Creativity Coach - Artist Desiree East

You want to THRIVE and live in the PRESENT MOMENT. You want to CREATE THE REALITY YOU'VE ALWAYS DREAMED through CREATIVE LIFESTYLE HABITS.You want to tap into that hidden, CREATIVE POTENTIAL that is ready to be UNLEASHED to the world. When your inner voice, your intuitive heart --- YOUR creative genius --- is nourished and pampered, you know you can create profound changes in your LIFE that is the art.

Desiree East is a Soulful Entrepreneur, Certified Master Transformational Coach, Creatively Fit Coach and Visual Artist. Desiree facilitates live creative workshops and retreats, as well as, online art programs focused on personal and professional development. She inspires her clients to create meaningful change in their lives through creative ritual, using art-making as a modality for creative wellness and deep transformation (no art experience required). 

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be careful what you ask for, you might just get it

the biggest wave brendon duck dove. bali indonesia. photo by desiree east For weeks on end - no, wait...months, actually - all I've heard from my darling husband is: "All I want is to get some, barreling lefts... just a nice, clean, hollow left." This statement is almost always accompanied with him posing in a front-side stance, along with sound effects of what it's supposed to sound like when you get barreled.

"Wow, babe, you're good. You'd make an excellent sound-effects dude, too." I always told him that he could go into voice-over acting. You should hear him, he's really good.

As you know, we are blessed with a wide variety of waves in Ventura County. Well, all of California, for that matter. And Mexico. And Hawaii. And we've had our share of travelling to other states and countries, as well, to seek out fun, rippable waves. It's what we do. Mandatory.

But, what we all love (we, meaning regular footers) about California and Baja are the plethora of right-hand point breaks...makes me all giddy inside, just thinking about it. However, being married to a goofy-footer makes me realize, well, how badly I feel for all the people who have to ride back-side on a perfectly, peeling right-hand point break. Like, all the time. (Can you sense the sarcasm?) No, but really, I feel for you...

Brendon has had a taste of the Mentawais, and he's been itching to spend more time in Indo. So, after a series of unfortunate events - coupled with the perfect timing of a down economy - we decided that after all was said and done, time is more valuable than any material wealth. So, we put our rose-colored glasses on and decided to stretch our dollar in Bali...and here we are.

Several weeks ago, the Bukit finally turned on. Seasons are changing, and the trade winds are blowing off-shore on the west coast of Bali. And what perfect timing: a significant swell hit the shores of Bali.

And Brendon lived to tell about it (because it was that big).

I bribed him to write a little blog post for us, just because. So, just grab a beer and pretend like he's all salty-dogged out, and doing his usual hand-gestures and sound effects. I wish I could have gotten his reaction when he came in from the water, but this is the best I can do for now. Hopefully, next time, I'll have the video cam on stand-by...

walking out to paddle out zone. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

Guest Post written by Brendon:

I think that was the biggest wave I’ve ever duck dove.

It was my first time paddling out at this spot, and it was firing. I was watching the other people jump off at the paddle-out zone. Some of them made it out clean, without having to push through too much duck diving drama. Others were getting caught at the wrong time and getting sucked down the break, while having to duck dive, like thirty pretty good size waves in a row.

I must have calculated fairly well before paddling out, because I didn’t have to duck dive a single wave on the way out - except for the one right when I jumped into the water; the current started sucking out so fast, I ended up dry-docking it with my fingers in between the board and the reef. Great.

So, I make it out and try to find my place in the lineup and noticed, along with my now freshly sliced index finger, that there are guys way outside and some on the inside. I know there are bigger sets, but I get antsy and try my luck picking off some of the smaller, head-high ones bowling up nicely on the inside section.

perfect inside balangan. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east.

lonely guy getting barrelled. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

That was a dumb move on my part. Out the back, came one of the biggest sets that I had seen all afternoon. Shit.

I started to paddle out to meet a giant wall of water that seemed to keep getting bigger the closer we came together. At that point, I started to think to myself, "Can I even duck dive this f***ing thing, or should I ditch my board?"

