A Wild and Precious Life: The journey so far…

Growing up on the island of Ireland, I’ve always had a sense of being on the edge of things- the edge of Europe, the edge of the Atlantic and the edge of the known. Island life has cultivated a deep sense of curiosity within me where and I found myself asking, over and over: ‘What is on the other side? What else is possible? And how do I get there?’

Those questions have taken me around the globe several times over, weaving me through an array of adventures, encounters and deep cycles of learning and leadership.

Story 1

Family Foundations

I come from a family of craftspeople. My great grandfather ran a picture framing shop and gallery, which still runs in the family. From his lineage came painters, muralists, a calligrapher, a violin maker, a clock restorer, a chef, an animator, a theatre artist and more painters. I was in the mix too, fortunate to have been gifted the freedom and scope to express my creativity. As a child, I was given reign with art supplies and was often happiest when I had a linocutter or soldering iron in my hand, printing block cuts or making stained glass lamps in our garden shed.

Story 2

Education & Adventure

Education became a huge passion in my life and the travel bug bit, hard. Combined they led me to volunteer for a  year as a teacher in Tonga, South Pacific; get a scholarship and a Master’s degree in Education from Oxford University; spend a year in Beijing teaching literature at China’s top academic institution, Peking University; backpack solo across the world; co-initiate and run a leadership development and volunteer programme in India and Kenya; write some books (including One Wild Life- A Journey to Discover People who Change our World, Collins Press).

Fortune also led me to live on an olive farm in Greece; help to co-ordinate a national day of street parties with Street Feast; document and photograph global stories of social innovation; train as a hatha yoga teacher with Samadhi Yoga in Dublin; set up and run several NGOs and community led initiatives (The Trailblazery, Be Retreats, Women’s Entrepreneur Circle); host a national conversation about Trailblazing in Ireland (broadcast on RTÉ and The Washington Post); host a series of alternative education hedge schools, and set up a photography business (Clare Mulvany Photography).

Story 4Getting to the Core of Things…

So you will understand when I say that life can sometimes be a bit of a whirlwind. I am eternally grateful to have found yoga, mindfulness and my creative practices as my touchstones. Yoga helps to connect me and keeps me feeling grounded and fully alive. My creative practice opens the world up to me, gifting me a lens to see beauty in the ordinary and celebrate the complex stories of our lives in a single frame, paragraph or image. The journey has, I realise, taken me to the core of things.

The core?

Well, I now know that it was with me all along. It is the home within- a place of spirit, passion and connection, and a place which has the power to transform itself over and over again. And the golden thread which got me there? It has been creativity, which by leaning into it more and trusting my inner resources, a world of possibility has opened, personally and professionally.

Placing anchor in Ireland, I feel it is now time to offer my skills and experience out to the wider world, supporting others to catalyse their own creative visions and develop the tools and practices which will support their journey while sharing insights, learning from our practices and evolving a community of the creatively curious.

Story 5

Coming Home

I hope you will consider this your home. We will gather around the kitchen table, learn together, be together and ask some of the deep and eternal questions of ‘What else is possible? What is on the other side? and How do we get there’. The creative process will be our host, with art, risk taking, courage, vision and adventure invited as our welcome guests.

This is my home; this little island; this wild and precious life. You are most welcome.

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No matter what she does, be it yoga, teaching, or photography, Clare Mulvany radiates energy and optimismImage Magazine
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