Come Listen In

Something really wonderful happened this week that I want to share with you!

I was featured in an episode of a beautiful podcast called The Creative Genius Podcast with Kate Shepherd.

Founder of Morning Moon Nature Jewelry, Artist & Host of The Creative Genius Podcast, Kate Shepherd believes that everything that is wrong in the world can be traced back to a series of limiting beliefs we hold around creativity; what it is, what it does and who has it in them (or doesn’t). Creative Genius is a love letter to the creativity that lives inside all of us – Kate is on a mission through this podcast, to help as many people as she can to remember that we all have it in us. 

The show, among the top 5% of podcasts listened to worldwide (across all categories!), is candid, insightful & heartfelt conversations with some of the most brilliant, creative minds & hearts of our time – We talk about creativity, the creative process, limiting beliefs that keep us stuck AND the magic that can happen when we relearn how to listen to our hearts. 

The intention of the show is to help people everywhere realize that every single person on earth has the potential to be creative.

We had a great time and I am proud of the conversation we had. I hope that you hear something you need to hear when you listen to the episode. Head over to Apple Podcasts to subscribe and listen. Enjoy! 

Gudrun Sjoden GIVEAWAY

This week…I want to introduce you to someone very special who brings so much light and joy to the world!!

Meet Radiant Rachel!!

Gudrun Sjoden Brand Ambassador

Rachel Awes works as a psychologist, art playgroundist, and author, who loves listening to the beauty in people and animals and all living colors—and she truly embodies color, as she is also an ambassador for the Swedish clothing company, Gudrun Sjoden.  She is currently finishing her fourth book, that’s all about tending to your heart in all your relationships. Her prior writing has been nonfiction prose, infused with loads of her colorful drawings, all designed to affirm the human heart. She lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota, with her husband and tortoises, complete with wild bunnies in her yard, and two dear sons (ages 23 and 25) living nearby. Her most tender and mighty hope is to hold up a mirror for many, reflecting a hearty truth of your boundless worth.

You can see more from Rachel at her website at and her books and art prints at You can find her hosting monthly Instagram Live shows called Insides Matter (you can also see the recorded versions) at and also at and

You can receive FREE illustrated spring prompts if you sign up for Rachel’s (also free!) “Worthy Eyes Meditation” at

We are doing something FUN together!! ENTER OUR GIVEAWAY!!!!

Since Rachel and I are both Gudrun Sjoden ambassadors, Gudrun is giving away something very special to two lucky winners!!!

Here is how you can enter the giveaway! You can sign up for the giveaway by leaving a comment on my Rachel Awes/Gudrun Sjoden post today by saying something like “I would love to enter!” and your name will then go into the random hat! (Rachel is also offering this same giveaway, so you could find her at one of her links above and enter with her too!) The winner will be announced Monday March 14 on our giveaway Instagram post and the winner will also be emailed. Good luck dear ones!

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March Instagram Challenge

I am super excited to announce something special for March. Once again, I will be cohosting another month-long creative challenge on Instagram with the amazing Esté MacLeod !!

#coloricombo 1-31 March

How to take part in this month long challenge

Prompts are shared every third day. Use them to create art in your own style with a light and dark colour added for contrast. (Florals could be a great theme for some or all of your pieces… see info about Hudson Valley Seed Co. below.) 

If you’d like to be considered for any of the prizes below, in addition to #coloricombo please also tag #coloriflori so we can find your work.

Meet our first collaborator

The Hudson Valley Seed Co is known for their catalog of organic and open pollinated vegetable, flower, and herb seeds. Since 2009 HVSC has been creating a collection of twelve ‘Art Packs’ each year – special seed packs that are illustrated by artists who help tell the story of each seed.

HVSC asked Esté to illustrate one of their 2023 seed packs and the search is on for eleven more artists to illustrate their next Art Pack collection. 

There is more!

The Hudson Valley Seed Co will also choose three artists participating in #coloricombo to be featured in a limited-edition collection of Dahlia-themed note cards alongside a work of art by Esté MacLeod.

How to Participate

Create floral art with this month’s #coloricombo colours as inspiration. 

Note cards:To be considered for the note card set visit the Hudson Valley Seed Co’s Dahlia Collection and use the blooms as inspiration for your submissions. The three selected artists will receive $200, a set of notecards, and their name on the notecard and website.

