The first courageous step is just allowing yourself to do the stupid thing with pipe cleaners that you've been planning on doing once you are successful in your own mind."

"The dumber your idea, the more viable it becomes, paradoxically.  Especially in the creative world."

"Did he make it?  Yea?  Let's do what he did.  Did he not make it?  What can we learn from his horrible, spectacular, real-time failure."

"You constantly have to pivot, pivot, pivot.  Every time you run into a mountain that's too big to tackle, then you just change directions."

"You get to achieve perfection some day but you don't get to start there."

Links mentioned:

My Friend's Divorce Podcast

Connect with Nathan:

Streetarthustle / Periscope / Instagram


Mar 24, 2016

J.T. is the New York Times bestselling author of fifteen critically acclaimed novels, including What Lies Behind, When Shadows Fall, and All the Pretty Girls, and is the coauthor of the Nicholas Drummond series with #1 New York Times bestselling author Catherine Coulter.

With over a million books in print, Ellison’s work has been published in twenty-five countries and thirteen languages. Her novel The Cold Room won the ITW Thriller Award for Best Paperback Original and Where All The Dead Lie was a RITA® nominee for Best Romantic Suspense. She is also the author of multiple short stories.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, J.T. discusses:

-Her time living and working in Washington D.C. and how she thought that was the path she was going to go down.

-How reading John Sanford inspired her to get back to her own writing and to give it a shot.

-The memory of sitting down to write after eight years of not writing.

-Her advice for people who have had a long hiatus from their writing or art, to just do it.

-For people who have full-time gigs, to find an hour of time to put towards their calling.

-How people know how to budget their money to save up for a vacation, but they don't think of their time with creativity the same way.

-How her thesis advisor told her she "wasn't good enough" to get published, and how that voice remained in her head for years (and still does).

-Her advice for anyone who has received negative feedback and can't get that voice out of their head.

-The importance of having a critique group or some friends or colleagues that will give you honest feedback without tearing you down.

-One of her hardest times creatively, when she actually thought she was going to quit, and how "The Artist's Way" brought her out of it and realized that she needed to pivot and write something different.

-How you should not leave behind "half-eaten sandwiches," or half-finished stories.

-How it is important to be honest and explain to loved ones why you need to spend time doing your creative passion and what it brings to your life.

J.T.'s Final Push will inspire you to approach your creativity with reckless abandon!


"I think everybody goes to D.C. thinking they're going to change the world."

"I sat down and I started to write.  I wrote a paragraph, hit period, and I started to cry.  Because that was it.  I had come home."

"Something was wrong.  I was good at what I did but I hated every minute of it.  I hated getting up in the morning.  I hated going to work.  I hated going to sleep at night because then I had to get up and do it the next day.  If you are feeling that, you need to step away.  Life is just too short to be miserable in your work and in what you do."

"Writing is not easy.  It is not an easy path.  There are a lot of obstacles in the way, but any creative outlet whether you're a writer, a painter, or a poet... you have to just do it."

"You can find an hour to do anything."

"Fifteen minutes a day, write 250 words.  You will have a novel by the end of the year.  It's totally doable."

"That's why I didn't write for eight years.  Because somebody told me I wasn't good enough."

"If you can understand why a story is appealing on a broad level, you can fix your own."

"Voice can't be taught.  Voice is something unique to every writer.  And Voice is something that comes when you trust yourself."

"Learn how to structure and build a story and then let yourself go.  The voice will come."

"A bad day writing is better than a good day doing anything else."

"The problem with being a writer is that it takes a lot of introspection."

"All creatives are selfish.  And you have to be selfish and you have to be able to respect your time."

"It's very threatening for the spouse or parent of a creative person to see you finding satisfaction in something that's not them."

Links mentioned:

"No One Knows" by J.T. Ellison

"The Artist's Way" by Julia Cameron

Connect with J.T.:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter

Mar 23, 2016

Kelli Klymenko embraces all aspects of art.  He is an artist, storyteller, photographer, teacher, yogi, husband, father, science aficionado and free thinker - experiencing life in one of the most inspiring and picturesque places on earth: Sedona, Arizona, where he lives with his wife and children.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Kelli discusses:

-How when he was younger, he drew on any surface area he could find.

-How he has dabbled in many different forms of art, but he loves photography especially because it is so quick.

-His opinion that people should be sharing most of the work that they do, instead of only their best.

-How he is sometimes surprised by the photos that are extremely successful in terms of "likes" because of how little time he put into it in comparison to others.

-His iPhoneography course and why it is important.

-How easy it is to change the way you look at the world in terms of photography, and how easy it is to share your photos.

-How growing up, many people shared their opinion that doing art is not a way to make a living.

-How his worst moments are when all the hard work he does isn't appreciated or his vision isn't seen the way he thinks it deserves to be seen.

-How trying to please everyone is not the right approach for making art.  Just do what you love.

-How he is currently living in his best creative moment (Yes!!!)

-How his greatest inspirations are scientists, with Neil deGrasse Tyson leading the pack (Yes!!!)

-How most of his inspiration comes from around him, especially nature and Sedona itself.

Kelli's Final Push will inspire you to do something you've never tried before, even if it is simply going out into nature for a short time.


"The foundation of Kelli Klymenko as a person is most definitely built upon creative endeavors and the arts."

"I know some photographers who take months to get a photo out because they have to clean it up and work on it.  I take a picture and I share it immediately."

"I think that we should be sharing everything because it makes it more real."

