Color, Creativity and Courage

I never thought that I would be a teacher. And once I started teaching in my painting workshops in 2006, I never thought I would become a student as a result of it. The fact is, my workshops have provided as much growth and learning for me, as it has for my students. Every demo I do, (especially while struggling with a painting in front of a class of 16!), I learn humility. Every piece of advice I offer, that advice always applies to me. Every success, every failure, every bit of new information that I come across in teaching, is what I still need to learn…as a student, and as a teacher.



Make Room for What You Want

You know how things seem to catch your attention at the exact time that you need it? Last year, I read an article that really stuck with me. It was written by local business coach Machen McDonald, titled “Make Room for What You Want,”  stressing the importance of carving out what you want to happen in your life. It came at a perfect time for me.

In July of 2012, I put my request out on my Facebook page:

“O.k., time to dream big. I’m outgrowing my studio. If anyone has or knows of a building in town that would be cheap (or no cost in a philanthropic kind of way), and be suitable for an artist’s studio, let me know. Looking to develop my art to the next level and I need space to step back, without bumping into something… And if there is a God, ask her if she can find me a patron, while you’re at it.”

And a subsequent post:

“Dreams need to be specific. The studio space I’m requesting would need to be 800 sq. feet minimum, one big open space with high ceilings, bathroom (that would ideally have a utility sink), lighting and utilities, public accessible. Kind of like a barn, an outbuilding, large garage, preferably in town (Nevada City). Actually, if you want me to be even more specific, it would kind of look like this photo. (Monet won’t mind).”


Monet's studio
For fun, this is the photo I posted of my dream studio. (I don’t think Monet would have minded if he had to share it with me, do you?)


By November, the posts that I made led up to almost exactly of what I had envisioned. The value of dreaming big and being specific to what you want in your life is very powerful. We are often afraid to be specific, as to not be disappointed. Being specific helped me not only define my dream of the ideal studio, but allowed the reality to be way more than I ever imagined. I am so grateful.


LeeAnn Brook studio

Follow the Yellow Brick Road

Travel plays such an important part in my art. Through doing extensive photography and painting when I travel, I return with inspiration to bring back into the studio, reawakening the creative process.


In 2012, I fulfilled my lifelong dream and travelled to Italy. Starting in Amsterdam with the Van Gough and Rijks Museums, then on to Italy with the Uffizi and beyond, the experience was breathtaking. Please join me in my blog Unplugged Under the Tuscan Sun, as I meander through another world immersed with food, wine and art.