Margi Taylor Self (2020)
Reede, 03 Juuli 2020 19:00
Estonian Life No. 26 2020
In connection with our last article about thriving as a means to excel in times of adversity, we spoke with Margi Taylor Self, to discover how creative Estonian-Canadian leaders apply this strategy.
Margi is the owner of Creative Events Management Ltd., a company that oversees large events for corporate clients and associations. Margi is also an active exhibiting artist, having shown her work across Canada, the US, and Europe. In her printmaking studio at Alton Mill Arts Centre, she makes monotype prints, which combine illustration and painting to make what she refers to as a “printed painting.” She is the President of Headwaters Arts and a member of Eesti Kunstnike Koondis Torontos (EKKT—the Society of Estonian Artists in Toronto). Do you think your art career has given you unique knowledge in managing events?
My arts education has allowed me to problem solve creatively. And my work experience has allowed me to approach art systematically, without losing creativity.
Managing events is a logistical endeavour, always looking for solutions that make sense and work. The creative process, while sometimes whimsical and spontaneous, also needs to make sense and work (e.g. composition and balance).Creative Events Management Ltd. and your printmaking studio are both based at Alton Mill Arts Centre; so in a way, your work supports and is supported by this space. How does supporting other organizations and individuals play a part in the life of an artist and entrepreneur?
Supporting the Alton Mill Arts Centre and Headwaters Arts provides a certain amount of gratification and a sense of contributing to a greater good. It also provides an environment for being creative and a permanent home for making art.
Alton Mill Arts Centre is a vibrant creative centre with artists’ working studios and galleries. We are always striving to enhance the visitor experience. After all, the more visitors it attracts, the more opportunity there is for selling art. Not all artists want this kind of environment and prefer quiet contemplation. But everybody loves visiting the mill.With your business, do you find that your public relations and communications strategies differ with corporate clients as opposed to, for example, artist groups? How can creative individuals effectively thrive in diverse business environments?
The reasons for PR and communications rarely differ, but the strategies do, which always comes down to finances. Corporations have deeper pockets and the success of their projects are not always based on generating revenue. Arts organizations tend to be not-for-profit and their events must generate the revenue to pay for the event as well as additional income. Arts organizations’ strategies tend to be less risky with “tried and true” activities, while corporations want to offer their guests a unique and memorable experience.
The goal is the same for both: leave the guest with a positive impression and wanting more.How does community and collaboration allow you to thrive personally and professionally?
Collaboration is like a breath of fresh air.
Working with a group or alongside a colleague presents opportunities that you would not have considered alone. It broadens your outlook and gives you a sense of accomplishment on a whole other level. What can the process of printmaking teach us about overcoming difficulties and achieving goals?
Acceptance and flexibility.
While most printmaking is very precise and planned, the process for mono-prints is at first thoughtful planning, followed by quick execution, which means the outcome isn’t fully realized until you pull the paper off the surface. It’s quite serendipitous, which leaves you open to immediate successes or to an immediate learning opportunity.How can a leader, maker, and organizer successfully juggle involvement in several endeavours at once?
I used to say multitasking, but now I say “one thing at time” and I keep all three hats close by.Being in charge of the Headwaters Arts’ Youth Programming and Scholarships, how would you encourage girls to take on leadership roles and grow leadership skills?
They need to be exposed to good examples as well as good mentoring. Good examples include women in politics, professionals and historical figures. Not all young women who have an interest in the arts are interested in leadership roles, but those who are will be drawn to women in these positions and be inspired by them.Visit the links below to learn more about Margi’s latest activity and some of the organizations mentioned above:www.headwatersarts.com