We had the good fortune of connecting with Deborah Walker and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Deborah, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
In my journey in particular, risk has been essential and the most powerful practice in my growth. I made the decision several years ago (8) to leave a disempowering relationship, (divorce) Move to the beach, sell everything, and walk away from a business that initially was my retirement plan and step into a place I had always wanted to be and I just felt was right for me. It was scary, terrifying actually, the best thing I ever jumped into. I cried, felt anxiousness, in the end I also felt it was right. Fast forwarding 9 years later, in reflection it was absolutely without a doubt the best intuitive decision I have ever made. I took a short amount of time to settle, pause and refocus. The old saying “Im off to find myself” was absolutely the space I was in! In the next 9 years I received my certification in Meditation, Yoga, and Ayurveda through the Chopra Center in carlsbad! My entire life shifted. I also began painting again and this path in conjunction with the mindfulness blended perfectly and supported each other over those years. Weaving into and out of each other, inspiring me to not only be healthy in mind, but body, spirit. I since then have had my art in numerous shows, boutiques, selling online through Amazon, (a huge undertaking as I am not a technical person) Etsy, Vida, Society 6 and was part of the coaching program with the Chopra Center ,I have a wonderful following for both my mindfulness practices and artistic passion. I have experienced connection to what I love, my dharma (purpose) and my entire world has changed doing things I always dreamed about but never was supported to go after. I had to support myself is what I realized vs looking for someone externally to walk in and give me the permission to do it. I am now enjoying an amazing life creating art, sharing art, teaching when I can others to create and live a peaceful, healthy balanced life. All of this never would have come into my life with that one moment of decision, vulnerability, faith, trust and definately risk!
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I am a watercolor artist; which is all I have ever painted with, I am self taught. At some points I was told not to share that because it may say to people im not schooled, professional or skilled, true artist. I chose to disagree with that! My art is like me, unpredictable, risky, soft, abstract, expressive, and ethereal and also full of love, inspiration and utter joy. Watercolor as a medium absolutely cannot be controlled and I have learned to love that quality and what comes from my brush beautifully, to accept it and go with it seeing it as imperfectly perfect! I paint different styles from abstract to pen and ink, animals, a bohemian series, flowers, metaphysical and I am always open to painting whatever comes to me and I feel drawn to. This is the part that has to be there. I say my paintings come to me and they paint themselves always expressing through me and using me as their tool. I have painted many things that after I look at and think, wow did I paint that? It is a deeply spiritual/meditative process for me, if I am not inspired and connected to the piece It is as if I have lost all ability to paint! It is quite crazy actually and surprises me many times as too how my art expresses what I am feeling and experiencing in any given time in my life. I have also learned to completely love, embrace and trust all my quirks and uniqueness that is me! This was huge and took a lot of courage and vulnerability! I definitely had to overcome the comparing and fear of what I create may not be accepted, liked or good enough. My art is an expression of me and expresses those things that are me, when others feel it too and connect, that is the most rewarding gift for me! I learned to trust what I do is unique to me, from my style, the medium I work with and what I create as a whole. People recognize my work, my style and the feeling they get from my paintings and that is what being an artist is for me! I also learned that not everyone has to understand, like, appreciate who I am or what I create, teach and share through both my yoga, spiritual practices and express through my art, the ones that do, are who I focus on and I love that I can inspire them, encourage, and evoke emotions in them through art. My brand is colorful, spontaneous, unique, curious, playful, individual and definately all me! I would like for people to know that my path not have been pretty, perfect or without mess and challenge but it has been worth every single moment. My mission is to inspire others to jump into what they love, do what they love, be amazingly unique because there are people out there that need them, want them and will love them for that uniqueness they have just like me and they will feel a freedom like I do that was never there before! Take the risk….. It is so worth it.
Any great local spots you’d like to shoutout?
I would definitely take them through my town Solana Beach and Encinitas, I love the boutiques that have supported me through the years, given me my first opportunities to share my work. I would share sunset walks, Encinitas shops, wonderful cuisine from vegan dishes to a variety of cultural foods. I love that our town of Solana Beach has such diversity in foods, people and places. A walk through the meditation gardens, to feel the history there and peacefulness let alone the beautiful views. Another day I would take them to all of the gardens we are so close to, San Diego Botanical Gardens and museums, a peek inside the old theatre La Paloma (you just walk in that place and feel the history) I really want them to get a feel for what this little town has to offer from my fave local coffee shop Solana Beach Coffee, family run and operated to my absolute favorite boutique Neikki’s on hwy 101 where you can actually meet Neikki and Pam our incredible numerologist in there everyday of the week! This is what my town is about, local shops, local support and connections. For a nice dinner I I like to sit on the top deck for a drink at l’auberge before an afternoon of h’ordeurves overlooking the beautiful ocean, followed by a stroll through old town Del Mar. I would also share with them an early morning walk through Annie’s Canyon because its so cool and like a hidden treasure. Daily i would make time for evening beach walks, looking at the 1000 year old clam beds, cliffs and unique beaches in my backyard, magical sunsets, yoga on the beach at least a few times is a must!
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Definitely my family and Fiancee’ who without them I could never have taken the jump. My fiance 9 years ago found a painting I had done, shared it on FB (which completely sent me into fear as I had not shown my art to many for all the previous years) and I received a shockingly overwhelming positive response and even requests! This was certainly a turning point in my art life. They saw things in myself that I never saw encouraged me, never doubted anything I was doing or that I could do it. Without them I would never have continued in the scary times when I felt some doubt or “not good enough” stuff. The Chopra Center who supported me in my mindfulness path for 7 years with the most amazing mentors, guru’s, practices, events, teachings, Dr’s and of course Dr. Chopra himself who is a consistent inspiration. My yoga teachers, fellow teachers at Chopra Global, from the highest levels to the volunteers have always been incredibly supportive of both my art and my certifications and passion. I also achieved my yoga certificate which I am really proud of as it was on my bucket list for years). Without so much support and mentoring again, I would never have continued. I dedicate all I am today and all I have stepped into and enjoyed to all of them as well as a few close friends to continually support and encourage me even when they were not sure what the heck I was doing? the support was always there, and a constant support that they KNEW I could do anything I wanted and succeed and be amazing. It amazes me that sometimes others see great things in us so clearly, that we get in our own way of seeing in ourselves! I also thank my Intuition! It was spot on and that I had the courage to go with it and jump in fearlessly and trustingly!
Instagram: Purely Zen Art
Other: I also have a FB Purely Zen Lifestyle page https://www.facebook.com/photo/?fbid=634209143411121&set=a.213841252114581 As well as on IG “purelyzenlifestyle”