Creativity, Flora Bowley's 'Bloom True' e-course

Heading in a new direction: Joy!

Held and healed
‘Held and Healed’ by Flora Bowley (

I hinted in my last post that I may be about to take a new direction in life. It requires a bit of explaining and bizarrely, it all starts with a Salsa class…

I have always wanted to dance. For years I watched Strictly Come Dancing and vowed to start dancing, but of course I never did. Then, two months ago, I summoned up the courage to go to my first Salsa class. And everything changed.

From the very first class I was blown away by just how much FUN it was! There was no agenda. I was never going to make money from dancing. It wasn’t going to be my next big career move. And I had certainly no illusions about becoming a world-class Salsa Champion. For once I was just doing something for the pure joy and exhilaration of doing it. Not for some distant end result.

It was a revelation!

For some reason, the word ‘joy’ struck a chord with me in a way that it never has before. It kept sounding in my head like a mantra…


Soon I found myself wondering, ‘Where else do I experience joy in my life?’

It didn’t take long to come to the conclusion that unadulterated JOY was a bit thin on the ground. Sure, I have a nice life. There are plenty of things I enjoy doing – writing, walking, cooking, gardening… But joy and exhilaration? The same primal intensity I experience when I dance? Hmm, that seemed strangely lacking.

I took a long, hard look at my life. And realised something profound:

I need to go back to being a kid again and create for the sheer joy of creating.

Fun. Play. Excitement. Exhilaration. These need to be my drivers from now on. Not money. Or a ‘successful’ career. (Or what other people think.)

I want my creativity to feel more like dance!

I took a deep breath, called ‘time out’ in my mind, and trusted I’d know what to do next.

I didn’t have to wait long. A week or two later I stumbled across artist Flora Bowley’s website and fell in love with her paintings and her approach to creating art.

When she paints, she moves, she sways, she dances. And she paints from her heart and soul. It’s a fluid, trust-your-intuition process in which she allows the painting to naturally emerge. No agenda. No planning. No rules. No ‘mistakes’! A complete immersion of mind, body and spirit spilling exuberantly onto canvas.

I smiled happily as I read her website (thinking, ‘Wow, I wish I was more like her!’).

And then I noticed she was running a ‘Bloom True’ e-course. (“Hmm, there’s no harm in taking a quick look…’)

Of course, the course looked utterly A-MAZING. (“Oh God, I’d love to do something like that one day!”).

And, uh-oh, her next course was starting in two weeks’ time. (“What?! Get a grip! You’re not a painter, you only do doodles for goodness sake…”)

But a little voice in my head told me otherwise.

It told me this was just what I needed to get my creativity dancing again. And I’ve learnt from past experience to shut up and do what I’m told.

So, I can’t quite believe I am saying this, but I have signed up for a 5-week ‘Brave, Intuitive Painting’ course where we will learn to ‘Let Go. Be bold. Unfold.’ (Don’t you just love those words?)

I’m scared but incredibly, I feel like a kid again! There is something strangely akin to excitement tingling through my bones.

The course starts tomorrow, on June 1st. And I keep being drawn to this quote:

“Cease trying to work everything out with your minds. It will get you nowhere. Live by your intuition and inspiration and let your whole life be revelation.”

– Eileen Caddy


8 thoughts on “Heading in a new direction: Joy!”

  1. Hi Katherine
    Yes it is a great post. Thank you. I know you will produce some brilliant paintings. Because you’re going into the course with the right attitude. There is a quote that I like its “feel the fear and do it anyway ” and that is exactly what you are doing.
    The nearest I have come to real joy recently was when I received very positive feedback from my writing tutor. I’ll write to you and tell you about it.
    Enjoy the course I’m looking forward to seeing your fabulous work as I know it will be. It’s great that you have that joy. Good luck😊


  2. Well done for signing up for Flora’s course! You’ll have to let me know how you find it – I was tempted (for the second time) to sign up, but I felt that it could be a bit too much getting daily prompts for 5 weeks. In January, I signed up for Alena Hennessey’s “A Year of Painting” course (she’s one of the artists Flora Bowley interviews in her course, which is where I heard about her), where you get a new prompt every 3 weeks for a year – and I’m struggling to keep up with that!!
    I’m sure you will create some wonderful paintings, following Flora’s lead. Can’t wait to see them! :-)


    1. Ha, how funny that you’ve been considering doing the same course! I have to say it’s the best thing I have ever done. We only paint 2 days a week and on the other days we read articles, watch videos, answer questions, do little exercises etc. None of it takes much time but it’s all so well put together and incredibly inspiring. I saw Alena’s interview last week and thought about ordering her book (I think she’s got 2 out). What’s her course like? Any good?


      1. Alena’s course is good – although I’m not feeling as inspired by it as I had hoped. Her style is different from Flora’s – I quite like it, and yet I think I had set my heart on intuitive painting. Alena’s course seems to be a bit of that but also focuses on mixed media, which I’m not so sure about (e.g. the first exercise involved painting over origami paper).


        1. Yes, I like both their styles. Interesting that you had your heart set on intuitive painting though. I recommend getting Flora’s book – it will give you a real flavour of what she’s about. As soon as I started reading it I knew it was what I wanted to do.


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