This month I am introducing you to the very lovely, funny and talented Erna Van Dyk. I was so fortunate to spend a week with Erna earlier this year and she made me laugh every day, so I am very excited to share Erna with you all. 

Happiness Transform Studio is the place Erna has created to be able to live, eat, and breathe what she was meant to do – to make art! Erna established the company in order to help others do the same, to find that “happy place” where they can take negative feelings and thoughts, and replace them with positive ones, by tapping into their inner creativity.

Erna is very lucky to live and practice near the coast of Southern California, where the sun is always shining!  and she kindly took the time to answer a few questions for my series “Creatives from around the world Living Life In Colour”.  I hope you enjoy the discussion!

What was your journey to becoming an artist?

artwork photos 2From the moment I was aware, I knew that I needed to be in the creative arts field. I was born in raised in South Africa, where I received a degree in graphic design. After close to a decade in the industry, I relocated to the U.S.A. where I took advantage of the opportunity to do what I really love to do: paint and teach others how to do the same. With a bit of soul searching, I decided to continue my passion by becoming a creativity coach and art instructor. I love art and I absolutely love helping people learn to tap into their own inner artist.

What inspires you to create?

I am a hunter and gatherer of all kinds of pretty things. I get inspired outside in nature: leaves, shells, rocks etc. I love to look at patterns, flowers and I like to draw and paint what I see. There’s so much extraordinary beauty in everyday things, and I feel the need to share it with everyone!

artwork photos 3


What do you love about being an artist?

It is such an amazing freedom to be able to express myself and share a little bit of me with others. Being an artist helps me articulate what my true feelings and thoughts are, that I have nothing to hide, that there is nothing embarrassing about telling others what beauty is and where to find it. The biggest payback about being an artist is guiding others to do just that, and witness their enlightenment.

What essential mistakes have you learned from along the way?

You can change your mind. A lot. It took a while to realize that it is OK to change your mind and your goal as you go along.

What is your favourite piece of equipment and why?

Although I love all my equipment, I love a great journal with paint and markers. I can loose hours playing in my journal! It’s just pages of blank canvas waiting to be loved!

Do you have any tips for new artists?

artwork photos 4Creativity is a process, the more you create the more you want to create the more confidence you build while you create. Trust the process and not the outcome. Sometimes if I look at a painting or drawing I can remember how I felt while I was creating it. It’s also ok to paint over and start again. Like a new chapter in your life. Every day starts with a blank new canvas.

What is one thing about you which you think would surprise people?

I am as insecure as the next person! There’s nothing more I want than to please others, to make them happy. I have a tendency to put other people first…it’s that important to me. Because of this, I struggle with confidence and get a bit shy about showing my work. But, when I am making art, I get super excited about sharing my process, and suddenly, I am able to muster up confidence because it’s vital to me that others understand that they can do and feel the same.

Round of applause!

artwork photos 5Thank you so much Erna for sharing your tips and being vulnerable with us – I love how honest and open you are, and I truly, truly love your work. 

If Erna has inspired all of you closet creatives to really give painting a go and you want to learn please contact me here …. I am sure I will be able to assist you.

If you would like to contact or find out more about Erna and her beautful work you can find her at or follow her on Facebook at Happiness Transform Studio.




3 thoughts on “Creatives Living Life In Colour – Erna Van Dyk

  1. Thank you for sharing Erna and letting us
    get an inside view of beautiful YOU. Gratitude to you Angela for this lovely interview. <3

    1. Hi Nadaine Thank you for your lovely feedback, I am so pleased that you are enjoying the interviews. Angela x

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