Irish painter and writer
This week Im pleased to welcome Jennifer Donohue to the podcast, Jennifer is an painter and writer from County Clare in Ireland and a mother of one.
Jennifer found journalism early on and was taken by the concept of creating through the written word. She spent her early to mid-20s working in print journalism before returning to college to get a degree in Marketing and Management.
For years, Jennifer struggled to make an authentic connection to why she created art. Although she loved the act of painting, loved trying to create pretty work and it gave her a sense of relaxation and happiness, it was lacking in something and it wasn’t until she started back writing again in 2022 that something clicked in her brain.
Once she began writing more often, a funny thing happened – she began seeing her experiences of motherhood in the form of poems and prose. And from there, emerged the new sense that she had to transfer these written pieces to canvas. Pictures emerged that linked her words and emotions to shapes and ideas in paint - and a whole new connection to her art has come from that.
Jennifer works intuitively and allows the poem/prose to lead the way on how the art will emerge. She makes space for all of the emotions of motherhood - the love, the grief, the loss, the happiness, and tries to share them in a relatable and hopefully beautiful way. Primarily her subject matter reveals itself through land and seascapes, botanical art and some abstract work.
Jennifer's motherhood journey has really sparked deeper meaning in her art and she has discovered connection and community with others by sharing visual and written accounts of her journey so far.
**This episode contains discussion around pregnancy loss, miscarriage and grief**
If today’s episode is triggering for you in any way I encourage you to seek help from those around you, medical professionals or from resources on line. I have compiled a list of great international resources here
Music used with permission from Alemjo my new age and ambient music trio.
When chatting to my guests I greatly appreciate their openness and honestly in sharing their stories. If at any stage their information is found to be incorrect, the podcast bears no responsibility for guests' inaccuracies.
Podcast transcript at the bottom of the page
Thank you so much for tuning in to this episode of The Art of Being A Mum Podcast. I'm beyond honoured that you're here and would be grateful if you could take 2 minutes to leave me a 5-star review in iTunes or wherever you are listening. It really helps! This way together we can inspire, connect and bring in to the light even more stories from creative mums. Want to connect? Take a screenshot of this episode and share it on Instagram tagging me in with @art_of_being_a_mum_podcast
I can't wait to connect. And remember if you or somebody you know would like to be a guest on the podcast, get in touch! I love meeting and chatting to mammas from all creative backgrounds, from all around the world!
Alison acknowledges this Land of the Berrin (Mount Gambier) Region as the Traditional Lands of the Bungandidj People and acknowledge these First Nations people as the custodians of the Region.
Welcome to the Art of Being a mum podcast, where I Alison Newman, a singer songwriter, and Ozzy mum of two enjoys honest and inspiring conversations with artists and creators about the joys and issues they've encountered. While trying to be a mum and continue to create. You'll hear themes like the mental juggle, changes in identity, how their work has been influenced by motherhood, mum guilt, cultural norms, and we also strain to territory such as the patriarchy, feminism, and capitalism. You can find links to my guests and topics we discussed in the shownotes along with a link to the music played, how to get in touch, and a link to join our supportive and lively community on Instagram. I'll always put a trigger warning if we discuss sensitive topics on the podcast. But if at any time you're concerned about your mental health, I urge you to talk to those around you reach out to health professionals, or seek out resources online. I've compiled a list of international resources which can be accessed on the podcast landing page, Alison Newman dotnet slash podcast, the art of being a mum we'd like to acknowledge the traditional owners of the land and water, which this podcast is recorded on has been the bone dig people in the barren region of South Australia. I'm working on land that was never seen it. Hello, and welcome to the podcast. Thank you so much for tuning in. Apologies for my voice at the moment. I'm just cut recovering from a bout of pneumonia coupled with COVID-19 diagnosis. So things have been fun lately, but I am getting there. And I'm pleased to be able to bring this episode to you today. This week. I welcome Jennifer Donahue to the podcast. Jennifer is a painter and a writer from County Clare in Ireland and she's a mother of one. Jennifer found journalism early on and was taken by the concept of creating through the written word. She spent her early to mid 20s working in print journalism, before returning to college to get a degree in marketing and management. For years, Jennifer struggled to make an authentic connection to why she created her art. Although she loves the act of painting, love trying to create pretty work, and it gave her a sense of relaxation and happiness. It was lacking in something. It wasn't until she started writing again in 2022 that something clicked in her brain. When she began writing more often a funny thing happened. She began seeing her experiences of motherhood in the form of poems and prose. And from there emerged a new sense that she had to transfer these written pieces to Canvas. Pictures emerged that linked her words and emotions to shapes and ideas in the paint. And a whole new connection to her art has come from that. Jennifer works intuitively and allows the poems and prose to lead the way on how the art will emerge. She makes space for all of the emotions of motherhood, the love, the grief, the loss, and the happiness and tries to share them in a relatable and hopefully beautiful way. Primarily her subject matter reveals itself through landscapes, and seascapes, botanical art, and some abstract work. Jennifer's motherhood journey has really sparked a deeper meaning in her art. And she has discovered connection and community with others by sharing visual and written accounts of her journey so far. Please be aware that this episode today contains discussion around pregnancy loss and miscarriage and grief. Well, thanks so much for coming on. Jennifer. It's really lovely to meet you.
Yes, and thanks so much for having me. I'm very excited.
It's my pleasure. And I've got to say I'm very very grateful of all the sharing of posts and and things that you do with my podcast on Instagram. I really appreciate it very much.
Oh, no budget at all, I think well, I look as I said at dinner I love listen to podcasts and you know, some of the guests you've had on are absolutely amazing, amazing women. I mean, you know, these are definitely stories, you know, you want to share out and the little share on Instagram, you know when you can I mean? All of it helps as much
ya know. And honestly, it means so much like I don't know, I think yeah, I don't know. It can seem so simple but it makes such a difference and I'm really appreciate it so thank you for that. So we were just I was just saying before I hit record how much I love your your Irish accent.
Thanks very much.
Tell me about where you're from in Ireland.
Yeah, so I live in County Clare. So a little town called Ennis though it's about 10 Tails. It's the biggest town and clear but it's only about 10 15,000 people. So by Australian Standard is Like teeny teeny tiny place. But so if anybody you know, maybe your side of the world might be familiar with like the Cliffs of Moher, maybe you might have heard of that. Yeah, glyphs. Evolver is in County Clare. So that's maybe about 30 minutes from where I live. And originally, Originally, I'm from West Limerick, which is about an hour's drive south
of here. Yeah, right.
I've been in this for 10 years. Yeah. Cool.
Yeah. It's actually there was a horse that came out here for the Melbourne Cup one year called cliffs have more. I'm saying it right. But yeah, so yeah, I said that. I just went, Oh, yeah, I know that name.
Yeah. So yeah, a lot. A lot of people who don't? They've heard it before. So it's kind of a good landmark to give people an idea. It's, it's on the west coast of the country.
Yeah. Right. Are you very north, or we're about sort of a year.
So no, were very kind of nearly middle of the country. And kind of the rest of us. Yeah, if that makes sense.
Yeah. No, that makes sense. I'm getting getting good visual. Somewhere. I'd really love to go. I think I watched a lot of Father Ted many years. Oh, yeah. And I just
did you get did you get? Did you get to did you get to humor? Oh, you've watched? I've watched five to 10 Australians and you're like, watch this.
