UNFURL & BLOOM
"Ellie has a very lovely calm, serene and encouraging teaching style. This course is changing the way I think about carving out time for creative crafts and allowing me to explore them in a more slow, mindful and sustainable way. Thanks Ellie! X" ~ Kels @kelsosullivan
Unfurl & Bloom is a special space to discover or unleash your inner creative self. Through a mindful approach to your creative practice, we'll unlearn all the horrible words we tell ourselves, and begin (or actively continue on) a journey of creativity, mistake-making, nurturing and unfurling into the world.
Useful mindful, slow-living, meditative processes we'll spend time immersing ourselves into who our creative self might be (hiding under the uncertainty). We'll work on letting go of blocks and fears, and allow our authentic creative self to shine.
Sharing your creative voice is vital - it doesn't matter if you think it's not original, or someone's doing it better, or you're not good enough. This course is about showing you that none of those things matter - that when you feel powerful in your self then you can't help but shine and bloom.
Coming back to yourself you'll find that what happens is quite a magic process of becoming more and more in touch with who you are and who you might become.
Creative Confidence grows the further you unfurl. The stronger you feel, the stronger you'll be. What I'm saying is - once you start the journey of delving into your own creativity, of allowing yourself to be who you might be you'll find that it's easier to continue. The journey has ups and downs for sure, but once you start you'll want to keep going. The unfurling continues without you even trying.
This course is for anyone who considers themselves "a creative maker", be that an artist, designer, photographer, ceramicist, crafter, painter...... This is not about labels and having to define yourself as "an artist", but more about just doing your work and allowing space and generosity to express your own creative self whatever that might look like.
As a child I always loved making whimsical little things with my hands and heart. I remember one year, for our school fete, making some fabulous little hand stitched faces using fabric scraps and my imagination to create something entirely new. I can still see them in my mind today, almost 30 years later. They were like squashed little onions, with delicately stitched details on their faces. An old man and an old woman, with hair curled up into a bun.
I had planned on shoving them into a glass jar with a heap of other random things as part of a 'jar stall', but my dad took one look at them and said no way, they were like little works of art. In the end I sewed a brooch back onto them and we sold at the fete.
I wonder if someone still has those little faces. Where my craft was art.
I never actively pursued art as a uni course or a career. I wanted to be an actor, not an artist, but that didn't pan out either (lucky there's a lot of drama in my home nowadays!). It wasn't until I had my first child, when I stopped full time retail work (which thankfully did have a creative side to it with merchandising, window displays and such), that I came back to this internal childhood feeling of being an artist or creative. Since then I've been on a journey to find my voice, share it with the world, work through challenges, fears and lots of seriously hard moments. Overcoming my own inner dialogue of "not good enough" has often been a bigger challenge than the external words of critics.
What Unfurl & Bloom gives you:
- 5 weeks of weekly emails with inspiration and practical projects.
- A combination of practical work and mindful magic
- Creative prompts and jump-off points
- Mindful and Slow living practices to add to your creative work
- Downloadable sheets with tips, ideas and inspiration
- Videos showing Ellie's creative process
- Ideas for how to immerse yourself in your own creative practice
- And how to find your creative outlet
- How to tap into your inner quiet
- Practical creative projects - painting, stitching and instinctual work
- Tips on motherhood and being an artist
- Actionable projects, ideas, art-making, crafting, journaling and mindful creative work
- access to a private Facebook community group
- and more!
What will you learn?:
- Mindful breathing practices
- Stitch work onto paper and cloth
- Instinctual mark-making onto paper and cloth
- Botanical dye projects using plants, flowers, leaves & kitchen scraps to create colour on cloth & paper
- Simple book binding techniques to make yourself an 'art journal'
- Nature mandalas & inspiration from nature
- How to ignore the inner critic
- Ways to overcome the fear and anxiety of putting yourself out there
- How to bring slow moments into your life
- and lots of other little things that are mostly hard to quantify, such a how to give yourself permission to be an artist, or how to be wrong, how to learn to love what you create, how to be gentle and generous with yourself.
