how to commit to a 90 day plan - with downloadable tracking sheets

day (small ones - like a to-do list) and I check them off or cross them off my list! It’s so empowering!!

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t always get to check things off my lists. Sometimes I don’t get to everything on my list and have to re-evaluate them and see if they are worth carrying forward.

Another reason why I like to write them down in my daily planner is because I’m an easily-distracted-creative. My focus isn’t the greatest. I get bored, distracted and need to always remind myself to re-focus. It’s both a curse and a blessing. The good thing is, I never run out of ideas!!

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Why I decided to join the #the100dayproject - again! Will you join me?!

Why I decided to join the #100dayproject

I’ve participated in the project in the past but have never made it to 100 days!

Last year, I attempted to use my Canon Rebel to shoot a photo a day. I did ok, I just fizzled out around day 20something… I think. I am going to give the project a go again this year, and have decided to work on a tiny painting a day.

My painting won’t always be detailed or finished, but I have decided to focus more on my art this year and thought, “why not join the #100dayproject!”.

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Fun & Easy Watercolor project for beginners

Happy beginning of spring! There’s something about longer days, filled with sunshine and above zero temps that make people happier, more optimistic and inspired to use color!

I thought I’d share a fun and easy watercolor project for beginners that is sure to boost your creative spirit and mood!

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Six Podcasts that have helped me in my creative business

At any point in starting, growing and running a business, I feel like we need inspiration, information, a fresh perspective, and motivation to push through when we need a little boost. Podcasts for me serve all of those purposes and more. So I thought I’d share with you Podcasts that have helped me in my creative business.

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free march 2019 calendar

Before I get to this free March 209 calendar that I made for you, it’s confession time.

Even though I plan and write things down, it doesn’t always mean that I finish everything I hope to. I’m ok with that - now.

I think we plan and try to achieve too much in a short amount of time. Don’t you?!

A few weeks ago, I stupidly walked into a door frame going into a crawl space and gave myself a concussion. I wasn’t skydiving or skiing down a mountain, I literally walked into a door frame, head down, looking at my phone trying to turn off the flashlight app. Stupid right?!

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Goodbye BORING, hello exciting

I hope you’ve enjoyed a little inspiration with adding excitement to your walls with some really great art! Home decor and styling has always been a passion of mine and as someone who works from home, my personal space is really important to me. Being able to break up the boring, everyday, and saying hello exciting, new updates is important to my creativity and frame of mind! Do you agree?!!

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How to write happy birthday in modern calligraphy tracing sheets

Tracing is one of the best ways to help you build muscle memory and grow your lettering practice! So I thought I’d make it available for anyone who is looking for a fun and easy way to help with learning how to write “Happy Birthday” in modern calligraphy with these tracing sheets!

The best part is, I’ve designed this practice sheet to be used with both a pointed pen and ink, or a small brush pen! I’m all about convenience and multi-purpose tools!

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Learn how to get over your fear of trying something new

Have you ever dreamed about starting something new, learning something new, or jumping out of your comfort zone to shake things up a bit?! How do we get over the fear?

I’ve learned to be bigger than my fear! I let the fear pop up when it needed to warn me. Then I paused. Asked myself “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” if I hit share, publish or launched a new art piece. With each experience , I was more in control. With each bout of fear, I learned that I wasn’t in danger, and that my life wouldn’t end if I did this one new thing.

I learned a few tricks to help get over fear and am excited to share them with you now!

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How to celebrate National Handwriting Day

National Handwriting Day is January 23rd and I’ve been busy thinking of ways we can build our hand writing muscles and celebrate it! First let’s start with a few reasons why it’s important to practice our hand writing and why we should make it a daily practice. Hand writing is brain food!! It is even argued that cursive writing offers more benefits to the brain giving it an opportunity to train, and trigger different parts within the brain. I’m no scientist, but what I know for sure is that I remember things more when I’ve written them down. I also notice that I commit to things more seriously if I’ve written them down.

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My top hand lettering tools for beginners

For hand lettering and calligraphy fans, it’s such an exciting time to explore this skill and craft. There are many different lettering tools available on the market now to help you with your lettering projects. Far more than when I first started out for sure!!

Calligraphy and lettering is a large part of what makes up the design end of my business. I’ve even started teaching other the craft through workshops and classes.

I often get questions about which class to start with, or which tool to use, so I thought I’d share with you a quick video that I made demonstrating my top hand lettering tools for beginners!