It was at least triple overhead.

Usually, I would just ditch my board and swim down, but I had an old leash on (another smart move), which could easily snap. The last thing I wanted to do at that point is take the rest of the set on the head without my board.

At the very last second I decided to duck dive it.

The wave breaks about ten feet in front of me, and I had about 10-12 feet, like ceiling high or more, of white wash coming toward me. I pushed down into the water super hard and tried to time it to avoid getting annihilated. I got bounced around pretty good, but somehow managed to hold onto my board.

After duck diving the next 15 waves and getting pushed further and further down the reef, it was over.

Out of breath, super hot and exhausted, I manage to make my way back out and sit on the outside corner for a couple. I was clearly under gunned that day but managed to get a couple.

cleaner day for surf. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

simplicity. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

a balinese hindu ceremony...offerings to sea. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

The next day, was a bit cleaner and smaller, but there were still some decent size sets coming through. I paddled out with my buddy, Ken, and he makes his way up the break past the crowd. I went the other way to try and pick off one of those wide, swinging ones.

Just as I get in the line-up, the first wave of a set comes right to me, so I turn around and take it. I don’t know what happened, but I think I caught my rail when I dropped in on the wave.

Snap. There goes my leash.

I started to make the long swim in with the rest of the set breaking on me, but it wasn’t too bad. This is where a pair of reef booties comes in handy, because the reef is sharp with urchins hidden in the cracks. Urchin fest.

Some ladies kicking it in a tide pool grabbed my board.

Oh well, at least I got some exercise from the swim in. I called it a day, went in and got a Bintang and took some video footage from the warung. It's true, be careful what you ask for...

close up from warung. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

view from warung. bali, indonesia. photo by desiree east

"Is it true that you only become famous after you die???"

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qoqSYOCA3Eg?rel=0&w=500&h=311] One of my 10-year-old art students recently asked a question in class the other day, "Is it true that you only become famous after you die???"

To be quite honest, I wasn't quite sure how to answer that question. As I was trying to think of a sincere answer, my thoughts were interrupted by another young student who innocently added, "Yeah...I heard that you're only famous if your artwork is really, really old..."

(Ahem)...where in the world do kids learn these things???

The idea that artists are 'ahead of their time' and not fully recognized or appreciated for their art during their era, until much later after their death --- for instance, 'posthumously' famous artists such as, Vincent Van Gogh and Emily Dickinson --- is one that is widely accepted.

(However, this idea is debatable - and a whole-nother story - because the definition of fame and success have very different meanings from one artist to another. Not all artists create art for the sake of being famous. Also, many great artists' talents have been and are recognized and appreciated while still alive...just like my young, beautiful, and wonderfully talented art students!)

This brings us to my latest obsession, the late (posthumously famous) photographer, VIVIAN MAIER (February 1, 1926 – April 21, 2009). As we approach the 2nd anniversary of her passing, it is just absolutely astonishing how her images have almost instantly revealed a culture from the past - more like a time machine, if you will - and one that the world will learn from in the days, months, and years to come.

(Alright, so let me back up)...I don't know if any of you have been following the story of Vivian Marier, but the more it unfolds, the more intrigued I am.

FIRST, let's talk about photography (I'm kind of working backwards, here, so please bear with me). The fascinating thing about capturing images, is that you get a glimpse of what the person behind the lens is viewing. It's how they interpret the world as they see it.

Now, I'm not talking about specific assignments that professional photographers are hired for, and I'm not talking about a project that was assigned to you as homework in Beginning Photography 101. I'm talking about raw, candid shots. Shooting from the hip. Street photography. Urban photography. Whatever you want to call it.

WHEN YOU LOOK AT AN IMAGE, ask yourself:

What was it that motivated the photographer behind the lens to take that shot?

Is there a compelling story on the other side of the lens?

Perhaps the lighting had casted the perfect hue on the subject...

