Saturday, August 26, 2017

how did it all get started?

I am approaching the ninth month since having my first studio and my first business. This is a dream come true and one that I have been cultivating since my teen years. I wanted to help people through creative play. I had a rough idea of the plan but I lacked confidence and belief in myself.

Instead, I opted for careers and/or activities that were both creative, personally rewarding, and fulfilling my desire to continually learn. Pretty resourceful for a girl that thought she wasn't good enough. Sadly, my own health became the focus of healing, I was diagnosed, in my mid 20's, with two auto immune diseases.  Even at that young age, I was already entrenched and the 'too busy' routines intruded on making art. Fortunately, while convalescing at home, art was what I turned to to pass the time

I repeated this pattern into my late thirties:
Get well at home and make art to pass the time 
Return to work and get too busy to integrate art into daily practice

Nearing my 40's, working in corporate Oil & Gas, which could not be construed as a creative job, yet I tried to infuse creativity, playfulness and fun into my work. I questioned if I was fulfilled and knew the answer but, still, lacked the confidence for my early entrepreneurial dreams.

My health continued to plague me, winding up for month long stays in hospital, I was getting more frail but didn't know how to turn the bus around. Another stay in hospital, this one was almost my last, I had opted for major surgery, a true last resort choice. Tragically, a surgical error during my operation almost ended this story here.

The best news to come from this trauma, I knew that I had to pursue my dreams regardless of my fear, confidence or know-how. I knew that I was given a second chance at life to live it with creativity and joy. I knew that I was meant to live; to share my passion, knowledge and joy with others. 

Skip past the next six years, they were rifled with pain, sadness and physical recovery, therapy, art making, a solo art show, and art teaching. Which brings us to last year, I started to see that my childhood dreams were nearing reality. 

I submitted a business proposal to be a tenant at cSPACE King Edward, a historical building, operating as an arts incubator, their mission: to ignite creativity, community, collaboration. I proposed that I would run a public interactive art studio which would offer art class/workshops, retail space and pop up gallery space. 

A point of interest- during the (six post op) recuperation years, I watched cSPACE grow their public presence, I attended fundraisers, public talks, and art events. Yet, not once, did I dream that I would, or could, be a tenant within their walls. Not even a secret imagination or dream. NEVER! I underscore this point as I want you, dear reader, to understand the power that fear has on our lives, dreams and potential.

I am sure you are curious, what was the turning point? Sadly, if it wasn't for the misfortunes of a few, I likely would have never applied to cSPACE. I had been renting an art classroom from a local art supply store, and without warning, they went out of business. I was left in a lurch, about to start the next session of art class. 

This was the ingredient which my dreams needed in order to take root. I contemplated renting an art studio but it didn't have the activity of a public space, which I had come to enjoy at the art store. After months of hauling my students to temporary locations, I stumbled on the potential of cSPACE. I was visiting a friend, telling her all about cSPACE, and reading allowed their recent 'call for tenants'. It was still lost on me at that moment, until I heard myself reading aloud, the square footage price and their ideal tenant. Reality set in, my fear was taken over by facts. I was able to apply my past classroom expenses, capacity, and required square footage, and my ideology. 

What had gotten in the way of my dreams again? My fear. It wasn't that I hadn't considered cSPACE, it was that I could not even fathom the possibility. I share this painful admittance, because I know that I am not alone in allowing FEAR to run my life. 

The lesson:
Hear your fear and show it reality; Speak to your dreams and show them you can.

The Paula Timm Artist Studio is located at cSPACE King Edward! I have a perfect space with the most amazing windows, six of them actually, the light pours in from dusk till dawn. I am not just doing what I had dreamed of, but exceeding them.

I would love to show you around my studio and I have the perfect opportunity to do just that! 
Alberta Culture Days 
cSPACE King Edward
1721-29 avenue sw, #125

September 29, 30, Oct 1
Family Friendly & FREE! 
Beer Tents, Entertainment, Musical Performances, Live art making, Studio Tours and more...