"I don't like those plastic landscapes where everybody cleans it up so much that you can't even recognize the place when you actually arrive.  I like it to be real."

"At some point we won't even need the DSLR's.  We're not at that point yet, but we're getting really close."

"Just think about photos that you take and framing them as a fine art piece, even if it is something you normally wouldn't do."

"It's really very simple to change how you view the world."

"It's all about your mindset.  If you're one of those people that says "I can't" ... you won't."

"It's more about living in the moment.  I live by that."

"Just do what you love and then the people that love that are the ones that connect with you.  And you'll be reaching the right people."

"I get that with Sedona, too.  'Oh, another picture of Bell Rock.'  And I'm like, 'Yea, I saw it again today.  And it's fine by me.'"

"I really do live in one of the most beautiful places in the world."

Links mentioned:

Kelli's iPhoneography course

Connect with Kelli:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Google+ / Twitter

Mar 22, 2016

Carol Carter is a painter from St. Louis, Missouri who works primarily in large-scale watercolors and acrylics.  She has been featured in books by RotoVision Press and was voted best St. Louis Artist by The Riverfront Times in September, 2000.  In 2002 her work was chosen for the cover of New American Painting.  Carol also shares her watercolor techniques in workshops throughout the year and throughout the country.

Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepushcom/carolcarter

In this episode, Carol discusses:

-How it took her about ten years to develop her style and find her own voice.

-Her advice to people who are struggling to find their own style or voice.

-How you have to love your art and you also have to be willing to spend time with self-examination.

-The process of creating the painting and how there is always one point where she is dissatisfied with it, but then finds a way to solve it.

-How in the beginning of the painting until the middle, you tell the painting what you know, and from the middle until the end, the painting teaches you what you don't understand.  And this requires you to be humble and ready to learn.

-How what you learn from one painting translates into the next one, and so on from painting to painting, year to year.

-How a blue shape that kept coming back in her early abstract paintings was the key to her changing her path as an artist into a narrative, figurative artist.

-How artists sometimes think they need certain accolades, training, or notoriety in order to paint what they want, when in fact the only thing they need to do is start.

-How courage sometimes holds her back, and how important it is to be courageous in the studio.

-How a difficult time in her life caused her to try to work it out in the studio with her art until she decided that she didn't have to "paint through" the ugly chapter.

-How life's struggles and pains deepen us as creative individuals.

-How she paints a portrait of her son every year for as long as she lives, and how she is the only artist in history to accomplish such a feat.

-Her formula for balancing her time.

-What art and creativity brings to her life.

Carol's Final Push will inspire you to PAINT THROUGH THE RESISTANCE!


"You have to learn to see the world in your way."

"You have to paint what you love.  And if you don't love it, you can be sure that the person looking at it isn't going to like it."

"You have to have some sort of connection to what you're painting."

"Every day, I try to go into the studio and be a little bit humble in the creative process to learn a little bit more and take a bit more risk."

"That's how art grows.  It's first words, and then eventually the words become poetry."

"I didn't set out to be a figurative painter.  I just set out to grow as a deeper artist.  I could have gone any way, but that one conversation changed the course of my work."

"At the time I felt like I needed more rules before I could paint something that mattered to me.  I needed more accolades.   I needed more training.  And in reality, you don't.  You can start being the artist that you are at any moment."

"You can paint your way through life's dilemmas but you don't have to stay there.  And you certainly don't have to keep repainting them.  You can work through it and then go beyond it."

"I think that we all need waymarks to understand the human experience.  Some of us through words and novels.  Some in poetry.  Some in dance.  And some in visual arts.  Those are creative markers that show us the path that we are on."

"They are visual documentaries of my journey."

"You paint your way through the resistance."

Links mentioned:

Carol's Workshops

Growth Portraits (so cool!)

Connect with Carol:

Website / Facebook / Blog


Mar 21, 2016

Danny Gregory has spent three decades as one of New York's leading advertising creative directors and has created award-winning, global campaigns for clients like Chase, JPMorgan, American Express, IBM, Burger King, Ford, Chevron and many others. Danny has written many internationally best-selling books on art and creativity. He is also co-founder of Sketchbook Skool, an online creativity school that has inspired tens of thousands of students around the world.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Danny discusses:

-The voice in your head that tells you that you shouldn't be working on the ideas that you come up with.

-The reason why he wrote the book "Shut Your Monkey."

-The role that the amygdala has played in helping humans to survive as we have evolved, but how it now pops up in situations where it is not useful.

-The value in recognizing the monkey's voice so that you can differentiate what it tells you is foolish from what actually is foolish.

-The importance of sitting down and doing the work without judging it, because it might turn into an important idea, but if you kill the idea before you even try, you will never know.

-How the monkey will tell you that you aren't relaxing enough, but then when you are relaxing it will tell you that you aren't doing enough work.

-The idea of perfectionism and how sometimes it is just a way for us to delay putting our art out into the world.

-How important creative people are to the world and how discussions about the problems they have are important to have.

-What Sketchbook Skool is and why he created it.

Danny's Final Push will inspire you to to SHUT YOUR MONKEY and get to work!


"You probably should have a little bit of doubt in your life, just to push back against."

"Our job as creative people is to make something new."

"But the reality is that all kinds of bad things are going to happen to you if you spend all of your time sitting on the couch watching the ball game drinking a beer."

"You have to be able to suspend judgment in order to make creative work.  There's a time for judgment but there's also a time for productivity."

