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It all started a long, long time ago in a suburban tract house just outside of Washington, D.C., when a new box of Crayola crayons lured me to a rare act of flagrant disobedience — coloring on the walls of my bedroom closet. I was 4, and I was hooked on the way color could make even drywall seem like a brilliant canvas.

Alas, my sensible, hard-working parents thought that coloring belonged within the lines of coloring books. And, though they praised me for academic successes, they were dubious about the value of art-making apart from a well-set dining table and the beauty of a neatly manicured lawn. My mom was a neat-as-a-pin, just-so housekeeper. So it’s no surprise that my clamoring desire to do craft projects featured in Highlights Magazine (which largely involved saving cardboard oatmeal canisters or empty milk cartons and such dangerous products as glue and glitter) was met with a raised eyebrow and quickly orchestrated trips to the library to distract me from the seductions of (what would surely involve a mess) art activities.

I gave up my youthful inclinations to messy media, and turned my creative juices to sewing really hideous outfits in the 70’s (a certain wide-wale purple corduroy midi vest comes to mind with a particular horror — if you just had a flashback to Bea Arthur in the TV show Maude, you’ve got the idea). I also became a chick who loves yarn and devoted myself to all things knitted, crocheted, embroidered, and (Lord, bless me) the occasional macrame project.

But it wasn’t until I fell in love with Brian — an art student who spent his days in studio classes focused on fine art, experimental animation, and film-making — that I got a permission slip to play in the risky world of paints, pastels, print-making, pottery, and mixed media. He had all the tools and toys, and he encouraged me use them!

That starving art student is now my husband and art-making bestie. We’ve designed our life and home to make space for making art. And we are passionate about helping others connect to their creative capacities, too! As a licensed mental health therapist and Certified Facilitator and Case Consultant for Brene Brown’s The Daring Way and Rising Strong psychoeducational curriculums, I know that creativity is crucial to transformative change. We bring what we know in our head into deeper reality in our heart through the engagement of our hands. That is why I founded Daring Creativity, to promote personal discovery and spiritual growth through art, journaling, and community.

In March 2016, Brian and I attended a weekend workshop about painting daily taught by Lisa Daria Kennedy at Donna Downey’s Studio in Huntersville, NC. We came home energized to develop a consistent practice of completing one 6″ x 6″ painting each day — rain or shine, in sickness or in health. The ritual of daily painting has become a practice that stimulates my authenticity and connectedness. I like to think of these little paintings as exercises in praying with color. By making my mark in the world each day, I am saying an intentional “No!” to living numb, disconnected, and afraid.

This shop features selected originals from my daily painting series, as well as prints and other painting and mixed-media projects that have grown out of the creative atmosphere of our home and community.

I hope you love what you see. If you buy something, that’s great. But my deepest hope is that you will feel inspired to grab your own box of crayons, a paint brush, or bottle of glitter and find the permission to play. Whether your creativity is found in the garden, the kitchen, or the board room…whether you like to write, doodle, sing, or take photos…no matter what the media or the venue…go for it. Every day. Live awake, brave and creative!