Dani Ives is a self-taught fiber artist from Arkansas who has developed a beautiful and unique technique, which she calls “painting with wool.” She creates two dimensional works of art directly on fabric. Her inspiration comes from a love of nature and science, which has an enormous influence on her work.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/daniives
-How she became an artist in a roundabout way after getting a degree in biology and conservation education and then worked at a zoo as an educator.
-How she first became interested in needle felting.
-The challenge to do something new every week for one year, and how that led her to start doing wool paintings.
-Her transition from working at the zoo to creating art full time, and how pet portraitures helped her to generate income.
-How her process is different than traditional wool felting.
-How people are often surprised by how her art mimics traditional paintings and drawings.
-The effect that nature has on her art and her inspiration.
-The way in which she chooses between many different ideas.
-Her self-imposed challenge to fill a sketchbook and all of the things she learned as a result of her success.
-The importance of determining what you don’t like.
-How much she enjoys teaching other creative outlets to people.
-Dealing with imposter syndrome.
-How she balances her time.
“There was always a part of me that wanted to be a maker and I needed to fulfill that creative urge that I was having.”
“What I like to do is create the most realistic pieces I can with this medium.”
“I like the challenge and I like being able to surprise people about the medium. That’s the most fun part for me.”
“It’s really important to me to introduce other creative outlets to people, because you never know what will help somebody flourish or build up their creativity.”
“It doesn’t really matter what you think and sometimes it doesn’t matter what other people think, either. If you want to do it, you just do it.”
“Really cool things can happen when you step out of your comfort zone and when you push boundaries.”
Lori Richmond is a corporate creative director turned picture book maker. She is the author-illustrator of Pax and Blue and Bunny’s Staycation, coming in 2018. She is also the illustrator of A Hop is Up and several other picture books.
Lori is also a runner, and she documents her race training by drawing what she sees on her runs, in the same amount of time as each run via the hashtag #ViewFromMyRun.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/loririchmond
-How she started with her illustration and picture book making as a hobby and then slowly transitioned into making it her job.
-Her advice to not quit your job before you know that you can make money from your “side hustle” and also that you would actually enjoy doing it.
-The story of how Pax and Blue came to be.
-Being observant of the world around you and maintaining a childlike wonder.
-How and why she started running.
-How she was struck with the idea for #ViewFromMyRun
-The overwhelming positive response she got from the running community that encouraged her to continue #ViewFromMyRun.
-Getting picked up by Runner’s World and making friends with running legend Hal Higdon.
-The reasons why she limits the time she spends on each image to the time she spent on her run.
-The many benefits of using a timer.
-Some of the lessons she has learned from running.
-How your creative habit doesn’t have to be a daily one, because that often puts too much pressure on yourself.
-Friends Work Here and why it is valuable for her to surround herself with likeminded, driven, creative individuals.
“As artists, we need to be observers and listeners.”
“It was just like a lightning-strike moment – I should paint it, but let me see if I can paint it in the same amount of time that I’m doing this run.”
“I’ll put it on Instagram, and Instagram will be my accountability partner.”
“It was just so funny how all these things wound up coming out of this side project.”
“I was noticing so many overlaps between running and making art.”
“It’s more of a visual journal of my runs and my training for these races. If I leave one out because I don’t like the drawing, it’s almost like I’m not respecting the run.”
“You are only one decision away from starting that thing that you’re thinking about. The only thing holding you back is yourself.”
Sarah W. Goldhagen taught for ten years at Harvard’s Graduate School of Design and spent many years as the Architecture Critic for the New Republic. She’s written about buildings, cities, and landscapes for publications all over the world. Sarah’s new book, Welcome to Your World: How the Built Environment Shapes Our Lives is a thoroughly entertaining, eye-opening manifesto arguing that the buildings we live and work in deeply affect us, physically and psychologically, and that we can’t afford the soul-crushing architecture we mostly subject ourselves to.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/sarahgoldhagen
-How her book, Welcome to Your World is a shift from the work she previously did.
-“Blindsight” and how we take in information subconsciously or nonconsciously.
-How there is no such thing as a neutral built environment. It is either helping you or hurting you.
-The story of when she had to change her setting while writing her dissertation.
-What creative people can do to put themselves in a better environment while they are creating.
-Complex natural light, views of nature, and tactile experiences.
-How her interest in cognitive neuroscience and inspiration from Alvar Aalto is what drove her to write the book.
-Some of the big challenges that she was faced with in taking on such a big project.
-Her advice to someone who is thinking about taking on a project that requires a large amount of research and learning.
-How she was slammed by her colleagues after an early presentation of material from her book, and how she courageously went forward with the book anyway.
-The traveling and photography that she did for the book.
-The pros and cons of using pictures of architecture.
“People should recognize that the built environment and its quality and design, has a far greater impact on people than anybody previously realized.”
“There is no such thing as a neutral streetscape, building, or landscape. If it’s not doing something good for you, chances are it’s doing something really not good for you.”
“Creativity is such a demanding cognitive state that you don’t want anything in the built environment that’s going to be tugging at you in any way.”
“I ended up delving into a lot of different fields and then it was up to me to figure out what the paradigm of how people experience their environments actual is based on these studies, most of which didn’t have much to do with the built environment.”
“It doesn’t have to be perfect, but you just have to do what you believe might help or might bring people to new ideas and new places.”
Tyler Thrasher collects found objects and deceased creatures, and grows delicate, gorgeous crystal clusters on them. His unique talents for combining chemistry and artistry have gained his work some much-deserved attention. He is also an artist, music producer, traveler, rare plant collector, and photographer.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/tylerthrasher
-How he decides what he is going to use as a creative outlet on a day-to-day basis.
-How creative people have a baseline to create and then they pick an outlet to do that creating.