"You have to decide that your life and the work that you are doing matters more than this engagement with this stupid voice in your head."

"No matter what it is you make, somebody is benefiting from what you are making.  Your job is to focus on that."

"Nobody is going to notice the glaring imperfections in your work the way you are."

"We live in times in which creative people are more important than ever in human history."

"Try something.  Just try it.  Even it doesn't work perfectly, it is better than holding it back endlessly.

"Don't worry about what people are going to think.  Start making stuff and start putting it out there and sharing it with other people."

Links mentioned:

"Shut Your Monkey" by Danny Gregory

Sketchbook Skool

Connect with Danny:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Blog

Mar 18, 2016

Since 2009, Can’t Stop Won’t Stop has been cobbling together beats, rhymes and rhythms that call back to the early days of hip hop. Drawing on influences like the Beastie Boys, A Tribe Called Quest and Wu-Tang Clan, and new school lyricists like Spose and Watsky the sound is upbeat and decidedly revivalist.

Can’t Stop Won’t Stop has been featured on the homepage of some of the most prestigious culture sites on the web. Buzzfeed, Gawker, ESPN, YouTube, Huffington Post, The New York Times, USA Today, TechCrunch, TheChive, etc. All totaled, and across platforms, their music has been listened to over 150 million plays.

Despite frequent reconstruction and occasional setbacks, the music has been (and is still being) made by a core group, namely: David Eff, Fresh Big Mouf, Davey Hawkins, Chuck Wild and Fade Simmons, and David Eff comes onto the podcast today to talk about his and the group’s creative journey.

In this episode, David discusses:

-The ever-changing members of Can't Stop Won't Stop and how it is more of a collaboration than a group.

-The challenges that come with having moving pieces in the group.

-How it is usually easy to tell if an artist loves what they are creating or not.

-His opinion on when songs he personally loves are not as popular ones he isn't as proud of.

-The idea of authenticity and how your day job shouldn't necessarily define who you are in your soul.

-How people who are creative don't want to feel pigeon-holed and need to be able to express themselves via many different means.

-How he gets the same level of creative fulfillment from marketing and branding of the group as he does from creating the actual music.

-How like Jack Kerouac, he appreciates the "mad ones" -- the one that loves what they do.

-Human progress comes from people who see a problem in the world and can't move on until that problem is solved. and why they allow their music to be used for free by artists.

-Why he lets filmmakers keep the ad revenue that they generate while using his songs.

-How to collaborate with artists in other fields who are also trying to put out the best content they possibly can.

David's Final Push will inspire you to look at the opportunities in front of you and ask, "is this a unique opportunity that nobody else gets?" and "will I ever get this opportunity again?"


"Our big hustle is through YouTube."

"There's good and bad to it.  The good is that all the stuff that gets written comes from a place of really being inspired and having an itch that needs scratching."

"To be perfectly frank with you, there's a couple of songs in our catalogue that I think are slightly more phoned-in than others."

"Anything that moves the needle comes from someone that lost a bunch of sleep over it because they were just so sure that they could do it better.  And I'm really glad that is ingrained in the human psyche."

"It's hard.  It's really hard to pull that trigger."

"I'm going to turn 50 some day, and I will just have to tell the story that maybe I could have been in a hip-hop group that did something someday.  And instead, the story I get to tell is that I did it."

Links mentioned:

Devin's videos

Connect with Can't Stop Won't Stop:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Youtube / Use My Songs


Mar 17, 2016

Tai Taeoalii is an amazing artist who uses ballpoint pen to create surreal pieces of art intended to stimulate the viewer’s mind and evoke honest emotion.  Tai has recently taken his art “on the road,” using the time that he is not busy creating to tour the U.S. at various art galleries, museums, and art fairs. 

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Tai discusses:

-His creative origins, doodling in class with a ballpoint pen, until selling his work on Ebay.

-How he is now 38, but only really discovered who he is and his style 6 or 7 years ago.

-How at art festivals and art fairs, you get to talk to the people buying your work and you get to get feedback from them.

-How he starts a piece with an idea, and doesn't think much from that point on until the piece is done.

-Listening to music helps him tap into his subconscious, much like doodling while on the phone.

-The difficulty he experiences in attempting to do commission work, and why he doesn't do it anymore.

-What it is like to be an artist on the road and how it makes him a better person and a better artist.

-Why he makes his artwork affordable.

-The process of making timelapse videos of him making a piece, and how they are like an out-of-body experience.  But setting them up takes some of the spontaneity out of drawing.

-His method for writing ideas down on his phone, then being alone to flesh it out onto paper, and then shading when he is at his shows, when he is able to multi-task.

-How he obtains his Bic pens.

Tai's Final Push will inspire you to be honest, be passionate, and to work hard.


"I'm 38 now.  I really just discovered who I am and my style 6 or 7 years ago."

"When I create, I don't have to think at all anymore.  I can just make, and what I make works."

"That whole 10,000 hours thing is totally legit."

"What really makes the difference is the confidence."

"It's like I dream while I'm awake."

"I usually experience the drawing for the first time after I'm done.  After I've put the pen down and I've signed it."

"The trick that I discovered to tap into my subconscious was music."

"There's something kinda romantic about the artwork that I create eventually fading away with time."

