Northwest artist Angie Louthan has been coloring and drawing her entire life. For many years that was cartoon, characters, flowers, people and animals. After taking art classes in high school, getting graded on her work and comparing herself to other students, she hit that point that stops many of us from moving forward: The moment when “I might not be good enough” stops you from moving forward.
Angie had stopped playing with art on paper but kept pushing forward with academics. She studied human behavior with the goal of helping to create a kinder world. After obtaining her degree in social work and experiencing the ups and downs of life events, 15 years later Angie found herself teaching preschool in Snohomish. In a cycle of struggling with adrenal fatigue, depression and anxiety, Angie remembered what she used to do for fun –“Art.”
Working in a preschool classroom allowed art to be present in her life once again. One of her favorite stations to prepare was the Art Station. She saw children’s play as the process of trying new things, experimenting, taking brave chances, following their curiosity, choosing things that brought them joy, letting go of the outcome, being in the moment, letting contrast teach them new things, finding their own expression, trusting their intuition, and… just having fun!
Being a witness to this creativity, Angie asked the question many of us have asked ourselves at some point: “When did adults forget how to play?” She used that observation as a catalyst to give herself permission to take up art again, but this time in a way that was not about perfection, it would now be about play.
Paintbrushes, acrylic paint and a canvas were the first tools Angie used to reconnect with her freedom to play and paint. She invited friends and parents of her students to create with her in an intuitive painting class. Soon after, she started experimenting with drawing mandalas, pictures of leaves and flowers, zentangles, and then one day, a peacock. The peacock drawing incorporated both the mandala design and patterned shapes and lines. Next, she wondered what it would be like to draw an animal with intuitive drawings and zentangles inside of it. And thus, the Animal Zentangles were born.
Over the span of a couple of years, Angie created a series of 11 Zentangle Doodle Drawings, including the female centaur, the wolf, the bear, the hedgehog, the llama, the shark, the raven, the elephant, the sea otter, the shadow/light heart, and the mandala. These pieces are available for purchase in Edmonds at The Crow and on Angie’s Etsy Shop. You can also see a video here to learn about her process with intuitive painting.
To learn more about Angie’s work — and the way she has been able to blend her experience with psychology, mindfulness, shadow work, reiki and intuitive art to support others –check out her website here. In addition to being a talented artist, Angie is also a certified Life Coach, empowering women to create a kinder world from the inside out.
— By Rachel Gardner
Rachel Gardner has a heartfelt appreciation for art in all forms and believes everyone is an artist, some just don’t know it yet. A dedicated and involved Edmonds resident, she can often be spotted onstage cracking jokes between sets or in the audience enjoying local live performances. She enjoys being playful with her art and finding unique ways of expression, like forming a boho-grunge-folk ukulele trio with local Edmonds moms.