No, I loved it. I absolute because I was a fan of auto auto handling and been a fan of him for a while. And just like anything he does, I just I just laugh at him. I just think he's hilarious. Yeah, yeah. Yeah. What's that other show I did was like Inferno man or third semi man or something. And it was just so ridiculous. But so funny. But now we've got this running joke. Now. You know, the episode where the heat. Ted has to keep Bishop Brennan up the ass. Oh, yeah. Bridget printed up the arse. And we have this joke. Now, if anyone gets kicked on the bottom, my little son who's seven you go, Oh, he's Bishop Brennan is good or bad. But it's very funny.
So yeah. Anyway, enough of that I could go on and on, but I'm not going to
All right, so tell me how you got into your art form. And tell us about what you're doing what you create.
So yeah, sure. So I suppose look, I suppose like a lot of people kind of being creative was really important to me, kind of growing up, we were always in really encouraged. You know, like drawing art. I remember one year, Santa Claus bought me this fantastic V tech digital art team. And it was just kind of, you know, you know, sometimes presence just kind of stand out, you're grateful and doing doing it. And, and then when I was a teenager, I did work experience in my local newspaper. And I was like, hang on a minute, people get paid to write. So I just, I just fell in love with the idea of journalism and writing because I loved English and, you know, typical teenager, you know, trying to write stories and novels and all this, you know, wishing for it was actually finished. But you know, you kind of keep writing away, you know, and so I actually did journalism was my first career. And so it was an I did journalism for a couple of years. And I just loved it. I just love being able to write I love to creativity, I love meeting people I loved, you know, just a whole, just the whole idea of it, that you could kind of come up with these ideas and get them on paper and, you know, influence people and people would, you know, read them and, you know, be inspired by them. And, yeah, it was fantastic. It was fantastic. And then in my early 20s, I did a lot of Irish people do and I would love to stop. Yeah. Yeah. Australia, realized that, okay, I don't have a degree. If I want to get back to Australia for longer, you know, you need to have a degree. So I came back to Ireland, and I said, I do a degree in marketing management. You know, I said, marketing is creative. You don't you do something in business. Yeah. And so I did that kind of my mid 20s. And then of course, by the time I'd have three years done, I was like, Oh, come back to Australia. I loved it, but you know, you're kind of starting again. And so it was like, okay, look, I'll get some experience here. So then I kind of fell into kind of marketing and kind of sales roles and the creativity went out the door. Like, you know, the writing, I had been dabbling in bit of art and do a bit of art, like, I don't art in school, I loved art, you know, these are all true, you know, kind of primary and secondary schools. So up to the age of 18, you know, loved it kind of dabbled in art and a little bit afterwards, but it kind of went to the wayside. And then, in 2018, I did an art class, just in the local when it local colleges here, you know, so it was just, you know, it was just a temporary course. And I was like, Oh, God, I really liked this. So, you know, so did I started kind of going back into it, and, you know, just just doing just tried to create, but I suppose, like, a lot of people, you know, I was forcing myself into doing what I thought was, you know, good, Eric, you know, like, if it wasn't detailed, or if it wasn't, blah, blah, blah, you know, didn't wasn't kind of good art. So I just didn't have an understanding of me as a creative as an artist as a visual creative. So, you know, so I was trying to do a lot of things that were completely out of my range, you know, skill level wise, and that kind of thing. But I kept doing because I was getting, I suppose, emotional fulfillment out of it, you know, it was a nice pastime. And, you know, it was kind of getting back their creative, creative spark again, you know, and then we had our Kate Connor in 2019. So, you know, so I was still kind of doing like, little bit of art kind of here and there. And I started doing things like hashtag challenges. So I set up an Instagram page for my art. And, you know, it wasn't that my art was brilliant. But I liked sharing with it, I like connecting with other artists with other creatives and that kind of thing. So it gave me this kind of outlet to kind of appreciate life and art and, you know, just having something I suppose for myself as well, you know, that kind of thing, you know, and so, yeah, so I was doing kind of hashtag challenges. And then I was finding this, you know, teams were starting to, you know, my act was kind of improving, and that kind of thing. And I was like, brilliant. But I still had no kind of, I suppose, connection with my art. And I suppose that's what kind of motherhood has in a roundabout way given me is my connection to my art, especially in the last year.
The real value of my art I found over the last couple of years. Now, I know you mentioned trigger warnings. So I suppose I can do trigger warning here. Yeah, so miscarry, though, I'm bringing it up, because it's a definite part of my kind of creative kind of journey. Yeah. So I had my first miscarriage in August 2020. So it's 11 weeks, everything had been fine. Until it wasn't. And so I kind of turned to her again. And, you know, it was kind of giving me that little bit of hockey meat, I you know, I could just do something for myself. And decorating. And a dead saw. got pregnant again. And 22, early 2021 turned round, you know, and I started, you know, I'm just doing some hashtag challenges. And, unfortunately, I had another miscarriage. So go ahead. It's okay. Well, look, I look, I suppose. And look, if you do want to ask questions, I'm happy to answer questions. I bring this up, because it is part of my journey. And it's important to talk about these things, because I don't know, if it's the same in Australia and Ireland. We don't really talk about these things. Oh, absolutely. Yeah. Like, you know, as women as creatives as moderators, you know, these are all part of our journeys. This, you know, you don't you don't talk about, you know, it's kind of, certainly in Ireland, you know, we're like, don't tell anybody, you're pregnant for the first 12 weeks in case something happens. And then you're like, well, if something happens, how are you supposed to bring it up with a woman? Well, I was pregnant, and now I'm not, you know, it's very difficult. It's very difficult, you know, when trying to find a way of dealing with that, you know, especially when you're dealing with didn't know your own, you know, like, you can tell, suppose your friends and obviously your partner and that kind of thing, but it is difficult and you're like trying to find reasons, you know, working through the motions, and I suppose that's very my kind of art and so I've kind of committed as well, you know, it's just helping me discover To me, you don't like kind of just end. But, um, but give yourself something of your own as well, you know, that wasn't, you know, so I currently don't sell my art. So it's like, it's just something for me to enjoy and something to do and that kind of thing. And then. So yeah, so I actually did a core stem with lower heart. So she's an Australian artist over in Adelaide. Yeah. And so So yeah, so I did one of her courses, and you know, and it was just so nice and gentle. And, you know, just had a little community was really nice. You know, it was just like, oh, and it kind of started to open up my eyes, in terms of what my art was doing and what my art could be. So I was like, okay, so we started on that path. And then I had a turd miscarriage.
Oh, gosh, in
April in April of 2021. All these years just kind of rolling together. Yeah. And, and that was, that was a chemical pregnancy. And that went on for about three months, dealing with the kind of physical repercussions of that. And I was just like, footsy, like, you know, so but, you know, I started doing 100 Edge challenge. So I was like, Okay, I have something to focus on. You know, I was kind of doing away doing the art way. And then it's only been kind of, I suppose, in the last year, then that I've kind of made the actual true connection between motherhood and my art. And suppose this what all the rigmarole stories kind of leading up to? It started 2022 as like, okay, no, I'm just giving myself permission. Okay, we are, you know, we decided, okay, we're not going to try for more kids are done, we're going to, you know, we have one, we're very blessed, very happy. And, you know, I put decided, okay, look, physically, emotionally, spiritually, it's okay to see we're done. And again, I again, I think that's another message that I want to kind of portray in my act and share out in general, because, you know, we're always like, Oh, no, you know, your mother, you should suffer or your whatever, and you should push past your own emotions and your own needs and wants, because, you know, obviously, you know, like, I know, you talk about mom guilt, obviously, wrongly consented to, you're like, Oh, my God, you know, it's going to be an only child. What does that mean? You know, should I just, you know, push myself aside and blah, blah, blah. But I think we have to say, okay, you know, fight sometimes it's okay to say enough. Yes, say, you know, what we're doing. And I suppose giving myself permission to, you know, really listen to myself and my needs, yeah, suddenly opened up things in my art that I had absolutely no awareness of no concept of No, even now, I'm still trying to figure out what it all means.
