My Art

Sketching, doodling and copying cartoon characters have been part of my life since primary school. Singing and dancing, i.e. the passion for musical theater followed in high school together with the knowledge that a non-artistic education would bring me financial stability. Therefore, I chose an international career in the hospitality industry after having obtained a bachelor in hospitality management from the Glion Institute.

Once I was back in Zurich, Switzerland, my passion for the arts led to an industry change and a masters in arts administration from the University of Zurich. A career at the opera house Zurich followed, where I learnt that the people back stage are as important as the ones on stage. In my rare spare time, I kept developing my acrylic painting and drawing skills.

Original Acrylic Painting on Canvas
‘Value Beauty’


I was subsequently a freelancer, supporting individuals or groups in the performing arts with their project and production management, organisational, and process development. The joy to work impactful with people and the desire to spend more time as a producing artist, brought me finally to Vancouver in 2014 where I got certified and accredited as coach  and neuro-linguistic programming practitioner from Erickson International College and the International Coaching Federation.

Original Drawing stitched on Canvas
‘Value Freedom’


Being a professional coach enables me to combine all my experience and skills in service of individuals and teams, while at the same time actively draw and make art prints. I have joined the Malaspina Printmakers studio and organization as a board member and artist on Granville Island.

Original Oil Monotype Print on Paper
‘Ocean’s Peace’


My abstract ‘Doodle Art’ ink pen drawings and oil monotype prints are all inspired by people, nature and values; aiming to trigger a smile and the viewer’ imagination. 

Visit me in my online Esty shop!



Taken by Impressions

Spring in Vancouver

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Whistler – Ski Outings from January – May (!)




Kauai Island, Hawaii

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Vancouver Island, Yellowpoint

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Grape picking in Okanagan Falls

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Vancouver Island, Victoria, Butchards Gardens

The Butchard Gardens: end of 19th century, the wife of a cement factory owner had a VISION...
The Butchard Gardens: end of 19th century, the wife of a cement factory owner had a VISION…



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I called this the fairies' playground
I called this the fairies’ playground


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it gets busy on the "runway" out of Victoria
it gets busy on the “runway” out of Victoria


Totem poles at Cradle Point in Victoria, where the 1st Nation families would set the cribs & cradles of their children on the water, to ensure a long healthy life
Totem poles at Cradle Point in Victoria, where the 1st Nation families would set the cribs & cradles of their children on the water, to ensure a long healthy life


if you are afraid of the flower pot falling on your head, around this pub/restaurant, the chances are definitely higher ;)
if you are afraid of the flower pot falling on your head, around this pub/restaurant, the chances are definitely higher 😉


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the perfect flight back from Victoria in a water plane, shortly before landing in Vancouver harbour





Summer in Vancouver

The majestic Lion's Gate Bridge, view from Ambleside Beach, North Vacouver
The majestic Lion’s Gate Bridge, view from Ambleside Beach, North Vacouver
really cool airport of a different kind
really cool airport of a different kind
View from Stanley Park - Downtown
View from Stanley Park – Downtown
Entrance to 1st Nation Land - North Vancouver
Entrance to 1st Nation Land – North Vancouver
View from North Vancouver – Downtown


View from Londsdale Quai, North Vancoucer - Downtown
View from Londsdale Quai, North Vancouver – Downtown


look, they also have a "Bellevue" here :) (sorry, insider for Zurich people)
look, they also have a “Bellevue” here 🙂 (sorry, insider for Zurich people)
The 'Canucks' - local hockey team
The ‘Canucks’ – local hockey team
Home of the Vancouver Opera
Home of the Vancouver Opera
Historic Shipyard in North Vancouver
Historic Shipyard in North Vancouver
How kids will be happy at the hairdresser
How kids will be happy at the hairdresser
Serious "Stuff" Shop
Serious “Stuff” Shop
that's what I call gender equality!
that’s what I call gender equality!
A porch with a view indeed
A porch with a view indeed
Kitsilano (Kits - my neighbourhood) Beach View to Downtown
Kitsilano (Kits – my neighbourhood) Beach View to Downtown