-The importance of pursuing your curiosities and scratching every single itch.
-Remembering that the reason we started doing something creative in the first place wasn’t to become the greatest at it or to try to make money from it, but because we were curious about it.
-How his crystallized natural art started.
-How his interest in caves started and his analysis as to why he loves them so much.
-The importance of writing down all of your ideas and attacking them.
-Some of the opposition he has encountered from other people, and how it motivates him to prove them wrong.
-How he first began producing electronic music and photography.
-Losing everything in his recent house fire and the incredible support that they received from fans, followers, friends, and family.
-The synchronicity of titling his new book The Wisdom of the Furnace.
-Another synchronicity of J.A.W. Cooper’s Phoenix being the only piece to survive the fire.
-His advice to put all of your work on the cloud.
-How he got back to his creative work immediately after the tragedy.
-How he found ways to turn the fire into something positive by using it as a backdrop for a photo shoot.
“I have a lot of interests and I just make time to do something. I don’t really pick what it is I want to do, I just use three hours to create.”
“I think curiosity is a huge component in being a human and creating.”
“From my childhood, I’ve always been an avid supporter and admirer of nature and what it has to offer.”
“I went into my first cave and fell in love immediately. It felt like home.”
“It went from scientific curiosity to just mad science artistic expression.”
“If you’re lying in bed and your subconscious starts screaming DO THIS COOL SHIT, get up, write it down, go back to sleep and then wake up and at least attempt to begin that idea.”
“A thing that artists should learn is to ignore that voice and boldly run in and at least give it a shot.”
“It was a weird juxtaposition. It was one of the most heartbreaking things I’ve experienced coupled with one of the most human-embracing things I will ever experience.”
“I had lost everything for the book in the fire, but in return I kind of just got the book. In the end, the book had realized itself and came out of the fire.”
“I realized that I can’t talk about alchemy and transformation until I experience it first hand. And that’s what happened.”
Sarah Goldhagen : Website
Yellena James is an artist who uses pens, inks, markers and acrylics to combine complex abstract forms into dazzling images which take on lives of their own. Her colorful arrangements of organic shapes and tangled lines are at once floral and alien, organic and sci-fi
She has participated in shows around the U.S. and overseas including solo exhibitions at Giant Robot, the Here Gallery, and the Hijinks Gallery and she has done illustration work for Anthropologie, Crate and Barrell, Relativity Media and many others.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/yellena
-Growing up in Sarajevo during the Bosnian War.
-How she developed her creativity despite the conflict that was happening all around her.
-Her family’s move to Florida and where she went from there.
-How she started doing pen and ink work in her sketchbooks because she didn’t have studio space.
-Her decision to post her work on Etsy and where that led her.
-How bloggers began to notice her work and how that enabled her to be in shows and obtain illustration gigs.
-How many of her jobs seem to come out of nowhere and at the perfect time, but how that all comes from her work being out there.
-Her advice to put all of your work out there and to reach out to bloggers.
-Letting go of your internal dialogue that constantly asks if you are going in the right direction.
-How she balances her time.
-Her new book, Star, Branch, Spiral, Fan.
“It was kind of intense art-learning and I was very fortunate to be in that environment even though everything outside was very hectic.”
“It felt almost like somebody knew when I would finish one job and something else would come along.”
“Put it out there. Make sure people know about you.”
“I think if you work really hard and put your whole soul into it, you’ll eventually get to the point that you’re really happy with your work.”
“Don’t listen to your excuses because they are lying to you and they’re not worth listening to. You’ve got to follow your own heart.”
Christina Mrozik is an artist from Michigan who uses pen, ink, marker, and watercolor to compose semi-surreal visions of nature that are very different from the usual paintings of serene landscapes and friendly animals.
She is currently based in Portland, Oregon and enjoys working with arts education nonprofit groups.
She is currently being shown at Antler Gallery until June 26th.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/christinamrozik
-How there is no clear-cut path for artists and creative people, and how each one needs to walk their own path.
-How art acts as a mirror in which you can learn more about yourself from what you create.
-The importance of pursuing your curiosities.
-Embracing the idea that you will learn more than you will be able to create.
-How everyone has a finite capacity, and it is just a matter of utilizing that capacity over and over so that it can grow and so that you can grow.
-Looking back to work you made very early in life and seeing the core that has existed throughout your life.
-Her advice to young people to explore any genre or style that piques their interest and to continue to create things that they enjoy or think they might enjoy.
-How she makes most of her money doing commercial illustration for various companies, and how she balances that with her personal work.
-How she meets and has conversations with her new ideas.
-The fact that people curate their social media to appear as if a creative life is easy, but how most people struggle to make it work and have much less time than it appears.
-Finding ways to be creative in everyday life.
-How she is unafraid of white paper and approaches her pieces without a plan.
-Pieces that sometimes hang on her wall for years until something else will inspire and inform her to complete it.
-How her understanding comes first from movement, then imagery, and then language.
-How learning to draw feels like learning to play an instrument whereas working with clay feels like singing.
-Her show at Antler Gallery and her feelings about the pieces in it.
“I feel like art acts as a mirror. It is revealing the parts that are inside of you already and you’re just putting them on paper. Then you have something to look at that informs you about your inner world. So it’s this back and forth process.”
“We’re constantly dividing ourselves into categories and I think what I’m really trying to do through my art is figure out how to merge all those things back together into one complex being rather than to divide all those out into digestible pieces.”
“I think something every artist should do, no matter what stage they are at in their life, is pull out everything that they’ve made as far back as they can go and have everything out at the same time.”
“Your art should be a reflection of yourself and the only reason it should stay the same is if you do. If you’re on a path of growing and shifting, your work should grow and shift with you. You should feel like you have permission to allow it to change.”
