An Artist's Quest

The Next Big Thing

My Favorite Shoes

My Favorite Shoes

The School year is beginning to wind down here in the west where school starts in mid August and ends in late May. My whole life I have been tied to a school schedule. My father was a teacher and school administrator and I am a teacher and parent so to me summer means – change of pace,  a chance to breathe. I am deeply involved with one week of summer camp here at the Ranch but other than that I float around the edges, and that’s fine with me. It still annoys me a bit that my husband’s pace doesn’t slow during summer and in fact gets more intense but after 18 years of conflicting schedules I have just begun to find my own way. I like the way that working in schools gives a natural beginning and ending each year with space for reflection, and with the new school year a new beginning a new chance to create and inspire. This year is particularly poignant as the beginning of a very big ending is barreling my way. My only child will graduate from high school in a couple of weeks; he’ll spend the summer with working and hanging with friends then off to college on the east coast in the fall. I look to the beginning of the end with a mix of joy and sadness. I’ll miss my sweet boy in my life everyday but I am thrilled for his adventure ahead. And while part of me grieves for this ending another part rejoices for the beginning of a beginning that is just ahead. Now I’ll be an empty nester! What will I do with this new identity? I feel a strong urge to step out into something new as I launch my son I want to launch myself. For practical reasons I still need to work my two jobs as elementary art teacher in Healdsburg and resident artist at The Bishop’s Ranch but there is an itch to branch out.

I have set my sights on a new form of teaching. I am developing a online class that I hope to offer by mid to late July. The first class will be a basic introduction to the ArtRage app that I have been using for much of my art this past year, and then I intend to develop some art journaling classes using the app. I took an online class from Jane LaFazio, who is a remarkably prolific art journal and mix media artist and teacher extraordinaire (Jane’s Blog), I took her introduction to watercolor art journaling class and used my iPad instead of traditional medium to see how that felt and to get some inspiration and tips (the shoe painting is from that class). I found it immensely helpful, and am working hard this summer to get my own classes launched so let me know what you think and any online class suggestions you might have would be lovely. I’m going to try to get back on the weekly or more blog posting pony… thanks for coming with me on the ride as I approach some awesome endings and beginnings I’m glad you’re out there.

5 responses

  1. Jane

    How I hate it when one finally has to admit that those favorite shoes can no longer be worn!
    It’s very like becoming an empty nester; you know it’s time and the right thing but it is a bitter sweet good bye to the old and move on to the new.
    I confess when we became empty nesters it was exciting and fun, but at the same time we took a few months to ‘break in our new shoes’. All the boundaries and choices changed. We were surprized to discover just how much we took for granted as normal, was suddenly up for review. Before you leap into a new activity I encourage you to ‘walk’ a little in your ‘new footwear’ to play and test out the fit before you start on a full blown hike.

    May 16, 2014 at 2:03 pm

    • Jane, what a wise woman you are to link the worn shoes to the empty nest… I didn’t even get that it sent electric tingles down my neck as I read your post such a wonderful yet unconscious connection, I will try to take you advise on wearing the new shoes a bit before I start to run!

      May 16, 2014 at 2:08 pm

  2. thanks for the mention, Lisa! I really look forward to your ipad class, I loved your work in my class!

    May 16, 2014 at 2:15 pm

    • Well I meant what I said it was a pleasure to learn with you and hone a few skills as they apply to the iPad.

      May 16, 2014 at 2:17 pm

  3. Carol Jones

    Hi Lisa: Love this latest iPad painting. Look forward to more news about your proposed online classes. This seems to be the way to go now, enabling artists the opportunity of taking workshops at home. Noted you are going to be quite busy at Create in Seattle later this year. I gave two kelp workshops at A&S, Portland in April and will be giving 3 workshops at the next Retreat in March, 2014. Enjoy your summertime. Carol

    Sent from my iPad


    May 16, 2014 at 2:17 pm

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