Blissed out. ArtBLISS 2013

 

 Follow your bliss.

I know this J. Campbell wrote may be used overmuch – but it is a mantra for my chosen life and creative career. And it relates to the past weekend where I spent a blissful time with friends, old and new, creating, learning, experimenting, sharing and socializing. 

ArtBLISS 2013. 

Many heartfelt thanks to Cindy Wimmer and Jeanette Blix for the community they have created. Yes, its an art retreat; classrooms and a small sales venue. But its much more. Lifelong friendships are started, and nurtured. Support and encouragement offered freely. Inspiration and creativity are the daily norms.  

AB13

ArtBLISS faces

The only complaint – there arent enough hours in the day. Or night for that matter! So refreshing to meet faces that priviously had been a computer avatar. Equally satisfying – spending time with like minded people… 

AB 13 charm swap

The annual charm swap – gorgeous, diverse charms created and swapped amongst particpating students. Amazing packaging! Great work, a priceless momento. 

AB 13 polymer

Saturday I had the pleasure to work with Christine Damm for a second year. The pastels and crayons dazzled the eyes! Class mates Terri, and AJE teammates Karen and Diana working, each piece stirring new ideas… 

3 ring circus

Friday and Sunday I was taking class with Richard Salley and Jessica Papke. Two rings of their “Three Ring Circus” class series. It was so phenomenal… I am going to go a little more in depth into that experience in another post. Really. 

My Ab 13

My weekend’s treasures. A polymer work in progress – a palette, and a process to work with going forwards. The rings – as I said – the class was so rich, and so fantastic… and it carried extra weigth with me. I am giddy with pride at the results of my labors and so excited moving forwards. And yes – I am wearing them now – a talisman to keep in touch with the energy of the weekend. 

I will save my philosophical musings for another time – I have supplies to order, and artwork to create. Thank you one and all for making the weekend so magical!

 

Curves….

Hello my Focus on Life photo/journey/challenge compatriots. I usually post on Instagram – altho I missed a few, and dont get to interact with you too much. I am usually teaching ceramics class every Saturday morning, and never seem to get a post written ahead of time… Please follow my pix on FB, and Instagram, and here – when I can. 

(The scoop on Focus on Life can be found here for those of you that are curious.)

I spent last Sunday with a group of Stunners. Thats the Pre-Raphaelite term for their gorgeous ideal woman, their muse, that inhabit their paintings. I also spent time with real life beauties – my friends that accompanied me to the exhibit! It was a lovely day, hard to describe. The artwork touches a deep place in my heart and soul. It was wonderful to share the exhibit with like minded people. I ended the day feeling full, happy, sated, inspired, exhausted, euphoric…. 

Here are pix from that day – including my “Curve” themed shots. 

Grey DC

Mansfield's Atalanta

Mansfield's Diana

Diana the Huntress

Sculptures are: “Atalanta” and “Diana the Huntress” by Paul Manship. Divinely Deco, fabulously female, marvelously mythic – my style! ( If the style looks familiar – have you seen the “Prometheus” in gold that dresides at Rockefeller Center? Yup. Same artist.)

NGA fountain

I think I take a picture like this every time I am at the National Gallery. It never ceases to enchant me. 

 

 I will admit – I have not posted pix the last 2 weeks. “Wrapped up” and “Possibilities” So I submit this catch up photo – for both! I am deep into preparing for my first show, and I am all wrapped up in clay. The posssibilities are endless!

Possibilities: clay

Have a wonderful week everyone. I hope to see your pix out there on the Interwebs. Happy Spring!

 

Treasures delivered…

Over the last few weeks the postman has been steadily delivering magical packages to my door. Well, my mail box anyway. Thought today was a good day for “Show and Tell”. 

First up – Staci Smith. Her shop is chocked full of goodness. She works in a variety of materials: fabricating components and jewelry, sculpting in polymer and bronze clay, silks, sea glass… but thoughout maintains her sense of style. It’s gypsy/folk/tribal/boho if you ask me. And I quite like it! We had a chance to trade…so I selected the “Moon Baby” focal and she selected other treasures to surpirise me. (Sorry for the pix. The moon baby and discs on the lower left are a dark peacock patina that is gorgeous in person. )

trade from Staci

Then there arrived a sweet package from Australia! I have followed the blog and shop of Penny at Sparrow Salvage for years. She has a finesse at upcycling materials that never ceases to amaze. Her style is very gypsy/tribal/boho and I have wanted a piece forever. Recently Penny had a series of traumatic events in her life and I was happy to help out with a purchase, however small. Check out her shop, make a purchase, show some support for a fellow self-employed jewelry artist!