"The Creative Year has reconnected me with the power I have in my own two hands to create something of beauty" @emsellen
- Unfurl & Bloom -
Begins again in February 2018
or read on for more info and faqs
You want more? BONUS CONTENT: 'PHOTOGRAPHY & INSTAGRAM FOR CREATIVE MAKERS'
I love taking photos and sharing my creative work on Instagram and my blog. Actually, Instagram has been pretty much my biggest creative outlet for many years, and has allowed me to grow my indie business while staying true to my artistic voice. It's also given me the space to better understand how I work as an artist and a creative maker - and been a place to explore, discover and develop my own visual voice. Check out my Insta pages @petalplum or @ellie.beck.creative
Over the past 6 and 1/2 years of being on Instagram I've grown my audience by sharing my own version of a creative life, of finding the beautiful in the quiet mundane everyday moments, and connecting a community of creative encouragers.
Upon total completion of the full 5-week Unfurl & Bloom course, you'll receive access to my Photography & Instagram for Creative Makers ebook and videos. Honestly, this will be like a whole other course to take you on new ventures with your own practice. I love sharing as much as I can, and always provide more content than the initial course talks about.
This bonus material will show you how to share your work with your online audience in an authentic natural joyful way, while staying true to your self and not having to follow trends or worry about 'likes' and such. I'm more interested in having a connected, thoughtful, mindful audience than a whole lot of 'like' followers. After taking this course you'll feel the same way.
"When I let go of what I am, I become what I might be" ~ Lao Tzu
I feel like I could go on and on about how wonderful this course is, but the truth is that those sorts of endless salesy pages feel wrong to me. In my creative practice and my heart-based business I'm about sharing myself in an open, honest, meaningful manner. I care deeply about my students, and my biggest wish is that you can find yourself through your creativity in the same way that I have.
I talk a lot about what I love and am passionate about, but also I like to sit quietly and observe the world around me. This course is about both those aspects of myself, and how that will translate to you and your creative self. Me sharing the ways I work while giving space for you to learn your own ways of working. A combination of all the words & all the ideas & all the how-tos mixed up with me quietly stepping aside and letting you discover it for yourself.
What this means is - the course will provide tips, ideas, inspiration and thoughts on how I do things. Like little jumping off guides to get you thinking. But then you'll be doing the work (sometimes hard, let's not hide that fact) of practicing your creative practice, of simply doing the work, of knowing the muse is on her way and being open & ready, as well as when she's simply not going to visit and still doing the work anyway. But I'll be here waiting to offer any extra help as you might need it.
I'll also be sharing quotes to make you think. Because I love quotes, and often times there are wise smart clever people who can put my thoughts into words in a most amazing way. Don't you find that happens? I'll also send you a weekly downloadable quote card that you can print off to stick up in your room or use as the backdrop for your device.
How much time will you need to spend on Unfurl & Bloom?
To be honest, it's totally up to you how long you invest into each session. Emails will arrive twice weekly, Monday & Thursday, with occasional Sunday notes sent for a weekend encouragement. I'd hope you'll set aside half an hour each day to spend on your creative practice, but being a mother of 3, I know that some weeks this is easier than other weeks. Also, sometimes you might find you have more time to immerse yourself in one project and you'll spend a few hours with your creative self.
The lessons will be short and actionable. Designed to fit around your life (work, family, etc), I'm keeping my words as succinct as I can. So you can spend more time on the doing rather than the reading.
If I'm a practicing artist already, is Unfurl & Bloom for me?
It depends on where you're at with your arts practice. This course is aimed at those who are newer in their practice, still finding their feet, or have recently had children and unsure how to delve back into their own creative practice. If you're a full time 'artist' (or designer, photographer, crafter, painter, ceramicist) you may still have times when you feel lost in your practice. This course is planned to give you new ways of working, new ideas and inspiration in your current practice. Please contact me if you're unsure.
