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Wednesday, April 30, 2014

West Coast Trek to Connect: Finding Special Art Sistahs And Finding The Labyrinth

West Coast Connected

This March, I jumped on a plane to spend a week on the west coast.  I had done this several times in the last decade, but this time things were a little different.

I had a plan to connect with a few of my art friends....ones known either through publication or  social media.

The San Francisco Bay area is one of my favorite places to travel and visit, but this time I  ventured north and south a bit, to find those few special people.  As well, along the way, small adventures and epiphanies were had....all quite splendid and good for the soul.

OK, so the first stop was finding artist Lexi Grenzer.  Lexi lives in the Los Gatos area, so the drive south was easy.  The moment I met Lexi, I felt like we were connected, not only through art, but through family.   Her beautiful young son was the apple of her eye, her studio, the center of her world, and her kindness, was the thread that tied everything together.  We had an amazing lunch and chatted for a couple hours.  It was a gorgeous day and a perfect visit.  I left with a handful of gifts, some cool pix, and what I just will describe as new memory hugs.

Some time in between was spent along the coast (when hubby wasn't working), examining the shore life, native plants, and watching other artists who gained their inspiration from the spectacular views along the cliff and shore.


Now.... back to art sistahs..... the second stop on my search was to a place north of SF, called Vallejo.  There lived artist and friend, Chris Kerr.

I walked into her home and right into a studio that was so neatly and wonderfully stocked with all things metal, a media near and dear to my heart, yes!  Chris and I talked from morning until afternoon with an exciting field trip in between.

She drove us into Benecia, not far from Vallejo and where we had a tasty gluten free lunch before visiting a bead shop that had been closed the last time I had been to Benecia!  Chris's friend and owner, Carol, had a fabulous store.  And....of course I bought charms and beads!!  AWESOME charms and beads!! Just LOOK at these, and how about Chris, Carol and I among those sparklies.....

Before leaving, Chris made sure I left with something special as well.  Aren't these beautiful?

Thank you both Lexi Grenzer and Christine Kerr for two great days!  Hoping to be able to see you guys again someday.  : )

While on this trip, I was also able to spend some time in a town that I had only previously driven through.....Healdsburg, CA.  There I visited the Arts Council (and will be teaching workshops there next time I am in the area!!).  I also spent time in the gorgeous center square park, taking in the scenes of children playing and smelling the soft spiced scents of sweet orange trees in a warm breeze.  A few strong, tall palm shaded the area and provided a stunning silhouette against the sky.

As I walked along the streets of town, something lured me into a shoppe called Bella.  Well, more than was several things.  The fashionista within scored a few choice 
April Cornell items.  Oh, how luscious!  I kid you not, there were tiaras EVERYWHERE and accessories to match. Ou......Ou, Pinch me.

Since The Art Is You Retreat family will be in Petaluma, CA this year, it was one of the towns that I was eager to visit.  Sorry to say that I will not be able to be there this September, I hope that some of you will be.  Check out the link!

I few of the things I found interesting are pictured below.  The Seed Bank was closed, but I peered into the windows to see oodles of plants and old world seeds by the billions......

Another awesome find was this Pie Company.  How cool....a "Pie" Company!

Oh, and of course, I spent a couple of hours in here.  There were very cool things that I could not bring home in a plane, although I did consider shipping, if it were not for the tonnage....ah, next time I shall plan better ; )

 Before finally leaving the Bay area, we spent an evening in Sausilito.  I had never wondered through on visits prior, so it was a good choice.  Of course I found this intuitive to know that it was right across from where we were dining.   ma~hahaha.

Did I say that I collect roving?  Well I have enough now be considered a collector of it!  It was a cozy store with lots of inventory and terrific resources.  I hope to go back.

The final thrill was a complete surprise.  We had spent some time at a stop along the highway called Pillar Point Harbor, just north of Half Moon Bay in San Mateo County.  Currently, it is being developed into a wetland habitat by the historic preserve, but has an interesting military history which you can read more about here.  

What I found there was a gift.  I was recently reunited with a nursing friend.  She had introduced me to the concept of Labyrinths and their role in spiritual healing.  We will be working together on a project soon.  However, I was so amazed to find this labyrinth without without hesitation, I went in.  And by doing so, I have begun a path and my journey now begins

And I am home again.......

Friday, April 4, 2014

Art Is You Retreats: Mini Soldered Metal And Leather Journal Workshop Offered In Stamford

 Mini Soldered Metal And Leather Journal Workshop At ART IS YOU RETREATS!

A lot of us like to write... we jot down sayings, scribble thoughts, hash out song lyrics, or copy down url's we want to visit someday, when we are not so, so busy.

Wouldn't it be nice to carry around the coolest little book EVER that would make you smile whenever and where ever you opened it?!  Wouldn't it be even better if you were able to say, "I made that" when onlookers ou and ah!  : )  Right! : )

Well, you can say that after taking this mini little journal workshop at Art-Is-You this fall.  I will be teaching all the how-tos of image transfer, flood soldering, metal stamping, and special book binding without stitching.

Bring your own brass findings and stamps, or use mine!!  We are sure to have fun together in this workshop, sharing our ideas while honing skills!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Summer 2014 Sea Glass and Stamped Soldered Initial Pendant Workshops at Adams County Art Council

 Sea Glass Charms and Stamped Soldered Initial Pendant Workshops 

This Summer, At The Adams County Arts Council Of Gettysburg, PA, I have the opportunity to teach a few of my short "how-to"workshops in my own backyard!  The Arts Council has a beautiful education center on Washington Street, right in the heart of American history, and I am thrilled to be there!

Both workshops will take place on Saturday, May 31st at the center.  For more details and registration information click the following link:

Sea Glass Charms/Pendants

Stamped Soldered Initial Pendants

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