Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Interview with Jennifer Lee of the Right-Brain Entrepreneur Mentorship Program

As an artist and illustrator, I have worked for myself for quite a few years and yet I knew hardly anything about building and marketing a business. When I began working with Jennifer Lee in 2013 through her group mentorship program, a whole new world opened up to me. Suddenly, business concepts seemed so relatable, practical, and even fun and exciting. Not only did my business begin to grow and evolve in miraculous ways but my artistic vision and true purpose became clearer. Although I now fly solo after 2 years in the program, I use the teachings from the mentorship again and again throughout my business.

Check out this little snippet of an interview she did with me on her Right-Brainers in Business Video Summit a while back and see one way her program continually helps me.



The next round of Jenn's 10-month Mentorship Program begins on May 2. If you are a creative person whether you are a writer, an artist, a therapist, a coach, a musician, or a maker and you want to start or grow your business, this mentorship program will truly support you on that mission and give you all the tools you need to succeed while having fun.



I interviewed Jenn recently to give you a peek into her world and her work. She had so much inspiration and advice to share. Enjoy!

1. I love your books the Right-Brain Business Plan and Building your Business the Right-Brain Way. What drew you to specifically focus on a right-brain approach to business?

When I first quit my corporate job, I went the library and checked out a bunch of books on starting a business and I was so uninspired by how boring and traditional they were. None of them spoke to my right-brain sensibility. I’m naturally very visual and I love to use collage to connect with my goals so it just made sense that my business plan would start out as a vision board! As I shared my first Right-Brain Business Plan with people, I was struck by how excited folks got about their own goal setting. I knew I was on to something that would help make business more fun and accessible to creatives.


2. As an illustrator, I was so submerged in the work of creating the art that I didn't realize what really goes into building my business until I worked with you. I am sure that many creatives feel the same way. How do you make business concepts relatable and practical for artists, makers, and healers like myself?

We’re so conditioned to think that business must be done a certain way and we put on our “serious business” hat and then wonder why we feel stuck, overwhelmed or frustrated. We cut ourselves off from our own source of inner wisdom. But when we allow ourselves to tap into our right-brain genius, intuition, and passion we open ourselves up to an empowered and inspiring way of doing our work - even as we deal with the left-brain tasks. I find that things like visuals, metaphors, and experiential exercises help to make the money, marketing, and sales more relatable for creative folks. Who knew that sticky notes could help people with their budgets? Also, the real-life case studies that I share from my own business and from fellow cohorts create powerful light bulb moments when participants see what’s actually possible.

3. I know you have been spending time in your studio exploring large-scale intuitive painting. This is so exciting and I always love to see the paintings on your Instagram. How do creative practices such as this inform and support your business?

I love expressing my creativity and emotions through my gigantic wall-sized intuitive paintings. This creative practice has helped me on so many levels. I’ve learned to trust and act upon my intuition more boldly than ever and that it’s okay for things to be messy, ugly, or not make any sense (great lessons for a recovering perfectionist). Painting big has helped me practice taking up space and being seen (a huge turning point for this introvert). My practice also helps me move through the ups and downs that come along with the entrepreneurial journey - it’s one of the ways I work through places I might feel stuck or frustrated by and it’s a way to continually fill my own creative well.



4. You have been a full-time coach for just about a decade and I am sure you have learned so much from this journey. What do you know now that you wish you knew when you first started your business?

I wish that I knew earlier on how to think more like a CEO of my company and not just the coach or artist delivering the service or product. It took me a couple of years to really step into being an entrepreneur and business owner and once I started to run my business with that mindset, things started to shift.

5. You recently hosted an inspiring webinar on redefining success. People often associate success simply with money and/or fame and don't often look deeper to see what it really means to them. What is your current definition of success?

I admit that I’ve been seduced by those external definitions of success in my corporate career and even in my own business. As part of my own healing journey, I’ve been redefining success as feeling creativity fulfilled, making a positive impact through my life and work, embracing ease, and having the freedom and flexibility to enjoy my life in a way that’s aligned with my values and vision.



6. I am a huge fan of your Cohort Circle Mentorship Program and have participated for 2 years in a row. I truly learned so much and my business evolved in ways I could not have previously imagined. I am curious what types of transformations you have seen in the people who have participated in your mentorship program?

