Felicity Cavanough has been working seven days a week for the last few months.
"When you're working for yourself as an artist, there are no guarantees of income," she said.
"You need focus and determination to back yourself and continue to aim to be represented in exhibitions nationally."
Ms Cavanough has recently finished exhibiting at Sculptures on the Farm in Dungog and Sculptures in the Garden here in Mudgee. People may recognise her work from the Mudgee Hospital, where her black tie wire sculpture of two hands, titled Letting Go, adorns the first floor wall near the maternity unit.
Besides winning national awards for her sculptures and completing commissions, Ms Cavanough also runs her art school Art By You Mudgee and does NDIS work with clients. Ms Cavanough runs eight weeks of art classes during school terms for school aged children, as well as Saturday classes for adults and families.
One to two times a month Ms Cavanough also holds scheduled events and workshops, as well as private group sessions for locals and visitors and work Christmas parties.
"Mudgee has provided me with a space to flourish in my career, and allowed me to develop a service to offer the community," she said.
"If you offer something unique, it can really inspire people to join in and try something new."
Ms Cavanough's participation in the community began when she moved to the Mudgee region 12 years ago and her child started preschool.
"I started volunteering to do art making activities at the preschool once or twice a month, and that continued as my children became older and I started volunteering at St Matthew's school," Ms Cavanough said.
"I also volunteered my skills for smaller businesses and end of year concerts. Mudgee offers a lot of opportunities to be involved both with children and the broader community."
Five years ago, Ms Cavanough started holding her classes and workshops in the space above Albys and Esters Cafe on Market Street, and found it to be a central space where exhibitions of local artists were also displayed in the cafe itself. Ms Cavanough believes that Mudgee is very supportive of the creative arts community and that exhibitions, free activities and youth services have grown immensely over this time.
... people feel that the artmaking process is like their therapy.- Felicity Cavanough
"It is so fulfilling for me to do this kind of work in the community, but I believe it also benefits the community immensely to have so many programs on offer for both youth and adults alike," she said.
Ms Cavanough remembers a key moment during one of her workshops some years ago, when a woman who was a farmer shared her feedback.
"She said that it was the first time in ten years that she wasn't worried about the farm, wasn't worried about the money coming in, her budgets and her duties," Ms Cavanough said.
"It's a regular comment that I get, that people feel that the artmaking process is like their therapy."
Ms Cavanough offers a range of craft and art making styles in her workshops and classes, to appeal to a wide audience.
"People may recognise my signature style of delicate copper wire sculptures, but I love painting, working with colours and textures, and I have had incredibly popular workshops making things like succulent wreaths for Christmas," she said.
Ms Cavanough can be contacted for further information on commissions, workshops, classes and events through her social media pages Art By You Mudgee.