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Mentoring to take your creativity to the next level

I love people, business and creativity. When these three fuse together, I overflow with ideas, which I’m happy to share. I have been a professional writer and artist for almost fifteen years and one aspect of my job which I love is mentoring others to become more successful.

Mentorship Magic Alexis Marie Chute Artist Mentor art BLOG

I am currently mentoring a musician, a photographer, a writer, an artist… They are great minds and I am honoured to help them get where they want to go.

Here is a quote from one of my mentees:

“Being mentored. A wonderful experience of discovery and focus.

 

The best part about guidance from Alexis Marie Chute, professional artist, has been the inexhaustible amount of knowledge she can apply to your situation or seemingly unsolvable problem. Alexis Marie honestly and without judgement pointed out that in my case, spreading myself too thin with multiple projects and talents, would only result in a lack of finishing my projects and that I needed to find my focus or passion, and specialize.

 

After two weeks of intense thought on the homework she gave, I came up with precise lists of capabilities, skill levels and what I enjoyed the most. Alexis Marie used effective constructive criticism to then guide my focus as to how I would approach selling my products and gave suggestions for solving the problem in a positive and productive manner. As someone increasingly interested in the arts I would recommend her to anyone interested in putting in the time to seriously start their own artistic endeavours.

 

On that note, she is a kind and enthusiastic individual whose talent is beyond paint and portrait. Her life experience lends to her awareness of the sensitivity others may need and contributes to her knowledge that sometimes life doesn’t work out as planned so we all periodically need a little encouragement to seek out our hearts’ desires.”

 

  • Heather Groeller, Artisan

 

It is always rewarding for me to hear the positive feedback of clients – and these individuals are often an inspiration for me as well. Get in touch for more information about my mentoring services: info@alexismariechute.com. I charge $50/one-hour session. It is a worthwhile investment.

Here are other posts about my mentoring:

Get Focused, Be Productive & Tap into your Creativity through Mentorship

http://www.alexismarieart.com/index.php/get-focused-be-productive-tap-into-creativity-through-mentorship/

Mentoring for the Modern Writer

http://www.alexismariewrites.com/index.php/mentoring-for-the-modern-writer/

Coaching, Mentoring & Consulting by Alexis Marie Chute

http://www.alexismariewrites.com/index.php/services/coaching-mentoring-consulting/

An Artful Start to 2014

 

2013 was a great year. I started my MFA in Creative Writing at Lesley University and wrapped up my yearlong artist residency at Harcourt House Gallery and Artist Run Centre. People opened up about their struggles and healing in my portrait series, “The Quiet Rebuild,” and one of those images won first place in a photography competition at Method Art Gallery in Scottsdale Arizona.

My Harcourt art studio is already full of sunshine thanks to my daughter.

My Harcourt art studio is already full of sunshine thanks to my daughter.

As great as 2013 was, 2014 is already off to a wonderful start.

 

 

  • You can now find me either in my home art studio where I will be painting, or in my new studio at Harcourt House where I will be continuing with my wood sculpture explorations.

 

 

 

  • Opening in February is my solo show, “The Quiet Rebuild” the portraits. This exhibit is a part of Exposure Photography Festival and will be held in Calgary Alberta. I will also be hosting a number of artist talks and presentations during the month. (“The Quiet Rebuild” will also be shown at the Glenrose Hospital gallery later in the year.)

 

  • Also coming up in 2014 are two solo exhibitions of “Unfulfilled Precognition” which features the documentary-style art images that I took leading up to and following my son Zachary’s death in 2010.

 

I share my home studio with a very messy little artist indeed!

I share my home studio with a very messy little artist indeed!

I want to take this opportunity to thank the many people in my life who have supported me along the way. Thank you Aaron for always encouraging my dreams, having a positive attitude and making my passions your passions. Thank you Mom for always having a listening ear and taking such great care of my kids while I work. Thank you Candace for hanging out with me throughout undergrad while I painted and for modeling for me and generally being the best best-friend a girl could ask for. Thank you Dad, Bob, Randy and Gloria, Kaila, Kim Kelly, Robert Sinclair, Paul Freeman, Derek Brooks, Sharon Moore Foster… There are too many people to name. Hugs and love all around.

 

Photo copyright Alexis Marie Chute

Photo copyright Alexis Marie Chute

 

Cheers to 2014!  

Alexis Marie Blog shortlisted for the Canadian Weblog Awards in Two Categories

The Shortlist has been announced for the Canadian Weblog Awards. I was kindly notified by a twitter connection of my blog’s inclusion. Out of 34 categories my blog has made the top five in both:

Art, Crafting and Photography

Writing and Literature

Thank you to those that nominated my blog and thank you to those that read every post. It means the world to me. The first, second and third place winners will be announced in two days, on December 7th, 2013. No matter the outcome, I am honoured to be included on this list of some truly amazing blogs and dedicated bloggers.

