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Owner/Founder

Darcy Leigh (She/her/hers)

Thank you for exploring the Creative Jam website, and special thanks for being interested in me and the story of the Creative Jam.

I am a creative individual who, like many others, felt the joy of making art when I was younger. Along the way, I got discouraged, and well, life happened, and art was not the priority. Sure, I created and felt the drawn to painting, sewing, performing, but I always viewed it as a hobby, and not a particularly important one.

I usually found myself ironing fabric or hot gluing my latest creations at the kitchen table, or even on the coffee table in the living room. Usually though, I would get interrupted mid-project and need to move my glue, paint, beads, etc., out of the way for the demands of family life. Sometimes I would get back to my creations, and sometimes it seemed like a lot of effort to bother. I sometimes wonder how many beautiful ideas expired because I didn’t have dedicated space.

When I did complete some of my creations, and shared them with others, I would receive comments like, “Your stuff is so good! You should sell it!” That sounded encouraging, but back at the kitchen table, with a accidental coffee stain on my canvas, I would think, ‘Yeah, right.” How could I possibly make space to make more?

Eventually, I dedicated a space in my basement as an art room. And it was a pleasure to be able to have all my materials in one place, and to be able to have space that was only used for art. Not for cooking, or laundry, or cheering on football games.

In May 2023, I envisioned a space where I could show my work. Now that I had a place to create in my art room, I wanted people to be able to see what I could make, and maybe, sell some pieces.

The building that now houses the Creative Jam was empty except for some leftover furniture and stuff. When I walked inside, I immediately felt the energy of POTENTIAL. (Maybe it was all the wood and the sunshine).This place felt like a place that could not only show off my work, but also encourage my creativity. And I realized the sheer SIZE of it could benefit more creative people than just me. I spent some time thinking about the possibility and decided in June 2023 that I wanted to make something happen in this building.

In July 2023, I officially started the business and chose the name Creative Jam.

I choose the word creative because many people resist calling themselves an ‘artist’. I am not sure why this is the case. My guess is that the word artist comes loaded with expectations, like being well-known for your work (hello, Picasso and Michaelangelo), or selling your work for BIG MONEY, or being in demand by people who ‘know art’.

I find most creative people I meet just don’t have those three experiences. They create amazing things- expressive, beautiful, emotional, disturbing, imaginative things. But they may or may not have sold any of their work, often the work isn’t seen outside of their small circle of friends and family, and no one knows that they or their work exists.

I chose the word jam because of three things. The meaning of ‘Jam’ as something that really suits you. “That type of work is really my JAM.” As well as the meaning of ‘Jam’ as getting together and creating music, or art, or comedy without a plan. Just creating it, making it up as you go along. And lastly, the Creative Jam neighbor (and delicious food and beverage restaurant) called the Log Jam.

The Creative Jam logo represents the many options for creativity that can happen in space. Pencils, pens, paintbrushes, scissors, and a microphone are available in that Jam jar.

From July 2023- February 2024, I worked to renovate the space, remove the covers over the windows, bring it up to Town of Queensbury code, change the locks to swipe access, make it ADA compliant and accessible, and get the space cleaned.

I added researched other maker spaces and decided to add elements that are creative/artist friendly, like a utility sink, loads of plants, drafting desks, books, and other elements that make the place feel welcoming. I planted rose bushes, painted the window and building trim, fixed the foundation, and removed furniture and fixtures that weren’t needed. I purchased signs, worked to create the website and Creative Jam app, wrote the operating rules, and determined the membership options. I sourced almost all the furniture and fixtures at low or no cost.

This was an enormous undertaking.

And to be honest, there were moments that had me questioning my vision. Moments in which I felt the desire to let it go and give the dream up. Moments in which I lay sleepless at night asking myself what the heck I was doing.

