Hello I’m Alice Combes and welcome to Brave Creators!
Brave Creators is a fun, honest, encouraging and creative space open to all.
- Art is for everyone, there is no one way to look at or do it
- Creative expression comes in many forms and can be done by all
- Self development is key to learning, growing and making the most out of life
Brave Creators is here to inspire others to live their truth, express their whole selves through creative means and to provide strategies to build success in their lives again and again.
In my childhood and teens….
I wasn’t really creative, although now I know that we all are I just didn’t see myself as one. All my creative acts were done in private – journaling daily, drawing pictures and song writing. I have memories of enjoying art at school but not being ‘good enough’ to pursue it. Really we are all ‘enough’, ugh school systems….
My best memory of creativity when I was young was going going along to a drop in at a college my Dad worked at. The teacher asked us to bring in magazine pictures of things we liked or aspired to and our favourite things. We stuck them down on paper and then decorated it with bright paints and glitter. That one random class has really stuck in my memory and I now aspire to to bring the magic of free creative expression to others.
Growing up we visited a lot of Art galleries as a family, the styles varied from traditional fine art to modern and some folk. Going to free galleries meant art was accessible to everyone, you could be curious and interested in all kinds of ideas. I still go to galleries in London with my family yearly 20 years on!
At 18 I moved out and art moved in….
Creativity came back into my life at 18 years old, almost 10 years ago now! It happened in short bursts all around the same time so the details are a little hazy.
At 18 I was living with my then boyfriend, a blessing really as I was a fiercely independent teenager and huge romantic. Being new to the area and waiting for an employment opportunity to rise I found myself sitting in our dining room that we didn’t actually eat at but was my ‘creative space’ for when I fancied making cards for family birthdays. I had recently discovered journaling and was using my small collection of random supplies sequins, coloured pens, pencils and glue to decorate single A4 pages.
From loose pages I upgraded to a square Moleskine journal with thicker pages, one day I I noticed a set of acrylic paint tubes, which when mentioned to me I shrugged at, feeling a sense of resistance. They were after all very plain colours – light brown, dark blue, dark green, orange. They hardly lit a creative fire in me, how was I supposed to make pretty colours from that selection? Anyway I squeezed paint onto my fingers and spread it around on the page, and then I did it again and again and again. Soon my fingers were swirling around on the page in strokes of dark blue next to orange and I knew from that experience – painting makes me feel truly alive.
When life’s circumstances felt heavy, I responded with creativity….
I experimented with visual art in the form of journaling, I could paint, play, write, use images – anything I fancied went inside my journal. A non judgemental place where I could just be. I started reading the blogs of people who journaled, I watched videos and bought many art books – I was hooked on visual art and the written word!
My earliest inspirations were Violette Clarke and Journal Girl.
Without really releasing it, I used art and creativity as my therapy for three years when I my life circumstance became almost unbearable.
I read books that gave me support and encouraged self development from authors such as Ralph Waldo Emerson, Clarissa Pinkola Estees, Martha Beck and Julia Cameron.
Waking up each morning to write and paint on bad days felt like something I needed to do just as I needed to breathe. On better days it felt like a faint flickr of a light in darkness and a gap for freedom to be myself.
In this time I became interested in spoken word poetry, as with visual journaling and painting, I got up on weekends to spend a good few hours on writing then speaking it aloud. I felt I could say what I really felt, wanted and wished for through metaphor and rhyme that I would only aggravate, burden or shock the people around me if I simply told them aloud. I didn’t to complain because I dislike it in others, I didn’t want a sympathy vote, I didn’t want to be listened to or asked questions, I just wanted to tell the truth of how I honestly felt. Spoken word gave me that opportunity through free speech and poetry. From that experience I took part in a poetry slam and wrote 30 poems that at this moment remain unpublished.
After years of using creativity as therapy, in 2014 I made a plan to train into art therapy, though 1 year into my art degree I decided it wasn’t for me and I went back to my painting roots. This time much happier!
A second chance at happiness and creativity…
In 2016 I got back into an interest and practice of yoga. I’d done Hatha and Bikram and found Kundalini Yoga, from that everything started to fit into place. I noticed I was developing more confidence in myself, I balanced my nervousness and I felt stronger than ever about pursuing art and creativity.
I had a confusing but liberating few months where I painted and journaled freely, my life so much more better than the first time round. It was like someone had handed me a second chance at the visual arts.
Coming back a third time… At 27 I moved out and art and creativity moved back in…..
It’s taken a while for me to really define what Brave Creators is, the website has gone through many changes and styles overtime as has my own life. I believe Brave Creators is a source for anyone to gather inspiration from the arts, to make their own creative expression and use self development tools to live happier, freer lives.
I say it is for everyone because it truly is for real people with jobs, responsibilities and wishes to be fulfilled. Just as we are all curious we can all be creative in some way and make positive changes in our lives.
Brave Creators is a place to get encouragement in expressive arts, creative living tips and inspiration. My aim is to grow this blog to support others in their own creations and free style paintings!
I also share my art, yoga journey and personal writings over at ajeetamritakaur.com
‘To be or not to beis not my dilemma.To break away from both worlds is not bravery.To be unaware of the wonders that exist in me,thatis real madness’.-Rumi