I started back writing, and I started a blog. And then I started writing poems. I don't write poems. But I started writing poems, I started writing prose about motherhood, about, you know, the joy of finding out about you're pregnant. And, you know, the excitement of, you know, you know, giving birth and saying hello to your new child about things like being nap trapped, you know, you're stuck on your baby, and you just absolutely can't move, you know? So I started writing about all this stuff. And I don't know where it came from. Would it just, it was like, everything that I've been kind of doing belong had kind of mashed together, and just suddenly was like, oh, here because I gave myself permission to, you know, listen to myself more just on the argument. And I started, you know, creating different artwork and pieces, based on the poems and prose. Yeah, so I just, yeah, so it's just been, it's just kind of been crazy, as well as try to understand that over the last kind of couple of months, it's only been maybe within the last year. I've really kind of been able to gather the pieces and kind of put them all together and it's been really fun and exciting and it's also helped Me, you know, understand other areas of my life and kind of get centered in other areas of my life. And also, I suppose, you know, like the value of art and creativity in that sense, you know, it can't be underestimated. And I think that's what I really, really fell with that is just kind of like, you know, I feel understood, I feel heard and seen. And it's so funny, like, when I share, you know, it's really hard, it's easier to share the artwork than it is to share the kind of pools and pools and liquidity, but I find that when I share board together, that people are like, oh, yeah, yeah, I've, like felt like that, or, you know, I know where you're coming from, or definitely, you know, so it's that kind of sharing of experiences and decorating that, sometimes, we are always happy to talk about the happy stuff, you know, finding out you're pregnant, it's like, you know, sharing the new baby that can take you on, but the harder stuff is not really shared. And it's really sad. And just, you know, it's just part of the human experience. It is what it is. And, you know, so I kind of tried to share a little bit of everything.
Well, I love that look. Honestly, I think that's so it's so important to, for us to be able to talk about the stuff that doesn't go so well, like, for so long. And like previous generations, it's like, oh, no, you know, don't talk about that. We don't talk about that everything's got to be seen to be, you know, just fine. Everyone's got to be, you know, they try this image that we're all coping and everything's great. And it's like, no, enough is enough. Like, I think that's half the reason people have so much trouble with, like mental illness or issues with their, with their health is that they, they feel stifled that they can't talk about things. And it's so important. And thank you so much for sharing so openly. Something I really believe in is that any, like, we could share one thing, and we have no concept of how many people that could make a difference for. So I think you can like never underestimate the power of, of sharing your story. And yeah, thank you for I really appreciate your honesty, like you are starting to get really emotional, when you're talking about how everything came together, when you just said, Enough is enough. It's time literally to listen to yourself. And then it all just came together. And it's like this, this whole thing has opened up, I don't even know how to describe it. But like a thing has opened up. And it's all this amazingness is happening. I don't know how to describe it. And this is one of the moments I'm probably headed out. But you know what I mean? Like,
nobody would know, I do know what you mean, and it is important. But you know, sometimes I feel a bit weird sharing it and being open about it. Because, like, for so long, I didn't talk about it. So I didn't. So the first miscarriage happened in August 2020. And I didn't tell anybody about anything that was going on, you know, bear my immediate family, you know, my husband's immediate family. And like one or two friends. I eventually shared a post on my personal Instagram in October 2021. And like this was after we'd met, I met a consultant. So we've got miscarriage clinic and med consultant, you know, to kind of see if we can kind of figure out what was going on. And it was after that ended, I just shared and you know, like, one of my friends was like, we're like, you know, over the course of a year, like you were, you know, you were pregnant for six months, which you were, you know, physical miscarriage, you know, for about three, four months of it. And did you know, and you didn't share anything? And I was like, Yeah, you know, so many women do that. And the minute I shared the post, the amount of women that I was friends with, you know, either on Instagram or Facebook, private message me she's like, Oh, Jen, yeah, you know, I had the same experience, or, you know, I just after having one, or, you know, that kind of thing did happen a couple of years ago when they hadn't shared anything, really. And it's really sad because it is currently you know, it's one in four. We you know, and it is difficult, it is difficult to talk about, and some people can't talk about it, and that's fine. But if you can talk about it. I think sharing your experience and saying that you know what, look, it's shit. But you you will be okay. You know, it kind of helps people who can talk about it maybe so.
Yeah, now Good Feet on Reddit look, honestly, I'm I don't want to sound condescending. But what you're doing is fantastic. Really? Good. No, I'm really yeah. Sorry. Like, nice feel like you're awesome. I love it.
Yeah, but, but like, in general. It's just and it was, you know, I mean, it was giving that myself that permission to be like, okay, They will look. You know, it is it is what it is like, we can keep going. But, you know, we have happy situation, you know, we have a great kid. I mean, he's absolutely amazing. It's just turned four. Yeah. And he's better look for, you know, and we're like, look, sometimes, you know, it's important more, you know, it's just as important to have happy healthy parents for kids. Yes. You know, that kind of thing. And it's like, and it's very easy to feel like you need to martyr yourself. You know, yeah. And maybe marriage was too strong word, you know, post, you know, it's like, it's important in the Ford picture, and it's all key to take into a picture. You know, I think I think we need you know, so I think it was it was giving myself that permission and didn't suddenly, because I'd been kind of doing the art all along. It just suddenly, like, you know, it just exploded, and it's just, it's just so nice. And it's just, like, it's an outlet for me, it's, you know? Yeah, look, it's just it is, it's a beautiful outlet. You know, you can connect with amazing people like you, like, you know, all people, women, amazing women that you've had on the podcast, you know, I mean, listening to their stories, you know, it's, it's really inspiring, you know, and you know, that you're not alone. And in order to have this thing that you could share with the world, and it's, it's fun, it's fun. After a long day, it's fun to be able to pick pick up paint brush, you know, I work primarily in, like acrylics at the moment, I'm doing most of my stuff on canvas. And it's fun, it's fun, just to see where things go. And you can just, you know, I do like, it's funny, because every, you know, like, so I started off with the kind of poem and prose, and then it just kind of turns into something, you know, I have no idea what is going on, you know, I kind of started to see pictures and stuff in my head. I'm like, oh, yeah, you know, and it kind of, kind of take it in certain directions. And from there, you know, says, interesting, it's, you know, when it's yeah, it's, it's colorful, and it's you look, it's, it's important to use the right side of our brain and to kind of user behind us and, you know, our, you know, our voices or whatever, whatever, it's up to you. You're, you know, this, it's bringing forward and just go with it, you know, Oh, absolutely.
I think it's it, like any sort of creativity, I think is just vital for human beings to have something, you know, like you said that, that other side of your brain, and, you know, I like, like you say, like, it is fun, it's a, it's a switch off. Like, it allows us to process things like you've talked about, but the act of, you know, we think I work in childcare, and or not anymore. Sorry, I work in kindy. I worked in childcare for nine years. So I mean, early childhood education, and like, the kids love to paint. And it's like, when, why do we stop this stuff? You know, I know, most, like most adults don't paint unless they, you know, artists, they'll call themselves out. So they're like, Yeah, we don't draw, you know, most of us stop running around and being silly or whatever, it's like, you get to this point, you're an adult, now you have to grow up and act or serious. Like, you're fine. And we have. Yeah, like, I think if I working with kids is so good from for me and my mental health, because it is so fun, and it's so enjoyable, and you get your true authentic self, you know, you can't hide behind, like the kids will see right through you, if you've got some sort of a laugh, and you get to joke around and be silly and engage. It's just so it is so much fun.
