show episodes
 
Are fear and procrastination keeping you from making progress in your art business? Artists Laura Lee Griffin and Nikki May believe strongly in the power of community, accountability, following your intuition, taking small actionable steps, and breaking down the barriers that keep you "stuck". The Startist Society will inspire you to stop getting in your own way and start building an art biz and life that you love. Follow along with us on our creative business journey as we encourage you on ...
 
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show series
 
Laura and Nikki interview Stacie Bloomfield, a perfect example of a Startist. Stacie has been creating artwork for brands and products around the world since 2009. Today we learn more about how her illustration business, Gingiber, went from an Etsy start to the thriving company that exists today. Gingiber has had products sold in over 800 stores, a…
 
Laura and Nikki interview Laura's talented friend Miranda van den Heuvel. Miranda is an intuitive painter and creative life coach living in Luxembourg. The founder of Create and Connect, she loves to inspire change through creativity. As a life coach, she inspires people to go from reacting to creating their lives. As an artist, she likes to draw p…
 
Laura and Nikki introduce you to Hannah Cole, an artist, educator, and founder of Sunlight Tax. Hannah educates fellow artists about taxes and money because she believes creative people are the empathy builders of our culture and when they're financially secure and empowered, they can make bigger, bolder work that will fix our broken world. Her fla…
 
Laura and Nikki discuss whether or not blogs are still relevant for artists. They talk about the history of blogging, how both the reading and writing of blogs have changed over the years, and admit to being less than stellar bloggers in the past! Think you should be blogging? Listen to this episode to hear all the reasons they think you should. TO…
 
In this episode, Nikki and Laura talk about the impact of overthinking on your business and your life. From analysis paralysis to fear of making the wrong choice, you'll hear what they tend to overthink and recommendations for getting out of the overthinking cycle! TOPICS DISCUSSED: Analysis paralysis (1:36) Maximizers vs. satisficers (2:00) Nikki …
 
This month on Local, Laura talks with Dreamcatcher Rep company member Jason Szamreta. In this fun, light-hearted interview, they get deep into what makes Jason tick and what makes him fulfilled — including his enthusiastic eating. Jason discusses his decision to enter the field of social work in addition to acting, and how the two fields inform eac…
 
In this episode, Laura and Nikki talk about all the different ways they find inspiration for their art. From journaling and mind maps to getting outside in nature, and viewing other artists’ work, they provide tons of ideas and resources for creative inspiration. TOPICS DISCUSSED: Laura's new Skillshare class - Copic Marker Essentials: Coloring Tec…
 
Laura and Nikki talk about mental health, specifically about what happens when you get into a creative funk, feeling uninspired or unmotivated to create. They discuss how this shows up for each of them and some different approaches you can take to try to get past it. TOPICS DISCUSSED: The impact of isolation during a pandemic (0:57) How creative fu…
 
Nikki and Laura are excited to introduce you to startist, Trupti Karjinni! Trupti is an internationally-recognized artist and creative entrepreneur from Belgaum, India. She wears the hats of a painter, paintmaker, and educator. She is the creator of Thrive With Trupti, a membership and community where she teaches watercolor enthusiasts the skills a…
 
Nikki and Laura discuss the challenges that introverts face in developing their art business and offer some tips to help. TOPICS DISCUSSED What does it mean to be an introvert or extrovert? (0:48) What if you're both? (1:54) How do you know which you are? (5:00) How does being one or the other impact your art business? (7:03) Laura shares a story a…
 
Laura and Nikki talk about whether or not it’s necessary to go to art school to be a professional artist. They share their different experiences related to art school and other types of art and creative business education. TOPICS DISCUSSED Nikki’s art school experience (1:29) Individual Teacher’s Online classes (7:17) Free mini-courses/lessons (10:…
 
