It Is Time.....IGNITE
It seems like life times ago that I was attending Cleveland State University to receive my Art Education license and prepare myself professionally to bring the magic and healing of the Arts to the masses. I had already been teaching Art for 8 years at the Cleveland Museum of Art and various Art organizations in Cleveland, Ohio, when I felt strongly that it was time to step it up a notch and pursue the education that I believed would open more doors for me to touch more lives.
Going through the Art Education program was not an easy feat. Not because of the work load or amount of requirements---but because of the disappointment that started to form in my heart the further I went into the program.
I became disappointed by my peers--many who were in Art Education because they thought it would be the "easiest" route to having a job with paid holidays and your summers off.
I became disappointed by the administration--as it made painstaking measures to condition us to fit into a system--a system I was slowly realizing was not a good fit for me--no matter if I had paid holidays and vacations or not.
But I stuck with it--and I searched out the professors who shared my passion, eventually found fellow students that felt like me, and I swore, no-matter-what, that I would put my heart into it--believing that it was no accident that I was there.
Then, the semester before graduating, I was in one of my favorite Art Education classes of all: Aesthetics and Critique, when a real light bulb went off. The visiting professor was an incredible man who when he told us that he left his home in the Dominican Republic (that had 2 mango trees and a hammock in the backyard) just because he longed for an adventure--an adventure to share the power of the Arts with others--I knew I found a kindred soul. He taught me more in the two courses I took with him than I learned my entire two years of the program--and sadly he was met with a lot of resistance and backlash from the students--because he challenged us to think--to really be creative--and to share the passion why we were (suppose to be) there in the first place.
To be honest, I don't remember what my 20 minute final presentation exactly was about--but I do remember clearly that my intention was to do my best to IGNITE my peers into seeing how important their role as an Art Teacher was going to be. I was a minority in the program--being that I already had two Art degrees and almost a decade of teaching under my belt. I knew what laid ahead for many of these people if they seriously chose to pursue a job teaching Art--and what worried me the most is that they would be a disservice. Not only to their students--but to the overall appreciation and life of the Arts for generations to come if they were just in it for the paid vacation time.
After my presentation my Prof asked to speak with me privately. The other students noisily filed out and my Prof plopped down in the desk right next to me. In his thick accent he carefully said: Connie, there are those that go on to teach and there are those that go on to teach those that teach. I see a life ahead of you--no matter what path you choose consciously, to be a part of the latter.
That's really all he said.
But that was the light bulb moment for me in my life. That's when all my experience, all my background, all my likes, dislikes, celebrations, and tribulations started to make much more sense to me.
I knew he was right. I knew it with all my soul.
And now, lifetimes later, I see that not only in every teaching job that I have ever taken--that I have done my best to create empowered leaders of my students--but in every job, relationship, and even in writing this blog. My intention always is to inspire and empower others to embrace how important their gifts and talents are--so they can IGNITE and inspire others as well. Others that resonate with them so that the magic and healing of the Arts can create a huge web.
Truthfully, I could say that a year of planning, hard work, and pouring my heart and energy has gone into this moment--this day, were I finally launch my FEARLESS® Painting Teacher Training Program IGNITE into the world. But the truth is, it's been much longer than that.
Much, much longer.
Though I know now, with all my being, what I am fully ready to do.
I'm not just ready to inspire others to be the best teachers/leaders/healers they can be--because I've been doing that for awhile. But I am ready to step into this next evolution of my own spirit. Through IGNITE I will gather together a community of amazing women, to guide, support, and most importantly IGNITE their own gifts, talents, and innate wisdom. Gifts, talents, and wisdom that I believe are so needed in the world today.
Now, with great joy and excitement, I am happy to announce IGNITE.
IGNITE is not another certification program. I will not be conditioning you to teach like I do or to go out into the world following some formula or prescribed standard. But rather, I will be doing what I do best as a teacher--and that is guiding you to ruthlessly believe and embrace your own innate wisdom and gifts, sharing with you all the tools, techniques, and experience I have gained through my 15+ years of being a successful, inspiring teacher/ creative entrepreneur, and supporting you in creating your own unique path into making teaching your life's work. But the best part of it all is that we will do all of this together--through the incredible power of the FEARLESS® Painting Process.
Do you too feel deep down that you are ready to really empower, transform, and IGNITE other women's creative spirits? Not to mention your own first?
Than IGNITE might be the right fit for you.
To learn more and be one of only 12 women I am accepting into this program please go HERE. If you have any questions or would like to discuss more in depth if IGNITE is the right fit for you, please EMAIL ME and let's set up a time to chat!
And when you're ready, let's IGNITE the world together!