“Make sure you get lost in something that you really like and feels really good, because if you’re hating what you’re making because you think it’s what you should be doing, you’re doing yourself a double disservice.”
“If I really want to have a good creative day, there will just be no noise anywhere and it will just come find me.”
“There are so many times where I don’t really have a clear idea at all, I just know that I’m feeling creative. I’ll just sit down at a piece of paper and see what’s in there.”
“For me, so much of the making is the thinking itself. They’re not always ideas that have been hashed out and put together. They are the hashing out.”
“It’s like the actual process of moving my hand is what helps my brain think or understand.”
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: http://yourcreativepush.com/artbytaireplay
-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.
"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."
Amy Kuretsky is a health coach, acupuncturist, and herbalist with expertise in traditional Chinese medicine, digestive health, and a wide variety of nutritional plans. She coaches creative entrepreneurs to be their healthiest selves and to tap into the energy that is the source of everything we do.
Amy also hosts Health Fuels Hustle, a podcast all about living a healthier life as a creative.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/amykuretsky
-How she came to be an acupuncturist and a health coach for creatives.
-How she got off of all the drugs that she was taking for an autoimmune disease.
-Her advice for creative individuals like Youngman who suffer from burnout and let their health fall by the wayside.
-The importance of establishing our priorities and being aware of the fact that we say “yes” to too many things.
-Her method for doing a “brain dump” to rid yourself of the things that take up your energy but don’t bring you money or joy.
-Creative entrepreneur’s hesitancy to delegate.
-How “done” is better than “perfect.”
-How breaking up larger tasks into smaller portions can be effective in overcoming the sense of overwhelm.
-Taking the quiet time to set a baseline for yourself with positive and negative thoughts and how they affect your body.
-How the biggest excuse she hears from creative entrepreneurs is that they “don’t have enough time” to take care of themselves.
-The power of morning and evening routines and a glimpse into hers.
-Cell phones and the importance of keeping them away from the bedroom.
-Alarm clocks and setting reminders for yourself throughout the day to be present in the moment and to fill yourself with the warm feelings that your goals bring you.
-What acupuncture is and it’s benefits.
-What people can expect from her podcast, Health Fuels Hustle.
“I found that so many creative entrepreneurs were burning the candle at both ends. They had so much going on that they were letting their health fall by the wayside. This was a community that really needed support when it came to their health.”
“When it comes to our energy, our health, and fueling our hustle, it’s all about building up our reserves. So if we can do more of the things that we love doing and it brings us energy or joy, those are just as important as making money.”
“Oftentimes what I see when it comes to creative entrepreneurs is that they really fear delegation.”
“Done is better than perfect. Perfect is a myth and so often we hold ourselves back from completing a project or putting ourselves out there because we don’t think that either we ourselves or our work is perfect yet.”
Marta Nael is a Spanish artist currently working for Ediciones Babylon as an artist and art director. She has a love for all painting techniques, using both digital and traditional media. After completing her Fine Arts degree, she specialized in concept art and matte painting. This allowed her to develop her own style, which could be described as a game of light and color, or Digital impressionism when it comes to digital media.
Marta has published four books, her latest being Sketchbook 2.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/martanael
-Some of her earliest creative memories.
-The lessons she learned in art school.
-Her switch from traditional to digital painting and the initial resistance she received from her professors.
-Her advice for people who are afraid to get into digital painting for various reasons.
-Where she gets her inspiration for her concept art.
-The story behind “Darth Monroe.”
-Her early process for starting a piece of art and how she knows which ideas to move forward.
-Struggling with the lack of support from her parents when she first decided that she wanted to be an artist as a career.
-Dealing with the inner demons that tell you that your work isn’t good enough as you are trying to share it on social media.
-How she started making money from her art.
-How she gets the courage to post work when her self-doubt is at its peak.
-Her advice for when your creative passion starts to feel like work.
-How she doesn’t have much time for personal work, so she tries to put as much of herself into her commissions as she can.
-Her new book, Sketchbook 2.
“As an artist, I’m always getting inspired by what surrounds me, so if you love something, it is normal to want to paint that.”
“That’s my only fear. When I want to upload something and I feel like maybe it’s not good enough.”
“When it comes to social media, you can have that feeling that if you don’t upload something people will forget that you’re there.”
“When you have to paint daily, you lose that freshness that you have when you paint whenever you want.”
Blake McFarland is a recycled materials artist who uses recycled rubber tires to create amazing lifelike sculptures of tire animals. In addition to his tire sculptures, Blake is a painter and he also creates murals out of recycled wine corks.
Blake is also a pitcher in the Toronto Blue Jays organization.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/blakemcfarland
-Having two identities as a baseball player and an artist and how he balances those two worlds.
-How the baseball offseason provides months of time that he can fully devote to his art.
-The type of art (and planning) he does during the baseball season.
-How he started as an acrylic painter and sold his very first piece.
-How Goodyear reached out to him to make sculptures for the Cotton Bowl.
-His method for deciding what specific type of art to do in a particular day.
-The initial resistance of people not understanding what he meant when he told them he wanted to create tire sculptures, and his decision to create it to show them.
-How he used the negative result of having to get shoulder surgery to get positive results in his art career.
-What art and creativity brings to his life.
-The story behind his recycled cork art.
“I had basically eighteen days to finish two larger-than-life sculptures which would normally take me up to two months to create.”
“I’m not a guy that likes a lot of downtime, and I always think that if I’m watching TV I could be doing something else more productive, so that’s when I do the majority of my artwork.”
“When I told my wife I wanted to make a tire sculpture, she just kind of laughed at me.”
“Take whatever bad thing comes at you, and channel it into something positive.”
“When you’re writing or doing art, you’re not thinking about anything but the task at hand, and that’s what you need to get your mind off of other things.”
