Do you call yourself an artist?

Seriously though, do you?

Because a huge number of people who make art regularly ... don't. 

Inside the Happy Artist Studio, we change all that.

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artist.

def. a person who creates art using conscious skill and creative imagination

I see you.

There you are, covered in paint, with canvases stacked up in the spare room, and a penchant for whipping out your phone at any given moment to take a photo of a crack in the pavement for ‘inspiration’.

Anyone looking at you would know right away, "this person is an artist".

And yet, like so many artists, you shy away from claiming that word for yourself.

It's holding you back from making your art and feeling truly fulfilled as an artist, and you've had enough. You're ready to change it... you just don't know how.

Do any of these sound familiar?

Your Instagram bio says 'wannabe artist', or 'trying to be an artist', or something equally 'not quite' an artist.

{Meanwhile, your feed is full of things - art - you’ve made.}

You’ve gathered a ton of techniques and supplies from all the art classes you’ve taken. And you keep signing up for more. Partly because it’s fun, {ok, you’re obsessed}, and partly because the itch doesn’t go away, no matter how much you scratch it.

{Um, could it be because you’re an artist? Just sayin’. 🀷‍♀️}

Even though you’ve done all those courses, you don’t have a degree, so you’re not really an artist.

{Hi. I don’t have a degree. But you think of me as an artist, right?!}

You look at the work of artists you admire, and think, “I could never be that good. That’s what a real artist looks like.” 

{Meanwhile, someone tells you how much they love what you just made.}

You haven’t found your ‘style’ yet {what with being an eternal student and all}, so you can’t call yourself an artist right now.

{Except that you almost certainly haven’t seen the common thread that runs through everything you create, because no one’s shown you how.}

If anyone asks you if you’re an artist, you panic and say something like, “Well not really… not a real one. I dabble.” 

{Meanwhile that stack of canvases in the spare room weep quietly amongst themselves.}

When you think about using the word ‘artist’ next to your name, an uncomfortable knot of emotionally charged words start flying around in your brain. Words like fraud, imposter, not qualified, amateur, playing at being an artist, not a real artist, just a hobby, not like so and so, they’re a real artist…

{And yet, if you told someone you were an artist, they wouldn’t dispute it.}

You might think it’s just you, but you’d be surprised how many Actual Artists feel this way.

It’s like a quiet epidemic. 

And … what if you’re wrong?


What if you actually are a real live artist?
What if there’s no secret handshake or set of criteria that qualify you?
What if the only thing necessary for you to be an artist is to make your art?

What then?

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Imagine a world where…

You develop a process that feels good and fits the way you are and your current lifestyle. 

You may not have a dedicated studio yet, but you have a creative space that really works for you. 

Whenever you go to make art, there’s something to work on, or you have plenty of ideas, so you rarely, if ever, experience ‘blank canvas syndrome’. 

When you get stuck, you have a range of practical and mindset tools that you know work for you, so you don’t stay stuck for long.

You’ve developed a style of art that feels true to you, and while you're aware it’ll always be refining and evolving, you know what you want to say and how you want to say it.

You trust yourself to make good decisions about when a piece is finished, whether you’re satisfied with the quality, and how you want to share it in the world.

Your work is increasingly strong and distinctive, and people start to recognise it as yours. They have even started asking questions about whether you sell it.

You don’t rely on validation from the outside any more. Compliments are nice, and criticism can sting a bit, but your own opinion of your work is paramount. 

You still experience the demons - the critical voices, the self doubt, the frustration - but they’re much quieter and less dramatic than they used to be, because you know how to handle them, and they don't stop you making and enjoying your art.

That probably all sounds like a tall order (or even an impossible dream) from where you’re standing right now.

And yet it’s actually much closer than you think.

This is the part where someone might tell you there’s a blueprint or framework, or six simple steps to artistic freedom. 


I’ll never tell you that. #sorrynotsorry

Being an artist is a calling. 

It’s a life’s work

And it’s one of the most beautiful, profound, challenging, growth-inducing journeys we can take. 

You know that because you’re already on the artist path. Even if you can’t bring yourself to put those six letters next to your name yet.

{Not for much longer!}

The thing is, while the life of an artist of any kind has ups and downs - like the life of any human being in fact - it doesn’t have to be this hard.

It doesn’t have to be full of self doubt and feeling stuck and confused. 

