34: A Creative Approach to Fine Art with Diane Richey-Ward

34: A Creative Approach to Fine Art with Diane Richey-Ward

What really inspires your creativity? Do you ever use the time it takes to do your routine tasks as an opportunity to reflect on things? And if so, do you make use of those reflective moments for your inspiration? Some of my most creative ideas have come to me while preparing a meal, or while doing laundry. And at times I allow myself to really indulge in the sensory input from my surroundings while getting completely lost in the moment. I focus on the colors, textures and my feelings at the time and then the creative force usually follows a bit later. I also love to see what other people are making, as the creativity of others can be a wonderful source of stimulation for new ideas too! Today’s story will offer many insights into the life of a fine artist, as I have Diane Richey-Ward with me as the guest on today’s show. She’s a fine artist based in Sacramento and she was also my drawing teacher a while back. Listen in today to find out about Diane’s creative approach to fine art.

Diane has been working mainly with the medium of drawing for the past thirty years. Every ten years she alters her approach, changing from drawing only to mixing drawing with sculpture or with other, different media. Her latest interest has been mixing drawing with photography and she’s been busy with that for the last three years. She features her latest work in an awesome show which is going on currently, at the Eastry Gallery in Sacramento. Today Diane talks to us about her widespread experiences and about the shows she’s had, all over the world. Listen in now to find out more!

Show highlights:

  • What inspired Diane’s idea of mixing drawing with photography.
  • Diane discusses her love for both drawing and photography.
  • What gives Diane the fantastic feeling of unlimited potential that she experiences, as an artist.
  • How Diane’s creativity has really increased, since her retirement
  • How architecture has featured prominently in Diane’s latest work.
  • The way that traveling provides inspiration for Diane’s work.
  • What art residency is all about.
  • What got Diane into teaching art for almost twenty-three years.
  • The most satisfying aspect of being an art teacher for Diane.
  • Why being retired is so much fun for Diane.
  • Why doing things other than art sometimes is a good idea.
  • How Diane initially got into art.
  • The hard work and perseverance that is required to become a successful artist.
  • The kind of venues that Diane prefers for her shows.
  • The key influences in Diane’s life as an artist.
  • Some tips to help you when you apply for art residencies.
  • A way to get a fresh, new perspective on things, if you run into a creative roadblock.


Photos of some of Diane’s work are available to everyone at A Creative Approach (on the Patreon page.)

They will also be available to the members of the Creative Approach Facebook group on the Creative Approach Facebook group page.

29: Creative Photography with Shutter Sisters Founder with Tracey Clark

29: Creative Photography with Shutter Sisters Founder with Tracey Clark

What is your artistic vision? The way you see the world is completely different than everyone else. And how incredible is that? As creative individuals, we have this great capacity to grow and heal through our art. This podcast celebrates the triumphs we as artists create, and I cannot think of a better person to celebrate with than today’s guest.

Tracey Clark is a photographer, first and foremost, but in reality, she is so much more than that! Tracey is an author, teacher, speaker, and founder of Shutter Sisters. I first learned about Tracey through her classes, but then soon discovered Shutter Sisters and was immediately on board with all that she does. Tracey lives and breathes the small moments of her life that she captures in so many fun ways. Whether you are a mom, a creative, or someone looking to add a little love to their life, you have a lot to learn from Tracey!

Tracey is all about creating safe spaces through her classes and with Shutter Sisters so that artists feel encouraged and empowered to share their vision. She challenges the idea that some people are not creative. Creative expression is more than photography and paintings. Listen today to hear us chat about what energizes Tracey, from her projects, her life’s story, and how photography is changing lives.

More in this episode:

  • All about Tracey’s diverse interests that go beyond photography.
  • Hear about Tracey’s teaching history and philosophy.
  • Tracey loves to share with people how to see the world a little differently.
  • Photography is accessible to everyone.
  • Phones or DSLR? Tracey makes a case for both!
  • Learning the artists skills are essential for boosting photography.
  • Every artist has their own vision and perspective.
  • Comparison is the worst killer of creativity.
  • Shutter Sisters was a way for artists to share photography free from comparison.
  • The work we make to please ourselves are some of the best expression of our artistic vision.
  • Tracey’s dad had a camera around, so that meant she had so many family moments captured and saved.
  • Motherhood and photography can go hand in hand.
  • Hindsight is important for Tracey’s work.
  • Join in the community events to push creativity.
  • An exciting announcement is coming in 2018.



Instagram @ShutterSisters


03: Coloring Outside the Lines with Erin Manning

03: Coloring Outside the Lines with Erin Manning

Do creative people inspire you? Would you like to enhance your own creativity, or nourish it in your children? If so, let this week’s dynamic and versatile guest on  “A Creative Approach Podcast”, Erin Manning, encourage you to “color outside the lines” as she is interviewed by Karen Poirier-Brode.

