Tag Archives: creativity

Feminism, Creativity, and Breaking Boundaries: A Conversation with Anna Fishbeyn

“I only got onto the stage after I had my children. When I became a mom, it gave me an enormous freedom in thinking about myself.”


Recently we got a chance to talk with Anna Fishbeyn who is a creative in many areas. The conversation with Anna covers the interesections between parenthood, unzipping the layers of definitions as an individual and as a creative. Anna shares that creativity is “something that is constantly moving and evolving” much like our lives from moment to moment.  Anna shares, “I find it very strange that society has defined titles for us like writer, actress or filmmaker. I actually find that they are all intertwined.”

Find out how her creative life began on stage in 2010 with an array of vignettes including The Nuts and Bolts of Espionage i.e. Sex I n Mommyville to some advice she has for swimming in your own creative waters.

You can see more of Anna Fishbeyn’s work including her winning episodes of Happy Hour Feminism on VimeoOnDemand ($1.99/video). If you are interested in also helping to support Anna’s projects, you can also visit www.patreon.com/xofeminist.


Check out more of Anna Fishbeyn’s work and websites:



SexinMommyville FANPAGE

MyStubbornTongue FANPAGE

HappyHourFeminism FANPAGE

Anna’s twitter handle is  twitter/annafishbeyn and her instagram is Annafishbeyn.

To Create or Create for Change….That Is The Question

“An artist’s duty as far as I am concerned is to reflect the times…”
(Nina Simone during an interview)

On this site we often talk about encouraging and inspiring individuals to create, but the question of whether or not to create has several layers.

Will you create?  Or will you create in order to impact change?

Will you use your body, your movement, your canvass, your camera lens, your pen, your voice to bring attention to the urgency of the now?  This question was inspired by this video in which Nina Simone talks about the duty of the artist to go beyond just creating…

Just Wild Over This Year: Open Letter to 2015

letter-stackAs you read this, perhaps you might think about your own letter to 2015 that you want to craft.  Perhaps your “letter” is in the form of a simple resolution.  Maybe it is a theme or name you want to give it that encapsulates all of the lessons, adventures, or living that you have gained from 2015.

time spaceWhatever and however you are wishing to mark the transition, do it in a way that allows you to nurture or plant the seed for that wild, untamed creative space that you’ve been wanting to come out.  Sometimes, it is as simple as starting with a list of your intentions.
Good luck to creating and remaining open to the wild inspiration, adventures and musings that await you in the New Year!

Open Letter to 2015:

I started with you as I do every year as a hopeful child
now I leave you some parts disillusioned,
and yet still hopeful

Your hours and days included many relationships
and some worth revisiting


All not quite what they seemed

MagicThere were the adventures you gave me that were not planned or expected
and, let’s face it,
there were adventures that happened that I did not sign up for,
the ones that I wanted to forget but they will provide a good story or two in old age

You whose name was “Things are things” and in many ways you defied all categories
encouraging and daring me to be a wilder,
livelier version of myself

You pushed me into taking chances
and you didn’t just thrust me out of my comfort zone,
you openly challenged me to live within all of the places that were uncomfortable

While I  am happy to see you go
ome parts of me will miss some of your surprises

As you leave,
I will now be whispering to myself,
What of you do I want to keep?
What parts of you am I happy to see go?

Perhaps these and other questions
can remain in the web of the rhetorical as I look forward to 2016

Reminding myself that it was you, 2015, who gave me permission to spin a web of intentions with everything,
every person met,
every place seen,
and every experience had within your 12-month womb

In many ways,
you prepared me for many endings and beginnings
reminding me of the gift of being open
reminding me of the many ways to gracefully break the rules
crash the mold
forever daring me to set fire to the idea of what is

As I approach your end and begin again
you remind me to remember all of the ways of being creative
showed me the topography of my wild
while reminding me to keep a book of matches,
an eraser,
an open mind,
and an open heart to the unknown that awaits in the new year

After all
you and I once started in a place where you were new
and unknown to me

© Shanta Lee


Creative confidence: Living a truly creative lifestyle by Chris Cromwell


Take a moment to consider this… What quality would you consider to be the most fundamental aspect of being creative? Lots of notable teachers in the space share common opinions. I’ve heard everything from being open to new experiences to being actively curious. I’ve heard really simple things like the awareness and intention to be more creative. I think each of these methods have merit and I believe that together they can create a truly empowered creative experience.

I propose that each of these tactics have a unifying theme.

The title for this little blurb was inspired by a book I read recently. “Creative Confidence” by Tom and David Kelley. The book outlines their concept of confidence as it relates to creative thinking. The book was actually fantastic and I highly recommend it for anyone pursuing a creative lifestyle.

I wrote this article with the intention to share my own opinions in contrast to what I learned in their book. I’m completely addicted to learning and I listen to about one audio book per week. In my immersion of education, I’ve gained lots of insights into my own learning process and I’ve found a few common principles for living a truly creative life.

First of all, we have to constantly be learning new things. I always like to use the analogy of a toolbox when referring to the mind. Your mind is a toolbox. Information and knowledge are your tools. The more tools you have, the more things you can build. It makes good, logical sense doesn’t it?


I’ve had the good fortune of meeting thousands of people in my adventures and I constantly notice something unique about creative people. They are veracious learners. For creators, it doesn’t matter what the skill is, as long as it’s interesting creative people will deep dive into a topic without hesitation.