Like, it's an it's important for adults to play. Yeah. And to kind of, you know, like, you know, for whatever format that comes out, and, and, you know, what I think it's, I think nowadays is more kind of acceptable, you know, like, you know, people do art, you know, if the computer games, if it's music, if it's seeing if it's, you know, reading and that kind of thing, it's, you know, I think it's starting to become more acceptable to have a range of, you know, hobbies or that kind of thing, you all so you have work and so if you're not, but it's important, it's important to our sense, our sanity.
Absolutely, yeah. Absolutely. To be able
to switch off to have something for yourself to have something that you can you know, kind of just relax into and you know, you can enjoy. Yeah,
yeah, and like, I guess people, you know, have really stressful jobs or as, as moms it can get quite overwhelming sometimes and That level of stress gets to have something that's not stressful. And that is just really enjoyable and fun is, yeah, it's so important, so important for us.
Like, for me, it's just having to have it if I, if I can switch off, you know, my, like, every other modern day, you know, your brain is going 100 miles an hour, you're taking this and that and, you know, you're trying to organize, and you're trying to be 10 steps ahead of yourself. And you're also trying to remember the stuff that you were supposed to do, when did you do all this stuff? And so you're just like, Okay, no, you know, it's just have some time to switch off, have some time for yourself, and be able to give yourself permission to enjoy it and just be like, oh, you know, what? Happier parents, you know, doing whatever little thing did you like to do for you just doesn't have to contribute in any way to anything. Auditing yourself is also important.
Absolutely. Yes. Absolutely.
Your son, you said he's four. Does he like to come in? And do painting with you as well?
Yeah, yeah. So what we do is, we alternate bedtime routines, because my son has like a to our bedtime routine, where he's like, you know, you have to play and read and do this, and then you eventually get him to do his teeth, you know, put on his pajamas and that kind of thing. So we moved him into his big room last year, so I took over a little box room for my art space. Yeah. You know, so like, he came in, he's a box of stuff now, you know, of his own teams, and he'd come in, and we'll do a bit of art, you know, or we do some at the weekend, you know, he loves, you know, he just loves to crack, he loves, you know, kind of painting and that kind of stuff, you know, so it's, and it's great fun, and it's nice, quality time that I can spend with them. You know, sometimes, sometimes we just take over the whole kitchen table, you know, the pages they refer, and we're mixing up paint, and, you know, he's learning about the primary colors, and he's talking about this, that, you know, oftentimes, it's important for our kids to, you know, because they're learning, they're learning to create, they're, you know, they're learning stuff, you know, certain language documents associated with, you know, art and creativity, and they're tapping into that, and they're, like, they're naturally in tune with, you know, they enjoy certain things, you know, that kind of thing. And it's just their imagination, they're playing events, you know, it's, and it's a nice way for us as, as adults to connect with them. Via that, you know, so yeah, like, he'll come in even, you know, he'll come in and do a bit or, you know, if I'm just starting on the canvas, you know, I get him to help me, you know, get all lit up, and, you know, put some colors. And, you know, and he's like, when you're Kansas Mama's like, Yeah, but you're alone? No, you know, so you have to set the rooms, you know, if I'm working on the canvas, you know, there's some canvases you can touch with some of them
something that you've kind of nearly finished, and you're like, Oh, no. No, that wouldn't be good for anyone.
But that's true that, you know, setting boundaries, that's an important thing to do with kids. You know, I feel like, sometimes parents are scared to say no to their children, or to say no, actually, this is my you can't do this. It's so important for kids to learn that and for them, for them to then know that it's okay for them to have things that other people don't do, or you know what I mean? Yeah,
but yeah, but that's it, but input and they understand, if you explain to them understand they understand more than we give them credit for? Absolutely, yes. You know, like, if you, if you say to them, Look, no, you know, notice this one is mom's but this one is yours. And you you know, you can do what you want to do so, and I've given him like, there's a couple of my kind of old small canvases that I've given him. So he's delighted with that, and he can paint over them, and he could do this and that, you know, so he has his box itself. And, you know, like, sometimes I let him use some of my paints and He's pure, happy, you know. And it's kind of, you know, it encourages that bond between you and you can also Like you say, it's, you know, you can create your boundaries within this and, you know, and it's good for both of you, you know,
I can now having my little fella come in and paint with me, was so good for me to learn to like, just relax a bit and not be so stressed about certain things being perfect. Or, you know what I mean? Yeah. It's like, oh, no, don't touch that one. Don't and it was like, actually, what does it mean? If he uses that pain, like it was sort of getting things into perspective for me, so it's definitely helped him that way to not stress so and then, once you learned, like you say about different things like, you can paint on this, but don't paint on that. Or if you're going to use these paints, make sure you've got something under it, or whatever it is, once you have that set up, it's like, you can sort of relax a bit and go, Okay, that's cool. He knows not to put that one on the carpet or something, you know? Is that initial setting up? Yes. I can now can relax.
Yeah, yeah. But but but that's it. And you know, like, and we can learn from kidssoup when it comes to art, you know, I mean, like, like, you see, you know, they might pull out a painted, you're like, oh, no, that's a good paint. No, I can't use that, you know, might have satin, you might have said practically on us for last three years. It's like, don't use paint, yes to paint. Like, buy more if you you know, use it or, you know, yeah. You know, and just and just go for it and just kind of let yourself loose and let your you know, let yourself imagine and, you know, go with this, you know, that's it. Yeah, that's, that's, you know, that's is definitely lesson we've learned from our kids and just go for it. And just enjoy and just, you know, it's the only boundaries in your art are created by you. Yeah, you know, when you think about it, we are where it wants to set the boundaries, you know, and the limitations. So, you know, we don't have to stay in sight lines if we don't want to,
Hmm, let's see, isn't it? Yeah, that's one of the things that took me a long time to get over. But even just making like the choices that I make, when I'm painting, if I can think more like my son, when he paints and not overthink everything so much, like, that's been a good lesson for me to just, yeah, I don't know, I think you can be in your head so much questioning yourself. And like the self doubt and the imposter syndrome, all this stuff, that's all in your mind. And it's like, if you just if you switch off and be like a kid would be, they don't think about all that stuff. They don't think Oh, is someone going to like this, or if I'd done this bit rash, or, you know, we could learn so much from them?