I absolutely loved having you in the group, Nicole! It was awesome to see how you applied the teachings to your own business and got such great results! Like you, I’ve seen our participants get clearer on their core message and offers - for example, Vivienne McMaster of Be Your Own Beloved was a past Shining Star and she’s really worked to establish herself as a leader in self-compassion and self-love through self-portraiture. Others have grown their lists by hundreds and even thousands (like you!) by hosting virtual events or doing collaborative projects. We’ve had participants transition from successful businesses into new creative work that’s more aligned to who they are now. Mostly it’s the deeper transformations such as gaining confidence, expressing more of their authentic self, putting themselves out there in bigger ways, and trusting their own voice that provide the foundation for the awesome outcomes and accomplishments we celebrate in our Circle.



7. What advice would you give to someone early in their creative entrepreneurial journey?

Remember that it takes time to grow a business so keep on taking one small step after another. Every action gets you closer to your big vision. Also, make sure to surround yourself with supportive people who can help you to continue taking those steps forward. You don’t have to go it alone!

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Spirit Cats Inspiration Deck on Kickstarter: Feb 1- March 4

This past week has been an exhilarating ride. I launched the Spirit Cats Inspirational Card Deck a week ago on Kickstarter and it was funded in just 1 day. My heart was overflowing with happiness and gratitude for the support of all the spirit cat fans. You all are truly co-creating this vision with me. This deck will now be able to bring its sweet healing magic to many people thanks to you.



The Spirit Cats Deck is 44-card Oracle Deck Featuring Magical Cat Illustrations with Healing Messages. Ignite your Intuition. For beginners & tarot lovers.




























I created this deck of 44 inspirational cards to bring you peace, connection, and clarity. Each card consists of a hand-painted Spirit Cat printed on one side and a unique healing message on the other. These Spirit Cats come straight from my heart and imagination. 

Let them into your heart and they will bring you playful and sweet inspiration each day. 

The artwork is complete. The writing and copy-editing are done. The box is designed. The manufacturer is in place. As soon as this campaign is funded, I can place the order for the Spirit Cats Deck. I’m ready to bring this deck to you.












What People Are Saying


"During the time I had my kitty (over 20 years), I knew that he had a unique magical energy. The illustrations and words of wisdom in the Spirit Cat Deck capture this. Every cat-lover should have this deck for its beautiful images, its purely magical energy and its surprisingly accurate readings!" ~Janet Pacik

“I love, love, love your paintings of the cats! Your paintings have so captured the soul and spirit of these cats. Each painting is so different but in your style. I love everything about them. The stories you provide about each cat captures the essence and spirit of each… They are beautiful creations of creatures that so many love.” ~ Hamilla Jean

“I’ve been so touched by your beautiful cat paintings and their messages. It’s difficult to pick a favorite piece as so many speak to me. ” ~Tzipora

"Each cat is beautifully painted in watercolor and has it’s very own character and world. I love their inventive names...along with beautiful words and deeper thoughts...Like bits of poetry really! Your kitties bring joy and inspiration!” ~Eva Marion Seyffarth

"As soon as I saw Nicole's Spirit Cat paintings, I wanted to have every one of them. Now, I can! This deck gives me a chance to let all of these healing kitties into my life! I am so excited to begin this adventure." ~Ekaterina Rudneva

Thursday, December 10, 2015

The Journey Within Bloghop, Art Challenge & Giveaway

Welcome Bloghoppers!

I am so thrilled to be a core teacher in The Journey Within: A Year of Handmade Art Journals with bookmaker Kiala Givehand and 16 other artists.

This e-course is perfect for artists and non-artist alike. All you need is a longing in your heart to play, to get creative, to discover yourself, and learn something fresh. You will be inspired by the warm and supportive community of fellow seekers, dreamers, and makers.

Each month, you will learn how to make a handmade art journal and get techniques, tips, and prompts for filling the pages with creative magic!



To kick off this amazing course, Kiala has created a journal for December and asked each guest artist to give her a challenge to complete during the month. Here is what I asked her to do:

I love to use serendipity and intuition when making art so I closed my eyes, tuned in, and picked a card from my Spirit Cats Inspirational Card Deck just for you. You got the "Warrior" card.