Seed pack art: If selected, each of the eleven artists will be offered a paid commission to create an original work of art based on one of the new 2023 varieties. See HVSC’s website for relevant T&Cs.

Meet our second collaborator, Jo Packham of Where Women Create

Jo is the creator/Editor-in-Chief of best-selling magazines: WHERE WOMEN CREATE — Inspiring Work Spaces of Extraordinary Women, WHERE WOMEN COOK – The Heart & Soul of Cooking, WHERE WOMEN WORK, A Passion for Success; and her newest publication: WHAT WOMEN CREATE, Inspiration for Your Imagination. Jo has been a leading innovator in the handmade publishing market for more than 35 years.

We are so happy to be working with Jo who will be scouting the #coloricombo and #coloriflori hashtags to find an artist to feature in an issue of Where Women Create or What Women Create Magazine.

Our third collaborator, Margo Tantau

Margo describes herself as a creative connector, counsellor, curator, collector and collaborator. We are excited about this idea Margo proposed: would you like to see your art on a scarf? Margo will be looking to commission four artists to create flower themed bandana scarves. When you participate in the March Coloricombo make sure to tag #coloricombo and #coloriflori so we can easily find your posts on Instagram. 

Este will be doing a live workshop session on 19 March with Margo. You can read more about it here.

How the prompts were curated

Ten female artists will be featured in prompts every three days. The prompts will consist of three colours found in floral themed artworks by these artists. We are also very excited to be collaborating with three dynamic businesses that will be awarding prizes to participants of this Instagram challenge: Hudson Valley Farm, Where Women Create and Margo Tantau are part of this event. See details above.

To kick off the month of March, we are starting with this artwork by still life by artist Mary Fedden.

‘Red and White’ Mary Fedden Oil on Board – 1961

Mary Fedden 1915-2012 was a British artist known for her bold and colourful still life paintings. She was the first female painting tutor at the Royal College of Art and David Hockney was one of her students. You can read more about her eventful long life here.

Colour Combination

This prompt’s colours are Rose Pink, Carmine and Warm Brown.

Create with the limited colours as shown, combine them with a dark colour like black, a light colour such as white or other neutral colours. Doing this helps to keep the focus on the specific colour prompt selection.

Share what you create on Instagram with the hashtags #coloricombo and if you would like to take part in the competition below also tag #coloriflori (see info above.)

You can also post in the private Creative Prompts with Esté MacLeod Facebook group.

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HappyYouIn22 Challenge Winners

Thank you to the co-hosts for the January #happyyouin22 Instagram challenge!!

Tracy Verdugo

Kenzie Elston

And thank you to everyone who participated in the month long creative challenge!! Wow… so much beautiful work!! Once again… you all made it very tough for our esteemed judges!

Below is a list of all of their favorites. I will be contacting each winner with more details and to gather contact information.

Again THANK YOU to all! Look for our next challenge in March… a new color challenge co-hosted with the amazing Este MacCleod.

Lisa Congdon’s Pick

Prize: any print or book from her shop

Kath Waxman

Roben Marie Smith’s Picks

Prize: a PDF of digital art papers designed for this challenge








Jane Monteith’s Picks

Prize: enrollment in her Artist Entrepreneur online class

Louise Swaby​



Jessie Stephens’s Picks

Prize: a signed copy of her book “Heartsick”​

Annie Riker​​

Nelly Edwards​

Andy Meehan’s Picks​​

Prize: Andy wants to invite these artists to discuss making a single card or a small line of cards or stationary for Madison Park Greetings

Top Three​

Lisa Wetegrove

Annie Riker​​

Prize: ZOOM Call with Andy… also known as the GreetingCardGuru – For any artist (from the top three AND/OR all honorable mentions …

Honorable Mentions​

Karin Lauria​


Jenn Perry​

Allyson Wilson​​

Elspeth Dally Designs​

Kicki Fjell​

Beth Logan​

Isabell Larson​

Penny Wolf​

Courtney Prahl​

I will hold a 90 minute Zoom call for a maximum of 6 Artists – to talk about the greeting card industry and have a short portfolio review for each person to give them feedback on card design ideas​. This session will be in March 2022 – time tbd – when Andy has responses from the first 6 people.

Amy Tan’s Picks​

Jenn Nagy​

Mandy Ford​

Prize Options:​

1) a signed book, Amy Tangerine travel watercolor set, other goodies mailed​

2) 30 minute creative consulting session via Zoom​​

Again…thank you…I appreciate you all!!


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