You're listening to the art of being a mom was my mom, I was naming. That's what I found to put, you know, when I started kind of going back painting, what I found was just, I was like, Oh my God, if I don't make this, you know, kind of really realistic looking, or really intricate, looking, you know, are really perfect looking, you know, people aren't gonna like it. And I was trying to force myself into skill level for I was definitely not at, you know, that kind of thing. It didn't it was like, it got really frustrating. So, why can't I do this? Yes, yeah. You know, when I, when I decided to let it go, like I am, you know, I don't paint realistically, if, you know, if you love photo, realistically, you know, if you look at my painting, you know, you know, it's, you know, it's a painting, you're not going to think that you're looking at a photograph, you know, you're not only Samaritan's Purse, like Amazingly, the detail and, you know, the texture and everything they achieve, you know, so once they kind of accepted it, no look, just go and play. And I found this things like the hashtag challenges. And kinda you know, it really, like, it opened up, you know, my eyes kind of flat you could do and just kind of let go of this perfectionism and try to just start to listen, just listen to what's in me, because, you know, we all connect with other people, you know, different things about everybody's work, we'll connect with other people. So you know, my arch with, you know, a Pete some people and other people will be like, that isn't dirt. What are you talking about? You know, that kind of thing, you know? So, so yeah, but, you know, it's all open to interpretation. And, you know, nobody's necessarily right or wrong, but it's, you know, it's, as long as it's making you happy, you know, and like, obviously, you know, I mean, I don't currently send my work. So it's funny, when I got a message from you on Instagram, I was like, imposter syndrome. No, I can't talk about Oh, my God. I was just like, as like, oh, no, she might take the day. She said, My work is so my, this just, you know, like, something that I'm not and I was just like, Well, no, look, you know, I call myself narratives. So I create our own, you know, you know, regular basis, you know, I mean, I Yes, the ultimate team is I would love to start selling my work. Maybe I went this year, maybe I get over myself and for that impostor syndrome to decide and be like, no, okay, you know, I kind of ready but, you know, I've viewed it like, I'm in art school. I'm sad. Tod artists, I'm currently in our school of life. And, you know, and I'm just enjoying it a lot. You know, I think when you give yourself space and to explore and that kind of thing, you know, you do find your kind of truer, authentic voice. And kind of, I feel like I've kind of started to tap into that, but it's only because I've given myself space. And obviously, it's easy for me to say, because, you know, I mean, I worked full time in a non articulated, you know, area. So, you know, I don't have to worry about that. So it's like, I can play, I can give myself space, and that kind of thing, energy isn't so important. And, you know, it doesn't matter whether whether it's your full time job, or a part time job, or, you know, your hobby, can give your space set space to be creative to, you know, do what you want to do. And it's all valid.
Yeah, that's it, that's so true.
We sort of mentioned the monkey earlier in regards to having one child, how do you feel about it? When it comes to art? Do you feel any of that? Sort of those emotions? And that time? No,
no, I think because, okay, because I work full time anyway. Like, demand guilt is, you know, kept from my full time job, you know, because, you know, it's like, you know, you know, so, you know, like, there are like, cases, you know, where you're just like, you feel so bad, you know, leaving, like I kind of went through a phase last year. Where he because I started work at 10, seven, and morning. So you know, so I start really early, and I finished in at, you know, have three, so I have to be awkward, I kind of have five quarter to six American, he started, he was having a face where he get up with me and didn't want to leave, he bought his eyes out. And my poor husband didn't know, I'll be dealing with this. And, you know, I feel so guilty, you know, going out to work and him crying, and you're leaving for me hard to deal with this. And you're just like, Oh my God. You know, like, look, it was a face you got over it, it's fine. You know, you know, that kind of thing. But they're like, look, you can see Mom relatable, so much. So much different things. And it's so hard, you know, and I suppose you know, it might, you know, it'll show up differently for me to new and, you know, that kind of thing. But there's always I feel like there's always something to feel guilty about you like, Oh, God, am I doing enough? I mean, you know, this mother is doing this, or, you know, you're you're looking at social media, like, Oh, my God, you're doing like, you know, these fantastic, you know, things and they're going out every weekend and look at, look at how they're living life. And we're like, you know, I'm sitting on the floor playing Duplo instead of, you know, taking out some fancy, whatever, you know, adventure park or whatever, you know, that kind of thing. What is it but it doesn't matter, as long as you're happy lungs, your family or, you know, happy you know, you have to you have to let go of that. And it's really, really hard sometimes, you know, because you're just like, Oh, God, you know, I should be doing more. But no, I think once you let go of kind of that, and do your best as all you can do. And you're always going to feel guilty about sorting, because there's always something that you could probably be doing a bit better. Yeah. You know, you're only human, you can only do so often. It's like, it's I think manga is just it just goes with the territory, you know? Yes. I don't know if you ever get over it at all. Maybe Maybe you do eventually, hopefully.
Get that's the thing like is if you're not doing one thing, you think I should be doing that. And then if you're doing that thing, you think I should be doing that. And it's just this constant thing that plays out in your mind. Yeah. And I get I get points where I'm like, No, don't think that. Like, don't don't worry about that, you know, but then you find like, 10 minutes later, something else will happen. And you'll be like, Oh, it's just
so yeah, yeah, yeah, definitely. Yeah. But that's it. And it's hard and it doesn't matter. It's just, it's just constant. So you just you do you have to let it go with you came and I wrote this poem. Just about just literally, literally, it was about debt. I actually probably should have brought it down. So I was like, the last line was like, Don't give me your shoots because they're not going to carry and it's true. And it's like, you know, what's, you know? Like, what's valid for you and your family? Your kids? You know, isn't that sincerity was going to be valid for mine and this kind of entity is hard because you're you are seeing people do you know XY and Z? And you're like, oh, maybe I should maybe I should do that. Or, you know, society you feel like society's expecting certain things from you. There's maybe you're not. Maybe you know, it's not suitable for your family and you just do what's right for you what's right for your family and trust yourself this, you're doing the best you can.
That's it, isn't it? Having that confidence in yourself to say actually, no, I don't need to be going and doing x y Zed that such and such. Oh, you know what I mean? Like, yeah, like at the moment here at home. Much to my disgust my loungeroom my good Landrieu is being taken over by a big game of monopoly that seems to be never ending. Like monopoly and we just got home this morning. We played my son plays tennis my little little work. And they had a social day for like parents or family or whoever to play. And they put us in all in teams, this mixed doubles teams. I haven't played tennis I think properly for like, I don't know. Honestly, 15 years like a long time, but it was great fun. I really enjoyed it. And we had a great heat and everything and then I got home. All I do is sit on the couch and have wrist. Yes, this monopoly game just looking at me like ah, should be playing this game. I wanted gone out of my of my lounge. I want to finish this guy. And then degree my little fella comes, Hi, Joe. I'm playing Monopoly. I'm like, if I can lay down on the floor, I'll play.
But you know what I mean? Like there's always something out and I and it's like, sometimes you just gotta put your blinkers on and go No, I actually, this is where my focus is. This is what I want to be thinking of now and the rest can just disappear.
That's it, but let's put guaranteed, right? It's the things we're like, oh, God, we shouldn't be doing that. So your game of monopoly is something that your kids are going to remember to be bringing in open if you remember when we played that monopoly game that lasted for like 10 weeks, and we just take every single day. And you know, and it was probably you know, it's best for you know, so it's just yeah, it's just you know, for kids just wanted to keep just want you to connect with them. Kids want you to play with them, you know, again on the floor, you know, do you know connect with them? Forever. We do like to be connected with you know, like mean, Connor, you know, we pay so much to glow and he's big into Ghostbusters. Now we're not sure if we're to Ghostbusters thing came from but like he's like, you know, like, literally like Ghostbusters, and it's old school Ghostbusters from like, our childhood, you know, the 90s Like, you know that Ghostbusters? Yeah. And that's all he does all he wants to do. He just wants you just just sit down play with him. And, you know, it's just, you know, and those are the things that they remember. They don't necessarily, you know, to be to be crazy things. It's like the small connections that you can make the on day, you know, whether it's true play or creativity or music or, you know, that kind of thing, though, those are the things that they remember. And you remember and you know, so it's kind of Yeah, but it's hard because you're trying to you know, you're like oh my god the kitchen the state and obtained loads of laundry. And that's exactly, you know, you're trying to you're trying to find the balance someplace between all of us. And sometimes it works sometimes, you know, so some weeks, some weeks I know I fight even though I'm like, I'm totally on top of this, you know, papers and started you know, we're playing and then the next week is just an absolute shit show. And you're like, what? Yeah, no balance.