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Moved By A Story

About ‘Room to Read’

Once upon a time, when I was back in Zurich, a friend of mine told me over lunch that I should research a charity organisation called ‘Room to Read’ (RtR). Little did I know at the time, how important & much it would become part for my life…

Now, I know that most of you have been appropriately ‘brain washed’ by me on what RtR is. However, I don’t want to miss this opportunity to highlight what makes it such an unique organisation, worthy of your attention.

800 million people are illiterate in the world today. Over 530 million are women and children.

Imagine for a moment, they have the chance to learn how to read & write...and I mean with teachers that are trained, a curriculum, measuring parameters, with books in their language that have been developed locally with writers especially for children. Give them access to libraries that are filled with books and run by a trained librarian. You might think that this scenario is surely the standard across the globe, because that’s what we know from discovering the ABC. Well, it just isn’t…although we all know that literacy plays a fundamental impact on quality of life, health and economical standing, i.e. people creating their ‘productive’ life, communities and surroundings.

Now, let’s take it further and assume that both girls & boys can continue schooling after 6th grade. Again you might say, that this is the norm – for us. The truth is that girls are taken out of school to either work or be married off. The positive impact on lives of these girls on top of the economical benefits is a no-brainer really.

Room to Read exists to turn these two scenarios into reality – World Change Starts with Educated Children ® – with a Literacy and a Girls’ Education Program. The idea is to enable children to develop the skills and habit of reading and ensure girls complete secondary school and have skills to negotiate key life decisions.

What’s so different is that RtR collaborate and engage the families, local communities, partner organizations and governments in the transformation. RtR sets measurable goals and collects action-oriented data to ensure the programs are run with quality and impact, while maximizing cost efficiency. Results and reporting are shared with transparency and key indicators ensure rigorous evaluation of more than 7’000 projects. RtR has been reconized by Charity Navigator for its transparency, financial excellence, and responsible work that each donation has maximum impact.

Still want to know more? Read the two books that John Wood the founder has written ‘Leaving Microsoft to Change the World’ and ‘Creating Room to Read’ or visit the global website.

We are so thrilled that we have achieved our goal of reaching 10 million children by the end of 2015! Of course, we have a new goal and that is to benefit 15 million children by 2020.

Join our efforts, make a difference and become a donor, volunteer, advocate, friend and part of the worldwide RtR family! YOUR contribution (be it in skills, time, money or awareness spreading) will make a profound, direct difference in a child’s life. And I ask you – what is better than that?

Please reach out to me, if you want to discuss fun-fundraisers, volunteering, company engagement or maybe a trip with me to one of the Room to Read projects?

I was a member of the Zurich chapter and was welcomed with open arms into the Vancouver chapter. In April I had the chance to attend the RtR Global Leadership Conference in San Francisco and honestly, I was blown away…what a feeling…to be part of such a passionate, active, fun, intelligent group & movement. And just like that Room to Read has become an intrinsic part of my life – happy (me) end.


‘How you imagine the world determines how you live in it.’
David Suzuki


Founded in 2000 in Nepal – Literacy & Gender Equality in Education – in 2015 will impact 10 million children
Where we work
RtR is in ten low-income countries in Asia & Africa

Zurich Event June 2014 – Music & Art for Education

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Vancouver 2015 – Destination Dining Series

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Shaken By Coaching

I AM a professional coach because I believe everybody deserves to know how to change!

My clients are leading professionals working in high pressure roles in volatile environments.

Together, we form a productive partnership through creative, to-the-point, fun and action-oriented sessions. The coaching process has you, among others, understanding your values and changing unresourceful beliefs. This leads clarity in your vision, achieving your goals and being in-sync in career, life as well as being successful in the face of adaptive challenges.

