Monday, November 5, 2012

Lending a hand...


Greetings!  A number of art retreats and artists are coming together to lend a hand in the Hurricane Sandy relief efforts and we need your help!  The gals over at Art-Is-You have led the way in creating a website to help us help those in need.  Just click on the link above to read about their efforts, who is involved and where the funds are going.  Any and all contributions are greatly appreciated!

And to sweeten the pot a little, anyone who makes a donation and then comments here will be entered into a raffle to win a little artistic treasure.  Max will help me choose names on Saturday, December 1 and the lucky winners will get one of the following:

An original painting by Katie Kendrick;

A beautiful handmade book by Albie Smith;

A Provisions packet of vintage papers and ephemera;

A Provisions packet of vintage fabrics, trims and bits.

This is our way of thanking YOU for being a part of this relief effort.  Again, just click on the logo above to go to the official website and make a donation, and then come back here and leave a note in the comments area and you'll be entered to win.  Good luck, and thanks so much!

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Neither here nor there...

but scattered a little bit everywhere.  That pretty much sums up the state of things, as I'm in the process of moving out of my home of the past 21 years.  I've got mostly-packed, half-empty rooms with piles of stuff everywhere, and then I've got painters, electricians, hardwood floor guys, and a BIG mess over there.  But in just a few days, I'll be sitting in my new place, surrounded by boxes, wondering what hit me.  I'm not moving far in distance, but it's a big move for me in other ways.

It was a summer full of precious time with the grand girlies; visits from family and special time with my best-est childhood friend; lots of hard work and tough decisions, but also quiet moments of gratitude for my time here.  I'll miss this house for a lot of reasons, but I'm ready to move on.  It took me awhile, but when I was ready, it was an easy decision.  The house sold in less than an hour, my offer was accepted on the other house (out of 11 offers), and both homes had a short escrow.  Everything flowed so easily, as it does when things are meant to be. 

The real work is ahead of me now.  There's the obvious stuff, like taking out all the damaged cement, landscaping, replacing the old linoleum kitchen floor, covering windows, finding spaces for things in a much smaller house, etc, etc.  Those are all minor though, and they'll get sorted out in due time.

The tougher part will be dealing with all the emotions surrounding the events these past four years that led me to this space in my life.  It's acknowledging and honoring the losses, the disappointments and the fears; it's about taking the time I need to feel them, and then letting them go.  It's also about feeling the exhilaration of a new adventure right around the corner, wondering what might be in store for me.  I'm curious to know who I'll be when the dust settles and I have a chance to look around.  I wonder what I'll find?

As soon as I get a tiny bit settled, I'll be diving in head-first on next February's Artful Journey retreat, which is already about 80% full!  What a blessing that so many artists want to come up and join us in February; I'm SO excited to have that to look forward to.  I've missed my art peeps!  See you on the other side!

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Registration Opens Today!

Thinking about joining us next February for An Artful Journey in the beautiful redwoods of northern CA?  Don't ponder for too long--registration opens TODAY at 10am Pacific Time.  Hope to see you there!!!

Friday, June 1, 2012

Give-Away Winners!

The magical, mystery random number generator has come up with the two winners for the vintage ledger sheets, and here's the evidence:

Congratulations to Kelly Warren and Lorie (Garver?  Is that you?)  Just shoot me an email to confirm your addresses and I'll get a little packet out to you in the next few days—I'm sure you'll put them to good use!

And I love hearing from folks who are excited about attending the retreat--makes my heart swell up like a balloon!  I'm so fortunate to have the VERY best instructors who want to teach for me (did you see dear Nina's recent blog post?), and the BEST attendees too.  So many great memories, and lots more to come!  Check back here in coming weeks for updates.  Have a great weekend!

Workshops are up!

Last Night's Dream—Nina Bagley

 The workshops for the 2013 Artful Journey Retreat are now posted online for your viewing pleasure!  We'll be gathering in the Santa Cruz mountains of northern CA next Feb/March for a long blissful weekend of art, friendship, collaboration and inspiration.  The instructors are offering their very best just for you and I'm sure you'll find something (or two or five!) that sparks your interest. 

