Thinking back on ARTFEST the best part of it was being there with my aunt and sister. We have never done anything like that before and it went really well. Spending time in the cottage enjoying the view watching eagles fly through the sky was a treat (The photo with the trees is the view out our window). Of course I had to leave to go to class. On the 3rd day I took a class from Carla Sonheim on drawing and collage. It was very relaxed and fun. I don't have any projects because much of it was quick line drawings that were thrown out at the end of class. Late night in our little cottage was the best time when we all laid in bed and remembered back on the day, we would talk until each of us drifted off to sleep often in mid sentence. It was a once in a life time adventure.
Day 2 with Stephanie Lee, a palette knife and a wonderful class room. To me being in the class room was my favorite part huge paint covered tables, tall windows with old rippled glass the smell of paint and turpentine. We were unable to use a brush, pencil, chalk or any other supply except the palette knife until 1 hour before the class was over. It was a challenge. I glued prints of photographs I had taken and painted over them. The fun part was scrapping the paint off revealing the image below. I enjoyed taking a razor blade and sand paper to my painting once it was dry and scrubbing the surface, I liked how the texture changed and how the images changed. This class was very difficult for me I am not a painter I just smeared paint on the canvas and moved it around. I don't know how often I'll use a palette knife in the future but I enjoyed the day with Stephanie and consider it a good learning experience.
I'll start at the beginning since there is so much to remember and I am still a swirling twirling jumble. ARTFEST was a wonderful experience for me. I can't say at this point what was my favorite part but I really did like being there with my sister and my aunt. Although they were working and at times the tension ran high I was able to separate myself from that and I still had a great time. Day one was a class with Nina Bagley making a wall hanging jewelry display. All three of us took the class and it was so fun and relaxing to sew, visit and be together. In the afternoon Nina read poetry to us and it reminded me of grade school when my teacher use to read stories to us I loved it. Working with fabric, thread and a needle is my cup of tea and so this class was a great warm up for getting my creative juices flowing.
Friday and I've lost track of time. ARTFEST has been absolutely wonderful and I am enjoying every moment of it. The little cottage my sister rented is great those windows in the back ground look right out on water. It is so peaceful to watch the sunset and boats sail by although I've been so busy I've spent little time at the cottage. Today I am taking a class from Stephanie Lee and learning how to paint with a palette knife, so far I have more paint on my hands than any where else but it has been fun. I am just taking a quick break to post this and have to run to class, will update you all with more photos and info when I have more time.
I've spent this week-end getting ready for ARTFEST. I leave on Wednesday, meeting my aunt and my sister, having a girls week-end with the bonus of doing art work. My sister is teaching two classes there this year and my aunt is her assistant, it is a work weekend for them but fun and games for me. Taking a break from the packing I went for a walk in the hills. I kept my eyes wide opened for the beautiful blue bird I had seen the week before but he was no where in sight. In place of the bird was the most delicate blue butterfly who I chased for many minutes hoping for the right moment to capture it on film but it was not to be. Some memories must be left for the mind-now I wonder what next blue creature I'll see that will bring me a sense of mystery. How I love the out doors and the surprises it holds.
"Nature is man's teacher. She unfolds her treasures to his search, unseals his eye, illumes his mind, and purifies his heart; an influence breathes from all the sights and sounds of her existence." alfred billings street
A week from today I'll be at ARTFEST and I'm only now getting ready. I spent part of the morning running errands following a list I had made earlier in the week trying to get organized. Out and about I remembered it was Friday and snapped a quick photo of myself-one that shows off that deep crease between my eyebrows. It is always there good mood or bad, stress or no stress. My mind has frozen itself at the age physically of about 38 and so it is difficult to look in the mirror and see the reflection of who I am now. Taking these pictures are helping because I do truly like the person I am and want to accept the whole package.
A new camera has arrived in our house. I had a point and shoot camera that has been a trooper and been a great little camera but I was wanting more. Not feeling advanced enough to go with an SLR I got another point and shoot camera but with a bigger zoom, lower light capability, and more features on it than my old camera. I felt guilty this morning leaving my trusty little camera behind as I went out to play with my new toy. But as I explored with the zoom and practiced with the dials and the macro I soon forgot my guilt. There is so much to learn and the instructions are rather vague I guess they expect people to already know what they are doing when they buy the camera-but not me. I'll just have to keep practicing and you will all have to bare with me as I do so.
It is a beautiful spring day here in the Lilylovekin home. The sun is shinning and it is a warm sun, there is no wind and the air is full of bird song. I am celebrating because my test is over and as you all told me I passed. The release of the stress has left me drowsy and relaxed. Also the time change took away an hour of sleep. When I got home from my test I went for a walk around the neighborhood admiring the many gardens all coming to life. Tulips are such a bright and happy flower I love them, they remind me of home. I grew up near Holland Michigan where every year they have a huge tulip festival. I have a few bulbs in my yard and am amazed every year when they poke their heads up and return to visit me. Today is a day for celebration.
