Brave Space begins with the assumption that we possess the intelligence we need to address the complex challenges we face. We simply need to uncover it. Balancing fresh insights, and deep intuition with seeing the big picture we can discover the clarity we need to take bold steps forward.
Brave Space provides creative services tailored to meet these needs, from personal leadership to community engagement, applying social methodologies for systems change.
Here are the services offered by Marguerite. Click below to jump to a particular service to learn more.
Bring your meetings, conferences, community conversations
to life with real time visual note taking, interactive mapping
and graphic harvesting.
Meaningful conversations. Facilitating participatory process to work with an increasingly complex and fragmented world. Meetings, trainings, conferences & community engagements.
Programs and practices to work with girls, women and
Simple and fresh drawings to illustrate anything: Web design, reports, presentations, wallpaper, videos and displays.
Marguerite trained in graphic recording and facilitation at The Grove in San Francisco. She uses this skill set to visually capture and reflect the content of meetings, conferences and trainings. By listening to thoughts, ideas and conversation she is able to draw out patterns, create connections and surface collective voice. You can literally see the big picture. These visual maps, notes and images are valuable both in the room and as a record for reports, documents and online materials.
Marguerite began as a student in the Art of Hosting community in 2007 and has been participating in and hosting meaningful conversations since then. In 2010 she began hosting gatherings and training others in the AoH methodologies. She works with a great team of hosts from Nova Scotia and beyond and brings the conversations to life by capturing them visually.
Marguerite has been convening women’s circles and groups since she had tea parties in her backyard as a child. Since then she has gathered mothers in her home, hosted high school women’s circles and taught workshops on sexual health and women’s issues. She began facilitating the Coming Into Your Own program in 2011.
Marguerite studied drawing, sculpture and photography at NSCAD University until 2006. She continued her drawing practice with graphic recording training at The Grove in San Francisco. She brings simple and clear form to people, landscapes, ideas and stories. Her illustrations have been used to create many products from wallpaper to children’s books, slide presentations to illustrated videos. Her illustrations could be applied to most anything you can imagine!
Marguerite has just recently ventured into the realm of motion. She has recently completed a series of 10 drawing videos with Springtide Collective and has learned a ton. Ready for more, Marguerite is excited to work with others on more video projects.
Marguerite Drescher is a visual artist and graphic recorder/facilitator, trained in cultivating vivid expressions for learning.
She is dedicated to living art and exploring the possibilities for social transformation through creative process. Marguerite is actively engaged with communities around Halifax primarily with public engagement, leadership training and capacity building. Her company, Brave Space, offers graphic facilitation, illustration, women’s leadership training, and Art of Hosting trainings. Marguerite is an unwavering Nova Scotian, with deep roots in this raw and magical place, and currently lives in Halifax.
After growing up with a natural love for art, I became disenchanted with the art world, feeling isolated and disconnected from the communities I wanted to participate in. I longed to join together the contemplative approach I’d learned through meditation practice with art and meaningful social engagement. ALiA Summer Institute introduced me to a community of like-minded friends with a passion for genuine leadership. ALiA became a beacon of inspiration for me, where brilliant people convened and conversed about the world, exploring new ways of engaging with our current reality. The program brought together innovative thinkers, community activists and private interests. The diversity of the people combined with the integration of contemplative arts and meditation created a hot bed of creative energy. This is where I first heard of graphic facilitation and the art of harvesting. I was amazed to see the insights of the collective expressed so beautifully through large scale visual form. The atmosphere of the gatherings was captured along with the content. Patterns and themes emerged and the group was able to see their process reflected back. I knew that this is what I would love to do.
The way forward wasn’t clear. There were very few people who were doing this work in Halifax and I knew I was going to have to create my own curriculum and learning trajectory. I started experimenting with the meetings I was in, taking visual notes. I quickly saw how much I had to learn. It was so hard to capture everything! How did I know what was important? How could I choose images to go with other people’s words? How do you draw “collaboration” anyway?
I went back to NSCAD and took a night class in illustration. I started filling notebooks with my stick figures and fonts. Finally I felt ready to take a field trip. I headed to The Grove in San Francisco for a program in graphic facilitation. There I found my people; artists who have been learning and teaching this way for 30 years. There was so much to learn about layout, materials, templates, text and image... I left feeling full and excited to put my new knowledge into action. I took my materials to conferences I was attending and got to work. The response was incredible. People were thrilled at the color, playfulness and content capture of my work.
I began working with other facilitators, apprenticing in the Art of Hosting meaningful conversations. I was simultaneously apprenticing with a Women’s Leadership program called Coming Into Your Own. My skills developed rapidly and again I ran into a challenge. I found myself asking, what does society really need? Another facilitator, another program, another artist? I realized that my true contribution could be deeper than these things. The complexity and challenges we face require a stillness, presence and quality of listening that really allow intelligence to blossom. Then the vividness of the world and the people in it can express their genuineness and brilliance.
I began making my visual work simpler in order to listen more deeply and engage others in my process. My capacity to improvise improved and my confidence in the work began to build. I realized that I am a harvester in all areas of my life whether I have a marker in hand or not. I am listening for weight, resonance and patterns in order to link and connect ideas and people.
Listening and expressing began to come together. Uncovering what is truly present in a situation, and making it vivid for all to see allows fresh understanding to arise. We can move from what we know into the learning space of the unknown, where habitual patterns have less power. With new clarity and freedom we can take bold steps forward.
So the methods I have learned are good ones but the true wealth of this work lies in the ability to create a Brave Space for waking up, facing the challenges in our world and working with them with bravery, openness and kindness.