When I started blogging I had no idea the enjoyment I would derive from online journaling, sharing stories and updates on my work. It has been a pleasure.

Why Alexis Marie is an Avenue Magazine Top 40 Under 40 in Edmonton

– MEDIA RELEASE
 –

Artist and Writer honored to be included amongst Avenue Magazine’s Top 40 Under 40 in Edmonton

Any time a person finds themselves on a list of ‘top anything’, it’s usually a good thing. But when that recognition comes from the place and people that fuel and nurture the work itself, that acknowledgment is all that much sweeter. So Alexis Marie Chute’s inclusion in Avenue magazine’s 2013 “Top 40 Under 40” sits high amongst the honors she has received for her work as an artist, writer, and volunteer.

Chute hasn’t been told who nominated her, but it’s difficult to see how she wouldn’t be recognized as one of Edmonton’s best and brightest. Chute has been a high profile artist in the city for many years, exhibiting in dozens of venues at home and abroad, teaching children about the importance of art in their lives, being named an “Emerging Canadian Photographer” by PhotoLife Magazine, and most recently acting as Harcourt House’s Artist-in-Residence. Chute’s solo exhibition, “The Quiet Rebuild,” can be viewed in the Harcourt House Gallery until November 29, 2013.

Through it all, Edmonton has been central to Chute’s personal and professional development. “The city has been so good to me, both directly and indirectly. I don’t think of Edmonton just as my home, but as my community—something that runs much deeper and is so much more important.”

Chute’s involvement in the Edmonton community also extends into the personal realm as she reaches out to bereaved families since the loss of her own son Zachary in 2010, just moments after his birth. Instead of retreating into her grief, Chute’s instinct was to encourage others who have experienced a similar loss. Apart from inspiring her own visual art, the experience saw her helping others use artistic expression as a way of coping with loss and becoming involved with recovery groups in the area along with speaking and teaching engagements.

“It’s my honor to give back to a place that has given me so much.”

Get Out of the Creative Desert

Arizona Desert
Photograph copyright Alexis Marie Chute

How do we replenish ourselves as artists? As writers? As creative human beings?

When our reserve of energy and inventiveness are depleted, when our desire for innovation and experimentation runs low and our passion for creative expression is a barren desert and we have nothing left to give: what then?

How do we revive these qualities in our lives so that ideas flow, inspiration rains and our creative selves flourish?

For myself, I have discovered that creativity breeds creativity. Art breeds art. Just as in life, kindness begets kindness and love multiplies itself in an environment of love.

I know all too well the desert of the artistic soul. It is the last place I want to be. Fortunately, by understanding that creativity begets creativity, I have enjoyed staying in the place of creative flow.

I find myself presently in a ramped up artistic season of my life. I am Artist in Residence at Harcourt House, have many exhibitions of my artwork (photography, sculpture, mixed media) upcoming and have recently completed a memoir, novella and am currently in the midst of writing a full length novel.

Arizona Desert Flowers
Photograph copyright Alexis Marie Chute

It is a good time. My mind is ripe with ideas. My writing inspires my artwork, my art incites poetry, my poetry evolves into my photographic practice. The love I feel from my clients (and their joy at receiving their portraits) creates a warm fuzzy feeling that keeps me chipper as I work in the isolation of my art studio or pound the keyboard writing during NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month).

Creativity begetting even more creativity seems to be a magical state that I find myself within and it brings an artful mindset into every area of my life. It is as if I am not only an artist, period. Or a mother, period. Or a wife, period. I am an artist of all these things and they all play an important role.

I have come to believe that if you want to increase your creativity in an area where you are stuck (a.k.a. writer’s block or the equivalent for other artist types), try shifting gears and let the artist in you come out in some other fashion. I bet you will experience a breakthrough in not only the first area but both.

CREATIVITY BREEDS CREATIVITY

This is my goal and I am finding it wonderfully exciting. In every area of my life I am choosing to include my passions and challenging myself to be creative as an artist / writer / photographer / designer / mother / human being without boundaries.

The result: My life is now richer and riper with meaning.

Arizona Desert Flower
Photograph copyright Alexis Marie Chute

I’ve Been Busy! Let me catch you up!

It has been a busy summer and fall is continuing this trend with lots of artistic goodies! Let me catch you up on the action!

 

My printer winning bicycle image of Bride Christina.