Tuesday, August 15, 2017


the day has come. and i am prepping for my next surgery.
harder words have never been typed. or wait, they probably have. and that was when the last surgery happened.

if you're just tuning in, the abridged version of the past 12 years:
we moved to calgary
I worked for 2 years with an oil and gas company
I quit smoking which made my ulcerative colitis flare for a year non stop.
I was hospitalized for a month.
I started to hold it together but work stress kept creeping
I got bronchitis in september 2010
My dad died october 2010
My illness got worse.
I submitted to hospitalization in January 2011.
February I had my large intestine removed.
there was a fateful accident during the surgery.
I recovered for many days and years.

I believed that my art practice was the only thing left to try that would give me another lease on life.

and now I am here.
awaiting another surgery, hoping and wishing that it won't fall apart.


WHAT? I am on the Cover?

August 15, 2017

Recently, on a really brave day, I wrote my Creative Life Story and submitted it to Blank Spaces, a Canadian Literary Magazine. With a focus on all things creative, Blank Spaces offers regular columns/features in the many categories. 

They not only said yes to showcasing my written submission in the category of Different Strokes, but they featured my art on the front and back covers!

Want to purchase your own copy?

We have two options, save a tree and download a digital version. If you must, get a print copy to hang on your wall, because my digital mixed media piece, Nomad is the feature art for their cover!

Monday, August 14, 2017


AUGUST 3, 2017

I have enjoyed some paint nights with some lovely artists in my studio. The overwhelming sentiment on having a witness to art making, is that it's intimidating at first but quickly releases and becomes super rewarding. 

The rewards come in support from fellow artists; 
-commentary on what they love (which boosts your confidence on your work), 
..having fun with my ladies at a recent Painting Meetup!
-seeing a direction that you could implement, be it in colour, technique or subject matter. 

I could go on. But you get the gist, the panic quickly goes away and the community support grows exponentially.

Which brings me to you, I bet you have always wanted to do art but for the reasons stated above, you have opted to find an excuse? It's so common but a very unique feeling that shouldn't be underestimated, and nor should your courage!

I invite you to consider attending 
one or two of the following options....

No art is made during the meetup..but we talk about each artist's process. You 'can' share a piece that you have previously created or just show up to see how it all unfolds.
$5 fee
2nd Monday of each month


Designed for your pocket book and your heART!! Drop in to make art in a creative environment. No formal instruction - just creative support from fellow artists! 

B.Y.O.S. (bring your own supplies)
$20 fee
Weekly on Wednesdays
4-9pm (drop-in for all or some)

Are you wanting to get your art on too? Let me know, I would be happy to host a special class for you and perhaps a group of your choosing!

Get a feels for my teaching style here and then give me a shout here!

...hope to see you getting BRAVE soon!!

Paula J. Timm

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

and the winner is!!!

My heART is full

a new year and a new start!


Thank you all for coming to my Studio Warming!

It fully warmed my heART and studio!
As you know that in exchange for your attention, for bulletins such as these,
I gave hourly door prizes and the chance to win the grand prize!
Without further ado,
the winner of $150 voucher towards a Class* or Workshop*
of your choosing is.....

Kendall Titchener of Pixelated Pinto!
Congratulations, Kendall, contact me and we can discuss!!

*a class or workshop facilitated by Paula Timm 
Four years ago, when keeping my dreams a secret was no longer serving me, I announced to the world that I wanted to be an artist! I started by participating in #yycarts events, sharing my work, facilitated workshops and even had articles published! WOW!!

Then, one year ago, I was suddenly in need of a new art facility to teach my weekly art class from. Coincidentally, I was visiting a friend; sharing the greatness of the #YYC arts community and an unique arts hub that was soon to be looking for tenants. It was then that it hit me, like a tone of bricks! I hadn't even given a second thought to applying to this arts hub! A throwback to my old self limiting belief system had crept back in without my notice!  It just seemed like an unattainable option for me. However, when I looked at the monthly lease, square footage, and location; it wasn't unattainable, it was more than perfect. So, I applied, and I, was accepted as the first tenant of studio suite #125 @cSPACE King Edward.