Sparrow Salvage earrings

They are definitely shoulder dusters! I look forward to wearing them at my next festival!

Sparrow Salvage earrings2

Imagine my luck – when I won a give away. You know the type – like our FB pageSecret Scents is line of perfume lockets by Mystic Memories. I was familiar with them because my friend Brigid Ashwood is one of their featured artists. So I left a comment, and Fortune smiled… Its really a lovely piece and smells fantastic. I like the idea of wearing it choker length on velvet ribbon. Suits the locket well. And great packaging too!

Secret Scents locket

And last – but definitely not least: BUTTONS! Cindy Wimmer (Sweet Bead Studio and ArtBliss) is hosting a button challenge blog hop. I am partnered with Sandi Volpe – who treated me to this lovely package…

sandi buttons1

and this treasure trove of possibility. Vintage buttton covers, tiny antique buttons, lovely earthy colors, and the sculptural button bottom right? She cast that one. I see a female form in there. Its calling my name. 

detail buttons1

The hop reveal will happen here and on my colleagues blogs on May 13th. Stay tuned. I have ideas flitting around my head. The possibilities are endless, really. 

detail buttons2

 

There IS one more thing I wanted to mention in this epic post. Sandi and I have nearly met… We both attended ArtBliss workshops last year, hosted by Jeannette Ryan and Cindy Wimmer. (Yes, the button hop Cindy.) This weekend long art/jewelry retreat is held in Northern Virginia/DC in late September.  This will be its third year. It is a great weekend of learning, sharing, immersion, socializing, creating, and camaraderie. I have made great friends there that I look forward to see every September. If you are interested in lampworking, metal smithing, polymer… check out the classes. Registration is open!

Art Bliss badge

 

 

Art Bliss in DC

Do you know that feeling when you have experienced something fabulous and you want to share, yet at the same time you want to hold the magic in, keep it close and personal and precious? 

I am ready to share… Art Bliss thoughts and ideas from this past weekend. There are a plethora of art retreats all over the country. I have never attended one. I am spoiled in that I take workshops and work with infinitely talented artists – at the Shepherdess in San Diego, my second home… And while that becomes a retreat in and of itself –  a seperation from the daily grind, chores, etc…I used to work there, and I relish the behind the scenes perspective I have returning there. And Cooky, the owner is one of my best friends…

 The event, the first East coast, Mid Atlantic art retreat; was organized by the multitalented Cindy Wimmer and Jeannette Blix Ryan. Held in a hotel near Dulles airport, all our needs had been tended to by our thoughtful hostesses. Meals catered, classrooms equipped…Time to get to work learning, creating, sharing…

So I departed, with the intention to arrive in Dulles before DC rush hour had fried my brain. Used to live there; know what it is like. Friday night Meet and Greet: wine and nosh, artist instructors and their work, reuniting friends eagerly anticipating the weekend of creativity and inspiration. I was a little adrift, as my friend Jen had to cancel…and I didnt want to monopolize the artist/instructors and come across as a crazy stalker student. ( If you have ever done a retreat or a class, you know exacty what I mean…) Pleasure to meet Melissa ManleyDeryn MentockLesley Venable and her OOAK husband, chief executive cookie baker husband Tom. (Didnt get to meet Kerry Bogert. Oops)  

Saturday – “Hard Candy” enameled beads created from copper, glass, fire… taught by Melissa Manley using tools I already have! Oh I love an applicable skill that doesnt require $$$$ new tools! Just point me in the right direction, and sparks will fly: Hard Candy domes The first attempts. And the finished pieces, including a few extra components…

Hard Candy 

Saturday was a crazy day: dinner, evening class (more on that in a minute) and Trunk Show: Trunk show There were quite a few of my fellow students opening their doors as well, to display their wares. I wish I could have gotten out to see everyone! 

Stay tuned for Part 2 Art Bliss DC…..

Same Bat-time! Same Bat-channel! Until tomorrow…