I find that it does go it goes in flows. Like it's never like, I don't know if sometimes, like a clean up. And I think I'm gonna keep this really clean. Like what? Lately I've been doing my cupboard. Make sure I put everything back away after I finished wearing it or put the line the shoes back up. So like, how long is this going to last for your record? It's not going too bad. But yeah, nothing are fine with me anyway, it's always it ebbs and flows, ebbs and flows.
Oh, yeah. Yeah. You do. You just have to go with it. And you just have to just try to give yourself a bit of grace and say, Okay, well, look, it is what it is. Let's just, you know, make the best.
That's it. Isn't it being kind to ourselves? I think that's yeah, that's sort of the underlying thing that I think always get back to in these conversations is just, we've just got to be kinder to ourselves, you know, give us a carousel some slack and
yeah, not be so quick. Yeah, definitely. Yeah. Cuz there's, like, there's always this weight of expectation of, you know, you could have how you can do doing things differently. But I suppose like that you just have to try and connect with yourself and You know, with your partner and with your kids and pots, rice, what's right for you? You know, and just go from there. It's really all you can do is, yeah, that's it easy
so with your artwork at the moment, what sort of what? Where do you gather your inspiration from at the moment? Is it still working through the emotions of of losing the babies? Or is it more day to day? Things that you feel?
It's, it's mostly, it's mostly day to day, like, you know, I mean, I like as I say, like, I think it's important to address all the emotions. So, you know, motherhood isn't, you know, just joy, it is grief, there is loss, whether whether you've lost pregnancies or lost, or, you know, I mean, there's a sense of, you know, like, you lose yourself a little bit, you know, because you gain a new you, you know, and push, like, like I was saying, you know, so like I did want about being that tract, and, you know, to painting does emerge from it is this big, massive waterfall basin, because we were in Iceland last year, so space and one of the waterfalls there, it's this big, massive waterfall, and two big rocks, and loads of flowers, and this really colorful in this light, you know, so you're not trapped. So you're stuck, you know, between a rock and a hard place, and just like the end of the end of the team, you know, the whole poem is like, you know, do I need to pee, you know, but I'm not trapped. So I can't, you know, it doesn't matter, you know, and you're trying to kind of go through all the emotions, you know, so you're, like, oh, there's somebody at the door, but I'm not trapped, I can't get up to or, you know, watch for the TV, because, you know, I'm not trapped. I can't, you know, I should really shower, eat or do laundry, but I'm not trapped. And in the end of it is like, what's that? What's my bladder, you know, like, I do need to pee. So that's what kind of waterfall came from, it's like, oh, waterfall, you know, what you're, you know, kind of just making, you know, it's just, it's about fun that I did like another one. Like, my favorite moment, you know, so it's about your favorite moment with your kids, you know, so it's, you know, I taking this photo of Connor who's walking off the field. And so you've just been blue sky, and you know, the field. And so, instead of the sky, I did all these, like, little postcards of moments did you have with your kids. So you know, so, you know, like, one was, you know, in playing in a puddle, or, you know, Bubbles, or you know, what kind of reading or, you know, like, all of these little, you know, to talk to small moments, we remember, okay, they might necessarily remember, but we remember, you know, leading to them not watching their favorite TV show. And, you know, how all of those are kind of, you know, your favorite moments that you kind of gather up along the years, you know, once saw another, you know, painting was inspired by that, and I did this big sunflower, I don't know, if I'll ever be able to sell it. I think he's probably talking a bit too much. You know, so it's about love first, sort of, like finding out, you know, when you find out, you're pregnant, and you're like, Oh, my God, it's a you know, it's an amazing feeling. And, you know, you can kind of go through it, and then you're just, you know, you're waiting, you know, you've all these emotions and everything, you know, so it's just just be happy. So clarity, and all that have layers, you know, I've worked, I've worked with a lot of layers and, you know, bright colors, and, you know, so, yeah, it's like, it's, there's so many emotions, you know, but I do feel this, you know, it's important to talk about my journey, because, you know, that is very came from, you know, there is, there is, you know, loss and grief and stuff associated with, you know, being a parent being a martyr. But there's so many happy moments, there's so many nice moments, and it's just, you know, I'm working on what never diminished and just, it's all flowers, it's like, you know, it's based on I can't wait to meet you. So, you know, all these, like, new moments that you have with your kids. So, you know, obviously, the first moment of scene opened or a newborn and, you know, just arrived, you know, but, you know, each step each, you know, step into child's life is kind of a new step for you in your relationship with your kids, you know, and it's, it's amazing so you can celebrate the kid, you know, as a war as the higher you know, each step that they kind of come along and they're kind of like blossoming entities, you know, Hmm, amazing, amazing flora, you know, so So yeah, so I tried to, I tried to cover, you know, a range of softens, you know, like, it's funny because, you know, the writing would contribute or strange times like I mean, I might because like, remember once I was walking so we dropped kind of off to crash so, you know, I was walking on to Greyhound so I was walking, you know, when a trike with my two greyhounds, and you know, these lines were coming to me, so I had to stop after decided or put into the footpath after, you know, and I was on my phone type annoyed. Because if I don't write it down, I'm not going to remember it. I'll be kicking myself because I believe that was perfect. Why did you write it down? Yes, yeah, I'm doing that. And it's just and you just, you know, and it's, you know, so you have to just kind of go with it. And, you know, write your dough, and, you know, the note app, you know, I've got, you know, all these lines and an otter, you know, and, and sometimes, like things will just come like just randomly, you know, and it's all the like, little moments, you know, it's kind of I was driving home one evening with Connor, and it was hard to keep them a week, because it was Derrick girls, it was kind of around five o'clock, or halfway or something. And, you know, I was trying to get Louie. He's a big fan of boys. Yeah, we love Louie, this house is great. So trying to get that on, you know, and that, you know, that kind of inspired another poem. You know, it's just like, just, you know, there's so many things, you know, that you kind of go just day to day that you can kind of think about and remember, and I like to kind of make the connections of Dash, you know, so it's not like, so it's not just the big moments is the small moments, you know, kind of, yeah, that you kind of remember and you take on board, you know, so it's kind of it's, it's interesting, just to see how things translate first of all into words and did bring it out into, you know, a painting and so, so yeah, so it's kind of it's been a journey for me didn't try to relay that, you know, how to share data with other people. So it's like, in my head, I'm like, Oh, this makes perfect sense. You know? And then you're trying to explain to somebody else, you're like, oh, okay, yeah. That's something cool. Yeah. So just, it's, it's just, you know, a journey of exploration. And I think, again, it's going back to that giving myself permission to explore, to learn, to identify, you know, kind of how I can kind of best communicate all of this stuff out of my hand, you know, and onto, you know, paper or canvas, you know, whatever. And it's so it's yeah, it's interesting, it's fun, and it's, you know, and, and as I say, you know, like, when I start sharing is, start sharing the meaning behind the paintings. And people are like, Oh, okay, yeah, you know, they kind of get it more so, like, what I'd love to do is have an exhibition, you know, prehab, the paintings, and you have the pros kind of behind it. So people can kind of make that connection, and you're like, Okay, you know, so they can kind of see where everything comes from. And, you know, that kind of thing. Because, you know, when you start sharing that the amount of people who'd be like, oh, yeah, you know, that's, that makes sense. Or I felt that or, you know, so yeah. Like, as, as artists as creatives, you know, we can put into, you know, words or, you know, visual effects, what other people can't necessarily, you know, so you can kind of make that connection, you know, with, you know, with the motions with that kind of thing. And, you know, that's how you can build your connection, build your community, and then go from there. And that's, you know, that's where I'm aiming for, you know, to share these experiences with older people. Because, you know, a guarantee, like, every single model has had this kind of story. We're trying to keep their kid awake in the car. Oh, yeah. If you see, though, you're not going to sleep until midnight tonight. Exactly. So you do whatever you can to, you know, try to keep the kid awake or keep the kid entertained. And definitely, you know, so it's like, we have all these shared experiences that, you know, they might be slightly different to each other, but, you know, they're, you know, the same you know, so you know,
oh, sorry. No, no, no, I was just gonna say, I've got a funny story when it comes to trying to keep a child awake. My my first son, who's now 15. I had to try and keep him awake while I was, you know, there's sort of seats you get put on the back of your bicycle. And yeah. And so we're coming back from a friend's house and I could feel his head pushing into my bag. Like, trying to steer like really safe, trying to lift your colleagues, LAX, I'm particularly under the chin and the kid who just fell asleep on the back of the bike. And I swear, they sleep for 10 minutes. And that adds like four or five hours on to how it's like this recharge nap. Oh my gosh, yeah, amount of times we've done on the trip, just to get, you know, somewhere, boom, off, he goes, like, oh, no, no, he's gonna be up all night.
