Thursday, October 15, 2009

Art and Soul

How do I do credit in words the experience that is Art and Soul. A week of art shared with friends, both old and new, is beyond the ability of words to describe. There is an incredible atmosphere of creativity and peace. A complete separation from the world outside and for the moment, there is only art amidst the company of your own kind. It's a bit like breathing rarified air and feeling the energy of shared experience bring your body back to life.
The retreat began with guest speaker, Danny Gregory, whose words inspired me so much, that I later journaled on his thoughts on art. Some of his quotes that struck me were, "Drawing is a record of a journey my eyes take. A record of an observation. A slow deliberate journey with a pen". He stated that art is spelled with a small "a", but it can rewire the brain and change a life. Drawing is "in the moment but out of time - a meditation" It causes you to see life for "what it is" and focuses on what is real and not the "demons of fantasy" He said to appreciate beauty and the conciousness of the task at hand. He ended by saying "be good to you". He is an amazing man who began journaling to understand the why of his wife's injury in a freak subway accident that left her partially paralyzed and has a huge following on his Yahoo group, Everyday Matters.

My focus this year was to take classes to improve my painting skills. I began my week with a class from Katie Kendrick, Tales from the Land of Odd. She is such a talented artist and teacher and led us in creating three canvases using the works of known artists to inspire us to create our own works of art. As a watercolor artist, it is very difficult to switch from my medium to acylic, painting from dark to light instead of light to dark. But Katie pushed each of us to experiment and the paintings produced in class by the students were amazing.

The face I completed in Misty Mawn's class. I was happy with it as a first attempt.

Misty's journal cover

My next class was a two day class with Misty Mawn, another talented instructor in which we learned to paint a face and put together a luscious painted journal 7" wide and 20" tall. We learned a wealth of background techniques in the class and she was very generous in the supplies and ephermera she provided. Unfortunately, my asthma kept me from attending the second day of class, and I was disappointed to have missed even a moment of this class.

DJ during class demo.

My journal cover partially finished.

My third class was a two day class with DJ Pettitt and she led us in creating a journal out of fabric and modeling past that was amazing. I felt like I had hit a grand slam with these instructors. They were incredible.
Glenda with her completed copper repousse box.

On Sunday, I was blessed with five wonderful women who joined me in my Copper Repousse class. They were all amazing artists and we laughed and chatted through the class as we created the repousse to mount on our display boxes. As you can see, their work was amazing.

Marie Kennedy with her completed box

All too soon, it was over and I had to return to my "ordinary" life. But the memories made during this week will last a lifetime. Next post: Apifera Farm

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