Hello! I’m Robin – Chief Storyteller and Mess Maker at RobinLK Studios.
I’ve been a curious learner my entire life – from my days as a ‘wee one’ to my days in the U.S. Navy. I’ve been a “let’s try that!” sort of teacher (middle/high school/college) for 25 years. Most recently, I’ve discovered the power of colors and mark-making while still working full-time in Education as an Instructional Coach. A Florida native, I currently live in Central Florida with my husband and fur children.
Strong coffee + a writing notebook to start each day
A typical weekday starts at 4:30 AM in my world – with a cup of strong coffee, my writing notebook, and two kitties snuggled at my feet. I prefer to write longhand while getting ideas out and making sense of life. With just 30 minutes to scribble my thoughts, I head to campus where I spend the next 8 hours working side-by-side with fellow teachers in their classrooms. Coaching is a rewarding role that helps me stay grounded in what’s happening in classrooms.
At the end of a school day, I return to my joyful home studio – where the day began and the magic happens. With an hour or two before dinner prep gets underway, it’s time to make. Anything. Whatever needs to come out. Some days, an idea has bubbled up from the night before, waiting quietly in the background until I can give it my attention. Other days, my feelings about the day take over. No matter what it is, I know I can leave it on my work table – in a messy, colorful, half-done (usually) state – until I can continue or repeat the process the next day.
A day without glue and paint on my hands is like a day without … well, you get the idea. Creating is essential for me every day, even if it’s 30 minutes.
In spite of my busy ‘daytime world,’ I’m truly an introvert masquerading in an extrovert’s world – with a brain that feels like 100 Internet tabs open at once. Do you know that feeling?
It’s the quiet of the creative process that centers me again. One thing’s for sure: I am… Creative by Discovery and Creating Toward Understanding.
how the art-making process found me
Everything we do is a process – good or bad, fast or slow – it’s a process – and I’m fascinated by that. I’ve been reading and writing as long as I can remember, but when my writing voice disappeared in 2014 and I discovered art as therapy, it was colors splashed across paper or canvas that helped me get through the darkest hours. We watched our baby sister battle breast cancer. It was slow, painful, life changing. Art focused my despair. Gave it a voice. Gave it an outlet. Gave me a place to scream, cry… a place to try to make sense of things.
A few months into discovering art as therapy, a family member asked what I wanted to do with my new interest. I didn’t hesitate. I knew I wanted to share the power of creativity as a wellness tool – a way to let emotions and feelings out, destress, and let go – all while playing with words and colors. There is no fancy art here. No judgment, no expectations – just fun. Still a full-time teacher, I created RobinLK Studios – part writing, part ‘arting’ – 100% making/creating!
Creative play is essential to our well-being and ‘making’ does not need to be complicated.
how creative play can benefit you
So how does my story of words + colors benefit you? Fast-forward a few years and our sister is healthy (thankfully) as I continue to find joy in playing with words + colors. “Making” has become no different than breathing for me! But I’ve learned I find my greatest joy in teaching others how creative play can help us sort through our own ‘stuff’ – or – just make time to have FUN.
Either way, we come away a little more ‘well,’ a little more authentic if we’re lucky – and ready to take on the world.
Creative play allow us the time, space, and materials to let loose and have fun. Let’s check ‘adulting’ at the door for an hour or two!
We were all creative once, but many of us put it away ‘to be a grown-up.’ It’s time to rediscover our creativity or at the very least, let go and play – with words + colors.
What’s happening in the studios in 2019:
Creating art journals, also known as creative or visual journals, and teaching others how to make their own is my passion this year. Want to read more? Check out this short blog post I shared in late 2018.
Along with journals, I’m repurposing discarded books (usually vintage) into beautiful ‘altered’ books that get a new life as ‘coffee table books’ or journals – ready to be explored by the unsuspecting reader. (Don’t judge a book by its cover!)
Finally, workshops and retreats are being scheduled this year, taking place in Central Florida.