Mike is a UK based designer specializing in Web/UI Design, Graphic Design, Branding, Illustration & Photography. He has a worldwide client roster and his work is regularly featured in design related publications. Mike is also a regular speaker at design & tech conferences.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/mikekus
-How he feels as if he was predisposed to become a designer from a young age.
-Working as a graphic designer for The Body Shop.
-His entrance into the world of web design.
-The story of his creative block while trying to design for Carsonified and the “penny drop moment” that cracked the block.
-The strategy he employs to avoid creative blocks and to get to the thesis of what he is going to create for a company.
-Developing a “single sentence” that encompasses what a company is all about and what his design will attempt to portray.
-Being a black sheep in the face of trends.
-How he attempts to create a unique identity for each of the companies that he works with.
-How the layout of a website is unimportant in comparison to the content.
-How his interest in photography was reawakened with the emergence of Instagram and the accessibility of his phone’s camera.
-The importance of not having an agenda for your creative passions and just doing them because you want to do them.
-A lesson he learned from being in a band about not listening to people who try to influence you to change one way or another.
-A story of putting off writing an article about productivity.
“Creativity is the last thing that computers will steal from us.”
“There’s not even a point in doing design if you’re not trying to be a black sheep.”
“My belief is that everyone I work with is unique and has a unique story to tell.”
“I don’t feel that layout is much of an issue. It’s really the content of the website that’s up for grabs.”
“For me it was more about capturing a moment.”
“Because it was simple, because it was in my pocket, I started getting into taking pictures again.”
“I started using Instagram on the day it came out.”
“Doing work for companies mixed in with my personal works brings more variety to the pictures I take and the locations I end up in because of it.”
“Just starting to do it and seeing what happens is much more important than trying to have an agenda.”
“Just to know that when you’re going through a period of lack of motivation and you’re not being productive, you’re not the only one. Just knowing that other people are in the same boat is sort of comforting.”
Andreas Preis is a designer, illustrator & artist, currently living and working Berlin. He was born deep in the Bavarian Forest in the south of Germany and pursuing his lifelong desire to become a painter without a boss, he studied communications design in Nuremberg.
Andreas also creates murals, tape art, and live paintings, and also works in different areas of traditional communications design like typography, logo design, icon design, and art direction.
He has worked with a variety of brands, including Microsoft, Adidas, Adobe, ESPN, Ford, Nike, and Coors, just to name a few.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/andreaspreis
-What it was like growing up in the Bavarian forest.
-Why he decided to go with communications design.
-How he unintentionally developed his personal style, and how he isn’t even sure if he ever wanted a “style” in the first place.
-How it is much harder to change your style once you already have one than it is to develop one in the first place.
-His hatching technique and how he sees it as a meditative process.
-How some digital tools and devices make his creative process faster, easier, and more convenient.
-How technology can help you to play around and get new ideas that you wouldn’t have been able to conceive of without it.
-The story of his first mural on the Berlin Wall.
-The challenges that come with translating his work onto a larger scale for his murals.
-Dealing with difficult clients and trusting your instincts when it appears as if a client either has no money or has no idea what they want.
-When and when not to do free work.
-How he balances his time between working for many different clients and still trying to find time for his personal work.
-Why he thinks many of his friends never posted any of their work.
-How criticism becomes easier to deal with the more you put yourself out there.
“When you do things that you personally like, I think that after a while you will have your own style.”
“I think where technology can help you a lot is that you can play around with things and maybe get new ideas from it.”
“If you already earn money, that’s already something that’s holding you back from going freelance.”
“If people are trying to talk you into different reasons why they can’t pay you for something that will pay them later on, it just doesn’t make sense.”
“For me, drawing is not really work. So if I have a day off, chances are pretty big that I will draw or paint anyway.”
Sandra Busby is a still life artist who paints in a contemporary style using traditional methods. Inspired by the ordinary, she strives to capture the playful light in glass and other still life with her paints.
Feeling stifled by the modern way of teaching, Sandra turned her back on art school, shut herself away and studied the traditional methods of painting.
Her work has since been published multiple times, she won her first award in 2016 and her paintings can now be found hanging in private collections around the world.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/sandrabusby
-Her creative history, including a long gap in drawing and painting.
-The idea of not drawing in your sketchbook because you are afraid of spoiling the pages.
-How 100 pages of doodles or bad drawings is much better than 100 blank pages.
-How she is able to “scratch her creative itch” before she starts her work day, and how productive that time ends up being.
-Finding a slot of time that works best for when you are most creative.
-How starting is often the hardest thing to do, but once you do, how fast and smoothly things can go.
-The idea of having a white board or something similar to write down all of the ideas that come into your head so that they are in plain view.
-Her experience at art school and what led her to decide that art college was not for her.
-How she eventually developed her style by ignoring everybody else.
-Some of the resistances that she faces on a daily basis, including self doubt, procrastination, and guilt.
-How difficult it can be to get to your creative passion when you are in love with your partner and just want to spend time with them.
-How to strike a balance between the love for your family and the love for your art.
-“The Skanky Teenage Stage” of a painting and how to get through it.
-The power in approaching your art with the simple intention of making it just a little bit better.
-Some of the people that she draws inspiration from, such as Danny Gregory, other bloggers, and her Uncle Danny.
“Trying to write a novel with one child attached to your leg and the other attached to your boob is quite distracting. It was never going to work.”
“It was six months before I opened that sketchbook because I was absolutely terrified to spoil the pages.”
“It made me realize that I could paint the world however I wanted to paint it.”
“You don’t have to show anyone. If you’re that worried, get a ring binder. You can pull the pages out.”
“You do need to forget about perfection and the end result. You’ve got to just make marks and see where it takes you.”
