Announcing: New Workshop Venue, Studio Hours, & Private Lessons!

As I hinted in my last blog post, some exciting changes are happening around here!

I FINALLY found a venue to partner with in my neighborhood of Nyack!

Since I started teaching workshops 2+ years ago, I've been like Goldilocks searching for a place in that was just right for me - I tried a co-working space, and a fun restaurant partnership, but both were lacking that bright and airy feel that I love. For that reason, I’ve traveled across the bridge to Westchester and NYC for the majority of my workshops.

While walking back from the Nyack farmer's market recently, I noticed a new art gallery with beautiful paintings in the window - the artist's style really spoke to me. The shop was closed so I could only peek in through the glass, but I literally gasped when I saw the bright, airy open space (setup was still in progress).

When I finally got to sit down with the talented artist and owner of the gallery, Shelly Luan, we spent hours chatting, and laughing... we became fast friends and Shelly was more than willing to host my classes at her space!

So, I went right to work in filling my calendar with new classes and events and my brain started swirling with lots of ideas, thinking about the world of possibilities in this new space.

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Studio Hours | Creative Co-Working | Private Lessons

One idea that I'm testing is something which, I've dubbed, "studio hours".  Every Tuesday, I'll be in the gallery for those who'd like to schedule private calligraphy lessons with me, or try "creative co-working"

What's creative co-working? It's like regular co-working but instead of work, you bring your own creative projects to work on! With a day pass, you'll have access to the supplies we'll have on hand in the studio for a focused calligraphy practice session, or just spend a few hours creating in a quiet space! {There's no WiFi, but there will be complimentary snacks!)

As you can imagine, I’m super excited for what’s to come and I hope that you can join me (if you’re local)!

Check out all the new offerings below and feel free to get in touch with any questions:

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On listening to your heart and having the courage to let go

Real talk time -- 

Recently, I’ve been dealing with some internal struggles about my calligraphy workshops. As in, do I even want to teach anymore?

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Now, don't get me wrong - I love hosting events, teaching classes, and getting to meet people like you, who actually want to learn calligraphy! What I I don't enjoy is marketing myself, the anxiety associated with filling a class, lugging supplies all over the place, not having a venue to call my own, and the loneliness associated with being a solo entrepreneur, doing all of this on my own. It was starting to wear on me…

Last year, I had the opportunity to work with some amazing brands in NYC, which led me to hosting more workshops in the city. I admit, I was swept up by the excitement and “glamour” of it all. I felt validated, like I finally “made it”. But let’s be real. Taking gigs in NYC or anywhere else doesn’t make or break me as a calligrapher/teacher. The simple fact is that I was taking these jobs because it brought in funds that I needed to pay the bills. And yes, I will continue to take on gigs in the city as I see fit, but as far as workshops go - the anxiety of filling classes, plus expensive venue fees (and everything else mentioned above) was wreaking havoc on my physical and mental health. As much as I want to serve my NYC client base, I have to listen to my heart (and body) and let some things go.

Which, is why I’ve decided on the following:

City folks, going forward I will only be booking private workshops as the minimum number is guaranteed, eliminating some of the anxiety re: filling classes. So, if you live in NYC and would like to learn modern calligraphy from me, invite a few friends and make it a girls’ night! I can travel to your home or you can book a Breather space of your choice (referral link).

I have also opened booking for private lessons in Westchester & Rockland counties - this is for anyone who’s looking to take their calligraphy to the next level, or whose schedule just doesn’t sync up with my workshop calendar.

Making changes in my business is always scary, and I know that I will be disappointing people (I’m sorry!). But these changes can lead to new and exciting things - which, I’m happy to share is on the horizon! Stay tuned! :)

Give a gift that gives back | Custom lettered ornament

Every year, I try to do my small part in giving back during the holiday season. Using my talents to bless others inspires me to keep going on this creative journey, it's my "why".

This year, I'm partnering with The Visao Foundation, a non-profit organization with a mission to equip vulnerable youth in Africa with essential tools and resources they need to become change-makers in their communities.

I met Liesel, the founder of the organization earlier this year as she attended my workshops and meetups in Westchester. I was inspired by Liesel’s dedication as she shared with me how she wanted to learn calligraphy/hand-lettering so she would be able to bring new ideas to the students at Camp Visao, a week-long camp for the youth in Sierra Leone. Liesel spearheaded this foundation, along with its many amazing initiatives to fulfill the critical needs these youth require in order to succeed at life.

One of the Foundation’s newer initiatives, is Tools for School - which, ensures that children from families below the poverty threshold have the basic school supplies they need to have a successful school year.

With your help, my hope is to be able to sponsor 10 school supply kits ($250), which are filled with items such as exercise books, pens, pencils, ruler, eraser, sharpener, and art supplies. The Foundation’s team on the ground will begin assessing the students’ needs in January so the necessary items can be collected, assembled in kits, and distributed shortly thereafter.

To learn more about these kits and the Tools for School initiative, please visit The Visao Foundation website. Thank you so much for your support!

How you can help

Head over to my Etsy shop and purchase a custom lettered ornament. $5 of each sale will be donated to The Visao Foundation’s Tools for School initiative - I’ll be taking orders until December 14th!

As a THANK YOU for your support, each ornament order will include a FREE 5x7" folded Christmas card that I designed, which you can keep or mail to a friend (envelope included; while supplies last). Card will be selected at random (see photos above for designs).