I have just moved in to this amazing LEEDS Gold restored, 100 year old, sandstone school!! My vision for my studio is to grow my art career, be it my own art practice, facilitating workshops or extending my space for others to pursue workshops!

I could not have achieved this dream without the constant and loving support of my husband, friends and family. #attitudeofgratitude

See below for a few candid shots taken at the Studio Warming, by one of my fave supporters, Rick Bjerke.

p.s. the address and such can be found at the bottom of this newsletter or on my website.
Pitch an idea to rent or collaborate in the studio!
Read what student, now friend and facilitator Rachel Rose had to say about taking my class in a recent interview !
"...offering freedom to her students and a process to cultivate our creative instincts rather then wade through the technical bits of colour theory or illustration (although there is some of that there too!) Her approach felt refreshingly safe, allowing me to play at art and drop the intimidation and pretension that stifles so many other creative environments."
Register for Class!


I will have a variety of original works to meet your budget and splurge allowances! 534-9ave se
RSVP for First Pick Party 
Mar 10   5-8:30pm
Saturday Mar 11   11-6pm
Sunday Mar 12     10-2pm

Friday, December 30, 2016

2016 - What's in a year?

I have had so many very cool opportunities this year! I have been able to: exhibit my art, hone my skills as an creative arts instructor, published articles for super cool Canadian magazines and blogs, apply (and get accepted) to creative arts incubator @cSPACE King Edward, created brand illustrations and marketing materials,  and designed and facilitated public art collaborations!

If you weren't already aware of the in's and outs of this creative bombshell of a life of mine..allow me to summarize. Always a creative person, never an Artist. Until I got a chronic auto immune disease. I would get sick with a flare up of u
lcerative colitis, I would take time off work to be hospitalized and convalesce at home. When well enough, I would pass time creating art. When sufficiently healed up, I would return to work and the cycle continued, despite my best efforts to change my habits.

My body grew tired of the routine, I had my colon removed, major surgical incident occurred, the pearly gates were previewed, I returned home to convalesce, do art and hopefully not repeat the pattern.

It has been six years since the surgery, and apart from the hardest thing I have ever gone through there have been some benefits.  I have learned to share my creative self, became an art instructor, sold my art, published my writing, and practically earned a honorary degree in cognitive behaviour therapy. I am even facing the future of my own studio, where I will teach and share space with the city's bravest entrepreneurial artists and creatives. I could barely dream of any of this paragraph ten years ago let alone yesterday. So I am grateful for every choice, be it a fall or a leap.

I am preparing my body for more alterations, they may have to come surgically, definitely they are coming through therapy and a lot of hard work. I have tried and will continue to try non traditional approaches to my healing. I still hold space for miraculous healing and or pixi dust.

As I count my blessings, I am so grateful for a team of doctors and practitioners which I trust, a spouse that holds the most compassionate space, and a new community of friends to love and support me.

Monday, December 5, 2016

The Other Side of Pain

The second story in "Muse Worthy" features ME!
Visual Artist, Creative Instructor, Wellness Advocate, Writer & Presenter

"Anyone who has suffered from a chronic health condition will likely relate to the perseverance and courage she shares. Her battle with ulcerative colitis and its many complications led her to an unlikely place, a strengthened creative voice that has both healed her and propelled her to new places in life. I hope you enjoy her story and find as much courage and inspiration in it as I do."

The very cool Rachel Rose of Workshop Muse is creating a series on artists whom inspire her.
I am so very honoured to be selected this round in the series Muse Worthy - read here for the full article on her blog.

Her words start reflecting from the time that she met me in my art class to sighting my healing journey with art. I have reread a few times to capture her insights and will continue to re read to capture perspective on my life.
have a read here.. and make sure you read to the bottom for some Question&Answers by moi!

- it is so very beautiful, thank you!

Follow her Facebook Page, Workshop Muse for workshops, creative prompts, and thoughtful articles.