I’m honestly interested in your success, quests and/or sharks that pop up…imagine there is your ship, you are the captain and know to which island (with treasure of course) you want to sail towards. I will be the navigator at your side holding the map. >> It starts with you.


‘I AM – two of the most powerful words; for what you put after them shapes your reality.’

Big Picture


Brigit Elisabeth - Infographic

What is coaching: Coaching is a creative partnership to focus, design and implement specific, meaningful, personal, professional or organizational goals through the exploration of ideas and candid dialogue with a confidential and unbiased thinking partner. The goal is to support the client in developing a sustainable resourceful mind set.

coaching benefits: raising self-awareness concerning behaviors patterns and beliefs; being able to change them if wanted. building confidence, authenticity and peace of mind. tools and techniques to prepare, create mind set before a meeting / conversation / negotiation. dealing with pressure and stress in a resourceful way. 

professional coaching, client testimonial, coach bee, value fun. At your service, if you like to, be inspired, dedicated, organized, successful. Put it all together. Management consultant, strategy consultant, Administration consultant. coaching benefits. I support professionals successfully moving through career transitions by creating a sustainable resourceful mindset, confidence and stronger communication.


Principles: Client Centered: honoring your inner resources, skills, agenda and outcomes. Solution-Focused: moving towards a desired future outcome. Action Oriented: pursuing change in specific, inspired steps that lead to fundamental shifts in attitude, beliefs, behavior and habit formation. Systematic: understanding your holistic nature, seeing how change can fit into your life.

Process: As your coach, I sponsor you towards the ownership of skill-sets that encourage and support you to increase creativity, productiveness and effectiveness. In private, confidential sessions in person or over the phone, we will: Identify Topics/Areas: I will help you define what you want to accomplish in the areas of your life. Explore Ideas & Elicit Values: I will probe, challenge, listen and question until you have developed a clear and compelling vision and goal to move towards. Refine & Reflect: I will support and motivate you through the process to review aims, set direction towards the achievement of your goals according to your values. Set Actions: I will help you develop a clear action plan to move your goals forward Remove Barriers: we will identify barriers and discover points of leverage, that you understand your emotional reactions and learn how to work with them on a choice basis. Change can produce stress. I am here to assist you to stay relaxed and productive in times of challenge. When you commit to work with a personal coach you learn how to focus on your ability sets and even have fun in the process!

“You are the captain on your ship deciding on the route and destination. I am the navigator next to you holding the map.”

Kauai/Hawaii is always a good idea…

or of roosters & breaching wales

and a sort of life-changing decision…

I’m sure you know that state when you’re debating a decision with yourself, weighing up rational arguments and trying make sense of the completely irrational emotions sabotaging your attempt to actually reach a conclusion. It’s like no matter how hard you try to focus, discipline yourself and try to get to the bottom of it, it keeps slipping through your fingers. Before you know it, a state of confusion and frustration sets in – dead end – you can’t force it.

What this has to do with my trip to the oldest, most western island of Hawaii? Well, I purposefully decided to give myself a whole week in paradise not only to have a change of scenery, rejuvenate, explore, but also to allow myself all this time, to solely find the answer to one question that’s persistently been popping up over the last weeks: do I want to stay/return/move to Vancouver permanently?

So, there I was on the ‘Garden Island’ driving around in my ship of a rental car, going 25 miles per hour  through breathtakingly beautiful greenery, accompanied by the local reggae music radio station, going somewhere but not really…the dead poultry on the road added to this almost surreal experience, and I started to run a daily toll (I know, quite morbid). I alternated the days discovering the beaches, waterfalls or walking the ever botanically different trails with glorious views into the valleys. Besides giving each day a ‘theme’ (to do with my question) wherever I went, I brought my ink pens as well as notebook along, giving me the opportunity to capture absolutely all, i.e. thoughts & emotions.

