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Featured Moms

Creative inspiration and turning painting into a business with Ruth Oosterman

“As all parents know, finding time to pursue a passion or hobby can seem almost impossible when you have kids, so when I do get time I appreciate it so much more.”

ruth


Ruth is a Canadian artist currently residing in Toronto where she works out of her downtown studio. As a self taught artist, she began exploring her talent at a young age and now her work can be found at numerous exhibitions and private collections throughout Canada, the United Kingdom, Australia, the United States and the Dominican Republic.


LadyandtheFox

Besides your direct collaboration with your daughter, do you feel like becoming a mother has changed your artwork?

Definitely! As all parents know finding time to pursue a passion or hobby can seem almost impossible when you have kids, so when I do get time I appreciate it so much more. I tend to pour more of my soul and passion into my art now because I don’t know when the next time I’ll be able to sit and paint will be. Watching my daughter, Eve, and her enthusiasm for life has made me stop and appreciate all the small things and this channels back into my art. Before parenthood a lot of my creations fell in the same genre and now it is all over the map, I am definitely painting more children’s artwork then I thought I ever would!

Do you have any routines or things you do you do when you feel creatively blocked?

Chocolate. Lots of chocolate. And making sure I take some downtime with Eve to just relax and play. Most of my creative block comes from over thinking or having a swarm of ideas that I cannot get focused therefore finding it impossible to put it onto paper.

Going from being purely an artist to actually making a business of your artwork is a big step. How did you make this transition?

It is a huge endeavor and one that I wasn’t sure I would ever do. I have been selling commissioned pieces and my own personal paintings in Toronto for several years now, however earlier this year I decided to open up my own Etsy shop and see what could happen. It was very intimidating, and still is, but it would be my ultimate dream to be able to stay at home with Eve and make a living off of doing what I love. I knew that if I didn’t at least try then not trying would be my biggest failure. Once I decided to go all in and see what could happen I realized how little I knew about it all. This is where reading forum after forum came in handy, anytime I had a question I would go to the ever knowing internet to find the answer. Either that or talk to someone who seemed to know what they were doing to get advice.

The Sunflower Princess

Do you have any advice for moms approaching this step in their career or resources you found helpful?

Don’t be afraid to ask as many people as possible about how they have gotten to where they are and for any advice they can give you, we all have to start somewhere! Be prepared for a lot of hard work and also be prepared to ask for help. That is something I find a lot of moms struggle with, especially myself, is accepting help, but just say yes! One day you’ll have an opportunity to help someone else so it will all come around again. Most importantly just go for it! Jump in with both feet and don’t look back, you can only regret not trying.

Other than painting, do you have a favorite creative activity you do with your daughter?

We love to cook together, or more appropriately bake. I am slightly obsessed with baked goods so she will sit up on the counter and help me create whatever recipe we can find! Of course she is the official taste tester.

Thank you to Ruth for taking the time to chat with us during the media whirlwind! We love your artwork and can’t wait to see what else you and Eve come up with!


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