Zoë Downing

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About Zoë

Since I was little, I can remember this sense that I wanted to do something with my life that made a positive impact in the world. I didn’t really know what that would be until I began to dive into education courses a couple of years ago at Metro. I’ve discovered that I want to integrate my passions of art and yoga into forms of service that are beneficial to others as they have been for me. As a super shy kid growing up, I would never have guessed that I would fall in love with teaching as a future role for myself in the world. While I’ve only dabbled in opportunities to share the things that I know and love, I’ve found that teaching brings me a great deal of joy and fulfillment. Whether it was my weekly Friday night yoga class that I was guiding for the past couple of years, or playing with my 6-year-old niece who wanted to know how to paint something, I’ve found that I’m truly passionate about teaching others. While my path to teaching is still ongoing and has been rather unconventional, I know that every step of the way has been important and authentic to who I am. I’ve seen the light that both yoga and art can bring into my own life and others, and that is something I intend to keep sharing as I continue my next steps beyond graduation.

About Zoë's Research

Moodscapes is a process-based project in which art and yoga were integrated daily to develop mindfulness and emotional well-being. My project naturally developed into the combination of my two main passions in life. Although I previously compartmentalized each of these practices, I realized that they both evoked something within me that I longed to share with others. Art and yoga have led me through a process of coming to peace with myself that I thought was never possible. They also motivate me to bring awareness and an open heart to the world so that I can move through it courageously, and perhaps make a positive difference within it. 

The study of psychology has been incredibly instrumental in my personal development as a human, and I realized that this field applies to artistic and yogic practices in many ways. Within Moodscapes, I take a psychological approach to exploring my unconscious by utilizing movement between painting and yogic practices as vehicles to deepening my awareness. My research also focuses on some historical examples of artists who have used psychological principles and themes of consciousness within their work as well. The outcome is both tangible in the form of 25 watercolor paintings that were created, and intangible in the sense of personal inquiry and evolution that occurred. 

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