I'm 'only' a hobbyist, is this course for me?
Yes - being a hobbyist artist, crafter, designer, creative can be hard. In this current world where it seems most everybody is jumping into Indie business as a creative, you might feel like you're creative practice is left behind, not worth pursuing. While I'll be talking about being a full time practicing creative, it's not the underpinning of the course. There'll be small parts on sharing your art / craft with the world (through social media, etc), but this course is more about your self and your own creative voice. Not about the whole rest of the world. So, yes this course is for hobbyist, full or part time creatives
I'm not an artist, I can't paint or draw or anything like that. How will Unfurl & Bloom help me?
Firstly, I myself am not a painter at all, nor 'an artist' in the traditional sense. I call myself an artist on my tax return, because that makes things easier. But really I'm a creative maker. What this means is that labels and names don't make a difference to what I create, what medium I work with. I express myself through a connection of my hands, head & heart and that is enough for me.
If you're a 'traditional artist' then please do in the course. If you call yourself a crafter or photographer or designer or sewist or natural dyer or textile maker or.... any other thing we might label we attach to ourselves than this course is for you. I believe that EVERYONE in the world is creative in one way or another, and just needs help to learn how to expose or express it. Sometimes it's hidden under a lot of fear, society's rules, expectations and more. Sometimes because we can't name it then we think we don't have it. So - please this course is for anyone who has a feeling that they are CREATIVE in any way. This is about helping you learn how to express that.
"I am not what I am, I am what I do with my hands" ~ Louise Bourgeois
I'm not a mother (or my kids have left home) - will this course be all about mothering?
No it won't be. There will be talk about me as a mother and a practicing creative, and how I work through these challenges (and joys). There is one session on motherhood vs art / craft, but I hope those non-parents (or non-full-time parents) may still find some of those tips thoughtful and inspiring for their family or other work commitments.
I'm a new mother with young kids, how will I find the time for this course?
I'm, myself, a mother to 3 - a 13 yr old (in highschool), a 10 yr old and a 3 yr old. I run an Indie business with my husband and have a creative arts / crafts practice. We're also trying to finish building our house and studio. So, I know how full life can feel. Each session is written with limited time in mind.
The projects are fun and generally easy to do around children, in short amounts of time, or can be longer if time permits. I'll be sharing tips, ideas and help on how to work through the challenges of motherhood, and how to embrace the joys and bring your children into your creative practice.
What tools do I need for Unfurl & Blooms?
A computer with internet access - there'll be some videos, but I keep these short. My internet is pretty sketchy at times, so I know how hard it can be if you don't have solid internet.
Art supplies are minimal. I work in a sustainable manner, and don't expect you to rush out and buy a heap of new things.
- a journal or paper for writing / journaling.
- Plain fabric and art paper / sketch book.
- Paint, ink and fabric paint (fabric paint isn't necessary, but a lovely addition). Regular kids craft paint is fine.
- Fabric, needle, thread, scissors - fabric scraps, upcycled, op-shopped (thrift-store) fabric is good, old clothes
- most other items will be found in your local environment.
- Please contact me if you need more detailed materials list
How long do I have access to the course?
Unfurl & Bloom runs for 5 weeks starting 1st November, 2017, but if you 'fall behind' that doesn't matter. You can follow along at your own pace, there's no pressure to do all the projects on time or anything like that. You have lifetime access to the course (until the internet runs out or something like that - will that ever happen do you think? I have dreams about the one day when the internet won't exist again... well until then you have full access to the course). Also - every time I run the course again, you'll have access to take it with us again. You'll get automatic access to all and any upgrades (your feedback will help with upgrades, changes, etc).
Please send me an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions at all about Unfurl & Bloom. Or ask me via my 'contact' page.