“It’s just the mindset that I get into. It’s meditative. Art is the only thing that gets me into that mindset of just letting go. Letting go of fear and judgement of myself and what my art becomes and I become the best version of myself. I become trusting in myself. It’s the only time when I’m fully like that.”
Jessica Ando has always held a passion for art. Ever since her childhood, she would design cards, playing with fonts and lettering. Growing up, she expanded her artistic skills to photography, jewelry, sculpture and music. College allowed her to experience sophisticated art classes and even study art history and sculpture in Florence, Italy. While she worked towards getting her masters in art therapy, Jessica admired her classmates’ artwork and style. “At that point I didn’t know what my style was yet, so everything I saw, I wanted my stuff to be like that.” But once she let go of that mindset, the artist allowed herself to experiment with art to see what she could create and what type of style she held. Once Jessica went into the flow of things, she found her style.
After attending college and graduate school in the mainland to study psychology, studio arts, the artist returned home to work as a counselor doing art therapy with her patients at Hospice Hawaii. “It was a perfect combination of everything that I liked, counseling and art.” She enjoys the therapeutic feeling and creative process that art provides her. “It makes me feel very alive.”
In December 2014, Jessica participated in the Moanalua Christmas craft fair, selling her rocks and watercolor paintings. “I always had made art but just for myself. This was the first time where I made the decision to put my art out there and it felt like I was stepping into the identity that I am an artist.” Thus began the start of Blissography, the brand Jessica gave to her artwork of watercolors, feathers, dreamcatchers and inspirational words. The word “Blissography” comes from the word bliss and the artist’s connection to the phrase “follow your bliss.” With her brand, Jessica has a space to express her authentic self through art. Every piece she creates puts her into a state of flow where whatever comes out into her artwork represents her best self. “As long as I keep creating from this space and just being authentic, real, and having that trusting feeling, my artwork will go to wherever it needs to go or to whoever needs to see it.”
The artist enjoys drawing and painting the most, specifically dreamcatchers, the moon, horses and feathers as her creativity usually gets drawn to Native American looks. People can usually tell her art apart from others as Blissography features earthy tones, universe sparkle and a celestial looks to the pieces. Jessica also creates unique stone pieces with different images or phrases. This began when she took paint pens one day and wrote on landscaping stones. She enjoyed the energy of it and the idea that stones could not hang on the wall.
“It makes me excited when I think about Blissography. Just the feeling I get from creating makes me excited everyday. If I get an idea or image throughout the day, it’s like I can’t wait to get it out.”
As she prepared for the New Year after the art fair, Jessica saw an advertisement for Aloha Dreamboard’s upcoming workshop. Aligned with what she needed, the artist attended her first workshop in January 2015. “Being an artist and being creative is a part of me that is growing more and more each year. Since I went to the workshop, I learned more about what dreamboarding was; the significance of it, the feng shui, guided visualization and meditation. I found that to be very helpful.” As a visual person, the biggest aspect that Jessica enjoyed came from the process of looking for pictures and words. “I really like the visualization that she guided us through because that really helps with seeing what you truly want. It helps with confidence. I leave the workshop leaving and holding that visualization. It’s a really empowering process.”
“With Tiare, with her energy she brings and the way she does her meditations is something that I wouldn’t have been able to do myself. Setting that intention and visualizing with your mind and doing that first and then going into dreamboarding helps. On an individual level, I could do the same myself, but with her, the whole experience is put into one board. I like being able to visually see something that is appealing. With Tiare there is more depth. With her presence guiding you and sharing her story and her vulnerability is inspiring.”
“If I were to do things on my own, I could talk myself out of it. With Tiare’s workshop, I felt the confidence in what I wanted to achieve and she is someone that truly wants to genuinely see you achieve your dreams. Anytime that you are around someone that believes in that, that helps you too.”
“Dreamboarding workshops help you move into the space and balance of knowing what you want and be really specific and free to say what you want in life. Letting go of what you want to be is important too. I find joy in setting intentions and letting go and trusting. You have the added energy and manifesting is fun to do. You're setting intention and kicking action and trusting what’s going to happen around you and seeing the people who are going to come into your life. It’s also the universe helping you as well. It’s like an ultimate collaboration and that makes me feel really and feel that natural high. Dreamboarding is powerful.”
Dreams Jessica has manifested since she began her journey with Aloha Dreamboard:
Blissography grew into a fruitful business where Jessica participated in the Haleiwa Arts Festival and wore a nametag with her name and title “artist” underneath.
She received more inquiries from customers on how they could purchase her artwork.
The artist also developed new relationships with people she met because of her art.
Because of Blissography, Jessica gained self-confidence as an artist.
The artist checked off her list of qualities that she wanted to find in her ideal partner when she met Chad, her current boyfriend at the end of 2015.
Jessica now can say that she has a life that she loves and in a place where she feels more at home in her body.
“Every year, I have a new focus on the different parts of my dreamboard and it’s exciting to watch what will come out of it.” Jessica’s current manifestations include wanting to feel fresh and becoming ready to receive financial abundance. “With dreamboarding and manifesting, it is important to acknowledge your talent and see the joy in life, and the service you are doing and giving.”
“I’m still working on it, but really knowing and truly believing that you are worthy of having a wonderful life. We sometimes have these roadblocks in life, fear, and what I have learned is that we can really have good times in life and we can see and feel the ultimate joy. We can be human, see what life is about, and experience all the love, joy, and peace that we can experience. We can all have that. I feel like that is what dreamboarding ultimately helps people get to that. People can open doors during the workshop. It’s a healing experience all around.”
Jessica hopes to continue growing in her connections within the creative community in Hawaii and in the mainland. She aspires to create a mural somewhere, even if the mural becomes displayed in a store. You can find Blissography art pieces at Lily Lotus or by simply messaging Jessica on her Instagram account or email below.