Heather Doyle | Pratfalls of Parenting Ep 31


“We leapt because we knew we were capable of it”


Sculptor, educator, and founder of the Chicago Ave Fire Arts Center Heather Doyle talks about how being raised by a single dad and how his work as a builder and his willingness to let her participate in projects gave Heather early comfort with tools and making things. How growing up near Franconia sculpture garden gave her an early interest in large-scale design and building. She talks about some of her early projects building furniture for her bedroom as a child and how it showed her there is more than one way to use a tool.

“It was really powerful for me to have a teacher say ‘what do you want to learn?’”

Heather talks about how exciting it is to not only have a passion for building sculpture but also to learn she could share that passion with students. And about finding ways to use public art projects to address social and community needs.

“I love watching that light bulb moment for kids, or for anyone”

She shares how her awareness of the importance of learning how to work safely around large potentially dangerous tools and incredibly hot temperatures translates into wanting her daughters to not feel overprotected or afraid to experiment with ideas. And how much building and making her daughters engage in as a result of her work at the Fire Arts center and the amount of time they spend there.

“I have three things I use my stern voice about: food, sleep, and safety”

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