Links mentioned:

Timelapse from Tai's Youtube channel

Connect with Tai:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Shop

Mar 16, 2016

Michael Shainblum is a professional photographer/filmmaker whose work consists of Fine Art Landscape Photography, Aerial Photography, Aerial Filmmaking, Travel/ Adventure Photography and Commercial Timelapse Photography.  He has worked with clients like Nike, Samsung, Verizon, Disney, BMW, Google and many more, and his work has been published by National Geographic, Wired Magazine, Huffington Post and The Weather Channel.

In this episode, Michael discusses:

-That he was always trying to create from an early age.  And he knew by 15 or 16 that he wanted to be a photographer (and went with it).

-What "Eat, Sleep, Create," means to him.

-How creativity does something for him directly and it also does something for him through other people.

-The joy that you can get from the simple act of creating something.

-How being able to share and get feedback from people adds a special element of excitement to his work.

-Why he thinks that his photography of nature and space resonates with people so closely.

-The process of creating timelapse videos and what goes into them.

-His reaction to the unexpected response of "Existence" going viral.

-How he originally had no intention of sharing "Mirror City" with anyone but his friends.

-All the other things that go into running a photography business besides shooting and editing, and how he balances that time.

-The struggle of taking a true "break" from work, where you are thinking about all the things you should be doing while you are taking time off.

-The importance of keeping a variety of work so that you don't get bored or burnt out.

-His advice if you want to start doing astral or nature photography or timelapse, and how much it might cost.

Michael's Final Push will inspire you to follow your heart and just go and do it, because you never know where it will lead you.


"I was just so interested in everything photography and I was so excited to create all the time."

"It's just really really fun and really really satisfying to create something."

"I still haven't gotten over how cool that is.  How cool it is to create something and say 'I did this.'"

"I don't really ever think about what somebody's going to like or not going to like."

"I'm creative first, technical second."

"If I find I'm doing too much of one thing, I'll switch it up so that I'm doing something else.  It keeps it fresh and it keeps me excited about what I'm doing."

"You just need the drive and the passion to want to do it.  That's the most important thing."


Links mentioned:

The Art of the Timelapse

"Existence" by Michael Shainblum

"Mirror City" by Michael Shainblum

Connect with Michael:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Vimeo


Mar 15, 2016

Adonna Khare is an artist mainly focused on large-scale pencil drawings.  Her work has been collected by prestigious public and private collections throughout the world.  And in 2012 she won the world’s largest art competition, ArtPrize, competing against over 1500 artists from around the world.  She has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, NPR, The Huffington Post, Daily Mail, Juxtapoz Magazine, and Mashable, just to name a few.

In this episode, Adonna discusses:

-How she got to the point of drawing such large-scale drawings.

-How much of her progress comes from permission.  Permission from a professor and permission to go bigger, and permission from herself to create large environments.

-Her advice for people who brush off "big ideas" -- to instead give themselves permission to do them.

-How she has many ideas stew in her mind, jockeying for position, and when she sits in front of the paper, that is when one in particular comes to the front to say "I am ready."

-Why it can helpful to work on large and small projects at the same time, because when the bigger projects start to lose steam, she can work things out while working on the smaller projects.

-How her daughter has helped her to become more productive with her time, as she has much less of it to spare.

-The role that animals play in her art and how they are more than just animals.

-The story behind her "screaming bear."

-How each piece is like a diary, where she knows her exact situation in life at the moment she was drawing it, but on the flip side, how each piece can bring personal meaning to each person who views it.

Adonna's Final Push will help you understand that it is okay to give something up in order to create something you want to see in the world.


"You have those moments in your life where the light switch clicks on and you ask "Why did it take so long for me to figure this out?"

"I realized there was something in the scale of it that was the magic that I was trying to capture."

"What I was trying to do was create this entire environment that would bring people in and invite them to stay for a long time."

"If something is so strong within you that you're incomplete without it, I would say give yourself permission.  Because that's all you need in the end anyway."

"I've had drawings sitting in my brain for 10 years, saying 'It's not time yet.'"

"Creating it was my therapy, my friend, and my diary."

"When you do something that you love and you have to give something else up for it, it makes it valuable."

Connect with Adonna:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter


Mar 14, 2016

Adam Gaines was a Staff Writer on NBC's drama State of Affairs and his work on the FX drama The Bridge included co-writing the penultimate episode of the second (and final) season.

He published the eBook Mixtapea collection of one-act plays available as a free download on iBooks, Amazon, and Barnes & Noble. And most recently released a sequel called Fire Sale, available on the same platforms.

On the feature side, his script Negative is currently in production. Directed by Joshua Caldwell and starring Katia Winter, Simon Quarterman, and Sebastian Roche. And he’s set to make his feature directorial debut on the indie Prepaid, which he also wrote.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Adam discusses:

-One of his first creative moments, in his creation of "R-Man."

-Some of the things that held him back from creating.

-How doubt begins to creep into ones creative life and how to get through it by trusting your instincts.

-His advice for writers or anyone else who want to try their hand in writing screenplays or scripts.

-The value in reading the scripts of your favorite movies (and your least favorite).

-The hardest moment for him creatively in moving to Los Angeles for the first time.

-Having to throw out his old work and redefine himself once he arrived in LA.

-Attempting to find a balance between finding a job to make money and working on his craft.

-One of his best moments, when the day job and the dream job finally met for the first time as a staff writer.

-"Mixtape" and why he created it and put it out into the world for free.

-The unexpected benefits of putting your work out for free that you might have never expected.

-His formula for managing his time.

-The importance of turning off the Wi-Fi so that you can concentrate on being creative without distractions like

Adam's Final Push will inspire you to jump on the bus!


