Jeanne Oliver | Guest Artist Interview

Welcome to the Guest Artist Series.

Today, I'm excited to share my interview with Jeanne Oliver. She is generous, wise, kind, funny, and passionate about guiding people through the process of building a creative business.

Jeanne has been my mentor for the last year and has helped me on so many levels. Talking with her about my goals and dreams to build a business I truly love has been such a gift.

If you feel a calling to begin a creative business of your own, or, you want to make your current business stronger and more aligned with your life. I promise you will find the answers you're looking for within Jeanne's beautiful Creatively Made Business Course.

So, without further adieu…

Welcome, Jeanne, I'm so happy to have you as my guest. You are now in your 12th year of running your creative business, and it has grown and changed over the years into a beautiful offering of online classes, live workshops, and now, a Creatively Made Business Course. What has been your favorite part of running your business?

Thank you so much, Renee, for having me! It has been a crazy and beautiful journey so far growing our business. I think my favorite part of running a business is having the freedom to dream up new ideas and then deciding what we are the most passionate about to pursue. I love coming up with new ideas and knowing that we can make it happen and walk it out if it is right for our customers, business and life. This box of possibilities has given our business and family some pretty incredible adventures.

I know you love to talk about business, tell us why you decided to start a creative business.

Twelve years ago I had a one, five and seven year old and once they were in bed each night I would create until the early hours of the morning. I look back now on those nights and know that those hours to myself to create and finding time no matter the exhaustion the next day was what brought my creativity back to life. It all started with home, gathering, making handmade journals, altered letters and frames.

I always say our business “accidentally” started because as I was engaging in my creativity others in my life starting noticing what I was making and started asking to purchase them. It first started with friends, then small shop owners, a small preschool Christmas fair and then Etsy. Each step of showing up before I was ready was bringing me from a hobby into a business.

I attended your Creatively Made Business Workshop at your personal studio, and it was transformative on so many levels. You are now launching an online version of the workshop, would you explain your vision and intentions for the workshop?

These are the words and the transformations we love to hear! Our hearts are to stand beside other business owners no matter if they are in the dreaming, building or expanding stages.

I have been teaching and speaking to women in business for the past seven years and with so much changing in the market place, marketing and even within our own business we knew it was time to offer a new and more powerful business tool.

Not everyone can attend one of our live business workshops so we wanted to take everything amazing about our live events and go even deeper! We are doing something totally different than any online workshop that we have ever created before. We will be taking the business owners through a 6-month online workshop where each month and module builds upon the other and by taking the time to really digest this course you will be implementing change and growth from month one.

Creatively Made Business takes you step by step through the tools your business needs to succeed and your creativity to thrive. Each month you will receive new training videos with me, downloadable worksheets, monthly calls to action, podcasts, printable encouragement, live Q+A, monthly book club, and community.

The workshop will begin on February 3, 2020, and after the first week, the workshop will be closed to all new signups. This allows this group of business owners to create community and to become the best resource to one another.

You are a big believer in gathering creatives together to support, share, and encourage each other. How do you think being a part of the Creatively Made Business will work in developing a supportive community for creatives?

When I think of each time our business hits another milestone I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that we reached that goal through collaborations and community. We need each other. We need advice when we are lost, we need cheerleaders when we are facing our fears, we need others to share what we are building, we need other creatives to collaborate with and bring new things into the world that would otherwise not be possible alone. Community in life and business changes everything.

Often, it is difficult to begin any creative endeavor, feelings of overwhelm and comparison can stand in the way of creating the business of your dreams. Do you have any encouraging words for anyone who is thinking about starting a creative business?

I would just encourage anyone reading to start where you are with what you have. There is so much power in beginning and we are never ready. It just doesn’t happen that way. Most of us have to learn to walk through fear to find the next direction and path. It isn’t easy but it is the most beautiful life you can imagine connecting with your gifts and then walking them out in ways you couldn’t have ever imagined. Just start!

To learn more about Jeanne’s Creatively Made Business, or register visit her site here.

I hope you enjoyed my interview with Jeanne Oliver, I had such a great time learning a bit more about her and the new online Creatively Made Business Course.

I hope you’ll join me again in November when my next guest will be Ivy Newport. She will share with us the inspiration behind her beautiful Studioworks Journal and also how she overcomes frustration, failure, and fear when creating.

Have a beautiful weekend!