When I was at an Artful Journey we spent one evening doing Soul Collage. It is a fun, creative and relaxing process. That night we were lead through a guided meditation of the energy fields in our body. When we were done we were to make collage cards choosing images that spoke to us emotionally not aesthetically. At first this was difficult for me and then I began going for the bright colors (unusual for me). I decided I would throw the cards away when I was done and just have fun. One card I went crazy with playing with the bright magic markers and moving my hands alot. It seemed as if I was buzzing inside. After a while I settled down a little and made a card that I really liked and did not throw away but keep hanging in my studio to remind me of the wonderful weekend I had in the misty woods full of energy and life.
I'm posting a self portrait of myself sitting at the kitchen table studying away. I've been practicing at becoming comfortable with who I am and part of that involves being comfortable with what I look like. How long have I looked in the mirror and not really seen myself, it is time to start looking. And so photos- it is difficult to do but at Ninas suggestion over at Ornamental I'm going to try and post a self portrait every Friday. This is for me, not as vanity but as a way of getting to know myself better.
So involved I am with studying for my up coming test that I've totally forgotten that I'm going to ARTFEST in less than 3 weeks. If any one has been to an art retreat they know it takes much planning to pack supplies and get ready to go away. I've hardly looked at the supply lists for my classes-one more thing for me to stress about. So instead of stressing this weekend, I'm going to think of relaxing things like the green hillsides above our town. They are so beautiful this time of year, so green they hurt your eyes to look at them, later on they turn a golden brown. I'm going to quite worrying about the test on Sunday having faith that I will pass. When I stress I'm going to take myself to the green hills, slow down and remember to breath. I hope you all have a good week-end.
Every 2 years I have to renew a certificate in order to keep working. It always makes me nervous because I have to memorize charts, numbers, and lists and repeat them out loud back to people. I do ok on written test but do not do to well in live situations. So this week I am studying and studying and studying some more. Every time I put the books down I feel guilty and afraid so I pick them back up until I am just staring at the pages. My brain is mush. I did take a break and took a walk and these are some of the images that I captured. It is amazing to me how easy it is for me to remember colors, or shapes, the feel of the wind but yet I have such a difficult time remembering technical things. Don't come to me if you have a pulseless heart!!!!!
She invites us to lay our eye level with her smallest leaf and take an insect view of its plain.
The busy bee, so intent on gathering pollen he did not mind me getting close with my camera. Look at his heavy legs, I hope he can fly back to his hive. Spring is a busy active time of year. I prefer the laid back chill of autumn. But must admit the sun is nice after days of rain. To you folk who are still under blankets of snow the spring cannot come soon enough. Every season unique i its gifts to be enjoyed, that what keeps life interesting.
Opening up, the experience of sharing with someone else. Having a problem recognizing it and than working on it can be a long and difficult process. Yesterday stepping through the fear I started working on some problems that are close to my heart. Today I am exhausted from the fear, the tears, sadness, some joy and finally hope. I am amazed at what I learn when I think I know it all, I think I've figured it all out and than there is a new twist. What touches my heart can stop me still. Grief is powerful and all consuming and can break ones heart. But once the heart is broken it can be repaired with more room than ever for more love and tenderness. Grace is with me today allowing me to love with an open heart.
New toys to play with, things I purchased recently at the retreat I attended. I met many wonderful women, one being Lorri Scott a woman who owns an esty store LAS fibers and sells beautiful ribbons-check it out. I also purchased a wonderful porcelain egg, it goes perfectly with the ribbons I bought and I am already thinking about how I can put it together into a necklace. The egg is sold through the esty store of Starcatcher and she has eggs of all colors and sizes, they are beautiful. Heading into the unknown is scary for me and that is where I have to go today. I've learned that often the anticipation is much worse than the actual experience so this morning I am trying not to give it too much energy. It is hard to stay calm when my insides want to panic but I know I'll be happy when the evening is here and all is over with.
A spring time walk, climbing up the hills that sit above my town. The hills this time of year are bright green, lush and full of moisture. The path oozing mud and trickling a miniature stream. How I love to see the yellow mustard painted so brilliantly against the grassy background. It was a perfect day for a walk, no wind, beautiful blue skies, and the warm sun on my back. Mushrooms were the object of affection for the day. They were growing in abundance, enjoying the moisture and the warm weather. It fills my heart to breath the fresh air to forget my troubles and lose myself in the wonders of this earth. My heart is full tonight.