“I thought that to be a real artist, you must have this piece of paper to tell you that.”
“Procrastination is a great way of avoiding failure, isn’t it?”
“To be good at something, the first thing you’ve got to be willing to do is be bad at it.”
What Beginner Artists Need to Know about Painting [From Sandra's blog]
The Six Secret Stages of Painting [From Sandra's blog]
"Pep Talk" by Danny Gregory [Vimeo]
Benjamin Hardman is an Australian photographer residing in Iceland. He works to blend digital media with fixed aesthetic principles through textural contrasts and natural obscurities within the landscape. Channeling between portrayals of stark wilderness and refined conceptual pieces, his work encapsulates the seasonal change that grips Iceland throughout the year.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/benjaminhardman
-How he went from Accounting in Australia to becoming a professional photographer in Iceland.
-Some of the difficulties and adjustments that he had to make in moving to a completely new climate and culture.
-How he made the move to Iceland much more stable by spending a year saving money and working on his photography.
-His advice to have a well-thought-out plan before jumping into a big life change.
-How his photographic style has changed since moving to Iceland.
-Progressing and looking at the closer details.
-The adventures that he takes people on, specifically “Odyssey.”
-His YouTube channel, specifically the drone videos.
-The awe-inspiring event of seeing the Aurora Borealis.
-How he attempts to keep himself motivated.
-How he looks back at his old work to see if there are any “gems” that he hadn’t noticed before and what that does for his creative process.
-The idea of posting new work alongside old work.
-Trying to put your work together in groups to find trends or consistencies, even if you are just making an exhibition for yourself.
-How he balances his time with the many things he has to do as a professional photographer.
-His advice for amateur freelancers who want to reach out to people for work.
-Being down when he spends a lot of time on a particular photo and is still not happy about the results (and how he shares it anyway).
“I had no idea that this place would just completely change my whole perception of life.”
“If you have enough dedication, you will find a way. If you’re that passionate about doing something, it will be possible somehow.”
“I basically quit everything and went for it.”
“It’s okay to miss a crazy photo in one spot to go get a new, never-before-seen mediocre photo of something else.
“I try my best to stay motivated but when you’re your own boss, it can get hard.”
“If you’re just an authentic individual with a great plan, you’re going to go pretty far.”
“A photo can change so dramatically from where it started to where it ended and well beyond what I thought it would be.”
“Imagine the world of photography if everyone was pushing the barriers for themselves and doing things that maybe they’re not fully comfortable with but really pushing it. I think we’d have a way more diverse industry of people.”
Are you upset with who the country chose to be the President of the United States?
Does watching the News make you scared?
Are you spending all of your time getting into political debates?
Do things like poverty, global warming, inequality, and potential war make you want to curl up into a ball and hide?
When the world around us seems too big, too depressing, and too scary, creative people can sometimes go into hibernation mode. Long lulls in our creative output come when we get sucked into all of the problems that the world faces. Most of them just seem too big for us to try to face, so we simply don't do anything.
But it is our duty as creative people to battle these problems by changing culture at its source.
In this episode, we listen back to previous guests who have also been overwhelmed by the scary world that they live in and who have battled back to make a positive change. Youngman will try to make you realize that you don't have to have an enormous audience to make a change with your voice.
By contributing to the conversation with your art, you can change the world.
Shane Madden is an award winning illustrator and cover artist from Toronto, Canada. He has illustrated for books, magazines, and games including NY Times best sellers. He participates in workshops, online communities, and he teaches illustration at a college level. He is also the founder of the Illustration Lighthouse.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/shanemadden
-His experience in going to art school and being initially overwhelmed.
-Technical illustration and what that means.
-The false idea of the “Field of Dreams” art career, where if you build it, they will come.
-Building a portfolio around the type of work that you want to do, and taking the confusion away from the art directors that will be looking at your portfolio.
-How someone like James Jean’s portfolio isn’t something you should try to emulate if you are looking for work, as he is simply showcasing his work.
-His advice to not try to do multiple things at once, but instead start with the first thing you want to get going and then add on as you become competent.
-The power of having your own website and the dangers of people wandering somewhere else when you send them to your profile on social media sites.
-The idea of investing in your art career, even if that means spending money to take a trip with interviews lined up.
-Putting something in your portfolio that you are able to comfortably talk about so that you will appear knowledgeable.
-The three different types of artists and how they develop an audience and make money.
-How many different kinds of jobs that are available to artists that you might never have thought about before.
-His advice for artists who haven’t made a cent from their work to start making money.
-To not work for free – to at least get something from your time and talent (and publicity doesn’t count).
-His math formula for determining if your time is better spent looking for creative work than working at an unrelated job.
-How your resume doesn’t matter at all, all that matters is your portfolio.
-More about Illustration Lighthouse and what people can expect from it.
“You really don’t need any social media to get commercial work. The viability of putting your time into social media isn’t as good as you pounding the pavement and finding the right people to hire you for the type of work that you want to do.”
“You need to make sure that those five images say exactly what it is that you do and the kind of work that you want to do. Get that in front of the people that are looking for that specific work. Basically magic happens at that point.”
“What do you want to do first? Because if you try to do thirty things at a time, you are going to fail at thirty things. Try to get some success with one thing that you want to do and then start adding things on top of it.”
“Make sure that the work that is in your portfolio actually fits that market that you’re looking for.”
“You have to make yourself stand out. The best way to do that is to find out what it is that makes you different, what it is that you do that makes you special and amplify that.”
“I always think of myself as an art mercenary. Whoever wants to slam down the bag of money, I will be more than happy to fulfill what they’re looking for.”
“Go where no one else is going. Don’t try to storm the gates with the other thousands of people. Try to knock on the side door and get yourself in that way and differentiate yourself.”