But then I would remember that dreams are given to me by a supportive energy. I call that energy- the Universe. You might call it Source, or God, or Spirit. You know, the source of life, thoughts, planets, the taste of strawberries, the joy of roller-skating, etc. When I remember that energy, I remember that if the dream comes to me, the ability to do it will also come. Sometimes, this is a hard one to stick with. But I did cling to this vision, and now I have this beautiful maker space and creative community to enjoy with my fellow creatives. Thank you, Universe!

Thank you to the people who encouraged me and offered support all through the process. Jeff, Dad, Fil, Arik, Mariah, Aaron, Oona, Nicole, Stephanie, Delia, Pete, Betsy, Kathy, Mary, Joe, Victoria, Suzie, Paula, Arthur, Audrey, Valeri, Steve, and Jamie. You did big things and little things, and these comments and actions helped me and helped the Creative Jam come into being.

If you want to know more about me, Darcy Leigh, read on.

I enjoy writing, baking, drawing, painting (basically doing all things creative), reading (love my library!), working in my flower garden and living among the hundreds of magnificent trees around my home in Upstate New York.

I am known for my talents of being a good leader and teacher. In fact, I have taught thousands of people over my career how to speak publicly, how to supervise, how to communicate, how to understand personality types, and how to for other topic areas. I have been recognized with awards for this work. I am also an award-winning puppeteer/ventriloquist. 

I am insightful, generous, and determined. I enjoy playing in improv theater, participating in scavenger hunts, and helping other people. I especially love to drive with the top off my Jeep Wrangler (named MOOD SWING). You can spot it by the dinosaur artwork on the hood. Yes, really.

I have a master’s degree in Adult Education from Buffalo University of the State University of New York (SUNY).

My hope for the Creative Jam is to provide a safe space for people to be able to follow their creative intuitions. I dream of a supportive community of people, in which you are more noticeable if you are missing, than if you are present. Thank you for being one of us. We welcome you.

Creative, Intuitive, Healer

Stevie (She/her/hers)

In a world where creativity is often overshadowed by the demands of everyday life, I’ve found solace and purpose in nurturing my creative passions. From the tender age of childhood, where coloring books were my gateway to imagination, to the present day where my creative pursuits have blossomed into a vibrant kaleidoscope of artistic expressions, I’ve always been drawn to the beauty of creation.

Gardening, singing, cooking, writing, drawing, painting, making jewelry – these are not just hobbies to me; they are the threads that weave the tapestry of my existence. Each stroke of the brush, each note sung, each dish crafted with care is a testament to the boundless potential of human creativity.

 

But amidst the hustle and bustle of life, it wasn’t until the inception of the Creative Jam, a haven curated by my dear friend Darcy, that I found a sanctuary for my creative soul. Together, we’ve breathed life into a space where imagination knows no bounds, where artists of all stripes gather to weave their magic.

My journey into the Creative Jam isn’t merely about indulging my own artistic inclinations; it’s about igniting the spark of creativity in others. With a heart overflowing with compassion and a gift for understanding the unique perspectives of fellow creators, I aim to inspire and uplift those around me. Through teaching and sharing my spiritual gifts, from Reiki mastery to card readings, astrology, and beyond, I strive to empower individuals to tap into their innate healing abilities.

For over a decade, I’ve traversed the length and breadth of New York, touching lives and hearts with my healing works of art. It’s a calling that resonates deep within my soul, a testament to my unwavering belief in the transformative power of creativity. And as I stand on the threshold of the Creative Jam, I carry with me a burning desire to illuminate the path of self-discovery and healing through the boundless realm of artistic expression.

Mariah

Mariah is an artist at heart, wielding markers and pens to create captivating portraits and still-life art. Yet, beyond the canvas, she’s a roller derby powerhouse known as Blunt Force Drama, who thrives on the adrenaline rush of the high-contact sport, and proudly displays her bruises as badges of honor.

Mariah is currently pursuing a master’s degree in data science, where she applies her creative mindset to coding and problem-solving challenges.

She is excited to see you at Creative Jam, so come by today!