close-up of a mixed media art piece
Mixed media canvas “Trust your wings” with creative team member Nicole Watson
Posted Sep 19, 2018


While I was organizing some shelves in my studio last week, this 6×6 canvas literally fell in my lap! So, instead of finding a place for it, I decided to use it.

Next came the hard part—what am I going to create on this little canvas? Color? Subject? I began to think about fall and the colors and smells of the season. I am so ready for fall and cooler temperatures! However, autumn in Houston, Texas, means going through the peak of hurricane season. This year brings extra fear and anxiety due to memories of Hurricane Harvey.

With fall colors in mind, I turned on some music and began to create while pushing aside the worry that often fills my mind. The process of creating art provides an escape!

I printed a few of Shawn’s collage pak sheets that caught my eye and began layering them on the canvas. I have to admit, I was afraid to use the really fun swatch sheet (What if I messed up? What if I had a better project to use it on?) until I remembered I could print it again and again! How often do we let our fear take over? I laughed at myself and continued to create. I added three butterflies to the background, a symbol of being brave.

After collaging the background, I dripped, splattered, stenciled, and grunged it up before adding molding paste through Shawn’s mandala stencil. Once the paste dried, I glazed the sides of the canvas and the mandalas to add even more grunge. Then, I grabbed my pan pastels to create a rusty patina look to the mandalas. A few more splatters and some outlining of the butterflies, and it was time to find the message this canvas had for me: “Trust Your Wings.”

After I placed the words on the canvas, I laughed again. I completed a journal page a few days prior that said “Use Your Wings.”  The message was even more clear to me… not only do I need to use those wings, I need to trust them! Whatever your wings are (faith, family, art, etc.) use them, and trust them to carry you through difficult seasons.

Enjoy the video

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You can see more from Nicole here:







Have a great day! Be inspired, create and know that you are loved!


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Posted Sep 19, 2018
Headshot photo of artist

Hello there! I’m Shawn Petite

I’ve been teaching and creating for well over 25 years. About 15 years ago I found my art soul mate in mixed media, and it changed my life! I love the story that can be told by combining paint, texture, ink, paper and—really anything that you can imagine.

But what I’m truly passionate about is being your guide, walking with you step by step and helping you become your own hero in your creative journey.

Along my path, I’ve learned that the creating art also creates a healing space. Life can be messy and complicated and painful, but something about a paint brush can help heal your soul. I believe—no, I know—you are worthy of love, and I want to teach you to know that about yourself. Join me on this journey of art and inspiration!


  1. Nancy Olsen

    Great video ! I love the layering and colors ! Again adding more to my list of stencils I want from Shawn ! Thank you for sharing !!

    • nicole watson

      so glad to inspire you – and with one of Shawn’s stencils!! 🙂

  2. Patricia Murphy

    Loved the video!

  3. Celise

    I finally got a chance to watch. Great job. You are a good storyteller.


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