Welcome to Sunshine in a Jar

Arts & Creativity with Jessica Outram

Sunshine in a Jar is a labour of love. Engaging in the arts is an act of presence, mindfulness, and tuning into the self. Creativity helps us to hear our own voices and to share our voices with others. We can reconnect to the freedom of being a child again through improvisation, creative exploration, and through living our questions.

About Sunshine in a Jar:

Engaging with the metaphor “sunshine in a jar” began nearly 20 years ago when it first appeared while writing a poem. Continuing to explore the phrase throughout a Master of Arts in Adult Education and Community Development at OISE through Arts-Informed inquiry deepened the relationship. The metaphor still inspires me today.

Photo by John Davidson

Current Bio:

Jessica Outram is Cobourg’s 4th Poet Laureate. She is a Métis writer and educator with roots in the Georgian Bay Métis Community. Since 2019, her mandate has been to honour and nurture Cobourg’s culturally dynamic community. Jessica not only encourages the reading and writing of poetry, she also aims to enrich our shared human experience with heartfelt contributions.

She is on the steering committee for the Northumberland Festival of the Arts, works with the SONG and SONGtech programs, sings in the Safe Harbour choir, and has been an active volunteer with Northumberland Players. Jessica has lived in Cobourg for over 10 years, working in Northumberland as Vice Principal at East Northumberland Secondary School in Brighton, as Principal of Colborne Public School and then Dr. GJ MacGillivray Public School in Courtice. In August, she began a new position: Principal of Indigenous Education, supporting all schools K-12 in Kawartha Pine Ridge District School Board.

As the owner of Creativity Coaching Canada she works with artists and writers to nurture their life’s work. Jessica has studied watercolour, acrylic, mixed media, and photography. She regularly offers creativity workshops that focus on attention and ways of noticing using the arts from a variety of forms, time periods, and locations. Jessica is co-host of Hummingbird, a podcast exploring creativity for writers and artists.


I’m a proud citizen of the Métis Nation of Ontario with roots in the Georgian Bay Métis Community from the Verified Métis family lines of Solomon and Berger/Beaudoin. It’s an honour to have the position in my family as the story keeper for our history. Georgian Bay and my family are a main source of inspiration. Writing about life by the water, the history that was hidden for so many years, and the ways of our grandparents helps me to better understand our family story. What a blessing to meet so many cousins through this blog!

Upcoming Books:

  • The Thing With Feathers (book of poetry), Early 2022, Piquant Press.

Available Books:

Creativity Coaching

In August of 2020, Creativity Coaching Canada opened with regular virtual classes and coaching services.

Arts and Creativity are a way to peace, joy, and healing. Everyone is naturally creative. Sometimes people forget how to notice where it lives inside them. I can help.

Check out the Hummingbird Podcast! We are having a lot of fun chatting about creativity each week.

Blogging Since 2007

Include in your visit to this site some time exploring the blog. Creativity, arts, and writing are ways to relax, recharge, and reconnect. Over the years it has become like a digital scrapbook cataloging the journey of creative energy over time.

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