Yeah, that's it, you're like, can you teach me how to do that, because that would be very useful. 10 minute nap and just have
to be rising, it will ask you.
Want to ask that when you're talking about you, being able to express your emotions and your ideas through prose and through physically painting, do you find one is easier or harder than the other or that you find comes more naturally? Because I'm asking this because I once had Katie Callahan on the podcast, and she's a singer songwriter, and she also heights and we had this conversation about how different or I can't remember what it was, but how she approaches each sort of medium in a different way. And I just wondered what your thoughts were on that.
So yeah, it's, it's funny, I find with the writing, it just comes out in spurts. So it just like, literally, I can just No, I can't and poems and prose, okay. They're very rough. You know, I mean, I don't want reIated them, necessarily. Some of them, you know, I might kind of horn but I just, I just let them go. And they're just, you know, that's, that's what they are, you know, and some of some of them are nice, you know, nicer, you know, better put together than others. You know, what I just I just kind of, it just flows I find, or else sometimes I kind of get a couple of lines. You know, as a character ended up, I go back to the couple of weeks later and be like, Okay, no, this is what I need to say, here, you know. And, with the paintings, I like to have a couple of paintings going at the same time. So sometimes, it might be that I do, like, I like to work in there. So sometimes, I might do a couple of layers, and I might have no idea what's going to happen under the canvas. But then it's like something in my head, it's like, oh, no, you need to kind of try to do this, you know, and then other times, it's like, this is what this canvas is going to say, I know exactly what's gonna go on. And I can just, you know, kind of go into. And so it varies, it varies. You know, I don't have any set process. It's, you know, sometimes it comes to the sparks, sometimes, like, I find them like, really, really creative. And I suppose that's another thing that I'm trying to kind of figure out for myself as well. In terms of my process and my cycles, you know, they go find, sometimes enough very creative and I find, you know, to, you know, around kind of November and into December, no, no interest in creating at all, and, you know, and, and then after Christmas, like, oh my god, I have so many ideas, I've got to get everything down and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, you know, and, you know, you know, so far I kind of before Christmas, I was doing a little bit of writing and that kind of stuff, you know, but then suddenly, like the art was like, Oh my God, I need to paint the need to paint and you know, so it's so yeah, so it's kind of it does come in cycles, it does, you know, and bought it and kind of present a little bit differently I find for myself, you know, I'm currently in a position where that's fine. You know, I'm sure did if I was a commercial artist, if I was trying to you know if this was my livelihood. Yep, you know, that kind of thing. So I do think I'm kind of luckier that way because I can just lettings. lettings, you know, calm and I'm enjoying that process at the moment. And you know, without the pressure. Yeah, you know what I'm saying? So, so yeah, I do. I do. I do think if I was like you know if this was if this was my job and I needed to finish X number of paintings in the month, you know, that kind of thing to pay my rent. You know, it might be I suppose was, well, you know what, that pressure is good too, because you kind of it forces you to sit down, say, Okay, well, no, look, you know, what am I doing here? You know, I try to resolve and try to resolve stuff. But certainly at the minute, it's, it's very much intuitive, it's very kind of like, okay, and I do try to work with like a limited palette. I did, I got a book about color mixing, to Christmas before last, and I was like, oh my god, this is brilliant. Because this was like, a lot of like, you know, artists, when it first started off, you know, you want a tube of every color, you don't have to have a tumor, you have to have a tumor that, Oh, that's such a pretty color rubbish that, but I've kind of tried to pare it down note about like, maybe 10, you know, 10 colors, and I love blue. Like, there's so much blue, in my, you know, in my work Bush, I find like pink and green sofas actually come into a lot more, you know, kind of different variations, you know, now, so it's just, yeah, I find I find there's no set way. But at least if you leave yourself kind of open, you'd be surprised what comes through, you know, entity entities. Yeah, as I said, writing is definitely large refer in how it comes through soldiers, and I just let her just let her just let her come through, you know, and just like I'm writing blogs and stuff as well, at the minute, I'm doing 100 Day project at the moment. So I kind of tried to be kind of vigilant and writing blogs and that kind of thing, you know, kind of so I suppose all the dashes kind of helping things as well, and just kind of making things make more sense, you know,
do you find do you do? Well, when you set yourself a task like that they you know, like, everyday, I'm going to do this, like it's do sort of stick to it pretty well. No?
I, let's be honest. I, you know, if I set myself for, like, Oh, when I have to do blah, blah, blah, every single day, you know, I'm just like, Oh, really? No. But if I allow myself Okay, so look, this is the general schedule, this is my general idea. This is what I'm working towards. And if I can do a little bit every day, it didn't, I didn't, I didn't, I can, I can work towards it, and it works out, you know, but, you know, like, I wouldn't be like, my 100 Day project, it's about systems and sharing. So it's kind of, like, sharing on social media sharing, sharing, and podcasts. You know, and just kind of understanding, you know, about my connection, and you know, how to how to connect better with people, you know, that kind of thing and just trying to, you know, see what works better, you know, try to get regular racing, you know, and that kind of thing, you know, so it's, it's just, it's about building consistency, and connecting with the community and that kind of thing. So I find that there's a lot of value indoors. You know, some people are fantastic, and they paint every single day, you know, they might do like a mini painting every day. And it's just, it just wouldn't fit in my schedule. Like, I mean, there's some days where I just don't want to paint, there's some days where I just can't create, because it's been a long day, I've been up since whatever hour, you know, just work, you know, family life, you're doing dinner, you're doing this, you're doing that and you just want to sit down and watch Netflix, you know, you know, you have to you have to allow yourself that time as well and kind of try not to punish yourself for being human, you know, so like, like, from for me to undertake a project is very much, you know, trying to connect with the community trying to build consistency and work towards a greater goal. And by doing that, you know, it kind of works. It works better for me.
Hmm, yeah, that's yeah, it's good. i If someone says to me, I have to do like a thing every day. I just shut down. I'm like, no, no, that's it. It feels so overwhelming, right from the start, you know, but yeah,
but it does. Yeah, it does. Like I love to hashtag challenges. So there's a couple of hashtag challenges that I tried to kind of follow along with loosely every year. So in January, there's so the nerd paint podcast, they do 20 For 20 Day Challenge in January, you know, sort of painted or do something every day for 20 minutes, you can do that. Yeah, that's the TiVo. And there's a couple of artists that I follow that do hashtag challenges, especially at the start of the year. So Phoebe Gander, She's based in New Zealand. She does a 31 day challenge in January. And then Susan net of course, is in she's over in Ballarat actually puja. So yeah. It's really cool to see him extremely close to you.
