Artist, Therapeutic Art Life Coach, Author
Nice to meet you! I'm Danica Thurber, and I have been an artist for as long as I can remember.
I work in acrylic, watercolor, mixed media, colored pencils- just about anything that fits my mood or inspiration. I use the arts as a "visual diary", for connecting with my emotions and with my faith, as a means of relaxation, and as a way to help care for others and connect with my community at large.
2001-2009 Attended Vancouver School of Arts & Academics
2013 Published undergraduate thesis in Arts & Humanities
2016 Professional Artist
2018 Certified Therapeutic Art Life Coach
2020 Published first children's book
When life takes us beyond words, we can go beyond words to heal.
Life is messy. It's full of loss, grief, healing,
and (for me) learning to express it all through art.
When I was twelve years old, my dad passed away of a sudden heart attack.
I lost 2 more family members shortly afterward. Numb and depressed, I struggled to understand and express my grief for many years afterward, and art was sometimes my only outlet for grief.
I graduated from Washington State University in 2013 with a thesis on "Cultural Expressions of Grief Through Art", which was published in an online journal that same year. Since then, I have spoken at multiple conferences nationwide and led grief art workshops throughout the Northwest.
I am now a practicing artist and certified Therapeutic Art Life Coach. I am also the director of a growing arts ministry at a local church here in Idaho.
My online school called "Project Grief" was created in 2018 with the help of my amazing husband and entrepreneurial brother. It was a collection of pre-recorded therapeutic art courses aimed at helping individuals recovering from the loss of a loved one.
Project Grief was the resource I wish I had many years ago. The courses I taught were filled with growing-grievers who are learning about themselves and bravely expressing their thoughts and feelings.
But something was missing from my courses...
The COVID-19 pandemic plunged many who were already struggling with mental health and motivation into a deeper form of isolation and purposeless.
Late in fall 2020, I decided to make the jump to LIVE coaching and teaching only, using virtual platforms where, no matter the distance, we could meet regularly, face-to-face. I also wanted to expand my content to reach not just grievers, but also those coping with depression, anxiety, and low self-esteem.
Already, it's been such a rewarding experience!
The majority of my coachees and my art students don't start out calling themselves "artists"; in fact many of them start at the level of stick-figures!
But over the course of their time with me, many have discovered a new love and passion for creating and expressing themselves through art.
"I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn't say any other way - things I had no words for."
- Georgia O'Keeffe, artist