Alexis Johnson is an artist, producer and lecturer, whose many roles in talent development and creative learning have taken her all over the world. From Britain and Europe to Brazil and Nigeria, Alexis has seen, supported, advised, commissioned and mentored every type of artist you can think of, as well as developing learning programmes for British Council; Skillset, Film London.

In her own practice as a painter and participatory artist, Alexis co-makes site specific performance and installation. She’s exhibited at Tate Britain, Royal Academy of Art, Institute of Contemporary Arts And represented Westminster in London 2012 Cultural Olympiad. She‘s also pioneered socially engaged cultural projects and co – created a number of Learning Labs to  give young people in communities across the UK an opportunity to develop creative skills and access to employment pathways into the creative sector.

Now back on her home turf in the North West of England, Alexis has taken on the role of Learning Director at outdoor arts specialists, Walk The Plank and also leads on Talent Development for LeftCoast, a Creative People and Places Project in Blackpool.

In this episode, Alexis talks to writer and creative producer, Alex O’Toole, about accepting creativity as something that’s innate within us. We discuss how it’s easy to suffer from what she calls, ‘the Little Red Hen syndrome’ and why we all need to develop a personal toolkit for resilience. Some of the gems to look out for in our conversation with Alexis include the importance of full stop moments, how to find your incentive, why visualisation and an experiential approach is so important, both to artists and to commissioners and what collaboration can do to lift you out of the creative mire.

Alexis’ Website



Things we talk about in this episode:

  • Develop a toolkit of resilience
  • Overworking and knowing when to stop
  • The power of visualisation and an experiential approach to influencing mindsets
  • Collaboration for motivation and overcoming isolation
  • Recognising transference and what to do about it
  • Finding people who believe in you


Links mentioned in this episode:

Arts Lancashire

Walk The Plank


Implicit Project