This process and methodology suited me perfectly, and it is therefore not surprising that by the end of my stay, I had reached a crystal clear answer:  Vancouver it is

& hell yeah, it scared the living daylights out of me!

I mean, it’s half across the world from Zurich, where my entire family and lots of friends live. It means giving up my bijou of a flat, and of course, figuring out everything about the immigration process. All this to throw myself into the unknown, by myself, not knowing how/what/when etc.

That’s probably why it took so long to write this blog entry, as I first had to sort through all this and become clear, why I want to do this and what the plan(s) are. Luckily, I’m a coach! So, walking my own talk, I asked myself all the questions that I would a client and became aware of unproductive beliefs as well as automatic emotional reactions that were no fun…and therefore ordered myself a couple of loads of “Emotional Laundry”. The detergent was microwave popcorn and the background music were the screeching roosters (they have taken over the island and maybe they’ll soon be given a holy status like the cows in India 🙂

Anyway, guess what – it worked.

The conviction that “this is now the right thing for me to do” remained, bizarrely strengthened by lots of breaching whales that I had the luck to watch 😉 and even after landing back in Vancouver.

What it means? It means that I want to work in the service of the performing arts world, its artists, entrepreneurs, project leaders, support staff, educators, sponsors – true to my motto: the art of making art is putting it together…

p.s. you find my drawings from that week in the Doodle Art section. 




Christmas is…

or how I found Santa, his elves, ALL his decoration,lights & more……

sitting here on my couch in Vancouver with the sun slowly setting on the last day of the year, it feels like I had just been dropped of by Rudolph with his shiny nose. I’m not entirely sure if the last month actually happened or if it was one long glittery dream and my mind is playing tricks on me. Yet, I can actually recite the lyrics and hum the tunes of more Christmas carols than I was ever able to as well as knowing the answers to questions, that were definitely not in my “repertoire”, e.g. the name of James Stewart’s guardian angle in the film ‘It’s a wonderful life’!

Maybe it is not that important to label or tell what factually happened (nobody wants to write or read that – least me!). However, what I do feel compelled to share is my tale of how I became witness and part of some true Christmas spirit moments.

Put on the kettle, snuggle up on the sofa with your favorite blanket…
As once upon a time, in a far away land – in the UK to be specific – a young Canadian and Swiss (both very pretty 🙂 became friends while singing for a small amateur opera company in North London. Little did they know that ten years down the line, after having lost contact for over a decade, they would re-connect on Vancouver Island where the talented Canadian had created a Christmas Spectacular. A show where professional singers and dancers entrance the audience with music from a wide variety of genres (musical, country, pop, jazz, etc.) accompanied by a versatile small band with more costume changes that you can count! The program is interwoven with humorous readings, a Christmas quiz and of course, an audience carol sing-along 🙂

So, how is this different to any other show? you might ask…well, imagine this:
a community hall outside a 80’000 soul city, on a Monday morning early in December. Trucks with horse trailers in tow have just pulled up. About 30 Santa Carpenters and Elves (all friends and family) get busy with unloading trees, wreathes, sleighs, wooden market stand, ribbons, bows, curtains and lights…and then more lights…within a day the hall becomes the most charming Christmas Wonderland, where rehearsals happen alongside the fork lift beeping, hammering, chatter, children running around and over a pic-nic lunch the latest stories are exchanged.

And then…finally, everything is ready (or almost 😉 and 250 people get transported each show to another world when entering this now magical place, greeted warmly by Santa’s helpers. You discover the little market area where Santa stands with some of his deer and getting engulfed by the smell of the mince pies and punch, while Bing Crosby is dreaming about a white Christmas in the background. The Christmas decoration and all the lights let you go back into your own childhood, when you couldn’t wait to discover that one present underneath the tree that had your name on it.

