From Decorative Artist to Staging Diva, with Debra Gould

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Episode 007

The Guest: Staging Diva Debra Gould

The Host Artist: Carol McQuaid

The Bar – The New Oxford, Yaletown

From Decorative Artist to Staging Diva, Debra Gould

This week’s episode features Marketing Guru, Decorative Artist and Staging Diva Debra Gould

We’ll hear about what drove her to step away from a thriving career in marketing and communications in the heart of Toronto to explore her creative yearnings in a tiny town the gulf islands, and how those well honed business skills refused to lie dormant for very long.  She’s the home staging expert that CNN and the Wall Street Journal call on when they want to know what’s happening in the industry, and she’s taught over 30,000 students how to grow their own successful staging careers.

Let’s head to the New Oxford and listen in as Debra and I talk about developing a home décor line, raising a child and building an online empire, all at the same time.  We’ll talk about:

  • how Staging Diva began
  • Debra’s first art commission: “My 15 year old self was bribing the vice principle with art so I could take more art classes!
  • On single parenting and running a business: While running a thriving business a colleague asked what was the most important thing she would teach her daughter.  It was that moment that she realized her life was about to completely change.  “It was really clear to me our kids don’t learn from what we tell them; they learn from watching us.”
  • packing up her business and her Toronto life and moving herself and her daughter to Salt Spring Island
  • creating a line of beautiful floor cloths and custom home accessories
  • journeys of self-reinvention: the moments where we doubt, almost run back to old lives and old ways, and how to power through them
  • creating an annual studio tour in Victoria that still runs today
  • building websites and smart art marketing ideas
  • arranging media opportunities for herself and other artists. “I always leveraged these things, but they came about because I always put myself out there.”

The Staging Diva:

Debra’s Website:

Debra’s latest creative project, Surface and textile pattern design Instagram:








About the author, Carol

I love creating big cityscapes in paint and print. I travel around the world painting, teaching and doing art residencies. I meet artists everywhere, and I love bringing their stories to you on “Two Artists Walk into a Bar” podcast.

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