It doesn’t have to be berating yourself for wasting materials.

It doesn’t have to be getting frustrated because your work looks like someone else’s and you don’t know how to bring out what’s yours.

It doesn’t have to be feeling like everyone else is doing it better than you.

Or that there’s some magic secret that no one told you about.

Being an artist can be a rich, exciting, fulfilling choice to make. 

And you’re allowed to make that choice, whether you’ve been making art since you were old enough to hold a pencil, or you started last week.


The Happy Artist Studio guides and supports you in becoming the artist you want to be, the one who casually throws that word around because it’s no big deal.

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And here’s a secret:

There’ll come a point where that word doesn’t really interest you at all, because you’ve moved way beyond the label and fully embraced your artist self. And I can tell you, that’s freedom.


There’s no map to becoming a Happy Artist

This is uncharted territory you’re entering now, and no one else’s rules or style or traditions can tell you how you make your truest art.

No one can tell you what’s in there, and what unique combination of ‘you-ness’ will emerge to express itself through your art. 

Turning inward can feel scary because it’s largely unknown {and no one loves uncertainty}.

But that journey of discovery is part of the fun! It’s what makes the work to get there so enriching, valuable, and satisfying.

And when you become one of the Happy Artist Studio artists, you don’t have to navigate that terrain alone. 

Because everyone in there is charting their territory too, with the powerful equation that every Happy Artist has at their back: 

A little structure + a little guidance + a focus + a lot of support + your deep calling. 

Add all that up and you get the richest, most effective, most enjoyable kind of growth. {This is maths I can get on board with.}

The kind of growth that is incremental, sustainable, and involves a lot fewer growing pains than trying to go it alone without that focused and flexible scaffolding to support you.

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Hi, I’m Tara. 


I created the Happy Artist Studio because I spent a long time struggling with the same things you do: 

  • Feeling confused about what my ‘style’ was {when what I needed was to discover my artist voice - not the same thing!
  • Self doubt around my abilities and the value of my work
  • Uncertainty about whether I was ‘good enough’ to be a ‘real artist’ 
  • Looking to others to tell me my work was good, and not trusting my own opinion or choices
  • Getting stuck and frustrated while painting and not knowing how to move forward without help
  • Feeling underqualified and ‘not as good as’ [insert favourite artist here]

I spent years and years exploring, experimenting, learning, and charting my own inner territory.

And I discovered that there are two essential puzzle pieces that are necessary to being a thriving artist. 

When we only focus on one, it makes the journey much harder. 

Tell me, Tara...

What are those two pieces?  

(I thought you'd never ask πŸ˜‰)

Process and mindset.


Process 

...is the puzzle piece we all know and love (to play with)!

It’s getting paint on your hands {and in your hair}; it’s discovering new materials and techniques; it’s exploration and play.

Mindset 

...is the puzzle piece that often gets overlooked.

But without a ‘demon management system’, process can be a real struggle and much less fun. And it doesn’t have to be!

Ideally, we want the yin and yang of mindset and process to be working together - and that’s what we do in the Happy Artist Studio.

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I know this works.

Not just because it worked for me, but because I see it working for other artists all the time.

When I first got my art back, after a long period of depression, I spent years taking course after course, jumping into whatever looked fun, and I racked up a lot of techniques and paintings.

I loved every minute of it, got a good sense of what I liked and didn’t like, and made artist friends along the way. This is a common experience, especially for those of us without formal training. Creating your own art education is a delight! 

And then things changed.

I found myself running into blocks.

I felt confused about my artist voice; I was full to the brim with so many other artists’ styles and techniques.

I felt overwhelmed and unsure about what I wanted to say and how I wanted to say it.

Alone in the studio, I’d get stuck in the same places, unsure how to evolve or finish paintings.

 

I soon figured out what I was missing...

I was lacking that crucial and invisible mindset piece that would enable me to trust myself, to make decisions with ease, and to know exactly what I wanted to say and how I wanted to make my art to express it.

There wasn’t always someone to ask, and when there was, their advice would only take me so far. 

My missing piece was being able to rely on myself as an artist.

I saw others struggling with similar confusion and uncertainty, and I noticed that it was often easy to tell what online course someone had taken by the style of the art.

I didn’t want to operate that way any more; I wanted to have my own distinctive artist voice, and I wanted to help others step fully into theirs. 

