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Peer to Peer Mentoring - A Creative Journey

Meet Fiona Concannon - talented artist, watercolourist and tutor from County Galway.
I did last month, in a virtual meeting, hosted and arranged by the My Creative Edge Creative2Creative Matching Programme 

So what does that mean?
Well, the Creative2Creative folks say 'Peer-to-peer mentoring creates a wonderful opportunity to network and engage with international companies similar to your own business. It is a great way to platform your own work and meet like-minded people with the possibility of building long term business partnerships.'

I say, it's a bit like online dating for creative businesses; I've met the lovely Fiona, had a rummage around her online presence (I know she's done the same with me), a good look at her work and managed an initial virtual date on our own, away from the watchful, sensible and comforting eye of Creative2Creative.
And, we have a second date set.

We've found we have quite a lot in common... 

We both teach workshops and sell a  range of work to suit all budgets. You can see some of Fiona's landscape prints here 
And we both live in areas of Ireland currently playing with European Capital of Culture designations. Galway2020 will be making waves in 2020 and with weare2023, Belfast, Derry&Strabane and regions hope to do the same, biding for the 2023 slot. What that means for small creative businesses like ours we don't know yet. 

And we struggle with the same things...

Being creative is not a problem; neither of us seem to struggle with creative blockages, it's the time to do all the surrounding administration that zaps the will. Fiona and her friend Martina Furlong will be at Art Source in the RDS on the 10th - 12th November, so organisation and getting ready is high on her agenda.  Discipline and focus that's what we need, and hopefully, with regular meetings, we'll develop the sort of well-meaning, gently nagging and supportive relationship to push us both forward.

In the meantime, I've dragged a brush through my hair, straightened my carefully selected 'not trying too hard' outfit, all ready for our next date...

Emma Whitehead