Use this card to catalyse some inner exploration and see what art comes forth from this place.

I also challenge you to use a color pallette that you don't normally use. It is so interesting to step outside our habits and stretch our color wings.

Check out what Kiala made in response to my challenge HERE
I invite you to take a moment for some creative play and try this challenge yourself. 
If you do, please leave a link in the comments with your beautiful interpretation.

Even better yet, join us for The Journey Within 2016.

It's the season for generosity and magic so I just couldn't resist the fun of a giveaway.

Step right up and try your luck.

First Prize: The Journey Within E-course for the entire year!
Second Prize: The Journey Within Ecourse for January, February, and March


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Nicole Piar

Here is the blog hop list -- make sure you check out each artist.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Join me for a year of Self-Discovery and Creativity


Exciting news!!! I am so happy to be teaching as a Core Artist in The Journey Within - a year of handmade art journals. I will be teaching lessons in February, June, September, and December.

Awaken your CREATIVITY. 
CONNECT with other Makers and Dreamers.
DISCOVER YOURSELF. 

You can expect many tutorials, inspiring guest artists, prompts, creative challenges, and tons of support and community. 

You can sign up for the whole year or just 3 months.


Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Spirit Cats Inspirational Card Deck in the works

This month I have been immersed in all the aspects of bringing my Spirit Cats deck into the world from painting to writing card meanings to researching manufacturing options and costs to learning about kickstarter and beginning to fret over the need to make a ...... ahhhh!!!!! marketing plan!!!!

I love the writing and painting but the other stuff is a bit more challenging for me especially developing a strategy to get the word out. Somehow it just makes my mind spin and my anxiety levels rise. Deep breaths and keep moving forward. The 3 energies that came through in my kitty paintings this month are exactly what I need to help me with this project: Courage, Vision, and Gratitude.

COURAGE


VISION

GRATITUDE




To be the first to know when my Spirit Cat inspirational card deck is available, sign up for my newsletter here: http://eepurl.com/pWK8z

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Art Every Day Month: Creative Flow

This month, I am participating in Art Every Day Month ( #AEDM2015 #AEDM ).

Follow my progress on instagram, facebook, tumblr, or twitter.

After traveling for almost 5 months, it is time to immerse myself in the creative flow again.  This can be scary at first but the more you do it, the less you notice the fears and creativity just become part of your life enriching each and every day.

Here are a few sketches and paintings from this week.


Last night, I needed some free-form, no-plan intuitive painting , so I lit a candle and just let paint bleed onto the paper swirling together in the water. I had no idea what it would be and for a long time it didn’t look like anything but colors. For a moment there was a girl wandering through the meadow but she transformed into the tree on the right. The last bit to pop up was the little bunny to be the peaceful observer.



This is a Fennec Fox. I'm so delighted that such creatures exist in this strange world. I am excited to draw and paint other cute and unusual spirits like the red panda and the dik dik.

I made this quick sketch late Sunday night after  an amazing Halloween camp-out forest trance party and have been dancing away the last 24 hours in the trees, under the moon, and alongside the colorful wildlife human and otherwise that joined in the strange and wondrous celebrations. This sketch was how I felt in the moment… Adrift in the magical sleepy afterglow.






Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Zarillo And Moonfire: Mischief-Maker and Peaceful Protectress

Meet my friendly monsters who are part of the Supahcute Kaiju 2 Show: Cuter, Better, Fatter, Stronger at Leanna Lin's Wonderland. The show runs through April 26, 2015 and is filled with cute mayhem.

This is Zarillo. She is pure, playful mischief. She likes to play hide and seek in the forest. She knows how to swirl you about, happily tricking you into forget your responsibilities and getting deliciously lost in the wood. She will snuggle you with softness and love you into surrender. 



"Zarillo" by Nicole Piar
Watercolor on Arches watercolor paper
10.5in x 12in (framed)
$200 (framed) 
Purchase HERE

This is Moonfire. She is the peaceful protectress. She defends all that is good in us. She holds our dreams in her heart. Her fire, as pure and fresh as the sunrise, keeps those dreams safe and gives them space to grow.
"Moonfire" by Nicole Piar
Watercolor on Arches watercolor paper
10.5in x 12in (framed)
$200 (framed) 



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