all my kits are put together and shipped, i'm finishing up samples and handouts. still need to organize and pack. i'll definately be working up until the very end. but that is so typical for me. it reminds me of myself in college; when we were going to have a test i would study and study, and never feel quite prepared, like there was always more to do, things i didn't get to or do well enough. i'm starting to think it's a sickness, ha!
this was a demo piece i did in the collaged faces class at art and soul - painting a boy is very unusual for me. i like him. And here are a few spreads in my sample for the "Explore" fabric journal class I'm teaching on monday in houston:
May all beings be peaceful. May all beings be happy. May all beings be safe. May all beings awaken to the light of their true nature. May all beings be free.
Thank you so very much to all of you who put out postive and loving energy and hopes for a peaceful resolution to our "situation". In this case, no news is good news, and we feel hopeful that things have made a shift in a good way for our river and relations with our neighbor. The letter Walter wrote was received (we had a tracking number) and the new boundary stakes that he and a friend put down have not be torn out. We both feel good about it, and hopeful about the future relations.
There is nothing that makes my heart sing like spending time with the grandkids.Ethan was with his biological mom this weekend which is why his smiling little face is missing. One of their favorite things to do here is walk to visit the (other) neighbors' horses. We stop and pick plenty of apples in the orchard for them on the way.
And then they do a little riding on their horse when we get back to the house...
I have another very full week coming up. I'm working hard to get ready for the International Quilt Festival in Houston, but the end is now in sight, and I will be prepared when I get on the plane next Sunday.
This has been a full year for me, rich, and intense for me in so many ways. I feel blessed to have been able to do a LOT of two of the things i dearly love - creating art and teaching, and my life is constantly being enriched by all those I meet along the way, leaving their mark forever imprinted on my heart. I feel deep gratitude for this beautiful ride I'm on, and will enjoy it for as long as it lasts. I am also feeling tired and near worn out and am looking forward to the 4 months coming up when I have free time to do those things I've put on the back burner.
I don't usually take classes at the venues where I teach. I've found I need to conserve my energy so I can put everything into my teaching, and that works out the best for me. But I do also feel the intense desire to take classes from teachers that inspire me and whose work I admire and to continue my self-directed art educationin a relaxed way with other creatives.
So today, with Walter's blessing and encouragement, I signed up to go on a 5 day retreat with Stewart Cubley who facilitates workshops across the globe in his intuitive method called The Painting Experience. Several years ago, a painter friend took one of his workshops and told me I must take one some day, that the experience changed her life and her art. Go here to see a video of the painting process we'll be doing.
A couple days ago, when I happened to notice that this workshop was being held at the Esalen Institute in Big Sur California, a place I've never been but have longed to go to for 30+ years. It just seemed like it was meant to be. So in addition to 5 days of intuitive painting, painting big, I'll also be soaking in Esalen's hot springs pools, doing yoga and movement in the morning, eating nourishing homemade meals, and taking walks along the beautiful Pacifc coast. They have several massage therapists and body workers on staff so intend to arrange for a massage while I'm there as well. This trip happens to fall over Christmas and is a big splurge for me, a gift to myself. It feels so good to have my family supporting and encouraging me to do it.
I want to extend a thankyou to all who left comments on my latest blog posts - i appreciate all who come and visit, whether you leave a comment or not. i had intended to go through photos of my other two classes as Art and Soul and put up samples but getting ready for Houston and unexpected events here along the river have occupied all my time. I won't get into specifics here but I will say that there has been trespassing, tree-cutting, and malicious vandalism done on our property to some of our wonderous trees. For those of you who know me or have been reading my blog for any amount of time, know that my heart resides on this land, in the forest, the river, the stones, so this situation has been gut-wrenching for me and i'm having a difficult time keeping my balance.