The Ultimate Art Book—DJ Pettitt

Mapping Me—Orly Avineri

Sumptuous Papers—Albie Smith
Registration opens online on July 10 at 10 am Pacific time, so be sure and mark your calendars!  I'll be posting more details and class highlights as time goes by, so keep checking back here.  I'm SO excited to have this event to look forward to, and am already beginning to plan goodies and activities for the retreat.
Nourishing the Creative Heart—Katie Kendrick
No Limits—Jesse Reno
Speaking of which, this is the last day to leave a comment for a packet of cool ledger paper (see previous post).  I'll be picking two names this evening, and the winners will get a yummy selection, so you may want to join in!  As I 'hunt and gather,'  I'll be looking for more goodies to share with you in upcoming give-aways.   I LOVE this part of the job!

Hope you're enjoying the first day of June—we officially declared summer yesterday with a little fun in the pool.  Doesn't get much better than this...

Friday, May 25, 2012

Hunting and Gathering...and a Give-Away!

Hunting season has officially begun and the search is on for yummy provisions for the next Artful Journey!

I went to a local vendor faire last weekend up in the Santa Cruz mountains.  It was a gorgeous day, with lots of artsy vendors, happy faces, good food, and friendly little goat families. (I bet you can guess who was first in line for the bus!)

I picked up three amazing old ledgers from Brussels, which will likely be put to good use in some way for retreat attendees—the largest journal is HUGE, about 24"x26"!

Some of the pages will definitely end up in Provisions packets that I'll have for sale at the retreat as well.  But since I'm not the greedy type, I'm going to share the bounty with a couple of readers here (a few pages from other vintage ledgers just might find their way in there too--you just don't know).  Just leave a comment on this blog post and I'll mail out a nice little packet to two lucky winners next Friday.  Be sure to leave an email, so I can get in touch with you!

Just in case you were wondering, Max is also doing some hunting and gathering...sigh.  So far, I've received gifts of a dead mouse, a live rat, a robin, a scrub jay and a crow—I'll spare you the details.  Yep, we're in full wild kingdom mode around here.  Enjoy your weekend and we'll see you on the other side!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Orly Avineri's New Book!

There is no better way to start the day than with a cup of coffee, sunshine, and a new journaling book.  I'm so honored to participate in a blog hop announcing Orly Avineri's just-released journaling book, "One Artist Journal", based on her online journal/blog.  I just received it and it is beyond gorgeous, with page after page of color photos spilling over the edges, along with her heartfelt words alongside.

I met Orly at Journalfest a few years back and was immediately smitten--she's like that.  You just sense her gentle, mindful spirit, and you want to get to know her better and hang out with her.  I've been fortunate to take workshops from her, as well as having her as an instructor here at An Artful Journey (lucky us, she's teaching here again in Feb. of next year!)  Whenever I spend time with her, I leave feeling a little more hopeful about the world.  That's just the kind of energy she puts out there.  Lovely.

This book oozes that kind of soulful energy, and makes you want to crawl right into that space.  I have tons of art books, and have become rather particular about what I spend my time/money on.  This one is at the top of my list, and I highly recommend it to anyone interested in the art of journaling. 

The very, very, very BEST way to order it is through Orly herself (super easy, fast delivery) at her e-store or in person at one of her workshops in So. Cal.  Of course, it's also available at Amazon but supporting artists by buying directly is always preferable.  This would also make a great graduation gift for a special person in your life!

You might just win a copy of the book if you head over to Orly's blog and leave a comment here--she'll be choosing a winner on May 25.  And you might like to hop on over to visit these folks as well, to see what they have to say about this latest addition to their mixed-media library!

Brian Kasstle:
Donna Cetorelli:
Erin Faith Allen:
Gina Rossi Armfield:
Irene Rafael:
Jane LaFazio:
Kelly Kilmer:
Liesel Lund:

Monday, May 14, 2012

Passing it on...

