Born in Canada and raised for my first 20 years in northern Newfoundland. From there I began studying in Nova Scotia, I graduated from the Nova Scotia College of Art & Design in 2001 with a Bachelor of Fine Art, Interdisciplinary, with a main interest in sculpture.
My artwork became focused on woodcarving and a continuation of my interest from art college of finding inspiration in the symbols and themes found in folk-tales and mythology. This interest led me to become a storyteller, sparked when developing a story that was related to a woodcarving I was working on and a friend remarked, “Why don't you tell the story?” I asked, “What is a storyteller?” And so it began...
For many years I found myself doing various jobs while at the same time developing my art & storytelling practice. One of these jobs was an off-and-on position as a tree surgeon. Though I eventually found that I did not suit this work it brought me to a close understanding of trees and an ever deepening interest in the role of trees in mythology and folklore. To explore this relationship with people, trees and education I completed training as a Forest School leader, as well as exploring other ways of having further understanding and a more mystical relationship with the trees and the forest.
Eventually I began to ask about the other roles of storytelling & arts in society and became aware of the healing, therapeutic and spiritual applications of these practices. Along with my own journey I began to explore these ideas and what I have found has informed my work since. Some of my interest lies in the healing potential of art and storytelling, elements that are intrinsic to these crafts yet often overlooked, myths, therapeutic techniques, and shamanic practices show ways of opening up this potential. At the heart of these practices are creativity and expression, giving people ways of opening up and being true to themselves. I have been developing storytelling themes and workshops that are informed by these ideas.
I have been involved with many projects, some of which are storytelling based and others are working with art, most often the projects are a fusion of both. Projects have seen me working with communities, groups of children, schools, libraries, organisations, and festivals. I have also developed storytelling and art workshops for young people with additional support needs. My artwork has seen me complete many projects for private commissions, community projects, and other organisations.
Blether Tay-Gither are a storytelling group based in Dundee. I have been a part of the club since its beginning in 2007, and have been the treasurer since 2009. The club meet monthly in Dundee as a open space for adults to tell stories. Also we are a part of community events, organise family storytelling events and run workshops, among other things.