Local is back! And to kick off the new year, Laura sits down with Dreamcatcher Rep’s resident Sound Designer Jeff Knapp. In this fascinating and intimate interview, Jeff talks his college radio DJ days, being a theater student at a school without a theater, and his infamous appearance in The Sound of Music as “Captain Von Knapp.” He goes on to talk…
 
Laura and Nikki admit their art supply addiction, talk about some of their favorite supplies, discuss how to deal with supply overwhelm, and commit to embarrassing themselves with photos of their ridiculous collections! They give some advice they really need to learn to take themselves. Laura and Nikki admit to being art supply addicts (0:50) Laura…
 
Laura and Nikki are thrilled to introduce you to their first Startist Society guest, Shannon McNab! Shannon McNab is a left-handed, left-brained surface designer living in the San Francisco Bay Area. Her love of both art and numbers has allowed her to license and sell over 75 designs in just the past 4 years, working with brands like Party City, Cl…
 
Have you ever wanted to participate in an art challenge? Nikki and Laura discuss all the types that are available and how they can help you further your art career. From self-directed to organized, and weekly to 100 days or more, art challenges can promote personal artistic and career growth. Hear about some of our personal experiences participatin…
 
Nikki and Laura discuss the dreaded imposter syndrome and comparison trap. In a world where we live so much of our lives on social media, how do we combat the feeling of comparing our lives and work to others who seem so much further along than we are? How do we stop feeling like imposters in the work that we do? TOPICS DISCUSSED Comparing ourselve…
 
Nikki and Laura discuss the concept of creating a word of the year and the difference between having a New Year’s resolution and having a guiding word to live by for a year. Topics discussed: Laura talks about what exactly a "word of the year" is and how she learned about it (1:00) What to think about when choosing your word (2:15) Laura shares her…
 
Laura and Nikki talk about the importance of staying connected as a creative entrepreneur. Whether you live and work alone or you live in a house full of people who aren't artists, it's important to find communities of like-minded people you can relate to. In this episode, we discuss many different ways to connect to other people who are going thro…
 
Nikki and Laura discuss the overwhelming topic of overwhelm! What do you do when there are so many things going on that you don’t know where to start? How can you break things down into manageable chunks? Four types of overwhelm (0:58) Tools we use (2:43) Choose one thing a day (5:43) Weekly planning methods (6:23) Parkinson’s Law (7:50) Estimating…
 
Laura and Nikki share stories of how we get in or out of our own way, the importance of adjusting your mindset, and several helpful steps you can take to get beyond these challenges to advance your art business. Fixed vs. growth mindset Learn how to draw what you see, not what you think Change the way we think to get out of our own way Learning to …
 
Laura and Nikki discuss procrastination, fear, overwhelm and analysis paralysis that keep you stuck and offer 3 actionable steps to help you get out of your own way and start making progress on your art biz. Topics discussed: Fear of failure vs. fear of success Shiny object syndrome Analysis paralysis Wanting to do ALL THE THINGS! Overwhelm Forming…
 
Jessica F. Baskerville is a playwright based in New Jersey. She joins Laura for a fascinating and wide-sweeping conversation, covering the personal, political, and the life and work of a young creative whose work thus far has been intimately focused on community and sotries in New Jersey. Jessica tells Laura about attending Whitney Houston Academy …
 
Startist Society is a podcast and community for artists who procrastinate starting or making progress on their art business. Learn more about your hosts Laura and Nikki as they introduce the Startist Society to you. Maybe you are like us and have left your corporate job to focus full time on a creative business. Or maybe you’re trying to fit it all…
 
In this episode, Laura is joined by playwright and educator David Lee White. A longtime friend and frequent Dreamcatcher collaborator, David has worked with theatres and theatre programs across the New Jersey, New York, and Pennsylvania area. And this month with Dreamcatcher, we’re thrilled to be virtually premiering David Lee White’s audio play Wa…
 
In this first episode of Season 3, actor, singer, arts administrator, and advocate Deonté Griffin-Quick joins Laura. Hear Deonté discuss how he made his way into arts administration, how he uses his voice to advocate for diversity and equity in the arts, and how important it is for him to continue flexing his creativity as a performer. We’re so exc…
 
