Rainy Friday . . .

. . .and that’s fantastic! We’re in such a drought that no one is complaining. Rain is supposed to continue through most of the weekend – yes! Tomorrow Michelle Belto and I are collaborating in our Wax and Wings workshop. It will be a good day to gather around the Studio worktables, listen to the rain, andย  talk about nesting and shelter and how we can create those concepts through collage and encaustic. I’ll post the photos from this first session later. Here’s one from my practice time in the studio this afternoon, just the collage “nest” part. Michelle’s in charge of the inside encaustic part – she’s so good. Check out her book.

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BUT WAIT, there’s more – (drum roll please) – I’m about to boldly go into cyberspace with a new series of video art labs. Zinnia Galliher, an amazing artist and techno-wizard , has developed two sites where artists can teach lessons and present projects. She invited me to teach a class on her Roses site, then I’ll be developing some longer classes for the 2014 Artful Gathering. It’s really exciting and a totally new adventure – man, all this and rain to boot! And it’s Friday!! Life is pretty darn good ๐Ÿ™‚ Hope your weekend includes some rain and some art and a nice comfy nest.

zinniaartpage

 

Sunday Wrap-up

Today’s Mala and Spirit Flag Workshop felt like playing – wonder if there’s such a thing as a Playshop? It was like summer outside where we splattered our prayer flags with paint. We didn’t get much more done with the flags because sitting around the table stringing mala beads and talking was a lot more relaxing. One of the things we discussed was creating with intention, which seems to elevate and enrich any project.

Congratulations to Barbara Weitbrecht, the winner of the Mala meditation bracelet. Barbara, email me and let me know if there’s a favorite color you’d like me to use for the tassel. I’m still far from perfect at making these little wrist Malas, but it will be made with much love.

Here’s a video from today’s workshop – you can see what the parking lot around the Studio looks like! It was deserted on a Sunday afternoon so no one ran over our prayer flags. Yay!

First workshop at new Studio –

The first workshop was so much fun. I don’t know if it was the new space or the combination of personalities, but we had a blast. And this is just the first half! Yesterday we made the clay faces, and then Wednesday we’ll meet at Ann Pearce’s next door to do the beading and jewelry creations. I’ll take photos of those so you can see how the final pieces turned out.ย  If you’re interested, there’s a repeat of this two-part workshop on February 17th. Thanks to Chris, Jill, LeAnn and Susan – I had a fantastic time with you guys.

Boxing Day Challenge

Today, December 26th, is Boxing Day in England where I spent part of my childhood (our father was stationed at Ruislip Base in London for five years). There are all kinds of reasons why it’s called that – giving boxes of Christmas goodies to service workers is one – but I’m going to give you a challenge instead. I decided I wanted to learn how to make a new kind of paper box, and this little mulberry-paper container the result. Simple, right? Not. Even with the video, it’s tricky. See if you can do it. It took me a couple of tries to figure out that x#@% last part.

Origami paper box

Origami paper box

PS The person’s hands in the video are impossibly smooth – I think it’s a plastic robot, personally ๐Ÿ™‚

Link address to copy if you want to save it – http://www.instructables.com/id/How-to-make-a-box-with-paper/

Quick gift you can make

These cosalts2ol bath salts are one of the examples I show in my aromatherapy classes (see the site at Chemaroma.com ). My biochemist friend Dr. Bill Kurtin knows all of the reasons essential oils work scientifically, but you can do this project without knowing any chemistry – whew :). You’ll need some Epsom Salts, some essential oil (Sprouts, Central Market, Whole Foods) and some lunch bags. You can make these for less than a dollar each and they smell wonderful and work great on sore muscles or stressed out psyches. You can store them in your linen closet to make the towels smell fresh. Easy, cheap and nice – there ya have it.

Here’s a video I made for our aromatherapy class site that explains the how-to. Think hostess gifts and stocking stuffers. You can even toss a small handful of the salts into your shower and get the therapeutic effects of the essential oils without soaking!

The Trinity Alumni Artisan Show

This is always an enjoyable event – it’s not a particularly good “buying” group, but seeing former grads at the lovely Holt Center gardens is fun. Here’s a short video of the show. It lasted just two hours and was held in conjunction with the Alumni Picnic. Some of my favorites from other artisans were Tina Barajas’ clay Whistkulls and Cathy Geib’s giant cow done in pastels.