After feeling intense rage for the first couple days, i now feel heartbroken and sad and am having a hard time just coping. We know who has done it, the authorities have been called and have come out and documented it, we have a lawyer that is lined up to take on the case if necessary. walter has written a letter to 'them" in a firm but very civil tone stating exactly what will be done if any of these things happen again - including any harassment -and also saying that if they will just abide by the legal description of our land description, observing our boundaries, we will forgive everything done up till this point and no legal actions will be taken.
some people are easy to deal with - reasonable, kind, and neighborly. Others, challenge every cell in my body to stay on the high ground and keep my center. Most of us can't pick our neighbors, we just try to learn to live together. A spiritual teacher i once had told me the difficult people are our best teachers. i hope i can keep my heart open to learn the lessons. I would now ask a favor please, that you keep this lovely land in your thoughts and prayers, that not another tree is harmed, or animal. that these people will be reasonable and learn to be neighborly, and that my tears will soon turn to laughter and i will find my balance again. xoxo
I'm home now from a wonderful 5 days spent in Portland at Art and Soul. The students, the energy they brought to the class, and their finished work were all were sources of inspiration for me, and I feel proud and grateful to have been a part of their creative process.
I'm going to set up photo albums with photos of the students and their work but I'll give you samples of each, divided into three seperate blog entries. Here are pieces from the Faces in Collage class. Like all of my classes, they were a mix of beginners and more seasoned artists. Many of them consider these works unfinished and plan on doing more on them when they get home. A few folks got away before I got photos.
I'm really in the thick of busyness right now, as I leave again in less than 3 weeks for the International Quilt Festival in Houston. Lesly Riley, would heads up the Mixed Media Section of Festival classes, invited me to come there to the event and teach so I have three big classes to prepare kits, handouts, and gather supplies for. I will also be an 'onsite working artist' on Friday Oct 31 for Cloth Paper Scisors, in the Festival area where they set up for working artists and teaching demos in their popular "Make It University". I know it's going to be a very full, inspiring, and interesting week for me, I'm feeling excited. So, aside from posting photos of the other two classes I taught at Art and Soul, you won't be hearing from me much here until after I get back from TX the first part of November.
Finally, after having spent the past couple weeks working feverishly at times putting together kits and supplies, working on 2009 teaching proposals and samples, doing my shopping, gathering clothes and assorted things I'll need over the coarse of days, making some art to sell at vendor's night (only a very small collection - i just ran out of time) I'm ready to load up the car for my drive to Portland tomorrow for Art and Soul. "The car", christened Oscar by dear friend Alex, in honor of one of our favorite writers, Oscar Wilde, is a 1990 maroon, velvet lined Buick Park Avenue that was at one time when the car was nearly new and my parents still alive, their "Sunday" car. It was the car they kept garaged during the week, saving it for those special events on Sunday like going to church, then on to visit relatives or friends for an afternoon of visiting which sometimes included supper.
When they sang together, the world became crystal clear and her life spontaneously had meaning and purpose.
When we travel together, Oscar carries countless memories with us , many from those last years of my parents lives. Like the one glaring cigarette hole that mars the velvet front passenger seat, when my dad, absent-minded, dropped his glowing cigarette on the seat while we were on our way to the nursing home to see my mother, his beloved, after her massive stroke - the first time ever he had broken her "no smoking in the car" rule. So many memories. And loads of them make me smile - like when the car is crammed with beloved art buddies who have traveled from afar to attend one of these west coast events and we're making our way to dinner, a fabric store, a thrift store, another destination.
Sure the Buick is old, it's paint is rusting in lots of places now, the passenger window control is broken, there is no odometer, the mileage meter stopped years ago, and one of the back doors periodically goes through weeks at a time when it refuses to budge, then out of the blue works again, pretending there was never a problem. But these inevitable changes come to both Oscar and me as we age, and I find comfort in going through mine with "him".
So, until I get back with stories to tell and photos to share, I wish for you all a beautiful, creative, and peaceful mind. xo