Starting Point

…… This impressionistic ramble may be strung together with the most tenuous of associative processes but the back bone of these shall be the context of right here and right now.This starts on May day 2014. It finds me on a Thursday in the school holidays, which have punctuated my working life for many, many years. It is a blazing bright morning in Autumn in Auckland New Zealand and I sit in my customary laptop chair, still in my pajamas at nearly nine in the morning. Thoughts tumble in my mind – I’m thinking about trusting the creative process and giving time to allow meanings to emerge….

fringe of heaven

Titirangi May 1- looking out over the Manukau from my lounge.


I search my photos for a header image to put up on the blog. The one I choose dates back from a couple of years ago and shows me standing on a frozen lake in St Moritz, Switzerland. It was taken a brilliant day in the middle of winter,  crystal white in all directions and the temperature was well below zero. It was an utterly unfamiliar environment for a Kiwi used to being on the beach at that time of year. Starting this online journal is a little like stepping out onto an ice sheet that covers a deep, lake, high in the mountains. It feels strange, but exhilarating too.

These are the hats I wear:

In no specific order: I work part time as a counsellor at Hobsonville Point Secondary school, New Zealand’s newest school. It is new in all senses of the word; new building in a new suburb, new staff, new students and most importantly, radically new approach to education.Check out the school at I  have also worked part time for the last four years as as a counsellor and neurofeedback therapist in private practice. I am currently the only person in Auckland offering neurofeedback, although it is quite common overseas. Check out my business at Recently, after a long break, I began to rejuvenate my practice as an artist, which I was trained as before I became an educator and mental health practitioner. I am currently exploring landscape painting. I’m passionate about mountain biking. It keeps me fit, challenges my ideas about my physical capabilities and takes me to  beautiful places. Last but definitely not least, perhaps the biggest challenge of all is to have quality relationships as a parent, partner, colleague and friend.

So this is what I’ll be blogging about:

1. Creating a counselling service in a brand new, radically different school. What will counselling be in a school that is endeavoring to break down many of the silos of the school system most of us went through?

2. Reflecting on applied neuroscience. How are discoveries about the brain changing the way we approach mental health?

3. Drawing and painting. How does immersion in an artistic process inform other aspects of my work?

4. Being in nature on a bike. Why is it so important to be physically active and to get away from home?

5. Family and community life. What do I bring to my work from my intimate relationships?