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Katie is an author and artist based in Barcelona. Also a coach and expressive arts therapist she is particularly interested in the arts as a vehicle for expression and understanding.

Katie is the co-author of “Moderate Becoming Good Later” (Summersdale 2023) which captures her brother Toby’s story of adventure and overcoming loss as he kayaked around the Shipping Forecast. 

As a painter Katie works mainly in acrylic, although also uses print, collage and mixed-media. Although her art work has taken a back seat while she’s been writing the book, she hopes to share some new paintings soon. 

In 2015 Katie founded Step Up Create a company that connects business and the arts though training, coaching and consulting.

The long, unexpected route to becoming an author

Katie studied Drama at the University of Bristol, before completing a masters in Legal Studies at the same university. She did her Legal Practice Course at the College of Law in London then joined a small defamation practice as a paralegal.

Taking the opportunity to work abroad, she moved to Brussels and spent 6 months as a stagier at the European Commission. From there, she moved to Madrid where she lived for 9 years, progressing from marketing and coordination work at a law firm, to Head of International Communications at ESADE Business School.  

Having spent so much time finding and telling stories about Masters in Business Administration, she completed one herself, graduating from ESADE’s Executive MBA in 2011. A year after her father died sudenly.

A promotion following the MBA made her Regional Director of EMEA and India, where she traveled the world in a strategic role and moved her base to Barcelona. Keen to have a family, but unable to do so while spending so much time abroad, she left her position in 2014 and founded her company, Step Up Create. The company seeks to connect businesses to the power of the expressive arts though developing leadership, creativity and communication skills. 

Katie trained as a Co-active coach in 2016, while gaining extensive teaching experience in leading business schools. At the same time she be came Director of Communications and Brand for INCAE Business School in Costa Rica and Nicaragua. A post she held for two years before becoming pregnant with her first son, Llorenç.

While grappling with the challenges of pregnancy, becoming a new mum, and teaching, Katie started a Masters in Expressive Arts Therapy at IATBA in Barcelona.  Eleven weeks after the birth of Llorenç, her younger brother Marcus died of throat cancer. 

Katie finished her masters and continued to gain experience as a coach, facilitator and therapist. In 2018, pregnant with her second son, Max, she started a three-year programme in Gestalt Therapy. 

In January 2020, committed to growing her company, Katie rented a studio and training space across the road from her house. The joy of “a room of one’s own” was short-lived when the Global Pandemic started.  With Spain’s strict lockdown laws and two small children, she had to put most of her professional commitments on hold, but was able to reconnect with her art.

By the summer, with her other brother Toby’s encouragement she built her portfolio as an artist and started selling her paintings.  

2021 started strong for Katie, with plenty of coaching and teaching, but took a tragic turn as Toby was diagnosed with inoperable liver cancer. Finally able to travel, Katie spent the end of the year commuting between Spain and Cornwall, while still trying to run a business and be a good mum. 

In January 2022, Toby died having signed a contract to write a book about his journey around the Shipping Forecast. He had not been able to progress further with writing it than the proposal. This was an opportunity too good to miss and despite the immense loss Katie felt, and she decided to finish the book for him. 

As an avid reader, Katie had always expected to write a book, but would never have imagined it being “Moderate Becoming Good Later”.