Lana Crooks loves the antique, the creepy, the cute and the mysterious. Constructing creatures from fabrics and found objects, she is a purveyor of faux specimens and soft curiosities that are a blend of science and fantasy. Sought after for her pattern-making abilities, she frequently teams up with other artists to breathe three dimensional life into their illustrations, earning her two Designer Toy Awards.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/lanacrooks
-The “convoluted” artistic path that she took.
-Some of the many variables that came together to make her decide that she didn’t want to continue being an illustrator.
-How an “escape from people” at her job at Virgin Megastore led to a new creative job.
-How she started making her felt creatures and skeletons.
-Having two unique styles and not being afraid to pursue both at the same time.
-Her advice for people who spend too much time in the “incubation period” and allow themselves too much time to let doubt creep into their heads.
-This Is What I Do Now moments.
-Some of the other things that hold her back, like wanting to be “good enough,” being a perfectionist, and sometimes being too close to her pieces for too long.
-Her “box of sadness” and “box of happiness.”
-How she handles her monthly calendar and occasionally needs to catch up by having a “beast week.”
-The idea of needing to force yourself to get out of the house in order to give yourself time to be inspired by things that are outside of yourself.
-Her experience of studying bones at museums.
“Basically my whole creative career is a series of whims and tests.”
“It was perfect for me. It blends illustration with the costume design and the sewing, tactile part of it with the crazy things in my head.”
“You have to see where it takes you. You can’t pretend that the idea never crossed your mind because it won’t ever become anything.”
“Every couple years I have a This Is What I Do Now moment.”
“Having a lot of things to work on at one time is good for my morale. I get to banish pieces to the closet until I can have a strong enough will to see them again. And then sometimes I’ll pull it out and think that is great and wonder how I did it.”
“Once you’ve resigned the piece to its fate, that’s when you can start seeing good in it.”
“These pieces of art are basically like my children, but they’re just jerks. I love being able to create them, but they give me such hell that I get emotionally attached to them, either good or bad.”
“If you’re waiting for someone to hand you an opportunity, you’ll be waiting a very long time.”
Audra Auclair is a Canadian artist whose work has spanned across many mediums. She has been exhibited locally and internationally in Australia and America. Although she achieved a Graphic Design degree, she instead specializes in exploring the surreal and beautiful female form with her transcendent fusion of fine art and illustration.
She also has a YouTube channel, in which she focuses on art, mentality, and life, within an honest and calm atmosphere.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/audraauclair
-How she got to the point that she is at today in her artistic career.
-Why she decided to move to Thailand to find her style.
-How the way to find your style is to let go instead of trying too hard.
-How she balances her time with creating art and also managing the business aspects of being a professional artist.
-How she schedules her days and weeks.
-The importance of trusting your intuition when you feel like you are supposed to do something, even if there isn’t a good reason.
-Why she started her YouTube channel and some of her plans for the channel going forward.
-The idea of attacking your creative weaknesses instead of repeating what you are good at.
-The experience of opening up her sketchbook on YouTube for a “sketchbook tour.”
-The long and arduous process of creating a new graphic novel with her boyfriend, Lopi.
-Putting off creating something because of the voice in your head that tells you that “you’re not good enough yet.”
-The struggle of trying to find free time to work on personal projects.
-Not getting too caught up in comparing yourself to other artists and continuing to draw every day.
-The importance of taking inspiration from the real world around you.
-Not feeling the pressure to share all of your work.
“I didn’t have any proper style because I was still getting to know myself and my art.”
“When you think you want to do art, there’s so many paths that you can take.”
“There was an invisible dam that I had created with all these expectations. I thought I needed to be an illustrator or a graphic designer. I couldn’t just be an artist for some reason.”
“I didn’t realize that all I really needed to do was be myself, do what I wanted, and everything would fall into place.”
“It’s hard for me to like a finished painting the next day.”
“It’s a struggle because you want to make sure that everything’s perfect, but there’s a point where you have to say, ‘It’s never going to get done if I’m going to wait for this thing to be perfect.’”
“I think that this is going to be the biggest project I do in my life.”
David Luong has been working in the visual effects industry professionally since 2005. He is currently a Senior Cinematic Artist II at Blizzard Entertainment, doing lighting, compositing, and digital matte painting for Blizzard’s cinematics on games such as Diablo 3, Starcraft 2, World of Warcraft, Heroes of the Storm, and Overwatch.
He has previously worked on films such as Night at the Museum, Superman Returns, and Underworld Evolution at Rhythm & Hues, Luma Pictures, and Disney Toon Studios.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/davidluong
-How he began his creative journey by teaching himself Photoshop.
-A summary of his creative jobs at Disney Toon Studios, Luma Pictures, and Rhythm & Hues.
-What it feels like to be at the “pinnacle” in working for Blizzard Entertainment, one of his dream jobs.
-The feeling of being in “two worlds” in the cinematic department of the games he is a part of.
-ILM’s work on Jurassic Park and how their visual effects still hold up to this day.
-The experience of viewing other cinematics with a critical eye, and even his own past work.
-How he finds motivation to work on his own personal work away from Blizzard.
-His newest potential distraction from his personal work: Breath of the Wild.
-How and why he and his husband started their art gallery, Photonic Playground.
-The self-doubt that he experienced before putting up his own artwork in the gallery for the first show.
-The experience of seeing your own artwork hanging up in the physical world when you are so used to seeing it on a computer screen.
-His experience working on promotional posters and materials for Blizzard, including on the side of a 747 for Korean Air.
-His advice to new artists just starting out – to use the internet to its full potential.
“I think slowly tinkering away at it -- just a couple hours here and there -- is the way to do it.”
“I think it’s a lost opportunity to not have more digital artists out there being represented in a physical space.
