Speaking at TEDxYYC

 I always encourage my students to take a step out of their comfort zone and be okay with taking risks.  I even have broken track and field hurdles up around my classroom to remind them that it is okay to run at life’s obstacles at 100%.  If you fall, I remind them, it’s okay, just remember to get back up and keep going.

Somehow, when I have to take that advice myself it gets a lot harder! I was invited today to speak at TEDxYYC.  I’m honoured, excited but mostly nervous!  This talk will be an amazing opportunity to share positive news with a new group of people and to honour those who participated in Worldviews Project. There’s a part of me though that still always feels scared.  What if no one is interested?  What if I mess it up?

I guess I’m also nervous that I’ll be branded as “Positive Story Girl” instead of Kate. I’m not positive all the time.  Sometimes I’m angry and I want to punch people or yell or scream.  I just try to work really hard to control those feelings and act in a better way.  I’m scared that somehow giving this talk will make people think I have it all figured out, which I don’t.  I’m just trying to be brave enough to say that my intention is to be positive.

I’m not so different from my students, taking that first step and staring that obstacle in the face is hard.  I’m determined to do it though.  I want to be the kind of person who approaches these kinds of challenges with courage rather than fear.

I will need all of you supporting me in this journey.  I need to know when I step on that stage on June 14th that there is a community of people behind me cheering me on.  Because, ultimately it’s not about me at all.  I’m giving this TED talk because I believe that we need to share positive news.  So even if I’m not the perfect ambassador for this message I’m going to give it my best shot.  Keep your fingers crossed for me!  Or better yet, buy a ticket and come be a friendly face in the audience!


Radio Girls Podcasts!

  Working in colaboration with my Gr.8 students we have created 16 podcasts about our  journey to discover new experiences in Calgary! Come and hear the podcasts and share in our unique experiences April 11, 2013 at Alice Jamieson Girls’ Academy!

Inspirational Art: 100 year old window?

Unconventional CanvasesI decided to try using some unconventional canvases.  It started when one of my neighbours was hauling out window panes to her truck to get rid of them.  I looked at them and saw an awesome opportunity – art canvases!

My neighbour told me that the windows had come from her home and were 100 years old.  What an amazing chance! I would get to create art on something that was older than me! It’s inspiring to start looking at objects as having potential for art.  It changes your perspective to look for beauty and art in everyday objects and find ways to bring out the themes of Worldviews Project in each of them.    Now I’m working with wood, bamboo, slate and even an old wash board! Has anyone else found unconventional canvases?  I’d love to see what you’ve come up with!

Inspirational Art: The first step

Art Preparation

A wise friend of mine told me that the first step towards becoming an artist is to call yourself an artist.  I believe that she was exactly right, how often do we under-estimate what we can do and hesitate from calling ourselves what we are.  I think far too often I have not done something because I determined I was not good enough, not professional enough or not experienced enough to start.  In reality, I think the secret may be in just doing it.  In this spirit, I have started creating art. 

I have worked as an artist in the past doing both graphic art and free-lance work for textbook publishers however, I have never had my own art show! It’s quite daunting to create pieces and hope, keeping my fingers crossed, that someone will like it enough to want to buy it, especially now that the stakes are higher and I am relying on this money to help me in my social enterprise.  Either way though, I’m doing it, I’m going to start.  I figure if I’m going to ask others to get involved and take daring first steps towards creating solutions to common global issues, I have to be willing to take those steps myself.


Inspirational Monday: Art Creates Community

Check out how art can be used to make public space better! Love this idea! Artists can inspire positive thinking and create opportunities for community.  Want to get involved? Find grants in your community to pursue innovative art such as Calgary 2012 Grant Opportunities or Canada Council for the Arts