Student Spotlight: Iris de Voogd

Light-Seeker Student spotlight

Iris de Voogd

I'm excited to share with you the first of what will be a series of guest blog posts by some of the beautiful Light-Seekers taking part in my online class Layers of Light!

The focus of the class is on exploring our relationship with Light, both inside and out, expressing it creatively and sharing it through art. Being Light Seekers, but also Light Bearers. And to me, one of the ways to shine a light for others, is to create space for them to step into the light, own their gifts, shine their truth and inspire others.

As we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same.
— Nelson Mandela

Today I'm delighted to introduce you to Iris de Voogd, a textile artist from the Netherlands.

The following text is from her blog (original post HERE). When I first read it I found it raw and evocative. Personal and universal. Iris shares an authentic glimpse of her thoughts and emotions as she keeps striving for the light, feelings that will find an echo in the hearts of many of those on a creative life journey:


"Growing Pains"

Lots of em. One step forward, two steps back. Will I ever learn?

I know I shouldn’t let my emotions run away with me, and yet that is exactly what I keep doing. Which is not so bad when they are good but… Well, you get my point. That centre just keeps getting away from me.

And yet… when I look back at who I was almost nine years ago, I find her hardly recognisable. It seems impossible that I was ever this cocky. I keep asking myself: How did I manage to think that I knew so much (which I did, by the way, and do) when I knew so very little (and keep knowing less as I grow older, it seems to me)?

I feel both more in control and less. A little the wiser, I hope, and a lot of illusions the poorer. Still teetering on the edge of cynicism, although I keep scrambling away from it. Is there bravery in refusing to give in, or is it sheer stubborn stupidity? A bit of both, I suppose.

What I do know is that the world will only change if enough of us refuse to become cynics. If enough of us continue dreaming, fighting, rebelling… being naive and seeking to meld together the wisdom of the past with the knowledge that our species gathers so very eagerly.

And so I continue to seek out the Light.

As the days are darkening and the summer in which I went through another transition stretches into fall, I stride — or perhaps I should say ‘stumble’ — forward, feeling both as confused and as certain as ever (and perhaps more), but holding on just a little more securely to who I am.

And so I continue to seek out the Light.

Find Iris on:

© Iris de Voogd for all the images in this article

Iris is an artist, mother, bowerbird & upcycler, student of Mother Earth, plant healer & Wayfinder, believer in a better world.

Making comes natural to her but it is only recently that she has been feeling confident enough to call it art. Her work revolves around the earth and among her happiest moments are those spent wandering beach, forest and urban space with her children, gathering bits and pieces, taking photos, finding beauty everywhere.

Iris works with textiles, paper, sticks and stones and other natural materials by preference. Most of her dyes and medicines are found in her immediate environment; some are planted in her own garden or the space shared with neighbours nearby, and a few are sourced from sustainable suppliers.

She considers raising her children her most important work (although she sometimes thinks they might be raising her instead).