Kasia Avery | Guest Artist Interview

Earlier this year, I came across a post on Instagram looking for new teachers for the yearlong course, Wanderlust. I applied, and a few months later, I received an email from Kasia asking me to be a part of this incredible creative adventure. If you’ve taken any of my classes, you know that I believe in the power of art journaling. It is a place where you can abandon perfection and allow your creative voice to emerge in its purest form. So, I have to say, I did a little twirl in my studio when I found out that I will be a part of Wanderlust 2020.

Since this is my first year as a teacher on Wanderlust, I thought it would be fun to interview Kasia and find out a little more about Wanderlust came about and her thoughts about the importance of art journaling.


1. What inspired you and Jamie to create Wanderlust?

Two things really. First was Jamie's idea of creating a membership club for his arts and crafts online shop. The second was my unstoppable urge to introduce as many people as possible to art journaling. I was teaching in-person and traveling a lot, and I could see that art journaling literally changes people. The creativity that they discover through this beautifully forgiving form is just wild.

I wanted this to get big. I wanted to reach people who have this magic within them (and we all do!) and help them flourish, help them discover that freedom, whatever their circumstances or limitations. Online was the answer in this case. We put both ideas together, and that's how, in 2015, we created Wanderlust.

2. Why do you feel art journaling is essential to the creative process?

Here's the thing - in my opinion, creativity needs space to bloom, it needs freedom. It needs to be unleashed and allowed to go a little crazy. Then it grows big and strong and takes you to some wonderful places. Art journals are the perfect tool to let your creativity reveal itself. An art journal can be intimately personal, and therefore it allows you to be more experimental.

This is not a piece of art that you have to sell, exhibit (though you can, sure!), explain to anyone or show off. This gives your creativity the freedom to go crazy, to risk, and discover. And when you allow it to happen, that's when the fireworks go off. You get ideas and courage, you make a start at developing your own (and very authentic!) style, you start mastering techniques, you start becoming an artist that can tell a story through their art.

3. I love all the beautiful colors you use in your journal pages, can you share how you decide on a color palette?

Thank you so much! Colour is something I can go on about for hours so be careful what you ask for :) I always start with a colour wheel, this is a must. People think that if you need a colour wheel, then you are inexperienced. I think it's the opposite - it shows that you know what you are doing and you know what you are looking at. I like the analogous colour scheme. I choose one colour that I want to use, find it on a colour wheel. Then I look at what's next to it - these are the colours that I will be using the most.

Then I often look at the colour that's on the opposite side of the colour wheel (complimentary), and I use small amounts of it at the end to add contrast. I also add quite a bit of white and black (or Paynes Gray) to my pieces, also to ensure contrast.

Take a look at the teachers who will be a part of Wanderlust 2020.

Everything Art is Kasia and Jamie, a husband and a wife team. We are based in the UK, but you can join our offerings from anywhere in the world.

Our online courses in art journaling and mixed-media are firecrackers bursting with inspiration, learning, and lots of messy free play. Our biggest, year-long course is called Wanderlust.

Kasia Avery on Instagram:

Let's Face It 2020

I am so excited to announce that I am going to be a part of the Let’s Face It - 2020 Team!

LET’S FACE IT is a course created and hosted by Kara Bullock and is for anyone interested in drawing the portrait or figure.

This beautiful, year-long course is designed for all levels of artists. You will be guided step by step as we share with you the strategies, tips, and techniques we use to create our portrait and figurative artwork. I have no doubt that you will leave this course feeling confident enough in your skills to create beautiful art that is unique to you.

Let’s Face It is not open for registration yet. However, you can read more about this course here. Also, If you register by November 31st, you will get a discount on the price!

And, I have saved the best part for last, I get to give away one free spot in this course to one of you!

All you have to do

Like my Facebook page

Follow me on Instagram

Sign up for my newsletter

Come back and leave a comment below and your name will be entered into the drawing.

Note: If you already follow me on social media and receive my newsletter, just leave a comment below. Thank you so much for being a part of my creative network.

Winner will be announced by October 11th, 2019

I’m so thrilled to be part of this amazing team of teachers.



I Asked And You Answered

First of all, thank you, thank you for taking the time to fill out my art class survey. It will be incredibly helpful as I plan new classes for 2020

Below are the results:

Portraits - expressive and loose portraits - 84%

Expressive Florals - 84%

Figurative and Expressive Figurative - 89%

Basic Drawing Class - 47%

Private Creative Community - 84%

Other areas of interest:

Art Journaling

RMueller Art 1.jpg



Mixed media

Expressive Landscapes

Alcohol Inks

Oils & Oil Pastels

Style development

Time for creativity - I plan to offer "mini" lessons throughout the year that will be approximately 1 hour.

One on one mentoring - Quite a few of you were interested and I will let you know when the service will be available.