In the final episode of season 2, Laura is joined via Zoom by George Marriner Maull, Artistic Director of the Discovery Orchestra. Maestro Maull is a conductor, violist, television host, and music educator. Laura and Maestro Maull have an illuminating conversation on a range of topics, including how he founded the Discovery Orchestra and why the or…
 
In this episode of Local, Laura turns to Zoom for a conversation with her college pal Steve Harper. Steve is a producer on the CBS show God Friended Me, a co-producer on the HBO Max series Tell Me Your Secrets, and writer and creator of the original web series Send Me. They discuss his work acting, writing, networking, and building connections and …
 
This month Laura sits down with Julian Blake Gordon, an actor, classical pianist, and writer. Hear how Julian went from despising theatre to being a professional actor, how he experiences being a musician versus being an actor, and the importance of finding community and collaboration as an artist. Connect with Julian on Instagram. -- Music by Jeff…
 
Jeff Ertz is a NJ-based singer-songwriter, who has been featured on ABC’s ‘A Million Little Things,’ NPR’s ‘Reveal,’ as well as right here, because he composed the theme song for Local. In this episode of Local, Jeff tells the story of his music, and how he found his way into a creative and technology-driven career in post-production. He wears many…
 
Emaline Williams is a charming, smart presence you can find in theaters all over New York and New Jersey, including at Dreamcatcher Rep and Centenary Stage Company, as well as in film and commercials. Hers is a face you see around Dreamcatcher Rep a lot — helping us run smoothly behind the scenes and lighting up our stage in some of this season’s u…
 
On the season 2 premiere of Local, Laura sits down with powerhouse of the New Jersey theatre scene Betsy True. Betsy talks her love of working on new plays, the importance of respect and trust in artistic collaboration, and all of the many ways her artistic expression comes to life, now and throughout her career -- directing, teaching, singing, wri…
 
For the Local Season 1 finale Laura is joined by two guests, Lia Romeo and Erin Mallon, both of whom are NJ playwrights. This three-woman conversation is a fun exploration of the play creation process, being a mom and an artist, and what led them both to the artform. For more on Lia Romeo: www.liaromeo.com For more on Erin Mallon: www.erinmallon.ne…
 
This month on Local - Laura sits down with her good friend, Clark Carmichael. They talk about his acting and directing methods, casting adventures, and raising a family. It’s a fasinating peek into the world, art and industry of working actors. For more on Clark Carmichael: https://clarkcarmichael.wixsite.com/clarkscottcarmichael Music by Jeff Ertz…
 
Laura welcomes longtime Dreamcatcher company member Dave Maulbeck for a chat about his many artistic talents: acting, improv, comic books, and getting paid thousands of dollars to eat a hot dog. Dave explains the impetus for co-creating The Kinetix, a comic book series centering around teenage superheroes with disabilities, and he talks how his lov…
 
Visual artist Jessica Joyce joins Laura Ekstrand for a conversation about making art through the lens of Synaesthesia, a neurological condition that for Jessica means she can hear sound and also see the line and shape of its tambour. Hear how this sensory experience of the world affects Jessica's art, including the story of her amazing collaboratio…
 
Hear Laura's conversation with New Jersey actor, improviser, and small business owner Lulu French. Lulu shares what it takes to teach and perform improv comedy -- to children, to adults, and to businesses -- and she brings out some of her go-to comedic characters. Find Lulu at lulufrench.com and her business at rocketimprovcomedy.com -- Music by Jo…
 
This month Laura sits down with playwright James McLindon to talk about his dark comedy Dead and Buried, which the Detroit Free Press calls “funny, sad and heartwarming, often at the same time.” McLindon discusses some of the inspirations for his play, as well how he thinks about his work as a playwright and theater in general. Here's more on the s…
 
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