"It was just a crippling amount of doubt that the same blinders that I had on that other people didn't have on at an early age made me second guess, 'should I be putting this much pen to paper?'"

"You can learn just as much from a bad movie as you can a good movie."

"I said I was going to do this my whole life.  Now I'm here.  Two bags, one-way plane ticket.  It just got very real."

"I decided to take a page out of a rapper's book.  Let me put out free content on the Internet in the hopes of landing a job, or attracting representation, or even just starting to build a fan base."

"I work on my brand and my one man operation and my business every single day.

Links mentioned:

-Mixtape by Adam Gaines (Amazon)

-Fire Sale: Another Collection of One-Act Plays by Adam Gaines (Amazon)

-Hollywood Animal by Joe Eszterhas


Connect with Adam:


Mar 11, 2016

Oscar Gregeborn is a 17-year-old artistic phenom from Oslo, Norway who has a distinctive style of painting that you might confuse with that of a painter who has been painting for half a century.  His color palette in addition to his mesmerizing scenes leave you staring at the painting, yearning for entrance into his imagination.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Oscar discusses:

-A glimpse into his life as a high school student and his intentions for college as well as the industry.

-How he blends together the things he loves about his favorite artists into a kind of soup in order to develop his own style.

-How he feels as if he still has a long way to go before he truly enters the scene, but he has the advantage of time.

-His advice to young people who haven't "entered the scene" yet to develop their style and continue to work on their art.

-The power in sharing your art.

-His theory of "leveling-up."

-How 10,000 hours might not be enough for artists, as it is a lifelong commitment to improving.

-The story of one of his first creative moments at a water park.

-His advice to get down your ideas onto the canvas as quickly as possible, and then worry about filling it in later.  Just get the idea out there.

-The danger of comparing yourself to the artists that you love.

-How he took a three month hiatus from drawing because of doubt, and how he got back to the art with baby steps.

-What it was like to have his piece, "Naypyidaw" become a Daily Deviation on Deviant Art.

-How he never pushes himself to paint, but only does it when he wants to do it.

-His strategy for starting a painting in regards to planning it out.

Oscar's Final Push will inspire you to love what you are doing and give it everything!


"I try to level-up with every painting that I do."

"The response I get from people is always incredibly motivating and keeps me going."

"You've gotta remember that you only have one life.  You've gotta make the most out of it."

"Our eyes develop faster than our skill."

"I use it as a way to relax and meditate.  I just put in some good music and let my intuition guide my hand."

"All the ideas, locations, stories, and colors that I have in my head become something more than just an idea in my head.  They become a place on the canvas for someone else to see."

Links mentioned:

Oscar's Daily Deviation

Color and Light: A Guide for the Realist Painter by James Gurney

Connect with Oscar:

Website / Facebook / Deviant Art

Mar 10, 2016

Natasha Wescoat has been a full time acrylic painter since 2004 and has sold over 1000 original works to private and corporate collections worldwide.  Her art has been featured in ABC's Extreme Makeover: Home Edition and hit sitcom "The Middle" as well as Hollywood films like "Marley & Me".  She is also the founder of Art Career Academy, an online mentorship program for artists.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Natasha discusses:

-How she has been interested in art since a very young age.

-The start of her business of selling her art on Ebay.

-The woes that come from starting out as a young artist.

-The value of getting input from the people who are watching you, as you can learn about your business and about yourself by listening to them.

-How the business aspect and having a family can bog you down and drain you from your creativity.

-Her worst creative moment.

-The importance of separating your creative days from your business days.

-Her best creative moment, when she started making a completely different type of art.

-Her reason for starting Art Career Academy and what it can provide for artists.

-Her formula for balancing her time with everything she has going on.

Natasha's Final Push will inspire you to be brave and bold and share your work without fear.


"I had really no idea that it was totally okay to do this on my own and be independent."

"You've really got to be brave and take those risks."

"Put yourself out there.  Be willing and open to learn and change and evolve."

"It's a matter of focusing on getting that time to yourself that you need to build that creativity to keep yourself filled up."

"Make it a regular routine.  Your mind starts to prepare itself and it becomes natural to get in the mode and the flow to create."

"Having a better understanding of my own vision and what I wanted to offer to the world outside of making a living from it... that is when things really changed for me."

Links mentioned:

Art Career Academy

Awaken the Giant Within by Tony Robbins

Gary Vanderchuck

Connect with Natasha:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter


Mar 9, 2016

Suresh is a gifted public speaker, the host of the daily podcast BlissHacker Radio, and the author of the upcoming book “Be”. He is also a contributing writer to the Good Men Project. In addition to this, Suresh is a talented composer.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Suresh discusses:

-How he doesn't fit into a particular category except for "creative."

-How you question everything when you go through something like a divorce.

-How hearing Robert Rodriquez talk about how he doesn't know how to do the things he does but just jumps in and does them anyway really affected him as a creator.

-How people want to edit as they go, but how we can learn from children, because they just keep going and figure out the "editing" later.

-His advice for people who are afraid of just jumping into some creative pursuit because they think that they will be terrible.

-His method of "crowd-sourcing" for things he doesn't know how to do.

-What he means when he describes himself as "limitless" in terms of being able to connect with people around the world with a greater knowledge.

-Finding "warp pipes" to get ahead, by contacting people who have already been down the path that you intend to go down.

-The importance of knowing how and what to Google.