Jumping in here to let you know that the 2013 Artful Journey workshop descriptions are finalized and should be on the website by June 1.  I'll be sure and do a shout-out when they're up!  Registration for next February's retreat opens on July 10 at 10am Pacific time.  Easy to remember, right?  I'm so excited to be able to offer this special retreat again; I hope you're looking forward to it as much as I am.  More on the exciting lineup and classes in the coming weeks...(I sure as heck wouldn't want to have to choose between these 6 great instructors though!)

Things are hopping around here in my personal life, but I do take time out for a good read now and again.  One of my favorites is the Canadian magazine, Uppercase.  It's a bit pricey, but so worth it--great photos and graphics, lots of interesting articles and resources.  Honestly, it's just full of inspiration.  Go take a look here, but I'm warning you.  You'll be sucked in and may not come up for air for awhile.

I purchased a few back copies recently—just imagine my surprise when I spotted this little blurb in Issue #12, under 'A Roundup of Creative Retreats'!

I did one of those cartooney double-takes on that one.  As I started to turn the page, the voices in my head went, "hmm, that event sounds kinda familiar—woah, wait a minute!"  I don't know how it got there, but I owe a big thank-you to Christina Crook, as she apparently did all the rounding up.  Thanks, Christina! 

Another favorite splurge of mine is Dumbo Feather from Australia.  It comes out quarterly and is a superb collection of five inspirational in-depth interviews, as well as some short feature articles.  They "seek out those who inspire us, those who excite us, and those who thrill us with possibility."  What more could you ask for?  And to top it off, the photos are awesome, the paper is yummy--it even smells good.  Needless to say, I'm a big fan.  Again, if you want to lose yourself for awhile, just check out their blog right here.  TONS of good stuff!

Check back here on Friday when I'll be participating in a blog hop featuring one of my favorite artists/instructors, Orly Avineri...

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Fresh Eyes

My good friend, Robin, gave me this book for my birthday and I'm just now delving into it.  We don't get to see each other very often but she always comes up with just the right thing at just the right time.  I hope you have friends like that in your life too.  This thoughtful book emphasizes developing the ability to "see", utilizing eye, mind and heart when taking photos.  It's the perfect companion for me right now as I venture out, helping me to see things that otherwise might have gone unnoticed. 

These are a couple of shots I took recently when I went into town the other day and wandered around.  The assignment was to shoot 'flashes of color'--it was mindful and slow and thoughtful.  Perfect. There are tons of exercises and questions to ponder, along with beautiful photographs.  I highly recommend it if this is your kind of thing.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Coming to the surface...

I've been absent from here for so long, and it was a bit of a trek to find my way back. But here I am—and it's SO, SO good to be here!  To all of you who sent me notes of support and encouragement these past few months, I thank you from the bottom of my heart.  Knowing you were there gave me the strength I needed to move through the challenges and come through the other side.  My heart is full.

I'm grateful for a new year, with all the possibilities that it brings.  Like many of you, I've spent some time thinking about my intentions for the year, and will continue to check myself against them as the weeks and months go by.  The focus is to nourish myself, in mind, body, spirit and soul.  That pretty much covers everything!  More than ever, I've come to value my time with friends in creative pursuits more than ever before.  The time spent with others seeking a spiritual connection through creative pursuits feeds me in so many ways.  I'm determined that, no matter what gets thrown in my path, I will make these connections a priority.  Because truly, that's all that really matters when you come down to it. Right?

For these reasons, I'm happy to report that An Artful Journey continues as well!  I'm THRILLED to announce that Jesse Reno, Katie Kendrick, Orly Avineri, Nina Bagley, DJ Pettitt and Albie Smith will be teaching at next year's retreat here in the Santa Cruz mountains of northern CA. 
Circle the dates!    Feb. 28-Mar. 4, 2013

Details are still being worked out and will be added here and on the website as time goes, but I just couldn't keep the good news to myself any longer!  I just know that this is going to be a very special event.  Stay tuned...

(Of course, Max is excited too—he's such a big help!)