RMueller Art2.jpg

There were many fantastic suggestions regarding classes, live models verses reference photos, creative communities, live workshops, and style development. I want to dive deeper into many of these topics going forward, so stay tuned.

So what is my plan?

Every class I create must have meaningful content and be a beautiful, artistic experience for you. If there is a technique or medium that I'm not well versed in, then I will share a teacher who I feel would be better suited for the task. I promise to keep your suggestions and requests in mind as I develop new classes for 2020.

In the coming months, I will announce new online classes, guest teaching, and live workshops. I have some exciting things on the calendar and I can’t wait to share them with you.



Please feel free to leave a comment below regarding new classes or techniques you might be interested in learning.

Student Work | Portrait Of A Lady

Portrait Of A Lady online art class began in June of this year. Like many online classes, there is a private Facebook group where the students share their work, ask questions, and cheer each other on - it is pretty amazing!

This group is not only creating beautiful art but is incredibly kind and supportive of one another and that is something that fills my heart. The art that is coming out of this class is gorgeous and I wanted to share some of the students works with you.

Student Work

Artists:  Top Row: Kathleen Whiton, Betty Wilkins, Julie Lee, Maxine Shutter, Enny Meerwalt  Center: Dominique Pred’homme  Bottom Row: Enny Meerwaldt, Desi Aka Deezy Art, Kathleen Whiton, Libbi Byrd Corsen


Top Row: Kathleen Whiton, Betty Wilkins, Julie Lee, Maxine Shutter, Enny Meerwalt

Center: Dominique Pred’homme

Bottom Row: Enny Meerwaldt, Desi Aka Deezy Art, Kathleen Whiton, Libbi Byrd Corsen

A special thanks to all of you who allowed me to share your work.

A little bit more about this course:

In this class, we will look to the portraits of women painted by 18th and 19th Century artist for our inspiration.

My intention for this class is not to study a master artist, but to study the women in the portraits, their clothing, the setting, the hairstyles, the color palettes, and embellishments.

We will speculate about their untold stories, the ones they kept close to their hearts. So, with a slight nod to the past, we will explore a variety of techniques to create inspired contemporary portraits.


If you’re currently enrolled and would like to join the Facebook group, we would love to have you. This class is for all levels of artists, and you can start at any time. The course is self-paced, and all the videos are downloadable.

You can register at Kara Bullock’s site here.

Les Femmes | A New Class Inspired By Women Of The Theater

There is a vitality, a life force, an energy, a quickening, that is translated through you into action, and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.             
                                                                            ~ Martha Graham

Last Fall, I attended an art workshop with Jeanne Oliver at her beautiful studio in Castle Rock. Jeanne is a remarkable woman who is funny, generous, kind, and has the sweetest soul. I walked away from the experience with a full heart and incredibly inspired. So, when Jeanne reached out to me to teach an art class for her creative network, I didn’t have to think twice. Absolutely!

However, the day came when I had to start creating the class, and I just stood in my studio without a single spark of an idea. Jeanne and I had talked about touching upon my life in the performing arts, but every idea and sketch I came up with didn't seem to ignite a single spark.

So, I decided to think like a dancer. I turned on my music and a beautiful song by Nina Simone started to play - a spark! Finally! I would create a class inspired by women in the performing arts. There are so many creative directions that you could take from this subject - their history, their art, their music, and even who or what inspired them as artists. The possibilities are endless, and that is what we need to get started as creatives, just the inkling of an idea to open the gateway to creativity.


This class will touch upon some of my favorites female singers, dancers, and choreographers, along with room to explore. And, like most art classes, there will be a variety of techniques, color exploration, and step by step lessons that you can use in your work. I have also included a little music to stir your soul.

In the class, I will share concepts from classical dance and music that you can bring to your creative practice - concepts like, preparation, practice, repetition, theme and variation, storytelling, and symbolism to name a few. We will draw, paint, and explore beautiful stories that will inspire you to create.


As I created each lesson with intention, I worked to stay very open and allowed the class to evolve in the direction that it needed to go. I even reworked a couple of lessons two and three times until I "found the work," which seemed to expose more of who I am as an artist. If I'm honest, I experienced feelings of vulnerability while creating the class, but, I believe that is the only way to create in order to share work that is truly me. Not to say that my other art classes are not me, they most definitely are and I always feel a bit vulnerable before launching the class. But, as I continue to work as an artist and teacher, I’ve learned that I must bring to light more of who I am in order to grow and create from an authentic place.


I hope you will join me for front row seats for my new class, Les Femmes. You can register at Jeanne Oliver's creative network here