If you’re anything like me, you were told growing up that you should specialize your skills. Get a good education and find a job in a field that you’re passionate about. Easy right? Well, until you’ve had the experience of looking at all your options… It becomes obvious that a single specialty is just not practical. I’ve always been given freedom to choose what I prefer and being faced with so many options, I feel it to be painfully impossible to pick just one thing to excel at.

Personally, I’m excited about the science of people. Anthropology. I’m extremely passionate about music and the arts. I’m an avid marketer and sales person. I’m a big tech geek and I’ve always loved speaking and performing as an orator. I’m an entrepreneur and an aspiring philanthropist. As I’m sure you can tell, each of these skills are very different. I don’t specialize in any single industry or narrow my options to select just one field of study. Along my path, these passion have naturally overlapped and I’ve found it very useful in practice to have multiple skill sets.

Creative Confidence to me, is having the ability to face obstacles.

I feel that being curious, staying open to the potential of new experiences and living a ‘fun’ life are the foundational aspects of living a fulfilled, creative existence. Without having the courage to face new challenges and overcome new barriers, we become apathetic. I believe that continuous learning is the fundamental key to being empowered, creatively.

Our lust for life exists in our ability to seek out new challenges, create new problems and really face life head-on with ambition and excitement about the unknown. I know that we are naturally courageous and creative people that are drawn to learn, explore and ponder the world around us. I feel that our society (unintentionally) teaches us to play it safe and follow the beaten path. I suggest to get lost, make messes and explore the possibilities of the world. We’re very fortunate to grow up in this day in age where the information of the world is at our fingertips… literally.

It’s a natural experience to be curious and wonder about things. If we spent more time in our days following our curiosities and courageously exploring this magnificent world around us, we would be actively living a creative life and be fulfilled in the process.

Here’s to your creative adventure, whatever it might be.
Go forward courageously, friends!


More About Chris:

Chris Cromwell is a visual artist based in Calgary, Alberta. After losing both parents in 2011, Chris quit his day job and started pursuing art full time. Jumping in head first gave him valuable insights into how much work it actually takes to survive and thrive as an artist.  Read more about Chris Cromwell here.

You can check Chris out by visiting:


Wild Musings: Unzipping the Self & Tips for Wild Creativity (Video)

Wildly Creative Co-Founder Shanta Lee talks about tips for leading a wildly creative life during an interview with Ezlerh Oreste of Brattleboro Community TV.

Shanta Lee
Photo Credit: Liz LaVorgna, Core Photography

“Being in relationship with yourself is a long term dysfunctional relationship.”  Shanta Lee on navigating the relationship with the self in order to unzip creativity


Meet Chris Cromwell…Author, Visual Artist, Muralist & Web Designer (Audio)

“2011 was a pivotal moment for me because it taught me that life is extremely short and if I were to spend more time on this earth, I should be doing what I love.” Chris Cromwell

If you are interested in purchasing his new book, The Working Artist: 15 Lessons & Philosophies for Artists to Build a Successful Art Career,  you can visit the following link: http://amzn.to/1WsHUkw

More About Chris:

Chris Cromwell is a visual artist based in Calgary, Alberta. After losing both parents in 2011, Chris quit his day job and started pursuing art full time. Jumping in head first gave him valuable insights into how much work it actually takes to survive and thrive as an artist.

500 Hamsa
Original Art by Chris Cromwell
500 Fishy
Original art by Chris Cromwell

Chris currently works full time designing websites and commissioning fine art and mural installations throughout Canada. Chris is also an author and an enthusiastic public speaker.

Curiosity Chris CromwellChris travels to schools teaching young people to aspire to living a creative life and emphasizes the value of creativity, uniqueness, optimism and most importantly, creative confidence.


Chris can be found online through social media:

Chris Cromwell _ Amanda StewartFacebook

You can check Chris out by visiting:





Wild Musings: Something About Jimi

The following is taken from the Dick Cavett show aired July 1969 featured in the documentary Jimi Hendrix: Hear My Train A Comin, Jimi Hendricks is answering Dick’s questions about his reactions to compliments regarding his musical talent,

Dick:  “What do you hear if someone comes up after a concert?  What kind compliment do you like to hear?”

Jimi:  ”I don’t know I don’t really live on compliments.  Matter of fact, it has a way of distracting me.  And a lot of other musicians and artists who are out there today, they hear all of these compliments, they say ‘Wow must’ve been really great’  so they get fat and lost and satisfied and they forget about the talent they actually have and they start slipping into another world.”

The conversation continued with Jimi talking about compliments as corrosive to the spirit and hunger of a creative.

Compliments or Cheerful Validation:  A Possible Threat to Creativity?

There are always various tightropes to walk as an individual in the world.   On a basic human level, all of us struggle with balancing between feelings of confidence  and ego.  Many of us playing a balancing act along the continuum of seeing ourselves as we really are and along the way…..we sometimes inflate or at other times, we don’t give ourselves enough credit.

If you are unzipping your creative passions on any level in your daily lives, you understand this struggle well.    In the opinion of Jimi Hendix, compliments or praise allows one to rest upon laurels.  The need or want of validation plays an important role in the recognition of the work and courage it takes to share a creative endeavor with the world.   Of course, it also presents a challenge for one to stay motivated to create while feeding the fire to continually improve.

Compliments are great but perhaps well worth keeping at a distance as you carve our your wildly creative.  Well, at least that is according to Jimi…