I'll say a few weeks ago, actually.
Oh, sorry. Yeah. So yeah, yes, it's He does painting as a practice challenge in February. You know, so so like, there's various kind of hashtag challenges and stuff that you can follow this literally, like, there's a starting in the end, it's like, you know, one month, you know, you can, you can kind of achieve that, you know, and it's kind of I like to I like to follow along with those and, you know, it's, it's fun, I think it's good for you, because you kind of build, you build some consistency you build, you know, you can connect with people, you know, who are also doing it, that kind of thing. You know, so it's, it's, it's fun, but yeah, like that, you know, I mean, if I, you know, to take with the 100 day challenge, if I had to do something every day for 100 days. I feel like I was a failure. If I miss one day, you know, that can do it. Yeah. Yeah. So by giving myself Okay, 200 days, and I have, you know, kind of goals, kind of weekly goals that can change and try to hit and if I don't hate him, Okay, well, look, you know, do better next week. Yeah. Yeah.
I always find it's nice to always to see what other people are doing as well, like I can, I can't get very inspired. There's so many screenshots I kept on my phone of people painting because they think, Oh, I love how they've done that. And I might not be like, I don't want to replicate their work. But there's an idea of how they used something to make a texture or they, you know, just some color combinations. Oh, wow. So I like I take a lot of inspiration from others. I don't end up necessarily always attempting it, but I like looking at it, you know?
Yeah, but, but I think that's important to be able to sit back and relax and kind of take it in and think about stuff and look about look at things what you like what you don't like, do you do much painting?
Yeah, I love I it's just a bit of fun. Just it's like my, just haven't done any for a while at the moment. And same thing, I've got to be right in the mood for or need to do it. But I just I just love messing around with it. Really? I enjoy. Yeah, enjoy. Yeah.
Yeah, but it's fun. It's just I think it's, you know, what, it's just getting letting loose and, you know, trying out new things. And yeah, like that, you know, I think it's, it is important to sit down and look at, you know, consider your work, you know, that kind of thing and allow yourself time to sit with it and see, okay, well look, you know, whether it's writing, whether it's visual, you know, sitting down and taking it in and saying, okay, is this is this doing what I wanted to do? Or, you know, is there something else that it's, you know, trying to see, or that I need to see and darkening and also entities and we don't get enough time. You know, we're just very busy. We don't necessarily give ourselves enough time to kind of just sit back and say, you know, what, look, I just entered I do I like to do that sometimes, you know, even if I don't feel like creating, sometimes if you just go and sit with, you know, sit with yourself or look through your sketchbooks or through, you know, whatever, you know, or just play, you know, if you play an instrument, just, you know, clean, easy sound Did you like to play you know, and just, you know, just sit with that and enjoy it? And you know, there's so much value in that. And we don't we don't put enough emphasis on it.
Yeah, I think yeah, this is this whole idea that something's got to have an outcome, like there has to be a result to something it can't just be for the sake of whatever, it has to have this outcome, this capitalist ideal that our society seen that, you know, and that's, that's why I like to talk about the value of art, you know, like, just because, like you talked about not selling it. That's, that's insignificant, I think, next to either the gain that you receive from your art and then others do by you sharing it, you know, it doesn't have to have this this end outcome.
Would that look, that's a debt. Exactly, yes. You know, what I mean, I'm a better person, I'm a better person, I'm a better mother a better partner. Because it creates because I have that space to do something that I want to do. And, you know, and I can give myself permission, I don't have to answer to anyone else. I do what I want to do, you know, that kind of thing. And, you know, and like, I mean, look, if you can make money from your art or you know, creating courses, you know about your art and that kind of thing. Fantastic. That's amazing. That is amazing. But, you know, creating for creating sake for yourself is valuable, too, you know, and we have an You know, and it's good, it's good to just be able to sit back and just relax and just look, look at what you've done. And just, you know, even if it's big, messy, you know, muddy, you know, Ting under, you know, an A pit and some paper and you're just like, 40s, this, if you enjoy the process, if you're, if you've after having a long day, if you just need to just just do something, there's value in it, because it's helped your mood, it's relaxed, you it's, you know, you process whatever you need to process and now you can say, okay, okay, read, you know, and you go from there. And that's, that's hugely valuable. And we need to do that, and we need to do have more times and, you know, why not allow ourselves to enjoy things that we enjoy? You know,
yeah, that's so true. I know that I, I have times when I just think I, you just get so overwhelmed, like you were saying before, like the stuff in your head, and then physical stuff you've got to do, and you just go. And it's like, you have to reset yourself, it's like you have to recalibrate and having that timeout, like he said, where you're in charge of it, no one's telling you what to do. It's like your theme. It's, I couldn't live without it. Like, honestly, I would not be a sane person. If I couldn't do.
That's exactly it. And, and that's, and that's where that's where the value is in it. You know, I mean, you know, we're humans are born to create, you know, I mean, it doesn't, you know, it doesn't have to be, you know, inverted commas. Good. You know, I mean, 14 pot is good anyway, like, you know, I mean, I said already, you know, when somebody will look at my art to be like, Well, no, that's, that's not art, you know, that kind of thing. It's like, well, actually, yeah, yeah, she is, you know, okay, you have your opinion that that's fine. No water. But, you know, everybody's interpretation is different. You know, I mean, somebody might look at a photorealistic painting be like, that's beautiful. That's art. Whereas it might look at an abstract piece of like, what is this? You know, so it's so it's like, everybody's interpretation is different. And, you know, that doesn't diminish, you know, yeah, the value value of essence, you know, yeah.
I think there's art to creativity is, like, hugely important. And, you know, for people who don't do it, or haven't given themselves permission to do it, you need to, you need to for you, it doesn't matter what it doesn't matter what it is, you know, if it's reading books, if it's playing computer games, if it's, you know, writing in a journal, if it's doodling on, you know, paper, if it's writing songs, if it's playing music, if it's listening to music, it was dancing in your kitchen, you know, if it's creating art, like creativity, and knowing yourself to tap into, you know, you know, your creative side, you know, kind of relax it, do it, do it, you know what I mean to work, you know, and it doesn't, it doesn't have to be good, you don't have to share it with anyone, like, you can create art, and not share it with anyone. And it can be just for you, or you can write and it can be just for you. And it's still valid. You know, it doesn't have to be seen to be valid, it doesn't have to have a monetary value to be valid. And, you know, I mean, if you can, and want to create, you know, an income from your art, or your creativity, or your creative practice, whatever it is, that's fantastic, too. I mean, that that should be celebrated. But I think we just need to celebrate, giving ourselves permission to do what we want, you know, and just go create and just, you know, use their hands, user minds user, you know, creative voice, whatever it is inside you and just let it out. And just Yeah, and just go for it. Yeah,
that's so well said. Good on you, Jennifer. Honestly, it's been lovely chatting with you today.
Thank you so much for having me on SSH and open I got your message and Instagram. I was like, this woman has been hacked. She wants to talk to me.
Why? Because what you've, what you've shared today has been so valuable, and I appreciate it so much. Thanks for your company today. If you've enjoyed this episode, I'd love you to consider leaving us a review. Following or so subscribing to the podcast, or even sharing it with a friend who you think might be interested. The music you heard featured on today's episode was from Alemjo, which is my new age ambient music trio comprised of myself, my sister, Emma Anderson and her husband John. If you'd like to hear more, you can find a link to us in the show notes. If you or someone you know would like to be a guest on the podcast, please get in touch with us via the link in the show notes. I'll catch you again next week for another chat with an artistic mum.