Erin Manning is a warm-hearted, enthusiastic and talented photographer, author, teacher and media personality,  acknowledged for her friendly and clear style of teaching. She is best known as the host of the award-winning TV series “The Whole Picture”. Her methods encourage students to be bold and true to their innate nature. Let her innovative and entrepreneurial approach urge you towards living a more fulfilling and creative life as you “let your inner voice come out”.

Listen to Erin talk to Karen about:

  • How she became a trend setter while still in grade school.
  • Her love of clothes and fashion, which prompted her to seek creative ways to make money.
  • Her numerous bold and creative, youthful enterprises.
  • Her “Twenty-year college plan” to obtain her B.A. and why it worked for her to get her degree at the age of forty-one.
  • What shaped her attitude as a teacher.
  • How her passion for photography began at the age of seven.
  • How taking candid shots inspired her to write a book.
  • Her modeling career and how it helped her to become a better, more empathetic photographer.
  • The fun places that Erin teaches.
  • How she began teaching photography while traveling.
  • How her upbringing helped her creative development.
  • How she juggles many activities at the same time, all with the theme of being creative and creating imagery.


Erin’s website: www.erinmanning.com

Recommended Books:

Portrait and Candid Photography

Make Money with Your  Digital Photography


02: Add Depth to Your Digital Scrapbook with Cheryl Ashcroft

02: Add Depth to Your Digital Scrapbook with Cheryl Ashcroft

Are you looking for new and exciting ways to add depth to your scrapbooking projects? Would you love to learn more about the art of digital scrapbooking? If so, join Karen Poirier-Brode, on A Creative Approach Podcast, as she interviews Cheryl Ashcraft, designer of digital scrapbook kits and templates, as they talk about Cheryl’s creative approach to digital scrapbooking.

Cheryl, a hometown girl from Florida, creates richly layered, intricately designed digital scrapbook templates, to help scrapbookers tell their story without the fuss or mess. When she’s not busy creating fabulous new template designs, Cheryl loves taking family photos, decorating her house, doing detailed pen and ink drawings and lately, dabbling with watercolors and mixed media. She is also an avid reader and an occasional cross stitcher. Let her explain how you can use digital kits and templates to become more creative with your scrapbooking.

Today, Cheryl talks to Karen about:

  • Her creative influences while growing up.
  • How she started out scrapbooking and how it developed with the use of digital media.
  • How she converts her drawings to digital.
  • The advantages of digital scrapbooking as compared to paper.
  • How she used old files and layouts to create a slideshow in very little time.
  • A good reason to save old PSD files.
  • How she stared designing digital templates and her approach.
  • Themed templates as compared to non-themed ones.
  • How to add authenticity to a digital scrapbook page.
  • How to add depth to your scrapbook design, using digital tools and templates.
  • How to do art journaling, using a traditional digital scrapbook kit.
  • How to create ‘hybrid’ projects, using her digital templates.
  • Her advice for anyone wanting to pursue digital template or kit design as a career.
  • Her advice to anybody wishing to become more creative.



Cheryl’s website: www.fiddle-dee-deedesigns.com

Cheryl on Youtube: Watch Cheryl Scrap

Cheryl on Facebook: Fiddle-Dee-Dee Designs

Cheryl on Twitter: @fiddledeedeedzn

Cheryl on Instagram: Fiddledeedeedesigns

Cheryl on Pinterest: Fiddle-Dee-Dee

Cheryl recommends: www.thedigichick.com


Check out our latest episodes:

01: Finding The Creativity Within with Charr Crail

01: Finding The Creativity Within with Charr Crail

Would you love to be a creative person, but think that only certain people are born that way? Do you have a desire to express something creatively, yet feel that you’re not talented enough to do it? If so, break through your limiting ideas and become inspired by this week’s guest on “A Creative Approach Podcast”, Charr Crail, as she is interviewed by Karen Poirier-Brode.

Charr Crail is a photographer, artist, photojournalist, and teacher who has won countless awards. During her formative years, she often accompanied her Dad, a newspaper-man and photographer, on his assignments. This showed her some crazy things in life and gave her a sense of the journalistic point of view. She is wildly enthusiastic about creativity and teaches people about finding their passion and following it, using various apps and media. Listen in as she encourages us all to discover the creativity that “we all have within us”.

Listen to Karen’s interview with Charr as they discuss:

  • How an inner revelation, spontaneously expressed, ended up forming her career.
  • The “out of the box” first job that shaped her and taught her to ‘experience’ people around photography.
  • How she followed her instincts and got to where she is today.
  • How being open to possibilities and saying “yes” can unleash creativity.
  • How she views Photoshop as having tremendous graphic design possibilities.
  • That passion feeds creativity.
  • The unexpected ways that she came about doing what she really loves.
  • How an iPhone inspires her to teach people to do digital imaging with their photos as a canvas.



Charr’s website:

charrcrail.org (The “Learn” section has a list of workshops and tutorials.)

Check out our latest episodes:

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