I’m on a bit of a new journey professionally. In the last year or so I have become more connected with the quilt guild world. They are an organized bunch and set aside time and money for speakers and teachers. Now I’m doing a bit of travel in Northern California mostly, to share my talents and hopefully inspire others to try new things in fabric and surface design. I have two lecture/trunk shows that I do; one is a surface design for fabric artists overview and the other is a deeper dive into designing your own fabric using photos taken with a smart phone. I’ll be sharing these techniques in Fort Bragg with the Ocean Wave Quilters and I felt like I needed another example for them to touch and see. To that end I started wandering around The grounds of The Bishop’s Ranch looking for inspiration (if you have been here you know that’s not hard to find). The lushness of the saucer-sized nasturtium leaves grabbed my attention first and and snapped a few close up photos. Then the bright and happy calendula flower beckoned next. The green and yellow orange spoke to me of bursting new life and an idea began to form. How about a mandala of spring life? The butterfly that had been fluttering around the edges confirmed my suspicion that I was on the right track and asked to be included in my design. I took my photos home played with them a bit in a few of my favorite photo manipulation apps then printed my designs right on my home printer within minutes I had my own fabric to begin designing my backyard mandala. Thankfully my son has a math brain and with a bit of calculating he easily helped me figure out the angle I needed to create an octagon. A lot of machine stitching later and some sore fingers from embroidery stitching through lots of layers I finished my ode to spring.
Take a moment today to acknowledge the wonder of nature around you, Find some way to let it influence your day and allow creation to sing it’s sweet song in your ear.
I have creative mixed media classes coming to spark your artistic fire and fuel new ways to make and create go to my website to see more.
I’m teaching a two-day Encaustic Collage workshop this weekend at The Bishop’s Ranch where I am the Resident Artist. This class is one I’ve taught many times, so I have a good idea of how to organize the space and materials for success. One thing that I think makes everybody happy is to have things arranged and ready to get creative. While the creative process itself can sometimes feel magical and loose, for me at least, the magic comes from having everything in order, so my mind is free to be inspired. I try hard to give that balance to my students too, I want everything to be at their fingertips with stimulating materials and careful demos to guide them to finding their genuine, creative voice in a new medium. Wish me and my 12 art adventurers luck!
In the busy mix of the weekend I’ll try to take some action shots of my students at work to share at the end of the weekend. Hope you make some time for your creative self too!
Somehow I can’t keep up with my life these days; well that’s not quite true, I’m keeping up but just barely. Workshops are happening, my work at The Bishop’s Ranch is happening but I feel stuck in quick sand, I’m running but it feels more like slogging. I keep thinking I’ll get caught up – today is the day – and then the next day is the same. I’ll keep trying – I promised to blog more but bare with me. I want to keep you in the loop about what I’m up too so….
This weekend I taught this weekend at The Bishop’s Ranch my Winter Creative Workshop. It was all about making art papers and making personal, artful gifts and cards with the stenciled, stamped and sprayed papers, take a peek:
But wait there’s more! I’m having a Studio Sale December 1st-3rd, here is a preview and a link to details STUDIO SALE… PLEASE COME AND INVITE FRIENDS:
Still MORE! Commit to your creative self in 2017 come make art with ME! WORKSHOP INFO
Happy Valentine’s Day friends! I did this lesson with not long ago and I thought I’d share it with you for Valentine’s Day. I crammed a lot into the lesson with this kindergarten class but they really got it – I showed them Kandinsky’s Concentric Circles – which lead to defining the word concentric – then since Valentines was on the way we decided to do concentric hearts. I showed them the color wheel and shared the idea of hot and cold colors. I gave them the rules- 1. they had to draw concentric shapes; 2. they had to separate hot and cold colors. Then off to the art tables first to draw then to paint. They loved what they made and I loved watching them I hope you love it too! Have a love filled, creative day!
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.