Changing Anxiousness with Unstoppable Confidence: An Interview with Photographer Olivia Locher


Olivia Locher, a photographer born in Pennsylvania, now primarily based in NYC, is understood for her sarcastic method to studio images, with a heavy give attention to coloration and idea. A practitioner of the Transcendental Meditation method, Locher’s images are grounded in consciousness and dreamlands. We not too long ago caught up together with her to be taught extra about her work and the way her every day routine retains her impressed and centered.

In a single sentence, what describes your lifestyle?
Deal with all residing beings the way in which you want to be handled; it’s so simple to be mild and sort.

What does a typical day in your week appear like?
Since I principally do freelance images work, my days can look very unpredictable; I steadiness quite a lot of plates. I’m very eager on maintaining every day routines which can be steady, it doesn’t matter what my work life seems to be like from day after day. TM clearly is one in every of my favourite elements of every day, and I at all times plan to arrange home-cooked meals, carve out an hour or two for train, and love to finish every day indulging in a movie earlier than preparing for mattress.

What are your passions? What conjures up you?
Folks encourage me! I’m so to study others’ lives. My digicam, in a manner, is a automobile to get to really know whoever sits in entrance of it. I’m endlessly grateful to everybody who permits me to take their {photograph} and for sharing a little bit of themselves with me.

Recently, I’ve been actually impressed by nature. I’ve at all times break up my time between NYC and Pennsylvania, however recently, as a result of pandemic and the greenlight to work extra remotely, I’ve been in Pennsylvania much more. I by no means paid a lot consideration to the seasons till this previous 12 months. I’ve gotten actually into gardening. Watching issues develop, seeing the way in which the sky modifications, observing how completely different timber bloom, and studying their names has been so fulfilling. Each time I’ve left Manhattan, I at all times counted down the minutes till my return, afraid I used to be going to overlook one thing, however I used to be oblivious to the character at work round me!

Do you see your self as someone who took a leap of religion to reside a extra inventive life, or do you suppose it type of simply occurred?
I took a leap of religion. I grew up homeschooled and really shy. Once I turned 17, I spotted I used to be imagined to be making use of to schools, and I did an web seek for “finest artwork colleges” and utilized to all of them. The Faculty of Visible Arts (SVA) in NYC gave me a beneficiant scholarship, and it was my golden ticket to the artwork life. I used to be extraordinarily nervous to depart my household, residence, and the life I knew nevertheless it labored out for the perfect.

What drew you to images? What was the journey like?
Rising up, I used to be at all times daydreaming. My dad and mom have been at all times anxious I used to be not residing in actuality. Once I was a young person, I went to the bookstore and eliminated all of the subscription playing cards from the style magazines and, with my babysitting wages, I slowly began subscribing to every of them. It felt as if new worlds have been arriving at my Pennsylvanian doorstep, and I continued to dream. I began convincing my mates to come back over to my home and play costume up, imitating the fashions we noticed within the shiny trend magazines. I photographed them. It was then that I spotted I used to be completely in love with taking images, and it got here very naturally. I’ve obsessively made images ever since.

What are your three favourite “instruments” for a wholesome and joyful life?
Meditation, diet, and health. For me meditation is my guiding gentle. I really feel entire when I’m meditating twice a day constantly. The extra constant I’m, the better it turns into to proceed being constant. When I’m in keeping with my observe, discovering the time to meditate actually turns into easy. My job usually requires exceedingly early wake-up instances, and it has develop into a no brainer to suit my morning meditation in. I’ve discovered if I don’t carve out that point for myself, I’m foggy, and my judgement feels clouded. If I’m going to overlook a meditation, there will need to have been a significant emergency maintaining me from it.

Vitamin is one other instrument for my wholesome life; I’ve been a lifelong vegetarian and love making ready meals. I’ve had a collection of well being points over the previous decade, together with a digestive autoimmune dysfunction that runs in my household and power Lyme illness. I’ve turned my consideration to Ayurvedic cooking and have been managing my signs so effectively with the assistance of Maharishi AyurVeda. I’d encourage anybody who needs an additional enhance of wellness to dive deeper into Maharishi Worldwide College’s on-line enrichment programs.