To help you get a better understanding for all the lettering tools available, I’ve narrowed down my top hand lettering tools for beginners

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Balancing Creativity and Business As a Creative Entrepreneur

If you’ve been following me for any length of time, you’ll know that I balance being a creative and being an entrepreneur, wearing many hats in-between. Becoming a creative entrepreneur can be an interesting clash of two worlds. On the one hand, you have a creative skill that you want to market, whether it's decorating people's homes, producing music or making jewelry. On the other hand, you need to put your business hat on, and get to work promoting your creative skills or products. Growing a business while also carrying on with your creative work can be tough, and require a lot of work. So how can you balance your creativity with your need to grow your business? Take a look at some of these tips.

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Goal Setting worksheets

Goal Setting Worksheets!

First off, go ahead and download the goal setting worksheets here. Save them to your computer and print off a copy or two of each. You will notice that I have listed 5 categories; health, spiritual, relationship, finance and personal development. In an effort to simplify life, I will focus on only these 5 categories. Feel free to add others if you need, but keep in mind, simplifying is best so as not to get overwhelmed with your goal setting!

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Calligraphy practice sheet to help you write "best wishes"

Simply click here, to download your calligraphy practice sheet to help you write “best wishes”. Save it to your computer and print as many copies you need to help you practice!! The best part is, you can use a brush pen or a dip pen and nib to practice with!

If you missed my other practice sheets that I created for you, have a look at this post here.

Oh, and check out the free Christmas Gift Tags that I shared a little while ago!! They’ll help add style and will make a statement with your gift wrapping this year!!

Lastly, if you are curious about learning calligraphy or brush lettering with me, then check out these new online classes that I just created! They are at a low, introductory price for the next little while, so enjoy the savings while it lasts!

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Six years ago today, I began a new journey and never looked back

In a very random but powerful aha moment, I knew that I wanted to create art, share art, and inspire others to surround themselves by art. I knew that I wanted to continue to work from home, on my terms and with freedom to choose, when I worked and how I worked {My kids were still young, but didn’t need me as much}. I knew I wanted to maintain my independence while earning my own money and still be able to contribute to the family budget. I knew I was happiest when I painted, blogged and created.

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Free Printable Christmas gift tags

I wanted to please everyone with these free printable Christmas gift tags and hopefully you’ll find them easy to use wether you prefer wrapping paper or gift bags!!

I wanted to create a really special free printable for my loyal readers and followers as a way for me to help make this season a bit easier and enjoyable for you! So I created theses…

Free Printable Christmas Gift Tags

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Slow living plan and tips

With many hectic days of keeping up with business, two busy teens, university tours, hubby traveling etc., minutes are precious and face-time even more so. My goal for 2019 is to consciously slow down the pace. I was going to end that sentence with “when possible” but that’s not intention enough. My goal for 2019 is to consciously slow down the pace. Period.

I know. You’re thinking to yourself, “Nicki. You’re crazy. You can’t slow the passing of time.”. But I have. I did and I’m figuring out ways to do it more as I go.

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What's the difference between hand lettering and calligraphy?

There is a difference between hand lettering and calligraphy. Some would argue that there’s a big difference. I personally feel that any form of lettering, is simply letters that are “drawn” vs. “written”. In both cases, we draw strokes that are very purposeful and consistent. The difference between hand lettering and calligraphy is that the elements of those strokes vary. I recorded this video to help with explaining the difference between hand lettering and calligraphy in the hopes of helping to show how the elements of each art form vary.

Click play to watch the video.

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Free iPhone Wallpaper Background for November

I have spent most of my free time recently on painting abstract shapes and playing around with color. I have designs in mind that I am creating for my Society6 shop, that will go on things like pillows, laptop covers and even coffee mugs. Although my personal style in everything from clothing to home decor, is black and white, a small part of me is trying to embrace color {a limited color palette…} and try my hand at designing using some color! Sooooo, I thought I’d make this lovely wallpaper inspired by the falling snow and my current pattern designing mode, in the hopes of creating a lovely wallpaper to inspire you through the rest of November!

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Free Calligraphy Worksheet to help you practice more

Learning calligraphy is like learning any new skill, the more you practice, the better you become. You can take classes, read blog posts, watch videos and hear about all the important tools to use or paper to practice on, but the only thing that will help you improve, grow confidence and want to continue to fine tune your calligraphy style is by practice! This free calligraphy worksheet to practice more give you an option to use a dip pen and ink or a small brush pen to help you trace words and grow your calligraphy skills.

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Why take online courses?!

I believe in taking online courses so much so, that I have taken time away from my art and creative practice, to create courses to help others achieve their personal goals. I’m excited to share everything that I’ve learned over the years in the hopes of inspiring, empowering and saving you time and money! No matter what your goal is. [More about life i design online in another post]

Here are the reasons why I think taking online courses is the way to go! Read to the bottom to see my top online class resources.

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