I started exploring ways to dig deep into my own process and practice, experimenting with ideas for reducing the outside influence and gaining confidence and trust in my artist self. 

I focused on making a slow but steady transition from making art from the outside in to making it from the inside out, with perseverance, experimentation, kindness to myself, and by choosing my guides carefully.

Are you ready to become your fully expressed artist self?


In the Happy Artist Studio, we focus on the perfect partnership of process and mindset - the two pillars of a happy artist’s life. 
 
Mindset work removes the extra weight that holds you back, and the process focus refines the purest expression of you.
 
When you commit to doing this work, and stay consistent and intentional, the big shifts start to happen.
 

Things like:

Aha moments and clarity from dedicating time and space to turn inward to see what’s really going on inside you.

Gaining confidence by identifying, growing and strengthening your artist voice (and watching it flourish!).

Shifting your thinking away from doubt, lack, and fear by playing closer attention and making conscious choices.

Improved relationships because in honouring your true self you are happier, kinder, and easier to be around, with more to give.

Feeling lighter and freer in your painting and practice by learning to loosen up and be more expressive.

Strengthening your commitment to yourself, which leads to stronger self expression, and stronger art.

Feeling better - happier, more fulfilled, more inspired, more self expressed.

Using the focus and guidance to create a sustainable art process, practice and life.

Creating the artist life that will fit you without needing to run away to a cabin in the woods.

Focusing on you in ways you may not be anywhere else in your life.

‘Hearing yourself’ amongst the noise, then honouring and expressing what you hear.

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WHAT OUR MEMBERS ARE SAYING


A feeling of belonging... 

"Being a part of this community is special, it gives a really nice feeling of belonging. Most of us work and create our art alone, and stepping into our Happy Artist Studio is like entering our common workspace, where we are on this journey together. Happy to be here!"

Meri K.

Rooted in self compassion 

"What’s so brilliant about the Happy Artist Studio is getting to watch Tara making work, absorbing all her wisdom along the way. Touchstone really helped me find clarity during a time when I was constantly battling myself and getting in my own way. I love that Tara’s approach is always rooted in self compassion and finding the joy in your practice."

Helen Blencowe

It’s like I’ve found a universal key to unlock my creativity and inspiration

"Having access to all the courses is brilliant as there’s something in all of them for me. It’s like I’ve found a universal key to unlock my creativity and inspiration – and it often just takes one thing sometimes to change everything. Tara’s teaching technique resonates so deeply with me – it feels like I’m having a good in depth discussion over a good coffee with an arty friend!”

Deni James

It's helped me take a huge leap to create the kind of art I really want to

​​​​​​​"I want to say a huge thank you for creating this Happy Artist Studio. You’ve already helped me such a lot by moving me on and allowing me to develop and take a huge leap to create the kind of art I knew I wanted to, but just didn’t have the confidence to tackle. But now being able to access so much material at once feels like a genuine luxury. I’m so glad that I found you in amongst the myriad of art support out there."

Sarah Stuart

✨Are you starting to feel the possibilities?✨

Let's talk details.


Your membership in the Happy Artist Studio includes: 

βœ”οΈ Access to The Way of the Happy Artist, a foundational program designed to set you up for not just making the most of the Happy Artist Studio, but for literally any decisions you make as an artist for the rest of your life.

βœ”οΈ Monthly Topics including an in depth lesson and a beautiful workbook for integrating what you learn into your own practice

βœ”οΈ Support and guidance with just enough structure to keep you focused and moving forward, and enough flexibility so you can choose your own wonderful adventure

βœ”οΈ A friendly and supportive community space for connecting with and working alongside fellow artists just like you

βœ”οΈ Weekly check ins where you can share and tell stories about your latest work, celebrate your wins, and stay on track

βœ”οΈ Access to all content and courses, including:

  • Abstractify - Uncover and develop your unique artist voice

  • Touchstone - Learn to stop the demons from holding you back

  • Artist Inspired I & II - Develop your work with inspiration from the masters

  • Loosen Up - Release the realism for more freedom of expression

βœ”οΈ Monthly Q&A videos where I personally answer all your burning questions

βœ”οΈ A growing library of workbooks, tools and resources to help you on your artist journey, including:

  • The Happy Artist Workbook for diving deep and finding clarity

  • Audio lessons for learning while making

  • Choose Your Own Adventure for focusing on a topic of your choice

  • The My Creative Year planner

  • The Instagram Playbook for navigating social media with more ease

  • The Approaching Galleries checklist

...and much more!

