Student Success: Gina Nicole
In her early twenties, Gina Nicole met a feng shui practitioner who she soon hired to clear her home and adjust her color schemes and furniture placement. After realizing how positively these changes affected her relationships, sleep patterns, productivity and overall energy, she decided to pursue feng shui herself. After studying with BTB Feng Shui Master Edgar Sung, she decided to enroll in a feng shui course at NYIAD to further her knowledge of art. We recently had the chance to chat with Tricia about her time at NYIAD, her interior design career, and her plans for the future. Here’s what we learned!
1. When did you realize that feng shui was a field you wanted to pursue?
When I was 5, I was on a local news story with my horse. When the reporter asked me if I wanted to be a cowgirl when I grew up, I replied, “No, I want to be a nurse.” It shocked everyone (including me), because I screamed at the sight of a needle or blood. Looking back, I knew I wanted to help channel healing energy, but didn’t know what to call it.
When I was in my early twenties, I met a Feng Shui practitioner. As much as I didn’t want to spend more money to heal, I also knew that if I wanted change, I had to be a visionary and not act out of fear. I hired her with great intention to clear my home and give me Feng Shui tips on color and placement. I listened to her advice, made the changes in my home, and my healing then magically unfolded faster. I began sleeping better, work progressed, and my relationships improved. I finally realized that this could be a way to channel energy.
2. Why do you prefer feng shui to other interior design methods?
I prefer Feng Shui to interior design, because Feng Shui is a healing art. There is an aspect to the art that can help take your life to a whole new level. Interior Design is wonderful to beautify spaces, and Feng Shui takes it to a whole new level.
3. Have you always been interested in art and design? If not, what is your educational background originally in and what other similar topics interest you?
I have not always been interested in art and design, but I have always been interested in creating spaces to feel good. Even as a little girl, I was very particular about color in my room and surrounding spaces, and I would always ask my parents to move my furniture around. We are really sensitive to spaces, and when we listen to the intuitive aspect of that, we can feel so much better.
4. When did you enroll at NYIAD?
Before studying at NYIAD, I studied with BTB Feng Shui Master Edgar Sung in San Francisco. His program was phenomenal and so intuitively connected. It didn’t cover the art aspect as in depth however, so I decided to enroll in the course at NYIAD.
5. What was your coursework like?
The course work was super creative and fun. I always say, you are a creation; it took two people to make you, and you are a result of a creative process. If you stop creating, you are out of the flow with life. To manifest to your fullest potential, you have to always stay in creation, and this is what this course did for me. The work allowed for me to safely explore and experience different remedies in different ways. I was able to play with color and learn more about the elements of color and textiles, with no judgement, and only support.
6. Was your mentor helpful during the process?
My mentor was encouraging, and helped me to see things from a different perspective at times.
7. After graduation, how did you use this knowledge to help you with a real world career?
I was a practicing Feng Shui practitioner when I began this program. The program at NYIAD helped me to take my practice to a new level and uplift my existing offerings.
8. What did you learn working in the real world that you wish you could’ve learned at NYIAD?
The program gives you a nice preparation for what to experience in the real world. Ultimately however, it is going into other people’s spaces where the learning can deepen greatly. Feng Shui is not a black and white offering. It is one of intention with a lot of grey areas. NYIAD helps to prepare you for situations that you may be called to assist with, and ultimately more lessons come from moving through those situations.
9. Tell us the feng shui services you offer to clients.
I offer an hourly rate, and packages for homes and businesses
10. How do you find new clients in your area?
Feng Shui is not my only offering. I am also an Angel Intuitive. When I listen to the messaging of the Angelic Realm on how to help others raise their external energy and vibration, miracles happen. I find the best way to find new clients, is to offer that service that comes so natural to me, and the rest takes care of itself.
When you surrender to your inner calling, and allow your gifts to flow through you, you will always be connected to the people that are of that same vibration and ready to good in the world. Focus on how you can help make the world a better place, and you will absolutely find the people that will benefit from your offerings. If that is through Feng Shui, and you are called to it, LEAP!!! That is my advice. It is only growing, and my belief is that one day, it will be as common as acupuncture in this world.
11. If you had to pick one, what was the most memorable design project you’ve ever completed?
My most memorable design experiences (yes more than one) have indeed been designing acupuncture offices. If I had to choose one, it would be working with Rachel Hemphill of City Pulse Acupuncture: http://citypulseacupuncture.com. She has the existing knowledge of working with the elements, so she was able to take the assessment of her space to a whole other level. Her office turned out beautiful and I know she is reaping the rewards of intentional placement.
12. Describe a day in your life at work!
Every day is so different, and that is what I love. I get to choose what I want to do and when I want to do it. I see people one on one, do email reports from a distance, do events, teach classes, and have some online program offerings; (one being a Feng Shui course online that I often times receive questions about). I would be unable to describe a day in my work life, because no two days are the same, and THAT is what I love.
13. For any readers who are totally unfamiliar with feng shui, what are some simple, basic ways you think they could add positive energy to their space?
For one, BEFORE you do anything, you must set an intention to begin anew, you must be willing and ready to LET GO of anything you might be hanging on to, and create space for the new to come in! How do you do this? Being the Feng Shui enthusiast that I am, I always stress the importance of one of the most important but simple techniques of Feng Shui: de-cluttering.
I say De-Clutter stands for: Detox Environmentally – Clear Life Up Through Tidying & Eliminating Rubbish!
When you consider the way energy moves, it enters through the front door of your environment, which is known in Feng Shui as the “mouth of the chi.” From there, you want it to move through your space like water down a stream; it should flow nicely. Unnecessary objects blocking this stream, or “clutter,” disrupts this flow. Clutter can be very draining on your being, and like a river dam to a creek, it can slow energy from reaching you or even completely block energy from flowing to certain areas of your life.
So to start, grab a few trash bags, declutter, and start creating space for the new!!
AND … another tip … your stove is symbolic of abundance. One of the biggest inlets of energy into your home, so clean it!
14. How has social media/ blogging helped you as a creative professional?
When you offer value to the world, more value will come to you. Do good, be nice, and help others. Social media and blogging has been a vessel in which I can do this. It’s that simple. I say if I only help even one person with a post, a blog write up, or vlog, my mission is accomplished
15. What’s the most rewarding part of your career?
The most rewarding part of my career is that I get to shine light, spread love, and witness transformation after transformation. I receive emails on a weekly basis about how this work is helping people. I could ask for nothing more.
16. If you could give one piece of advice to our current and prospective students, what would it be?
Be authentic and work from a place of love. If you don’t know something, be honest and say that. Be willing to leap and fall, and let go of any expectation. There is absolutely no space to be anyone but you. If this is a hell yes … you have to listen to that. If there is even one doubt of you leaning toward “No I don’t think so,” LISTEN to that. If you don’t, you are simply being false to the world, and that isn’t what we are here for. SO follow your hell yes feelings, and be you.
In early 2015, Tricia McIntosh took some time off work to do a little self-discovery. During this period, she realized how drawn she was to art and design. A newlywed at the time, she was especially fascinated by the eclectic interior styles introduced to her by her husband and was curious to learn more about their history and about how…