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Valerie Gilman


1. Visual artists

2. Psychosynthesis life coaching

3. creative depth

4. inner critic

5. professional development


Shutesbury, Massachusettes. United States



Web site:



My job is to help artists

  • Get into the studio

  • Believe in yourself as an artist

  • Find your own most compelling insights

  • Know when it is time to show and feel confident in doing so

  • Develop ease and confidence in speaking about your work

  • Find opportunities for exposure and sales that fit you

  • Maintain a balanced healthy life in the process


I believe that when we tap into our creative unconscious, muck around in the darkness, and bring form to what we find there, we are not only satisfying our creative urge, fostering our growth and healing, are also doing this essential work for our culture.  It is vulnerable and risky business because in order to do it well and get below the conscious mind we must stay in the not knowing for as long as we can. We run into our demons, our fears, our blocks of various sorts.

I am excited to know what you will bring to my awareness through your creative work!

Methods of Working:

I speak with clients by phone skype and zoom and occasionally in person. I usually meet with clients weekly for at least 8 sessions. After significant progress it is often useful to meet less frequently so that the work can settle in.


As a psychosynthesis life coach, my work addresses the whole person from the practical to the psychological and spiritual, as well as the context that you work in.


There are two basic areas to address: on the practical side of goals and strategies, I help clients discern their direction and set goals, develop realistic and doable plans, and have a sense of accountability in moving forward. On the more psychological and spiritual side, I help client move past blocks, develop a sense of balance and long-term belief in themselves and their direction, and make peace with all of the conflicting voices that cause friction that makes moving forward challenging.


I studied life coaching at the Synthesis Center where I completed two years of training. I earned my MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and spent more than 14 years as a full time professor of art at the University of Redlands and at Allegheny College. I also have been a professional artist- showing locally and nationally since 1988.

Individual services offered

When following your creative dream feels like a struggle, what you really need to do is get all the parts of you in alignment, even the parts that seem like they want to take you down. Humans are complex critters and often we don’t even know that or how we are in our own way. The thing is that those very road-blocks, frustrations, negative voices are the things that you need in order to succeed- only transformed a bit. They are important players in your psyche.

This is big- let me say it again: The very parts of you that seem to want to take you down- those are the keys to your success. But there is some transformation to do to get them to be the positive force that they can be.

The way to do this is four-fold:

  • Awareness- developing a sense of compassion and non-judgment as you become aware of what is really going on- where you are getting stuck and what parts of you are acting out. This can be a slow unfolding- like pealing layers off an onion.

  • Imagination- by using the imagination as the bridge between the cognitive mind and the emotional and visceral psyche, you can not only illuminate the stuck places, but you can transform the parts that were causing friction into parts that help you succeed

  • Practicalities- getting down and dirty with breaking your goals into logical, doable steps, letting go of the too-much and prioritizing what stays. Clarity, kindness and listening for the true call of self

  • Compassionate accountability- when it gets tough- you can so easily be distracted away from your goals- having someone walking with you helps you stay focused on the path.

Talks Offered:

Tapping the Darkness- one artist’s exploration of the unknown through visual form and how it creates healing.


Classes Offered:

Ceramic Studio Class- all levels of ceramic sculpture and pottery


Training and Experience:
Having earned my MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and had 14 years of full time college level teaching experience and a lengthy show record, I am adept at helping artists develop their work to a high level of skill, concept and design, as well as moving into the professional realm with integrity and confidence.


I am also a transformational life coach trained in Psychosynthesis at the

Synthesis Center. This is a wholistic approach based in the work of Roberto Asiagoli. I help clients use all 6 psychological functions (thinking, emotional feeling, physical senses, intuition, imagination and desire) to access their true call to self. And I help clients make decisions and move from a sense of Self as whole and inclusive of both transpersonal and pre-personal aspects. We work with the different voices and stories that can get in the way in a way that is nourishing and healing.



Please see my web site for pricing

 Additional Comments:

I have a newsletter I send out periodically so that you can get to know my work a little better over time. You can find a link to it on my web site

Still have questions? See our Creativity Coach FAQ's
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