What’s your full name; can you tell us a bit about yourself?
Dipa Ein Siak – I’m the owner of The Visionary ART Workshop. I studied Fine Art and Art and Design Education in London, I am a certified Systemic Family Constellation Facilitator, I have a masters in Psychotherapy, I am on the advisory board for the Bosnian Pyramid of the Sun Foundation and I have stayed 6 months in an ashram in India, immersing myself in different types of alternative and holistic therapies. Currently for fun and exercise, I’ve enrolled myself in a bellydance and pole dancing class! It’s been bruises and aches – but all fun.
Tell us about your products/service.
I am a specialist in the area of art and happiness. My forte being guiding students of all ages and from all walks of life in learning how to draw well using various very simple but highly effective techniques, encouraging experimentation in a diverse multitude of creative expression and exploring the expansion of each human to their full potential.
How long have you been in business and why did you choose this sector?
I have been teaching and making art for approximately 24 years. I just naturally veered towards the field of art and education – probably life circumstances and genetics! A couple of my relatives were very accomplished educators, and this has also served as an inspiration!
In which bit of Singapore do you work, and what’s in the nearby neighbourhood?
In the Nassim neighbourhood in the Orchard/Tanglin area – which means plenty of food and shopping options come lunch time or after work!
What is the thing you like most about your work? Can you name your favourite kind of day?
There are so many, but if I have to whittle it down, I love being around people who are open and who love to learn about different things in life. Art and Life are intertwined, it’s not just about techniques. So that adds a lot of depth to their creations and the way they approach art. To always see my students amazed at themselves when they see that they are able to draw something that they never thought they could – is very satisfying.
I enjoy also chatting with students about their perspective of life. A day that is filled with humour, is the best kind of day. Which different nationalities are your clients? From all over the world! Local Singaporeans, British, Australians, New Zealanders, Americans, Vietnamese, French, Dutch, Indonesians, Indians, China Nationals, Russians, Africans and even Myanmese!
What do you think expats love best about living here in Singapore? And what do you love best?
They love the safety, the warm weather, the food, the different mix of races, the convenience. Ditto above! Plus, the government’s care and emphasis for nature in our city – that’s very important for me.
What do you like to do in your time off – give us an example of a great day!
Working on myself in all the areas of the body, mind and spirit! That, to me, is giving to myself. A great day is when I am in my element and then whatever I do will feel great! I like doing what most people like to do, watching a good movie, being amongst nature (which can be very relaxing) and of course, I’m not ashamed to say: shopping! What can I say, I’m a Singaporean – and a woman – haha. To me, shopping is a creative act – it’s a feast for my eyes. I love looking at beautiful things that others have created, it can be inspirational.
What is your fondest memory or proudest moment at work?
I don’t tend to attach myself too much to any memory – in fact, I have a pretty poor memory! But what stands out are the little humorous moments in class.
As for proudest moment, again, I do not give that much attention to that. It is not important to me to have any proud moments. But happy moments, or perahaps fulfilling moments? Definitely!
My purpose and role is to impart what I feel is useful to know, about art and about life which, as I mentioned, are intertwined. I see myself as a catalyst for a student’s growing process. When my students are ignited by art and start to pursue it in their own way successfully, that makes me feel happy – and to me that is success, not just in the monetary sense but also to see that another person gets as much happiness and inspiration as I do from art.
It could also be that they start to tap into their creative self, not just in art but in their everyday lives. Through creating art with me, these learned skills can often crossover into their lives in a more adventurous way. Students have told me that their colleagues at work will start to notice that they’ve become more creative in the way they come up with ideas or problem solve at work. They feel a sense of wonder at themselves when that happens and to me, I’m just glad for them that they are enjoying their new found self and living to their full potential.
There are many inspirational stories of student’s journeys. The most recent concerns a student that I first taught art in Singapore Changi Prison School around 5 years ago. He decided to reconnect with me and somehow found me through the web recently. To hear his story of how he consciously – and fundamentally – changed his mindset to bring himself back from rock bottom depression to happiness and fulfilment, is truly an inspiration for many. After his prison release, he pursued a career in the arts by enrolling at an art college. Now, on top of being an interior designer during the day, he is pursuing his passion in photography, web design and brand marketing in the evenings. He is slowly being recognised and acknowledged in his field by many well known celebrities. He’s amazed at how his own life has turned for the better now. To see him excited about life and his ‘new self’, simply makes me happy for him too, and to even know I had a small part in his journey of redemption is a truly humbling thought.
Which product or service is your best seller and why?
I offer a unique approach and style to teaching art and guiding people on drawing well. I can convey very effectively what I know about various art techniques – as well as the mindset and inner approaches – to students in a clear and simple manner that they can understand, apply and very quickly see positive results.
Begin your own artistic journey with Dipa, head to the Visionary ART Workshop’s page on Angloinfo!