Lizy Dastin: Find out more about...

Figuring out your dream job

When Lizy left her PhD program, she did a lot of reflection about what to do next. While she kept teaching, she thought she’d like to do something else besides.

She explained, “I did tons of life coach-y exercises trying to figure out what my perfect job looked like, what time I woke up every day, what would I wear, am I doing the same thing over and over, what am I doing?”

Lizy worked with a life coach, but you can do some self-reflective exercises too. Try this roundup of personality tests and career quizzes to get you started thinking about what you’d want your life and job to look like.

Lizy’s early writing career

From early childhood, Lizy wanted to be a teacher and a writer. She’s still a teacher, but she pursued her dream of being a fiction writer in high school, before switching her focus to art history:

"I thought that I wanted to be an author. I spent a considerable amount of high school writing books, and one of them ended up getting published. It’s called December First, and it was an epistolary book, so everything was a diary entry or a letter, and everything was dated on December first, and each chapter was a different decade from the 1900s, from the 20th century, and basically there were ten short stories, each protagonist was a young woman, roughly my age, so high school.

I wanted to show that even though the trappings of life changed, that the essence of the human spirit and the female spirit, that that really remains the same. And my intention as a 15-year-old, when I wrote it, was to make those connections, to have somebody who was reading it with contemporary eyes to connect with someone from the 1940s. When history in the classroom seems really stale, I wanted to humanize that."

Collaborating with artists

Lizy has interviewed about 100 street artists for Art and Seeking, and she has formed close relationships with some of them. Lizy believes in buildiling relationships with within the street art community and also in fostering the talents of the artists she meets.

“I will work with certain artists. It’s really important to me to give back to these communities, and I work with people that I believe in especially, and I’ll pay for them to be an artist in residence at a woodblock printmaking studio, for instance. So they learn a new skill, they progress their practice to something that they wouldn’t have otherwise done, and then they produce a work that we end up selling together.“

When Lizy says “what’s most important to me is the elevation of street art into something that isn’t just the colorful backdrop for your Facebook profile picture,” Colette Miller’s wings spring to mind. You might have seen people posing in front of her gorgeous angel wings on social media, or seen them yourself in LA.

Lizy and Colette collaborated on a limited edition of wings that people can buy for themselves, bringing street art indoors.



Read our interview with Lizy and check out her reading picks.