Just across the Pentland Firth from Orkney, in the small coastal town of Wick, is an inspiring creative entrepreneur who has combined art, with life coaching.
Lisa Weller, an English Graduate who once held a career in IT, now runs successful art business, Haven House Art. A place where she sells her paintings, as well as offering classes incorporating wellbeing and creativity.
With a diploma in colour therapy and training in life coaching, Lisa has spent this year showing others online just how beneficial being creative can be.
I sat down for a Zoom call with her to find out a little more about her, and what creativity and colour can do for us.
What inspired you to become a full time artist?
“It was unhappiness basically. I got sucked into a corporate job after university. I was an IT project manager and was so unfulfilled in my job.
“I had always been creative. When I went home I was being creative, making things, painting things. I carried on doing that. I started selling my paintings to friends and family, and that was the spring board to realise that I could sell my work. And so I cut down on my corporate job, became part-time, and part-time built up the creative world in me and the creative business.
“In the beginning of my 30s, which is now ten years ago, I decided that I was strong enough to be able to do it full time. It was a gradual thing.”
As well as being an artist, you’re a Creative Therapist. What does that involve?
“It is incorporating a lot of everything.
“I come up with workshops, lessons and sessions for people. They are tailored for them. What I would do, say if they’re stressed, is get them doing an exercise that will bring them away from that stressed mentality. I would use something like a mandala, where they can create this repetitive thing. It’s justzoning out of your mind and just getting into the flow of something.
“Also, in my group sessions, we devise vision boards. You go through magazines, pick out all your dream images that are resonating with you, words, and the colours that you’re seeing on the page. And then we create this vision board of perhaps how you want your year to be, or the next six months to be, or five years.
How can creativity improve our wellbeing?
“Massively. I am such an advocate for creativity. It takes you away from that monkey mind. The monkey mind is the one that’s constantly going chat, chat, chat. And it’s not always good. It can be like ‘oh I shouldn’t have said that; I should have done this.’ It’s all those anxious thoughts that are racing through our minds that ultimately serve no purpose.
“When you are creative you turn that off. You switch on another part of your brain when you’re completely going with the flow and you’re not thinking with those anxious thoughts. Creativity massively helps your wellbeing.”
What are some ways we can bring more creativity into our lives?
“Creativity for me is hand in hand with spontaneity.
“I’ve had people say ‘I can’t even draw a straight line; how am I supposed to be creative?’ It’s a mentality. If you go for your walk every single day and you always take the same route, that’s not going to get you into a creative flow. What you need to do is let go of your rigidity, and allow for spontaneity. That would mean, walking a different route, leave your house and turn right instead of left. Do something different every day that you don’t normally do. It will start opening your mind to creativity more and more.
“I believe everyone can be creative. It’s just how to tap into it and allow your mind to let go and be creative. It can then come out in different ways. So for me it comes out in words and in pictures. But for some people it’s music, for some people it’s singing, for some people it’s cooking. Creativity is about expressing yourself.”
You recently qualified in colour therapy. What role does colour play in our moods?
“A huge part. It opened my eyes doing the course.
“At the end of the day, colour is energy. And that means it affects our energy.
“Black is really dense and it’s just going to bring our energy down. Whereas we can then wear yellow which is really uplifting and bright and positive, and it will affect our energy. It’s all to do with the aura, and all the waves of energy that affect our aura.
“It is not even just the clothes that we wear, although those arereally important. But it’s also the foods that we eat. You need to incorporate a little bit of every single colour on that spectrum. It’s about bringing balance into our aura.”
Colour is actually a great diagnostic tool and can say a lot about a person's personality. Think about your favourite colour. That colour is closely linked to our personality traits and how we operate in life. If your favourite colour is red, it means you are more likely to be an extrovert, or have extrovert tendencies. You will have a good solid foundation in life, and have great will power and strength. Likewise, if you would like to exhibit more of these characteristics, it would be an idea to start wearing red and to incorporate more red into you life. A person who would choose blue as their favourite colour is more likely to be calm, placid and laid back, but does have a great skill of communication and expressing themselves. If you are feeling highly agitated, blue is a great calming colour to wear to restore balance. It is also a good natural anti-inflammatory, so if you have inflammation in the body you should fill a blue glass bottle with water and let it sit in the sunshine for a few hours, then sip throughout the day to bring the inflammation down.
How can we bring a little more colour into our lives?
“There’s so many ways. Your clothes. Your living space.
“I’ll just give you one tip. I realised when going through the[colour therapy] course, that there is one colour I didn’t have in my wardrobe, which was green. You might just think “oh gosh, green doesn’t suit me’. But there’s a way to bring that colour into your wardrobe without actually overwhelming yourself, which is to bring it into your underwear or to accessorise. You can accessorise with a pair of lovely, bold, bright earrings or put it discreetly in your underwear, and it’s just a great way to bring tastes of colour into your aura.”
The colour yellow is important right now. It governs the solar plexus which is the chakra that sits between the navel and the heart. It controls the digestive system, but its also where a top of the fear and anxiety reside.
If it s blocked, not flowing properly or you don’t have enough yellow you will feel anxious, depleted note yourself and you will present with physical issues such as digestive complaints, liver issues and nervous system problems,
To rectify this concentrate on your solar plexus area and envisage yellow light pouring into it.
Think yellow, sunshiny, bright thoughts. Introduce yellow intro your wardrobe, even if its is in accessories or underwear. Eat more yellow foods, like corn sweet corn and bananas.
Do all of this and you will be well on your way to a more sunshiny, less anxious way of life.
If you could only give one tip on how to improve our wellbeing, what would it be?
“The most important thing is to meditate. Even if you can only do five or ten minutes.
“It doesn’t mean lying down and doing the whole thing, it means literally sitting and having stillness. It’s so important for you to have that time to switch off that mental chatter. To actually connect to yourself, and to switch off from people’s expectations, demands and just connect to your essence and to your soul. That’s so important.
“I’ve done that ever since I left my corporate job. And it’s guided me so much. It means that I’m more in touch with my intuition than I’ve ever been.
“If you can combine that with being outside in nature, and do both at the same time, that would be amazing. It just brings you back to yourself, calms you down, calms the mind. It puts you completely on the right path, in the right direction and in the right mind-set.”
Thank you to Lisa at Haven House - find out more here - https://havenhouseart.com