“That feeling that you get as an artist seeing your digital work in the physical realm is very transforming.”
Martha Beck is an American sociologist, life coach, best-selling author, and speaker who specializes in helping individuals and groups achieve personal and professional goals.
Her books include Expecting Adam, Leaving the Saints, Finding Your own North Star, The Joy Diet, and her newest book, Diana, Herself: An Allegory of Awakening. She has also been a columnist for O, The Oprah Magazine since its inception in 2001.
Her newest project is a revolutionary writing workshop called Write into Light.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/marthabeck
-The birth of her son and her decision to pursue joy no matter what the circumstances and no matter what anyone else thought.
-The comparison between a destructive tsunami destroying long-standing buildings and structures and a surfer taking the ride of his life.
-The frightening, but profound decision that people can make to take risks by following their joy.
-The “Man Cage” and how men are heavily socially pressured to do what worked before.
-The importance of finding balance through joy.
-How difficult it can be to let go of the “factory mindset” of society and to trust that magic will guide you.
-Making sure to rest your body, otherwise you will lose touch with it.
-Why she started Write into Light.
-The responsibility that artists have to change culture when the culture they are living in is unsatisfactory.
-The idea of using writing to heal yourself, and then to spread that healing power to the rest of the world.
-Her newest book,
-How she spent all of her money on a ranch in California and became immersed in nature.
-To prepare yourself for criticism from the people around you when you go against culture, and to try to surround yourself with supportive people who understand where you are coming from and what you are trying to tap into.
“It unfolded because I was on this hell-bent path of pursuing joy.”
“There is a magic in the world, and I found that when my son was born.”
“If you can align yourself with what wants to happen, things will be done through you that you cannot do yourself.”
“It’s freaking scary. What we are basing our cultural models on is a factory that never stops working. To let that go and say that I’m going to trust that magic will do things through me if I just relax…. Phew, that is not for the faint of heart.”
“Culture doesn’t actually come from laws. Laws may reflect culture but they rarely create culture. What creates healing in cultures is new idioms, new language, new ways to talk about what’s happening to us, new perceptions, new insights, and new ideas. And those come from creativity.”
“It’s not easy because we have to go beyond culture because our culture is screwing us up big time. It’s not a recipe for happiness.”
“Ask yourself two questions: How do I want to be different because I lived on this Earth, and how do I want the Earth to be different because I’ve lived on it?”
“Your people are here. We may be in virtual space but we are all around you and we all feel it. There is something moving and changing in the world and you are meant to be part of it. So jump.”
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: http://yourcreativepush.com/auniakahnreplay
-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
"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."
The Artist's Way Workbook by Julia Cameron
Jim Carrey's Secret of Life - Youtube
E.W. Harris and Jo Kruger have come together to form a new ensemble, Caves & Clouds, a collaborative outgrowth of the Big City Folk collective in New York City. They are currently raising stake funds with Indiegogo for their debut record, The Winter of Our Discontent and the follow-up touring schedule.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/cavesandclouds
-Jo’s story growing up as a musician and how she got connected with the Big City Folk collective.
-E.W.’s experience moving to New York, living in Central Park, and meeting new people like Niall Connolly, the founder of the Big City Folk collective.
-How each of them has been trying to work with the other for a long time and how excited they are to finally get a collaboration going.
-The importance of collaboration in an uncertain political climate and artists’ responsibility to bring something new or positive to the table.
-The inciting incident that sparked them to finally collaborate.
-Some of the pitfalls and stereotypes of the acoustic singer/songwriter.
-Some of the reservations that came before launching their Indiegogo campaign.
-How backers of a project feel as if they are a part of the project as it is created.
-Dealing with the inner critic, especially when the creative process starts to flow so naturally.
-Taking your life-long battle with Resistance one day at a time.
-Dealing with hyper-focus on certain things to the extent that other important things lose all of your focus.
“I’ve been running around the scene here, admiring E.W.’s projects for a long time, and there are very few people who are hailed with as much respect in that songwriting scene.”
“It made it a really optimistic endeavor in a pretty nihilistic time.”
“We are not a team to be sneezed at when it comes to the kitchen.”
“It’s almost like antibiotic resistance. When you start to find ways to evolve around that silly voice, that silly voice finds a way to evolve too. It finds new dick moves to get in your way. And for me it comes when I try to do something new, because it can put a new face on old doubts.”
“Do what you can do to get past it for the day. It’s just a matter of one day at a time. It’s almost twelve-steppy in its zen-ness.”
“There are so many ways you can do the thing. There are so many ways that you can second guess yourself. There are so many ways you can push yourself through. Do one of them.”
“I feel like the only thing within my power to do is to cooperate with people. To try to participate in ideas rather than just do my thing.”
“You’re throwing us a Hail Mary, it’s the least we could do to catch it.”
“I wouldn’t find any value in this thing that I was doing if I was living in a cave on my own.”
“Coming out of your own fantasy and trying to find that Venn diagram where it meets everyone else’s fantasies. Reality is that sliver in-between.”
“Some of my harshest critics have been some of my greatest teachers.”
Brian Abbott is a Boston-based writer who has found his stronghold in the world of social media under the moniker of High Poets Society. His poetry is most recognized for its mesmerizing rhyme scheme and clever wordplay.
Brian has recently published his first book, titled “High Poets Society.”
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/brianabbott
-His history of writing and how he used to hide it from the world, only showing it to his girlfriends.
-Using the identity of High Poets Society as a way to give him the courage to post and show a different side of himself that most people in the “real world” don’t get to see.
-How your own perceived prediction of what people are going to think about you and your creative passion is always much worse than their actual reaction.
-How the validation from the masses helps him to gain the confidence to talk about his poetry and to share it.
-The initial experience of amassing a large following on Instagram.