I had the honor of being the stage & light elf (my elf name: Sparkle Garland), and I was charmed by every single performance by the artists, a crew colleague, a volunteer or a member of the audience – or all of the above 🙂 I watched young and old having a fabulous time, creating an atmosphere you want to be in on a daily basis. The generosity of heart, support, humor, passion, professionalism, team spirit, countless hours of work by everyone who was involved left me with a smile I just couldn’t shake off. That was when I realized and got the distinct feeling that this is what Christmas IS all about…

Thank you and congratulations to Katy, who created with her family (Dave, Annette, Peter, Tim) including their beautiful young sons (Nicholas & Matthew) a Christmas experience we all want to be part of…

if you want to sign up as a Magic Sponsor, Christmas Carpenter or Special Elf, go to: and drop Katy a line!

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Recipes that deliver

some traditional Swiss Christmas feelings!

Brigit Elisabeth Services - Get Inspired
countless angles – always good to have!

Cookie: Mailänderli

250g unsalted (!) butter (room temperature)
225g sugar (white or mixture with brown)
1   pinch of salt
3   eggs from happy hens (room temperature)
1   organically grown lemon (i.e. not sprayed with funny stuff)
500g flour
1   egg yolk diluted with water to brush the cookies
& of course cookie cutters and tin box

Mix the flour and sugar in a bowl (approx. 10 minutes), then add the salt. Add the egg (one by one) and continue beating until the mixture turns lighter in color.

Add the zest of the lemon and the flour and mold it with a hard spatula or hands to an even dough ball. Put it covered or wrapped in cling film into fridge overnight (yes, that means you have to plan when you want to bake Christmas cookies 🙂

Next day or whenever you are baking:

Take the dough out of the fridge at least 15 minutes before rolling it out. Roll it out on flour or non-stick surface (e.g. baking paper) approx. 5-8mm thick. Use your cookie cutters and put them on a with baking paper covered flat tin. Brush them with the diluted egg yolk and bake in the pre-heated oven on 180-200d C. for approx. 10 minutes (check early enough until you know your oven well). Take them off and let them cool on a grille.

Keep your cookies in a air-tight tin box – then they last the whole month of December while maintaining their yummy quality…


Please meet…the “tall” dark stranger

and other Halloween creatures…

When I grew up (not going to mention when that was), my parents gave us kids a wonderful comic book, called “The Witch’s Handbook”. It is a terrific, tongue-in-cheek guide for any aspiring witch (which I was of course, being the only one that actually WANTED the be the witch in the school play 😉 I was so taken with it that it even inspired me to copy / draw the witch on the cover on to our black board, enlarged to live size, in a 6th grade assignment (great success)…and I sourced a paperback version last year in the UK, had it shipped to Switzerland, and from all my books, it became one of the two that I chose to bring with me to Vancouver…

& what a treasure it is – by Malcolm Bird

Besides lots of food recipes for Halloween (→ see my recipe section) and other fun craft stuff, e.g. skull & bat tea cozies, knitted skull cap etc., it features important insights about a witch’s daily routines, preferred housing as well as pet companions. You might ask, where I’m going with this…well, it seems that I have envisaged this (unknowingly, over years) to such an extent that the universe has finally given in and delivered it (although it did resist for about 25 years). There I was in my cute flat underneath the roof, where the wind blows through the cracks of the windows, the walls and lamps shake when someone on the lower floors walk around, sitting at my office/dining/one table, when I suddenly heard a “miau-growl” next to me.

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Needless to say that I almost jumped out of my skin, whereas the “tall” dark stranger just jumped on to my lap, purring and obviously wanted some attention, before taking up his observation position on the table! I named him Ron, and it seems that he has adopted me (as he took possession of my bed), appearing whenever he feels like it. Ron has completed the circle of interesting creatures surrounding me, including the spider(s) everywhere, the squirrel on the roof (I had a true E.T. encounter moment with that – I was screaming & the poor thing must have been too), and the two crows stationed in the trees lining my avenue.

