Monday, May 31, 2010

Time for some lakeside peace...

I'm packing for my trip to the Squam Art Workshop in New Hampshire. I am SO ready for a peaceful lakeside retreat! The amazing Jenny Doh is the Keynote Speaker and a special friend. I have no idea what the topic of her speech will be but I already know that it will be insightful, thought provoking, and wonderful.

I've signed up for a few classes - it is always fun to learn new techniques and to work in a class atmosphere, seeing what everyone else is up to. I sometimes feel somewhat isolated in my studio, it is good for me to "play with others' from time to time!

There is a vendor fair on Saturday evening and I am going to be there, selling some of my artwork including original collages, art quilts and jewelry. As usual, I'm looking forward to doing a little shopping, too!

My quilt group, Fiber Art Northeast, has a show opening at the Mahopac Public Library, in Mahopac, New York, next Sunday. The show runs for the whole month of June and is sure to be a feast for the eyes. If you are unable to visit, a book including all of the work in the show will be available. Learn more at , the new blog for the group.

Well, off to pack & finish getting ready for my trip. I know that I've fallen off the "Bookworm 52" path that got me started on blogging but a lot of other things have captured my attention for now. The whole purpose of that project was to help get my creative tail in gear again so I've got to follow the path I find myself on.
I'll take plenty of pictures at Squam and will post about it when I get back~--

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Looking back...looking forward...

The first year I decided to participate in Dale Copeland's New Zealand collage exchange was 2005. I created a series of fifteen collages - thirteen to send to Dale and two to keep for my own collection. When it came time to package them for shipping I had a sudden attack of separation anxiety. I couldn't part with them!

I was so happy with how thay had turned out, I just couldn't let them go. I have framed six of them and they hang in the hall of our office. I've had many people ask to buy one or two but they belong together, in my mind (besides, I'm still not ready to part with them!). I wound up making an entirely new and different series to send to Dale.

The hand photographs are from a collage sheet by the fabulous Kelly Kilmer. Busy hands, creating things of beauty, deliciousness, or just being expressive, are so inspiring to me. I love watching the hands of a musician as she plays the piano - what magic they possess! We recently attended a concert that included a harp - the harpist's hands were so graceful as they swept across the strings, creating amazing music. It was not only a joy to listen to the music, it was a joy to watch her create it.

Back to the subject of my post... Looking back... looking forward.

As I move on in my creative journey, I find it helpful to look back at what I've done years ago. I sometimes look at my older work and am reminded of techniques learned long ago that have become buried in my mind as I learn new ones. The first quilt I ever made is hanging in the stairway to my studio. It is a very traditional quilt (and not very well made, I confess) and serves to remind me of how far my work has come since that fledgling attempt. On days that I'm feeling frustrated or blocked, it is helpful to revisit older work and to appreciate the skills I have acquired, the improvements in my techniques and to think of all the wonderful people who have helped and influenced me along the way.

Sometimes we have to look back at where we came from to truly appreciate where we are.
I am ever thankful for the joy I find in creating things of beauty with my hands. No pretty manicures for this girl - I'm happiest when my nails are colored with paint after a busy day in my studio.

Here I am, moving forward...ever curious about where this creative journey will take me next .