Or maybe the objects presented a strong composition in relation to each other...

It might have simply been the quirky expression on a child's face or the crow's feet extending from the sparkling eyes of an eldery person.

"Okay, so what's your point?" you ask?

Most artists have an opportunity to express what their intent is. Reading an Artist's Statement along with their work is the norm. It invites the viewers into their world in a compelling way, explaining the style of their work, or perhaps, the intent or message of the series of artwork that they are featuring.

Then we have the late Vivian Maier. Not a world-renowned artist (at least not, yet). Just a nanny. No artist statement. No nothing.

Except for the astounding images, of course. Oh, and the mystery audio tapes and documentaries captured on endless reels of film.

No one knew who Ms. Maier was until the random bulk of prints, negatives, and undeveloped rolls of film was acquired at an antique auction by historian, John Maloof, in 2007.

Since then, the story of her mysterious past have been unraveling before our eyes. Hundreds of thousands (literally) of negatives and rolls of film have been carefully dodged and burned onto photo paper. As each print is currently being rustled through, we are slowly starting to learn about this amazingly gifted artist.

As an educator and art lover, I am very excited and very thankful that John Maloof and Jeff Goldstein and their amazing network of support have decided to share this process of this project with the rest of the world. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU...

This is ART HISTORY, people. It is unfolding in front of our eyes, and WE are part of it. This is the moment to appreciate the unveiling of a great artist --- the Emily Dickinson and Vincent van Gogh of photography, the hidden world of VIVIAN MAIER.

2013 UPDATE! 'FINDING VIVIAN MAIER' HAS BEEN SELECTED BY THE TORONTO INT'L FILM FESTIVAL FOR ITS WORLD PREMIERE IN SEPT 2013:

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=8ZoYG1kgMNo]

HOW DO YOU THINK THE DISCOVERY OF THIS ARTIST WILL INFLUENCE SOCIETY IN THE YEARS TO COME? ANY THOUGHTS? FEEL FREE TO SHARE BELOW!

To learn more about this fascinating project, please visit the official site of Vivian Maier.

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describe the best road trip you've ever taken

big creek bridge. photo by desiree east The best, best, bestest road trip I've ever taken was during our honeymoon, of course! (The second bestest road trip would have to be any and all trips to Baja). You see, we are simple people, who love the adventure of spontaneity. No fancy resorts or crowded beaches. Just me, my hubby and the open road. For our honeymoon, we decided to spend two weeks on the road and take a trip up the coast from California, up to the Oregon coast. We camped and surfed on the way up and on the way back down. It was amaaaazing (as I bat my eyelashes and clasp my hand to my heart). I'm such a sucker for romance.

Before Brendon and I got engaged, we were both finishing up our studies, separately at college. I was up at UC Santa Cruz and Brendon was at Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo. We would visit each other between our studies and take mini trips to the Big Sur coast. To this day, we've continued the tradition of camping and surfing up there at least once, if not several, times a year. Sometimes we'd shoot up there by ourselves for a quick getaway and sometimes we'd meet up with friends and family.

It's our home away from home, and it's become a yearly road trip I most certainly always look forward to...

harmony. photo by desiree east

surf check. photo by desiree east

surfer's journal. photo by desiree east

desi and moana. photo by brendon east


transformational creativity coach desiree east

Desiree East is a Soulful Entrepreneur, Certified Master Transformational Coach, Creativity Coach and Visual Artist. Desiree facilitates live creative workshops and retreats, as well as, online art programs focused on personal and professional development. She inspires her clients to create meaningful change in their lives through creative ritual, using art-making as a modality for creative wellness and deep transformation (no art experience required). 

certified transformational and creatively fit coach desiree east

All images, illustrations, and artwork on this site are copyright © Desiree East unless otherwise noted, and may not be edited, reproduced or sold by any party without written permission. You may have permission to distribute and share posted articles and content, although credit would be greatly appreciated. If you would like to purchase or license any images, illustrations, or artwork, please contact Desirée East directly for more info.

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