Do you follow Catalina from Red Violet Studio on Instagram? If not, I’ll wait here with my cup of tea whilst you go and check out her feed. It feels as though each time I comment on her posts, I write something like “I wish you lived closer so I could send my kids to your studio.” I obviously need to work on the originality of my Instagram commenting, but Catalina’s feed is always filled with such glorious creativity for little people. She has just set up a home studio that makes me sigh with it’s loveliness.
It is a pleasure to introduce Catalina.
I am… an artist, a wife to a fabulous artist (@gfuenmayor77), a mother of 2 creative and silly boys, Martin 6, and Manolo 4. I am an art teacher. I like to do yoga, I try to meditate every day as it keeps me focused and grounded. I am intense and can be obsessive when I really want something. I am determined and creative. I am an overbuyer and an overthinker. I confess an addiction to materials and stuff I think I might need at some point for my art activities. I am anxious, sensitive and passionate. Sometimes I have so many things on my mind I can’t sleep. I am like a little girl at a toy store; I want everything, more so than my kids. I love the arts and I love crafting, and sharing it with children makes me happy.
I find inspiration… Children’s literature, nature, art, artists and other crafty people inspire me. I am very interested in progressive education and in the Reggio Emilia approach –which I read a lot about-. I guess inspiration comes from these sources as well. I like to give my kids a lot of freedom regarding their creative process and they never cease to amaze me and inspire me as well. I am constantly motivated by watching them feel empowered and happy by the process of making art and learning so many skills while at it.
I am excited about … My classes excite me every week. I love brainstorming and planning what I will be doing; buying materials and in most occasions trying out the activity myself, gives me a natural high. My bucks do not go into handbags and shoes but rather into the latest children books I fall in love with, or into fun materials I discover and wish to explore more. I am currently teaching 4 classes a week, 2 for toddlers and 2 for older kids (3-6) and I love it and enjoy every part of the process (everything but the clean up! Lol). I also love planning crafty birthday parties, it’s so much fun to share the passion for the arts with family and friends.
When I’m in a creative slump, I… When I want to get my flow back, I like to read and research online. Instagram feeds me with inspiration and ideas as well; there’s so many creative accounts I love to follow that bring the spark back when I am feeling in a blank moment. I also LOVE children’s literature; it inspires me, and I always like to connect my classes/crafts to a new book. Sometimes I just go to the book store and sit for a long time at the children’s section and browse at books, take notes, and buy those which inspire exciting ideas and activities.
I’m really proud of… The most important thing I have in my life is my family. My children, and my husband complete me and push me to always move forward and follow my dreams. I am proud of finally being brave enough to choose this path of being an artist and working with children. It is possible; it’s just a matter of passion, and love for what you do.
Someone once told me… “Love what you do and you will never work a day in your life.”
My advice to you is … Be you, follow your heart, follow your dreams and be happy. Time goes by so fast so treasure the little moments. Love more, be compassionate, kind, tolerant and patient. Say yes to your kids more often, let them be little, let them explore and make mistakes, let them get messy, let them be kids. Do what you love and love what you do and you will be the best at it.
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