-Neuroplasticity and the way your brain changes every time it learns something new.

-The power of YouTube when you are trying to learn something.

-Advice to not be so rigid, and to keep exploring to find ways to get your creative message out if you happen to not be very good in one particular discipline.

-Tips for achieving a flow state (safely) with your art.

Suresh's Final Push will inspire you to move someone else with your art.


"The root skill is being creative."

"The only question that people have is, "Who am I?"

"You don't have to know anything.  You just be."

"People feel that they need to know before they do, and that limits them because they realize how much they don't know."

"I'm not limitless, but I know how to connect with all the people on this planet.  And since I know how to do that, there is no limit to me."

"The vision is more than myself."

"I want you to think as if the entire world was your oyster and everybody on it was on your team.  Now think what you can do with that, because that's the truth."

Links mentioned:

-"Be" (Motivational video)

-Robert Rodriquez on The Tim Ferris Podcast

-The Rise of Superman: Decoding the Science of Ultimate Human Performance by Steven Kotler

Connect with Suresh:

Blisshacker / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / E-mail!

Mar 8, 2016

Aunia Kahn is figurative artist, photographer, creative entrepreneur and inspirational speaker. She has created a hybrid art form combining many disciplines. She designs, builds, and executes characters, non-existent places, dreams, illusions, fears and fables into creations, melding elements of classical and contemporary art.

Aunia also runs/hosts the Create & Inspire Blog & Podcast where she helps and inspires creatives to follow their dreams!

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Aunia discusses:

-How and why she started the "Create and Inspire" blog and podcast.

-How John Lee Dumas of "Entrepreneur on Fire" inspired her to start a podcast (just like Youngman Brown with "Your Creative Push").

-How most artists don't realize that their art can be a business and many of the mistakes they make when trying to sell their work.

-Her first creative moments with a Kodak Fisher Price camera as a child.

-How even though we are the most photographed era in time, we are going to be left with no actual photos.

-Her journey through various forms of art, and how she wanted to be a painter, and a surgeon, and a veterinarian, amongst many other things.

-How health issues inhibited her from being able to sing, and how that led to her beginnings as an artist.

-How art was therapeutic to her and gave her the feeling of having a purpose.

-The story of what made her start to share her work and the unlikely person who encouraged her to do so.

-Her advice for people who might be afraid to share their work because they are embarrassed or shy about the content or subject matter that they create.

-The importance of just messing around and experimenting, not worrying if it is good or bad, and just learning from it.

-How you shouldn't base your progress on the amount of Facebook likes that you get.

-The value in aiming to affect one person as opposed to appealing to a broad audience.

-Details about her gallery

Aunia's Final Push will inspire you to keep getting up and never giving up.



"Music is where I cultivated a spiritual and artistic vibe within myself."

"The art itself was never supposed to be shown to anybody.  It was, "I am suffering so tremendously that if I don't do something, I don't know how much longer I am going to be here."

"When you are sick and you are bedridden and you can't leave your house, you feel like you don't have a purpose."

"For some reason, I felt like the camera was a sketchbook for me."

"Everything feeds itself.  It is like a self-generating greenhouse of creativity."

"I went to the show and I actually saw a woman cry in front of my work.  After that, I had to go home and think about this."

"Maybe this is how I'm supposed to help people, by using my own creativity to help myself and indirectly helping someone else without getting too close."

"You don't need to make this for anybody but yourself."

"For one person who tells you that they like what you're doing or appreciates you, there's a dozen more that are maybe too shy to say anything."

"We can literally do anything that we put our minds to.  Our minds are amazing.  They are so strong and vast."

"Life is too damn short not to go for everything you've ever wanted, even if it seems ridiculous."

"If you can see what you want to do and it seems like you could reach that, you're not reaching far enough.  If you want to do something and its ridiculous and crazy and amazing and "I can't believe I could ever do that," then you need to go for that."

Links mentioned:

Aunia's gallery

The Artist's Way Workbook by Julia Cameron

The Best Motivational Video Speeches Compilation - Youtube

Jim Carrey's Secret of Life - Youtube

Connect with Aunia:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter / Create & Inspire / Alexi Era Gallery


Mar 7, 2016

Julie Zantopoulos is the author of Shoot Down the Wendy Bird. Before she published her first book she was Editor-in-Chief, creating content for a national print and online magazine, The Indie Chicks. She now runs a community of writers and fosters creativity in others. She will be launching Nobody's Beauty Guru, a site dedicated to her beauty addiction, in March.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Julie discusses:

-Her favorite trashy SciFi movies and how they can actually serve as inspiration if they are able to be produced.

-One of her first creative moments as a writer when she went to Greece as a young girl.

-The process of writing her book Shoot Down the Wendy Bird and the emotional journey that it takes both her and the reader down.

-Her advice for people who might find it hard to put themselves out there in their writing or their art.

-Her advice for writers or bloggers who want to write a book.

-The importance of having trusted people to read your work.

-How it is not always good to push yourself to write if you are not in the proper headspace.

-The importance of going out and experiencing life, so you actually have experiences to draw from.

-How her worst moments creatively are when she gets in her own head and begins to doubt the value of her own work (and how to break that cycle).

-How one of her scariest moments was switching from the comfortable scenario of personal blogging and taking the leap as a business owner of The Indie Chicks.

-The empowerment that comes from realizing that you are good at what you do and that you can make a living from it.

Julie's Final Push will inspire you to treat your writing and your art, not like a hobby, but as a PART OF WHO YOU ARE AND WHAT YOU DO!