Did you know that there is a flock of approx. 6’000 crows that spend their days spread all over Vancouver, only to return at dusk to Burnaby (a suburb of Vancouver)? It is quite a sight when they gather in my neighboring street, on some small trees and in a very orderly, organised fashion, all crows from the area start gathering. It is believed that the Burnaby roost has been there since the 1970s, and they are more like us than we might believe. They mate for life (not like us 😉 and apparently they can communicate with each other (again not like us 😉 Their offspring support the parents to raise younger siblings and live in loose family groups with complex social structures (obviously, how otherwise do they know when to pre-gather, fly to/from Burnaby etc). In short, we can learn a lot from them! If you are in Vancouver I can only recommend to take the time one day and watch the spectacular…

As for me, I cherish all my companions (the only one missing now is an owl, I guess) and ask you this, what is the morale of this story?

Be very careful & SPECIFIC what you wish for, the universe delivers
(following its own timing 😉

Happy Halloween everyone!

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Credits & Reference: 
The picture of the crow is by Gerry Kahrmann and the insight about the crows of Burnaby comes from the online version of The Province. 

Recipes that deliver

…the spooky, yet heart-warming Halloween feeling!
from The Witch’s Handbook (M. Bird)

Pumpkin Soup
(this is so easy, yet what you definitely need is a good knife or an ax – that’s right – not to scare some kids off, but to tackle the pumpkin)

1x pumpkin (preferably eatable – except you want to get rid of your guests)
1x onion (red or yellow – Europeans, you might need 2, as the sizes here do differ)
– vegetable broth (ideally without glutamate, yeast or sugar) depending on the amount of pumpkin
– cream (NOT sweetened or other funny business)
Optional: 3-4 carrots, ginger, chili-pepper

Get a big enough pan, delegate the pumpkin peeling, cutting, de-seeding to someone strong & willing 🙂 you can peel & cut the onion in the meantime (trust me you will prefer the few tears to the fight with the pumpkin).

Fry the thinly cut onion in some oil first, then add the pumpkin chunks, stir/fry for some minutes, before “extinguishing” with the vegetable broth. Add the optional ingredients if you want. Let it all cook on low heat, until you can squash the pumpkin with the ladle easily (takes approx. 1 hour maybe?). Take off the heat, let it cool down a little and either use a blender or hand held mixer pole to liquidize.

Heat it up again, add as much cream as you like and serve with roasted pumpkin seeds and/or add some pumpkin seed oil – Done.

Note: make sure you invite enough guests, or freeze the rest, or don’t add any spices and use the pure pumpkin mush as baby food.

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Apple Sauce
(also very easy – one of my FAVORITES)

1kg of apples (or 4 giant apples like they sell them here, see picture below)
Important: the type has to be good for cooking (hard, acidic etc.), forget about sweet types or Granny Smith – terrible
Fresh lemon juice (from real lemons, squeezed by yourself)
Lots of cinnamon & some vanilla sugar or extract
Optional: fresh cranberries, fresh ginger, Cardamom

Take a big enough pan, put approx. 2 cm of water in it. Cut the apples in medium-sized chunks (you can peel them if you prefer or the apples are “waxed” – Europeans, you are lucky there, as they don’t want to make the apples look shiny). Drizzle some lime juice over the apple pieces to prevent that they turn brown. Add the cinnamon and vanilla as well as any other optional items you like.

Cover the pan, let it cook/simmer (approx. 1 hour maybe?) until you can squash the apples easily with the ladle. That’s for me where it’s done, you might prefer to put it into the blender or take a hand mixer to it, or put it through a strainer…feel free.

Note: you can make a big quantity and keep it in the fridge pretty much for forever, or freeze it or again – don’t add any spices and use it as baby food.

An apple a day keeps the doctor away!

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Have some fun with your buffet food!
from The Witch’s Handbook (M. Bird)