Each month, Miranda van den Heuvel talks to creative people in Luxembourg and says “look, Luxembourg is creative! Here’s how and where!” The November talk is with artist Lydia Gee.
1. What is CREATIVITY?
For me, creativity is a way of expressing yourself. It is about being you rather than trying to be somebody else, and creating value in whichever way represents your true self. We are all different, and when we follow our heart, creativity is a natural process.
2. How are you creative?
I create original paintings embellished with Swarovski® crystals. I also often incorporate various types of glitter or, on request, other luxury materials such as gold flakes or gemstones (sapphires, diamonds…) in my art pieces. I would describe my art as colorful, bold and original. The Swarovski® crystals make the paintings glamorous and very unique. My favorite motives are symbols of natural perfection such as peacocks or orchids, but I also often paint abstracts.
It started as a hobby, but currently I have clients from all over the world as well as from Luxembourg. I especially love working on custom orders. Clients often send me photos of their living rooms or bedrooms and we design a custom painting together. I really enjoy this co-creation process – and the fact that I am developing a unique piece that will decorate somebody’s home for years to come is very motivating!
I am also the author of an e-book entitled “Believe in Yourself as Successful Artist, Crafter or Designer” which I wrote to encourage others to follow their creative passion.
3. Suggest a simple creative activity to our readers that can make them more creative
I often practice qigong which is an ancient way of moving energy, similar to the better-known tai chi. It is great for both the body and the mind. Often, my most creative ideas come to me when I practice it. I highly recommend it, especially if you have a tendency to get too busy in your mind or too tense in your body.
4. What are your top 3 websites for creative inspiration?
My favorite, and the only one I really visit regularly, is etsy.com. It is a community of artists, designers, crafters and vintage sellers who love what they do and create amazing, truly beautiful pieces. You can find anything from art to handmade organic cosmetics there. Very inspirational and a great place to shop too!
5. What are your 3 tips to become more creative in Luxembourg?
I am a member of The Network which is a community for (mostly expat) women in Luxembourg. Also, there is a very active community at meetup.com boasting with ideas of places to see and events to participate in. Finally, I really like all the beautiful parks in Luxembourg – great for a chilled out afternoon over a picnic basket (as we all know, most creative ideas come when you are relaxed!)
6. What’s your suggestion to make Luxembourg a more creative, innovative place?
I think for its size, Luxembourg already is quite creative and innovative. The international mix of people is a perfect basis for spontaneous actions like White Dinner or places like The Impactory to flourish.
I still think we need to step out of some traditions that are quite prevalent in Luxembourg. For instance, the food arena is pretty conservative, with most restaurants offering old-style French or Italian food. Modern fusion restaurants are rare, contrary to cities like London or New York where creative takes on international cuisine have been popular for years already. The public in Luxembourg is ready for more creative places like Happ or A La Soupe. There is also room for good coffee places in Kirchberg, where people can relax in the evening or on weekends (like Konrad in the city centre), and the creative potential is enormous considering the diversity of the local working and living population.
Moreover, I believe Luxembourg would benefit from more grass root creative actions like flash mobs or happenings, especially organized by young people. I would encourage young people in Luxembourg to step up more and show what they are capable of in terms of creativity. Luxembourg is not just a ‘banking place’; it is the home of an international creative generation with many great ideas that deserve more attention.
7. Who, in Luxembourg, should we interview next?
Kasia Krzyzanowski – a very creative and ambitious person who shares her passion for cycling.
Lydia Gee, interviewed by Miranda van den Heuvel, November 2013