"I treat my writing as an outlet and a coping mechanism."

"The hardest part is hitting publish.  That doesn't change over time.  It's not something you get over but it is something that you get used to."

"You need to trust in yourself and your own unique view on things that there is somebody out there that wants to read it and probably needs to read it."

"The world deserves to hear your voice.  And it should be heard -- you were given it for a reason."

"I don't think there's any greater joy than when you do finally let go, and let your work be appreciated by other people."

"You grow so much more when you allow yourself to share and get feedback."

"There's nothing to write about if you do not give yourself time to go out and live an active life."

"When you do it even though you're afraid of it, you gain such strength."

"Claiming myself as a writer was one of the most profound and amazing experiences."

"You never know where one decision where you push past fear will lead you.  Each one of those small little decisions that seem like nothing, can lead you to pretty amazing places."

Resources mentioned:

Shoot Down the Wendy Bird by Julie Zantopoulos

Connect with Julie:

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Nobody's Beauty Guru


Mar 4, 2016

Martin is an English artist with an African heart. Born into a family of zoologists in 1982, he grew up amidst forest and savannah creatures of central and eastern Africa. He has held successful solo exhibitions in Africa, Europe, and the United States and has exhibited with the Society of Wildlife Artists and at the David Shepherd Foundation's Wildlife Artist of the Year event. A driving force for Martin's work is his commitment to conservation efforts for endangered wildlife, and through his art he continues to support the work of selected wildlife charities.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Martin discusses:

-His upbringing in Africa, how his parents were young zoologists, and what that meant for his life.

-Why he draws detailed portraits of the animals on very clear white backgrounds, so that it doesn't detract from the animal.

-How he became obsessed with detail but tried to hone that throughout his career.

-How he likes to play around with composition, and push the boundaries with negative space, as it helps to engage the viewer.

-His ability to not just draw animals, but to draw animals in a moment in time, and how long that took him to figure out.


-How he was most creative when he was younger because he just dove into it without thinking.

-His advice for people who might be discouraged by their gap in skill in comparison to his.

-The importance of doing art because you enjoy it, and not comparing yourself to other people or worrying about what other people think.

-How to deal with fear.

-How mistakes are good and help you to evolve.

-His charity work for wildlife conservation.

Martin's Final Push will inspire you to put in the time and GET IT DOODLED!


"It wasn't until much later on in life that I realized just how privileged I was to spend time amongst those animals."

"They are the stars of the show.  It's the animals.  It's not me.  My first passion was wildlife, and then I discovered I could draw them."

"I like to push the boundaries with negative space.  That helps to engage the viewer more."

"If you try to use the negative space in a creative way, it invites people to engage with it more and be a part of creating that environment in which it is sitting."

"It's all about the hours that you put in.  You do improve even if you're not seeing it real time."

"I always start at the eye.  It's the window to the soul.  It's where all the emotion is conveyed."

"It's not just for me, the art.  It's for everyone."

"You put the time in, and you will improve."

"Don't compare yourself to people.  If you enjoy drawing, you just just be drawing and not be worrying too much about what other people are thinking.

"There's nothing really to be scared of.  You love doing it, so just do it."

"You sleep better at night if you've done something a little bit creative during the day.

Connect with Martin:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter


Mar 3, 2016

You might know Kent Gustavson as an award-winning author, for his biography on musician Doc Watson called Blind But Now I See.  Or you might know him as a musician and producer, with 14 critically acclaimed albums. Or if you are a student at Stony Brook University in New York, you might know him as a teacher. Or maybe you know him as a public speaker and perhaps you have already been inspired by him from his Ted Talk, "We Are Alive."

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Kent discusses:

-How in college he did a lot of soul searching to "find himself," but a near-fatal car wreck with his father made it clear to him that he should do what he loves doing.

-How he loves how art teachers see the world.

-How the idea that "there are no mistakes" really changed the way he thought about things.

-Jazz musicians and their ability to turn a mistake into a feature of the music.

-How anticipating mistakes make them easier to deal with and much easier to learn from.

-Training your ability to "turn creativity on" and finding the method that helps you to not spend.

-The importance of focusing on your own health, as well as taking days off (just like athletes need to do).

-How his creative upbringing led him to want to coach authors.

-How the block for many creative people is the idea of making the "next best thing," and concentrating too much on making it be perfect.

-The idea of "puke and polish" -- how sometimes you just need to just get it out there, and then worry about polishing it later.

-The different advice that he gives to different types of authors.

-The importance of understanding your audience and when they read and why.

-The value of using an avatar.

-How it is not easy for some people to simply use an egg timer every morning to work on their craft, since they get longer-lasting bursts of creativity.

-His advice for people who have many different creative ideas but haven't started on any.


"Take the mistake and turn it into something beautiful -- a feature."

"You can't live on top of Everest.  You climb up the mountain.  You hang up there for minutes.  And then you come back down.  Perfection is hitting the top of Everest, but you can't live in perfection."

"Who exactly is this for?"

"It's easy for the reader to see the author, but your goal as an author is to see the reader."

"You can have either happiness or fulfillment or both."

"If your life's in the doldrums, kick it in the pants.  Start painting.  Start playing some music.  Learn the guitar.  Spend more time with your kids.  Take a trip."

