As the owner of Neighborhood Art Studios, Preeti Dhillon has worked closely with individuals and groups of all ages in her community. She has fostered a love of art and creative expression. Through classes and workshops, Neighborhood Art Studios has cultivated a strong network of aspiring artists eager to engage with and contribute to their community’s artistic identity. Each brushstroke and creative pursuit has guided her to where she stands today.

Despite facing setbacks, such as maintaining a constant income stream and creative blocks, Preeti embraces every opportunity that crosses her path through trial and error. Her resilience during challenging times and willingness to learn and adapt have shaped who she is today—embracing continuous learning, exploration, and seizing opportunities, never shying away from trying to pursue different ventures.

“I draw inspiration from the women leaders and entrepreneurs in my circle who motivate me to push harder, believe in myself, and strive for success,” Preeti reveals. “Their achievements fuel my ambition, showing me that if they can do it, so can I. Amid the vulnerability of the COVID era, I embraced creative avenues and delved into painting, a newfound passion.” 

This venture led to numerous commissions, a realm Preeti has never explored.

“The support and inspiration from my friends transformed Covid’s challenges into a blessing, enabling me to discover and excel in my creative pursuit. As a passionate art educator, the closure of teaching during the COVID-19 pandemic gave me time to focus on my artistic expression. This period of self-discovery and creation has resulted in an influx of commissioned projects. With the unwavering support of my friends, I honed my skills. I evolved this newfound endeavor into a successful business venture, marking a transformative journey during a challenging time.” 

As an art instructor and educator, Preeti motivates young women and girls to pursue their passion for art and embrace their uniqueness. “I prioritize passion, dedication, eagerness to learn, openness to feedback, and a genuine desire to grow and excel in my students’ artistic journeys. I value mutual respect, collaboration, and a shared commitment to uplifting and empowering each other in our creative pursuits.”

Preeti has developed her leadership confidence and voice through artistic exploration, continuous learning, embracing challenges, and standing boldly in her creative vision. “Through years of honing my craft as an artist, educator, business owner, and advocate for the arts, I have found the courage to lead with authenticity, passion, and fearless dedication. I am committed to making a meaningful impact in the artistic community.”

Preeti delegated tasks, practiced time management techniques, and communicated openly with her team to maintain a healthy work-life balance. “Striving for harmony between work commitments and personal well-being allows me to be present and engaged in both aspects of my life, fostering overall fulfillment. As a South Asian woman in the art business, I embarked on a journey of raising awareness within my community. I showcased the uniqueness of my art—breaking stereotypes; I promoted custom paintings as a personal expression, paving the path to success by challenging norms and embracing my community.”

With aspirations to enter the art industry and run businesses, Preeti offers the following advice:

1. Believe in Your Talent: Have confidence in your artistic abilities and vision by embracing your unique creative voice as strengths that set you apart in art.

2. Seek Mentorship and Support: Surround yourself with mentors, peers, and allies who can guide, encourage, and share knowledge to build a supportive network for navigating art business challenges and opportunities.

3. Embrace the Entrepreneurial Spirit: Explore innovative ways to showcase and market your art. Take calculated risks, learn from failures, and strive for growth and success.

4. Challenge Gender Stereotypes: Break barriers that hinder women’s participation in the art business.

Preeti believes that balancing leadership and life as a woman requires strategic delegation. “Effective time management and nurturing self-care practices, prioritizing tasks, setting boundaries, and seeking support ensure harmony in both realms. I ensure I set boundaries, prioritize self-care, and manage my time effectively.” 

As we celebrate Mother’s Day this May, Preeti reflects on her mother’s unwavering love and sacrifices during her upbringing. Now, more than ever, she appreciates her endless support, guidance, and strength to navigate life’s challenges.

“What I adore most about my mom, a fellow artist, is her creative spirit and unwavering determination to pursue her passion,” Preeti reminisces. “Her artistic talent, resilience, and commitment to her craft fill me with immense pride and inspire my artistic journey. I thank her for her unwavering love, endless support, and boundless sacrifices.”

Now, being a mother is a transformative journey for Preeti. She has learned the profound value of patience, accepted that things may not always work as planned, and reaffirmed the importance of self-belief. She has discovered the depth of her teachings and values in guiding and teaching her children.