-How the number of followers you have has nothing to do with the talent that you have.
-The importance of writing ideas down the moment you get them.
-His method for organizing his ideas in Evernote.
-His mantra, “ambiguity and continuity,” and how he embraces the fact that his writing will take on a new meaning to every person that reads it.
-His admiration for Charles Bukowski’s advice: “Don’t try.”
-How he pushes through his laziness when he has things he needs to get done.
-The importance of deadlines, even if they are self-imposed.
-The experience of seeing his poems on Instagram in comparison to seeing them in the book.
-The story of how he quit his job on a whim.
-How not everything will be a success, as evidenced by his failed food blog.
-His advice for gaining followers on Instagram: use 30 hashtags, be consistent, take advantage of demographics, and make friends in the community and reach out to other people.
“For a long time in those thirteen years, I hid my craft away. I didn’t really show people or try to publish it anywhere.”
“It’s tough to open up.”
“I think the validation from the masses helps me get the confidence to talk about it and share it.”
“The numbers have nothing to do with the actual talent.”
“Thoughts would come into my head and I would lose them. Those are poems and thoughts that are gone forever.”
“When I’m writing, I like to tell myself ambiguity and continuity. Those are the two matras I yell to myself in my head while I’m writing.”
“Love is universal. It doesn’t have any constraints or rules to it. You love who you love.”
“I can’t control what I write, but I can control what I post.”
“Those deadlines light a fire under my ass and says Okay, make a decision. Stop messing around a pull the trigger.”
“It’s definitely a choice. And especially in this world where money and your status in society means a lot, it’s tough to give up what you worked for and live that starving artist life.”
“If you told me three years ago that a couple million people a week are going to read my poems I’d curl up in a ball and die.”
Caves and Clouds : Website
Thomas is a visual artist and photographer based out of Atlanta, Georgia who has developed a style that he calls "painterly photo montage" - a method he employs in editing software in which he crafts elaborately textured pieces that have a very organic, non-digital look to them. Although his artwork resembles paintings, his pieces are entirely photographic in nature, fusing many images into a cohesive whole.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/thomasdoddreturns
-Why he started doing animated photos.
-His recent year-long creative block and what caused it.
-How he got out of his creative block by trying something completely new and unexpected.
-The danger that many successful artists encounter in which they become a “one-trick pony.”
-How to know when it is actually time to move on to something else as opposed to self-doubt.
-The importance of choosing to fill your time with positive messages rather than getting involved in negative, time-consuming arguments on social media.
-His decision to make the relationships between people the theme of his new work.
-The inspiration that you can get by going back to your previous work and realizing what stones you haven’t unturned yet.
-Some insights behind The Inquisitor.
-The lessons that he has learned from working with people with disabilities.
-The profound joy that comes when you can get into a flow state and how to put yourself in the best position to achieve it.
-Addictive personalities and how that relates to a creative endeavor.
-The idea of writing an addendum or an explanation to a piece.
-Facebook and the differences between his personal page and his professional page.
-The importance of bringing your fan base with you off of social media sites.
-The power and deeper value that can be gained by artists when they begin to concentrate on concepts and philosophies.
-How Joseph Campbell was a consultant to George Lucas for the original Star Wars trilogy.
-Understanding critics, trolls, and people who just want to see the world burn.
-Snarky criticism he once received that had merit.
-How to find the positivity in negative people or negative comments.
“I found that I was stuck. I was looking at my work and being hyper-critical of it and not feeling like I could continue in that direction. Like I needed to blow it up and try something new.”
“You have much more power as an artist than the average person does because images transcend words. They transcend propaganda.”
“We’re more than our physical condition. We’re more than our body. We are our spirit. We are what we create.”
“I don’t know where it all comes from, but I know there is something magical about the creative process. There is something really deep about it.”
“As long as you’re still alive, there’s always a way of getting your message out there. Of getting who you are out there and creating, touching people’s lives, and making a difference in the world.”
“Being addicted to creating art is a very healthy addiction.”
“You should use everything. You should use all your talents.”
“Concepts. Ideas. These are most important things for artists.”
“Our role as artists is very important. We can really reach people and show them that this is something we all share. This is what it means to be human. This is what it means to be alive and to be on this planet. To make the world a better place, just one creation at a time.”
“Sometimes a snarky comment directed at your work might actually be something that you can learn from.”
“The most important thing that you should do as an artist is enjoy what you do. Every step of the journey. It doesn’t matter what you’re doing. Don’t do things for money. Do them because you love them, and then the money will come.”
Marty is the creator of the blog Spaghetti Toes, which has been featured on sites such as the Huffington Post, The Today Show, Buzzfeed, and the Daily Mail. His first book, I Love You with All My Butt: An Illustrated Book of Big Thoughts from Little Kids comes out on April 4th, 2017.
Full shownotes: http://yourcreativepush.com/martybruckner
-The very moment that sparked the idea for Spaghetti Toes.
-His feature in Pleated Jeans and how that helped to spark his journey.
-The importance of the name, Spaghetti Toes.
-The actual process of creating an image once a quote has been uttered into existence.
-The story of when he tried to push Harper into saying something profound for International Women’s Day.
-The process of creating the book I Love You With All my Butt and working with Workman Publishing.
-His advice to walk away from a project when you are experiencing a creative block.
-Some of his other strategies for overcoming creative blocks.
-The creative help that he is able to find from his wife and daughter.
-Dealing with not seeing his family while thing were taking off with Spaghetti Toes.
-His advice for deciding to stick with a current project or to abandon it.
-How he balances his time with all of the various projects he has going on.
-The importance of realizing how good you have it.
“I’ve been so lucky my whole life that I create and do artwork all day every day.”
“I thought, I have to do something to make this work.”
“I think perspective is so important.”