Spending time with people who are passionate about what they do is like therapy for me. They inspire me, make me want to create new things, dream bigger and live on a new level altogether. Most importantly, they remind me that my dreams are reachable. For them business and passion-work is not a means for making a living but a way of life. These people thrive off the impossible. (liveyourlegend.net)
Over the last few weeks I’ve had the opportunity to meet, work and share passions with new friends who have inspired me tremendously. How they entered my life is a story in itself and a perfect example is Robin May. There are three very significant people in Robin’s life who are courageously battling cancer. Feeling helpless, Robin began to envision a way that she could support and perhaps offer hope to patients dealing with this terrible disease. Not knowing where to start, she went to Chapters and began looking through some magazines, one of which happened to be about polymer clay. Another customer noticed and struck up a conversation thinking that Robin was familiar with polymer. This customer had taken part in a class I offered through the Gallery on Gore in Perth and after hearing Robin’s story referred her to me. When Robin called looking for help with her idea I invited her to take part in a test class, after which we set up a private lesson to help realize her vision.
Her vision . . . Bottles of Hope . . . tiny bottles that contain a message of hope and positivity, decorated with polymer butterflies, cane patterns and flowers. She just delivered the first batch of 27 bottles to the Breast Cancer Action group last Thursday! She’s also making them for the equivalent organization in Montreal.
Then there’s Lois Siegel . . . I met her at the Orange Art School. She was taking another instructor’s class, but popped into my classroom and asked if she could take a class with me in my studio. We exchanged business cards and soon she was booked into one of my in-studio beginner classes to sculpt a Pot Troll.
Lois asked if she could take some photographs of me in my studio and with some of my work. She has a current exhibit of her photography at the Ottawa Bagelshop and Deli at 1321 Wellington Street, but she is also currently working on a new exhibit of photographs of artists in their studio environments. I was honoured, and the photos are fabulous – she made me feel at ease and one of them is my new profile photo on facebook. But what’s even more incredible about Lois is her passion for art and for life. Her career spans over 35 years – a photographer, filmmaker and writer just to name a few, she’s won a Genie for her documentary “Baseball Girls” (http://www.siegelproductions.ca/lois/films.htm) , she’s been named one of the Capital City’s Top 50 People who are shaping the future of the National Capital, by Ottawa Life Magazine. (Check out this Vistek post from a 2015 exhibit at http://prophotoblog.ca/community/in-store-gallery/ottawa-photographer-lois-siegel/) and she’s won national and international awards and assignments.
This blog post has made me think about all the people who have enriched my life, who have offered support, inspiration and have been role models. It’s their passion that has influenced me and I hope in some way I am able to do the same for others.