Photography Update: Photolife Magazine

 

Photolife printed one of my photographs in their August/September issue as a part of their Showtime theme: trees. In the same issue I was chosen as an “Emerging Photographer” for 2012. This is a huge honor! I was one in 15 Canadians selected for this distinction (and the only photographer selected from Alberta).

Then, in the October/November issue of Photolife Magazine I was the winner of the Showtime theme: Bicycles. The award: an Epson Artisan 837 printer.

 

This is one of the winning tree images selected by Photolife Magazine. This photograph was taken on a mountain in New Zealand.

Writing Update: Walk to Remember

 

On September 29, 2012 I was the keynote speaker at the Walk to Remember to a crowd of nearly 2,000 people who gathered to celebrate their dearly loved children lost due to miscarriage, stillbirth, early infant loss or SIDS. It was an emotional day as I was remembering my own sweet Zachary who died shortly after birth two years ago. The event organizers asked me to speak after reading my blog Wanted Chosen Planned. You can read my speech in my post: “Walk to Remember Speech by Alexis Marie Chute.”

 

With this fine art photograph I was named an Emerging Canadian Photographer by Photolife Magazine.

Writing Update: 3 Day Novel Contest and NaNoWriMo

 

I spent the September long weekend locked in my office (with my newborn) writing a novel during the 3 Day Novel Contest. While others were outdoors enjoying the end of summer I worked three long days typing a full first draft of my debut novel. It’s a romance in essence but, as all good stories, is full of twists on the standard love story.

I loved the 3 Day Novel Contest so much that I have signed up for NaNoWriMo which stands for the National Novel Writing Month which begins today! November 1st! This time I am trying my hand at fantasy and am raring to go. My characters are coming to life in my mind and I am thrilled to tell their story. Stay up to date with my progress on twitter (@_Alexis_Marie). Stay up to date with my NaNoWriMo progress here on my Alexis Marie blog and on my Artist Reborn blog (where you can find my posts about my 3 Day Novel Experience).

 

This is an example of my wood sculpture that I will be developing while Artist in Residence at Harcourt House.

Art Update: Harcourt house & Kiwanis Gallery

 

As of today, November 1st, I am the 2012/2013 Artist in Residence at Harcourt House artist run center here in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. This is a wonderful position for an artist as the gallery will support my artistic endeavors for a whole year. What does that mean in practical terms? I will have a private studio at Harcourt House while I develop my body of artwork, give me opportunity to teach and at the end of the year the gallery will host a solo exhibition of my work. My show will be installed next October and I will give an artist talk at the opening reception. Please contact me if you want an invite to the opening.

I recently got word from the Kiwanis Art Gallery in Red Deer, Alberta that they will be mounting a solo exhibition of my fine art photographs in their 2014-2015 line-up. The exhibition will feature images I took leading up to and following the death of my son Zachary. The images document the life of my family as we spend almost two months at the hospital trying to save my son and the devastation that follows his death. It is an emotional collection of photographs but one that speaks to the heart and the resilience of the heart. You can read about my experience at Wanted Chosen Planned and how I found art to be a tool for healing at Artist Reborn.

The Quiet Rebuild

This post was first seen on my blog Wanted Chosen Planned as it relates to the rebuilding of my life after the loss of my son Zachary. I featured it there to encourage those who have lost a child to experiment with art (of all kinds: painting, photography, journal writing, etc.) as a means to find healing. I re-post it here as my hope for this blog is to bolster the weary creative spirit within us and to turn our frustration, fear, and failure into the artwork and creative writing that we were born to bring forth. 

“The Quiet Rebuild” © Alexis Marie Chute, Wood Sculpture 2012

I have been making sculpture although I am not primarily a sculptural artist. I find the use of my hands in the tactile nature of my recent artwork very soothing. My art has been focusing on the idea that we create our understanding of the world in many ways. When my son Zachary died, my world crashed down. Like a forest burn by fire, I was brought to ash, literally. It is fitting that my artwork uses wood, both natural and manmade. I find this particular piece, “Quiet Rebuild” particularly therapeutic to look at. It reminds me of where I am at, rebuilding my life in a different time, a simpler, basic time where my expectations of the world have been brought into check.

I rebuild my life and my understanding of the world from the burnt forest, atop a humble piece of wood. What I make of my life at this stage is truly of my own invention and each fragment of my understanding of the world comes together in an awkward balance but feels right in the face of everything I have endured.

Art is a personal and unique expression. It may not bring you the answers you search for but it can help you understand the questions you are asking. I encourage you to experiment, play and create like a child. Healing often does not arrive in the way we expect.

“The Quiet Rebuild” – When death comes and takes, it changes us who live. When we see this life as it is, the impermanence of all we hold dear and yet our ability to continue on, to love and value what truly matters, then we rebuild our soul with these lessons, changed yet whole.