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The Art of Being Present: Mindfulness & Healing Through Creativity

Words and artworks by Caro Latorraca. 

As creative people in advertising, we are constantly working toward an outcome. Always expecting validations, reactions, engagement, sales, likes and awards. So often, it’s about the destination, not the journey. We live in an incredibly fast paced world, where whatever we want is a click away, and we’re always looking for constant connectivity and instant gratification. But from time to time, we need to have a recess from all this. And I’m not talking about having a break to have a KitKat (with respect to Donald Gilles for such a great tagline), but that’s 46g of sugar you put into your body and then you go back to sit at a desk for hours. I’m talking about having a break to create a real pause; be mindful of the present moment; have a deep connection with your creative journey; and above all – embrace your process, so you don’t hit rock bottom and learn the hard way.


It is a very noisy world out there, with so much stimulation and so much competition. Everyone is looking for the next big thing, wanting to be ahead of the next trend. People are constantly doing things for others to expect validation, recognition, promotions, and big results; we were taught to look for answers outside of ourselves and to depend on work, money, and relationships.

But who are you and what do you do if one day you lose your job, your partner and money, all at the same time?

It sounds harsh, we are so attached to the physical world that we have forgotten that we are complete beings and that we have everything within.

 I moved to Australia five years ago and like most immigrants, it’s a long and hard process to settle. But I was finally where I wanted to be. I was working at an agency where work/life balance was valued, where I wasn’t bullied or a victim of racism for being South American (that’s a story for another time). I also had an amazing life partner and I had invested a lot of money into this next big crypto thing (you see... always looking for the next thing ahead). I had everything I thought I wanted at the time: the big Art Director role, the hot guy and the full crypto wallet. It turned out the big job fell short and decided to close their Sydney office, the hot guy decided to be with another hot girl and the full crypto wallet turned out to be an empty wallet because I was a victim of fraud. 

As a surfer, I usually love hitting big waves but not like this. This was the biggest wipe-out I’d ever experienced. So, it turned out that that click-away we are so used to – getting things when we want them – doesn’t work when dealing with adversity.  Being on the other side of the world (exactly 13,818km away from my whole family) wasn’t helpful. But I am not here to dwell on what happened, I am here to tell you that I thought I had lost everything and I didn’t know who I was without all those things.

Until mindful art came to rescue me, and I started the biggest and most important creative project of my life. I began to recreate and work on myself by connecting my mind, spirit, soul and body through art, and it turned out that I gained so much more than what I thought I had lost.


Mindful art has been the main tool on my life-healing journey. Nurturing our creative passions have a positive impact on our well-being and happiness.

Mindful art is not about creating a masterpiece and expecting everyone to love it and buy it; it is to embark on a journey of self-exploration and self-expression. It is all about the process and the deep understanding of emotional healing and transformation.

The idea is to create art and not expect anything in return. There are no KPIs to reach, no engagements nor results. When you open your heart to the creative process the universe will open many doors and will give you so much more in return than big promotions or validations, it is only about you.


Art gives you a deeper level of understanding, empathy and compassion towards yourself, it is a gateway to inner emotions and a powerful channel between the universe and your higher self. We are creatures from creation; therefore, we have creative powers within, but we are constantly focused on the world outside, filling up our calendars so that we forget how important it is to cultivate ourselves first. When going through tough situations, we tend to fill the holes in our lives with instant pleasures. But all the chocolate in the world won’t fix your broken heart. Winning an award won’t make you a better human and a bottle of wine won’t be the answer to your problems. Those things will only numb you and make you think you are resilient but in the end, they are taking you far away from the healing process by filling you up with new problems.


Did anyone teach you how to feel your emotions to then transform them? I'd be glad if someone taught you, but no one taught me. Many of us were taught just to suppress our emotions, be realistic, be strong and stay busy to avoid pain and ignore our feelings because if we don’t feel or think about them, they will go away. We are taught to operate on a mind level, but, we need to go within, surrender, feel and express our emotions to heal and grow. It is all about living the process, embracing every tear, every doubt, every fear, feeling every feeling, every emotion and not getting attached so that we can let everything be, let it out to transform and let the new in.


It is all about the process; for me, every brush, colour and hand movement is a way of communicating my inner world with the outer world.

Mindful art is my channel and there is always a spark within us, something that lights up our hearts and makes us smile, maybe while reading this a thought came to your mind, and that is the universe guiding you towards your intuition and passion. Your channel could be writing, dancing, music, photography or any sort of creative interest you may have. If you do it with mindfulness and without judgement, it will increase self-awareness, self-compassion and self-expression. It will reduce stress and it will allow you to be present without judgement. With an open heart and soul by trusting that the process is unfolding exactly as it should be.


Life is in constant change and so are we. I am not the same person I was yesterday, and I am not the same person I’ll be tomorrow. Every moment presents us with new challenges and opportunities for transformation and growth. That’s why I don’t have a unique style in my art, because I am mindful when creating. I am expressing my emotions and feelings; and they are in constant flow and movement. I want to always be evolving as a human and as a creative, so I don’t want to get attached to one style. And that’s the beauty of being a mindful creative.


As a Designer and Art Director, I’ve always identified as a visual person so I’ve always had trouble expressing myself through writing, especially in a second language (no wonder Art Directors often need copywriters to help communicate with words)! But I feel I needed to put my story into words. I’m taking a leap of faith and maybe this inspires you in some sort of way.

I want you to know that you are the most important person in your life and that you are your biggest, greatest and most extraordinary creative work. You, with yourself, are the longest and most beautiful relationship in your life.

If you are mindful in every process and if you are connected to yourself, you are making the world a better place because your own world will be better. We all need people nurturing their creative passion and doing things they love, with love.

I invite you to have a break, find a safe space for yourself with no external pressure, let go of your inner critic, be free and be a mindful creative. Acknowledge your thoughts and emotions as they arise and allow them to flow into your artwork. Creating without expectations, seeking any validation, or achieving any result, is not about making a beautiful thing, it is about going within and creating from your heart and soul. All while embracing the imperfect journey. It is then that you will discover how profoundly deep, transformative and healing it is to express yourself through mindfulness creativity.

About Caro Latorraca

Mindful Artist, Art Director & Designer

Caro is a mindful artist, an award-winning Art Director and Graphic Designer based in Sydney. Big on ideas with a passion for creativity, she brings a unique and modern approach to any creative challenge. Caro’s international career spans a mix of boutique and large-scale agencies including Ogilvy, R/GA, Saatchi & Saatchi and VCCP. She is part of Wild Creative Agency's founding team and founder of CaroLato Studio, where she offers mindful creations and artistic solutions. Her unique mix of creativity, knowledge and passion for the craft means no task is too big or too small. Caro volunteers her time on a number of projects (including Mavens) and is committed to making a positive impact by creating meaningful work.


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