Ready to start your new happy artist life?

You've got options.


Monthly

$43

Per Month

  • Immediate access to 30 courses + other learning materials valued at over $2500 
  • Full access to these and all future additions for as long as you’re a member
  • Downloadable course PDFs, checklists, and worksheets
  • Ask questions, share your work and get feedback in our supportive community
  • A growing library of Q&A videos
  • Access to all the previous monthly topics!
JOIN NOW

Annual

$430

2 months free!

  • Immediate access to 30 courses + other learning materials valued at over $2500 
  • Full access to these and all future additions for as long as you’re a member
  • Downloadable course PDFs, checklists, and worksheets
  • Ask questions, share your work and get feedback in our supportive community
  • A growing library of Q&A videos
  • Access to all the previous monthly topics!
JOIN NOW
All prices in USD.

WHAT'S INSIDE 

Our Monthly Topics

Each month we focus on a specific aspect of creating your happy artist life, to build that sustainable, intentional growth.


{Subject to adjustment}

January

21 DAYS IN MY ART WORLD 

This much loved challenge happens on Instagram and eases us into the year. Perfect for those who like to start slow rather than 'hit the ground running' {and burn out a month later}.

February

MY CREATIVE SPACE

Start as you mean to go on! We'll be clearing out, tidying, upgrading and otherwise optimising where we make our art. Cue the before and after photos!

March

MY ARTIST VOICE

We'll dig deep into YOU this month for the holy grail – uncovering, clarifying, developing, and refining what makes your art yours.

April

SUPPLIES AND MATERIALS

Exploring and developing a deeper relationship with our chosen materials, trying new ones, and using up those ‘one day’ supplies.

May

DREAMS AND GOALS

Exploring our dreams for our art – even the really ‘outrageous’ ones – and finding ways to bring them to life that suit our unique needs, desires, and circumstances.

June

PLEIN AIR MONTH

Hopefully the weather will be supportive of outdoor art this month! We’ll look at working en plein air and how it can support our practice, or simply be another way to have fun with our art.

July

DEVELOPING RESILIENCE

Mindset is HUGE for artists, more so than we might think. This month we’ll look at ways to build resilience, confidence and self trust, as that’s what everything else will stand on.

August

SHARING YOUR ART

At some point most of us want to share. Whether that’s for pleasure and connection, or for selling our work, or both, we’ll cover it all and start putting in place {or refining} ways that feel good to each of us.

September

FASCINATIONS

We all have them – interests and obsessions that don’t go away. And while we don’t want them to, we need to be able to choose where to put our focus if we’re going to make progress! This month we’ll look at ways to honour and embrace all our fascinations.

October

DEMONS MONTH

No artist is exempt from the demons: things like imposter syndrome, frustration, confusion, self doubt. Thankfully they don’t have to rule our experience, and this month we’ll put some alternative, kinder approaches in place.

November

CONSISTENCY, RHYTHMS & SEASONS

We are not machines. We can work with our natural rhythms and still make progress! We’ll reframe consistency so it doesn’t feel heavy, and look at our personal rhythms as well as those in a wider context, like the seasons, and how to work with it all in support of our art.

December

THE GIFTS OF ART AND ART AS GIFTS

A gentler month as it tends to be an extra busy time for many of us. We’ll look at the gifts our art brings us, so we can remember our fundamental ‘why’, and also at ways to give art or market it as gifts during the festive season.

SEE INSIDE

Take a Tour of the Happy Artist Studio

Watch this short video to see what it's like when you join!

 

FROM OUR MEMBERS

"A beautiful place to grow as an artist"

"The Happy Artist Studio is a beautiful place to grow as an artist. Tara has created an abundance of resources that give breath to the artist's path... whether you are finding your way or trying to stretch yourself. The community component is also lovely... I find the fellow artists to be very responsive and understanding when I have questions. In addition, Tara has an active and personable presence within the Studio and her responses to conversations really set a tone of openness, giving that feeling of kind coaching that matters for you in exactly the place you find yourself."

Bri Downard
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Let me ask you something...

What happens if you stay where you are?

 

You could stay stuck and frustrated ... or you could be learning tools to unstick yourself and always find your way back to flow.