Resources mentioned:

"Blind But Now I See: The Biography of Music Legend Doc Watson" by Kent Gustavson

"We Are Alive" (Kent's Ted Talk)


Connect with Kent:

Website / Facebook / Twitter / Blooming Twig


Mar 2, 2016

Nick Gentry is an artist from London who paints on recycled and obsolete technological materials such as floppy discs, 35mm film negatives, VHS cassettes, and X-ray prints. In doing so, he creates a conversation between digital and analog processes.

Full shownotes:

In this episode, Nick discusses:

-What the canvas of technological materials says to the viewer.

-How he finds charm in the materials that have already had a life.

-Where he actually obtains the floppy discs and VHS tapes to use for his art.

-How he uses ambiguity and pulling many different pieces together in order for the viewer to make their own interpretations about the art and what it means to them.

-The first time he made this type of art as an experiment, and how he left his work in the street to be picked up for free.

-His predictions for the future of technology and his hope that we don't get lost.

-How he tries to suspend his judgment while making art, so that if a piece isn't going particularly well, he can abandon it and move on.

-How we should learn from children and how they enjoy drawing and painting without thinking about if something is right or wrong.

-His advice for people who might be scared to share their work.

-The importance of being attached to your art while you are working on it, but then detaching yourself from it as soon as it leaves your studio (and that is where the daily practice comes in, because you can immediately move on to the next thing).

-His advice for people who have a difficult time moving onto the next thing.

-How being able to move on to the next thing also allows you to not linger on failures.

-How he draws inspiration from everything around him, especially nature.

Nick's Final Push will inspire you to be unique.


"It tends to be a slow burn with these ideas."

"It's really hard to have a perspective in the moment because we are surrounded by so much that is stimulating us all the time.  It's only with time that we can actually reflect upon what happened and what it means."

"With art, and my work especially, I'm not tying to provide any answers or predictions.  I'm just trying to ask better questions than I was before."

"Whenever you follow your passion, you just have the intuition to work when you need to work, and you find the time of day when you're optimal and you work at those times."

"I see things as more of a sequence rather than endpoints, so if that painting didn't work out then that is not a problem to me, because that is just a step on a long road."

"I think it's just a case of going ahead with it and doing it and not pondering it for too long.  Just seeing where it takes you."

"For me, it's all about moving forward on to the next thing."

"Art has to be a personal exploration."

Links mentioned:

Nick at the C24 Gallery

Connect with Nick:

Website / Facebook / Instagram / Twitter

Mar 1, 2016

Diana Gabaldon is the author of the award-winning, #1 NYT-bestselling OUTLANDER novels.  Diana has written eight books in the series, with more than twenty-six million copies in print worldwide.  The series is published in 26 countries and 23 languages, and includes a nonfiction (well, relatively) companion volume, THE OUTLANDISH COMPANION, which provides details on the settings, background, characters, research, and writing of the first novels in the series. Gabaldon has also written several books in a sub-series featuring Lord John Grey (a major minor character from the main series): LORD JOHN AND THE PRIVATE MATTER,  LORD JOHN AND THE BROTHERHOOD OF THE BLADE, LORD JOHN AND THE HAND OF DEVILS, and LORD JOHN AND THE SCOTTISH PRISONER.

Returning to her comic-book roots, she has also written a graphic novel titled THE EXILE (set within the OUTLANDER universe and featuring the main characters from OUTLANDER), but told from the viewpoint of Jamie Fraser and his godfather, Murtagh.

Diana’s current writing projects include the ninth major novel in the OUTLANDER series, as yet untitled, and a second volume of THE OUTLANDISH COMPANION. She is also serving as a Co-Producer and advisor for the Outlander TV series produced by the Starz network and Tall Ship Productions, which is based on her novels.

In this episode, Diana discusses:

-The story behind "Outlander."

-How she had known that she wanted to be a novelist since she was eight.

-How she was comfortable writing because of writing scholarly articles, grant proposals, and scientific papers, but needed to learn the details of how to write a novel.

-How Outlander was really a practice novel for her.

-How a Dr. Who re-run inspired the thought of a man in a kilt, and that is where she began Outlander.

-How starting to write immediately was important to her, so that she wouldn't get caught up in doing endless research.

-How characters come under three classifications: mushrooms, onions, and hard nuts.

-The most important question to answer is what does your character want?  Because this is what shapes the story (what is stopping them from getting what they want?)

-How the only cure for "cold days" or writer's block is to just write anyway.

-How she uses a "kernel" (a line of dialogue, a concrete object, an emotional ambiance, or anything else concrete) and she writes around that kernel to start telling the story or the scene.

Diana's Final Push will inspire you to set aside some time every single day.


"I just wanted to write a book in order to learn how."

"I said to myself, "I'm going to write a novel for practice.  I'm not going to show it to anyone.  I'm not telling anyone what I'm doing.   It's just for me to learn how."

"The important thing is to pick a point and get started.  It doesn't really matter where you start."

"I fought with her for several pages, trying to beat her into shape and make her talk like an 18th century woman but she wasn't having any of this.  She kept making smart-ass modern remarks and she also took over and started telling the story herself."

"You need to know who your character is."

"I don't plan books ahead of time.  I don't work with an outline.  I don't work in a straight line.  I work in little pieces where I can see things happening."

"The secret to success in writing is to understand how your own brain works and work with it rather than against it."

"You just need to get words on paper and eventually the words will become alive again and start flowing for you."

"You cannot write anything any way but one word at a time."

"Don't let yourself be stopped by lack of time."

Connect with Diana:

Website / Facebook / Outlander