How a Me-Set transformed life for artist Victoria White
When I met Victoria White at Art Basel in Miami Beach, I knew that I had to tell you her story. The vivid, monochrome portraits she paints are evidence not only of Victoria’s enormous talent, but also a Me-Set that entirely changed the path of her life. Today, Victoria spends her days creating and inspiring young people with her art and the lessons from her Me-Set journey. Recently, I had the chance to catch up with her after Art Basel and learn more about how she became a person who lives her passion and purpose.
Time for a Change
It wasn’t that long ago that Victoria spent her days at a law office instead of an art studio. She was a successful lawyer for ten years. And while she enjoyed her work, she knew deep down that something in her life was out of alignment.
As it turned out, this job was worse for Victoria than she could have ever imagined. “Over the course of several years, I got very sick from exposure to mold in my office building,” she says. “It got to a point where I just couldn’t do it anymore.”
Victoria decided to change her life in a big way. How big? Well, she relocated from New Orleans to Santa Monica. “I was very focused on developing a healthy body, a healthy mind, and a healthy soul,” she says. “What was going to make my spirit feel full again?”
Victoria began trying to answer that question for herself through healing practices like meditation, sound baths, yoga, and journaling. With an eye toward the future, she also committed herself to doing something creative every day. She knew that she wanted to go back to work when she was healthy enough to do so. But she also knew that she couldn’t go back to the same job she had before. Instead, she wanted to do work that gave her more flexibility and that tapped into her creativity.
She explored various avenues for that creativity — including writing, sewing, photography, and music. But it was when she picked up a paintbrush that her Me-Set really began to flower.
‘Maybe I Should Do This’
Victoria had painted before as a hobby. During her Me-Set, though, she considered whether art could be her new career.
As she thought about this possibility more, she felt drawn to painting portraits because of how they connect with people. On a museum trip, she got a flash of artistic inspiration when she saw one of artist Mark Tansey’s monochromatic landscape paintings. The next step was creating her first monochromatic portrait.
When Victoria showed that early work to a friend, the friend immediately asked her to paint her sons in the same style. Soon, she began getting more commissions. But she also felt inspired to start painting portraits of people who inspired her, like Muhammad Ali.
Victoria got a big sign she was on the right path when one of her friends asked her to paint a portrait of singer-songwriter John Prine for her brother-in-law, a huge Prine fan. When the brother-in-law saw the portrait for the first time, he started sobbing. “At that moment, I got this feeling like, ‘I’m touching people, and they want to pay for this? Maybe I should do this with my life,’” Victoria says.
As she grew as an artist, another part of her Me-Set fell into place. She had always wanted to teach and help kids. But she also needed flexibility because she wasn’t totally healthy yet.
That’s when she discovered a nonprofit called Indivisible Art, which is “dedicated to cultivating creativity, consciousness, and connection through the arts.” For an artist who had devoted herself to becoming “a conscious, joyful, peaceful individual,” it was the perfect match.
The Me-Set journey that Victoria set out upon when she left her law job and moved across the country has brought her exactly where she wanted to go — to a place of thriving instead of merely surviving.
Fresh off of Art Basel, Victoria celebrates the financial success of selling many paintings. Even more so, though, she’s grateful that she had the chance to inspire others by sharing her story. “That is success to me,” she says. “I think that my true purpose on this Earth is to inspire people to be the best version of themselves and to be the best they can at whatever they’re doing with their life.”
Victoria also continues to inspire through her work with Indivisible Arts. She has beautiful stories about her experiences with students, such as a young girl who started to process the traumas she had endured through art.
That feeling that her life was out of alignment is long gone. Even when she encounters a struggle or an obstacle, she knows it’s just a means of getting her to go where she needs to go. “Things feel easy,” Victoria says. “Even when they’re hard, they feel easy.”
I’m so happy to have Victoria’s wisdom gracing my life and her artwork gracing my home! You can shop for your own paintings, prints, and gift items on her website. If you’re in the area, check out her paintings at Indivisible Arts’ Resin gallery at the February 4 show “i came to live out loud.” And if you’re in the Miami area in mid-February, Victoria will be at Art Wynwood from February 14-18. To keep up with where she’s going next, follow her on Instagram and TikTok.
Many thanks to Victoria for sharing her Me-Set story! If you’re ready to start your own Me-Set, you can find resources on my website and YouTube channel. Victoria also has four key pieces of Me-Set advice to share with you:
- “Listen to your intuition and listen to the signs from the universe that are telling you what direction you should go in. … And when you get that feeling that ‘this isn’t right,’ change course.”
- “Be very patient and have faith. If you get disheartened over small setbacks, you’re going to miss the big prize.”
- “Manifestation is the product of very hard work over a very long time … I read recently that success is a lagging indicator, and that’s exactly right.”
- “Making a decision and owning it 1,000% is a very important part of the process. … The first few times that I told people that I was an artist, my voice would quiver. But as we speak, so we create.”
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