You could carry on feeling confused about what’s ‘yours’ about your art ... or you could start finding clarity and confidence literally today.

You could continue to procrastinate and feel overwhelmed by the possibilities ... or you could learn ways to confidently make choices you like and feel good about.

You could keep struggling to think of yourself as an artist... or you could redefine it for yourself and continuing to make your most 'you' art.

You could continue to feel lonely in the studio with no one to ask for help ... or you become part of a cosy community with guidance and support on tap. Like, in the next five minutes.

You could keep putting your art on the back burner and putting yourself last ... or you can create a life that supports your artist self and fills you up so you can still be there for others.

Isn't it time to step into the artist you really are?

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Encouraged me to do lots more art


"I was not expecting to love it as much as I do. Tara’s courses have not only encouraged me to do lots more art but they have resonated with me on a level that I never expected. It’s lovely to be part of the Happy Artist Studio community, I look forward to working through all of Tara’s inspiring courses, developing my art and seeing where it takes me."

Caroline C.

Got questions? I've got answers!

FROM OUR MEMBERS

We know the Happy Artist Studio is amazing...

but don't take our word for it.


"I am very happy to have joined the studio. The concept of a studio with all the courses in it, feels like a long needed form of 'companion' on my journey as an artist. As I am not in any art school (never have been) it is a bit lonely, and a lot of issues arise that I sometimes talk about with artist friends, but in this way it feels like I always have somewhere to go for some encouragement ...
I have an every day support station/connection to a creativity-boosting-source. Thank you!"

Alexandra Berggren

"I have some great ideas to work on and move forward. You have enlightened a spark and I am excited to start my art journey. Honestly you have so many amazing resources and materials. I especially loved the artist inspired section and appreciate all the research. 

Thank you again, your style of teaching is so refreshing and inspiring! I will be singing your praises. 😊 "

Joanne Gallagher

"I’m so grateful I stumbled upon your blog a few years back. There’s really no one with your teaching style (style may not be the perfect word here, maybe philosophy?).
Your courses are not result oriented which feels sooo liberating. They’re not about teaching to do things in a certain way – it’s rather about showing your students how to have a particular attitude or way of thinking towards their own creative journey/process. How cool and unique is that!"

Gina Axlund

"I've been having great fun working through the Happy Artist Studio. I love your overall approach to art and your generous and down to earth teaching style, and I've found your lessons really thought-provoking and inspirational. I just wanted to say thank you for all the hard work, heart and soul you obviously put into your courses; they are genuinely some of the best I've ever taken."

Angie H

"Tara is a brilliant facilitator with a warm heart who brings out the best in people who love making art. I’ve gained so much by playing, working and learning in her Happy Artist Studio. I highly recommend this excellent online learning place."

Carol-Lynn Bond

"It is lovely to have landed here in such a supportive and fun environment.  I have subscribed to Tara's  work for quite a while and I am so glad to have joined this group. I have coffee each morning here and explore and I am filled with gratitude! Love getting to know you and the structure and opportunities for being in this community!"

Debi Stadlin

"You provide a tremendous resource, I am amazed at the quality (and quantity) of material you provide. I particularly like your demos, you are very generous about sharing your techniques."

Susan P.

"I’m loving the Happy Artist Studio more than I could possibly have imagined. Your courses are perfect for where I am and how I’m feeling."

Caroline C.

“Tara is a very generous artist with her resources and experience. Her enthusiasm is contagious and she is passionate about helping you create 'the art that only you can make'.”

Jane Hinchcliffe

"I've really enjoyed poking around the Happy Artist Studio and worked my way through your new class Into Nature. A perfect pick-me-up as we all struggle with the strains of the on-going pandemic. Your inspiration and enthusiasm are much appreciated."

Louise Donnelly

"The Happy Artist Studio has helped me reconnect to my creative process and I have found your posts to be inspirational, authentic and multi layered. Even though I have not really been active on the forums, I have been quietly honouring the uniqueness of my own creative voice. Thanks Tara, you have created a wonderful online community."

Kim Power

“I have never felt better about my art, my style(s), my marks than when I have taken your courses. I really relish them. For that I am so appreciative and thankful for how you give of yourself. I have a huge value and need to be authentic in my art and you have helped me discover and deepen that.”

Penney Mellen

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