Natasha Larment quite simply exudes happiness, enthusiasm and excitement. You can physically see the energy bubbling inside her as she tells me all about the creative workshops she runs to enable people to connect to their artistic side.

But it’s about far more than just producing a work of art, she explains: “It’s not about me teaching techniques and how to do it. It’s more about helping people to stay connected, to support them to find their way and creative self. “They come away with a large canvas that they’ve created. Yes, it’s lovely to see what they’ve created at the end, but it’s more likely to see people coming in a bit tired and anxious and for them to leave feeling more at peace, feeling energised. I love it.”

As a passionate artist Natasha, 38, knows the feelings of contentment painting can evoke, after rekindling her love of art some years ago.

Born to an art teacher mum, she was always destined to grow up with a paintbrush in hand but, after taking a GCSE, A-level and foundation course in art, felt she needed a break from the confines of exam work.

“I was trying to do it in line with all the skills and techniques,” she explains. “It was narrowing my vision. “I felt it was very controlled as opposed to free, so for quite a few years I didn’t paint.”

It was while travelling in New Zealand eight years ago that Natasha had a sudden urge to pick up a paintbrush again. And when she did, the results were like nothing she created before.

“The way that I paint now it’s all about giving form to that which I can see,” she says. “I paint emotions, I create form out of what I can see, so I’m guided by what appears. It’s so therapeutic and nourishing and grounding.

“It was my time to paint from my heart space as opposed to my head space. That’s why I’ve called my business Natasha Heart Space.

“I’m now experienced at using that as a therapy tool to really help support and I realise how beneficial it is for people to have a creative outlet for them to have balance in their life.”

Natasha, who runs workshops in Dorset and Surrey, was keen to guide others to unleash their artistic side, but it wasn’t until health issues forced to her re-evaluate her life that she put her plans into action, with a little help from Outset Bournemouth, an agency offering free advice to those starting up a business in the town.

“I didn’t have much confidence,” she says. “I’m just a woman who has connected with painting like this and I want to share it, but the fear of failing was stopping me. So every year I put it off, until my health woke me up to look at what I wanted to do and not put it off.

“Outset Bournemouth have been amazing help with the business side. They’ve given me the skills and the confidence to do it.”

Natasha threw herself into running regular, three-hourly workshops for small groups which, while not classed as therapy as such, she says proved hugely therapeutic for those who took part.

She eventually decided to show some of her own creations, and held her first exhibition at the Hayloft Gallery in Christchurch last year.

The feedback gave her the confidence to pursue her career as an artist, and she is now booking further exhibitions and running monthly workshops at Moordown Artisan Community Art Studio, as well as devising a retreat.

It’s clear Natasha has finally found what makes her happy. “I love it,” she beams, “It’s great having this excitement because it really fuels my workshops and my art. I spent a lot of time searching for the right relationship, to go on the right course. It felt like there was something missing.

“Only in the last seven years did I realise what was missing was me being present right now. What I wanted was out of reach, as opposed to just being still and knowing I have everything I need right now.

“I’ve suffered from depression and anxiety and I look around and see people struggling.

“I want to bring people back to the right now and realise that they have enough, they don’t have to have anything else to be content.”

• To find out more about Natasha’s workshops, visit or email