Lastly, health is especially necessary to me day after day. I really feel additional alive every time I work motion into my day! Not too long ago, I’ve been training ballet for about two hours per day. I danced once I was youthful however completely deserted it. Rediscovering my misplaced love for motion as an grownup is unexpectedly rewarding.

How lengthy have you ever been training the Transcendental Meditation method, and what impressed you to be taught?
I learnt TM in the summertime of 2012. I used to be coming into my thesis 12 months of faculty at SVA, and it was simply the instrument I wanted. My life drastically modified quickly after I learnt TM. I used to be at all times very anxious from way back to I can keep in mind, and my stress was laborious to handle. I keep in mind feeling extraordinarily anxious; even going to my meditation instruction conferences. My TM trainer, Sara Anderson, was so supportive. As I turned extra in keeping with my meditation, I felt my anxiousness slipping away, and a confidence in myself that I’d by no means identified started to develop. Issues that I used to seek out extraordinarily laborious to finish turned simpler and simpler.

I heard David Lynch talking so superbly about TM for years earlier than I started my very own journey. What actually caught with me was the way in which he stated that an artist doesn’t should be in ache or struggling to create, that this stuff have been poisonous to artwork. He stated, “I don’t consider that Van Gough, for example, was struggling whereas he was portray. As a result of he beloved to color.” This too was true for me; once I create my images, I really feel unstoppable and completely assured. I needed one thing that would assist these emotions even be current throughout my life exterior of making. I stored considering: I want TM! I began a financial savings account for my TM instruction, and after a number of years, I used to be able to be taught. It was the perfect funding I ever made for myself!

Is there an expertise associated to your observe of TM that stands out in your thoughts?
My older brother Brandon not too long ago learnt the TM method. We have now at all times been finest mates and work carefully collectively, (he’s additionally an artist), are roommates, and now we now have the chance to meditate collectively. Having a member of the family who additionally meditates is so particular; we take pleasure in sharing our experiences, attending superior lectures at our native TM middle collectively and watching each other develop.

Do you are feeling that TM has helped you together with your artwork and creativity? If that’s the case, how?
All my particular person photographs begin from a single thought, and as soon as I’ve it, I let it dictate the whole lot. At any time when the identical thought pops into my head greater than thrice, I do know it’s one I ought to act on. To seek out the perfect concepts, I have to go deep inside myself. Fortunately, once I meditate, that’s exactly what I do. I’ve discovered that ever since I started training TM, my concepts are clearer and extra centered. Once I get an concept that I take pleasure in, the need and keenness to create is speedy. I wish to usually lay down and daydream after my morning TM; I discover a few of my finest inventive concepts come immediately after TM, once I lay down for a couple of minutes afterwards.

In case you might give an individual one piece of recommendation when fascinated about pursuing a life/profession like yours, what would you inform them?
If somebody wakes up and is continually impressed by their concepts and getting excessive satisfaction from creating, then that’s what they need to be doing! I really feel as if you can not select to have a life as an artist; it finds you. To create is a deep need that comes from inside. My finest recommendation could be to enter it with out not having objectives of it being a profession. All through my life I’ve carried out, and nonetheless do, a ton of various issues to make a residing. My artwork has by no means totally paid my payments. When a financial worth or exterior stress will get positioned in your creativity, I’ve discovered it could possibly hinder the unique vitality of why you’re creating within the first place. Making a living out of your inventive endeavors will be good icing on the cake, however do the work since you find it irresistible. The fervour and your consistency are probably the most essential parts.

You’ll be able to view Olivia’s work, or buy a replica of her first e book, I Fought The Legislation, at, or observe her on Instagram.

To be taught extra concerning the TM method, you may discover your native TM trainer right here ►