Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Artist retreat and such

It has been forever since I've been able to sit down and write. This is a new piece I made the other day. Jewelry has been my passion of late. This is a rose quartz pink carved rose with glass pearls, seed beads and Czech iridescent pressed glass beads. The chain is double rings of antiqued brass. I have been drawn to the antiqued brass because it doesn't tarnish or change like silver and isn't expensive to work with. I making a ton of pieces to take to a store in Denver where a lady is interested in my creations.
When I was out yesterday I ran across the book "Rejuvenated Jewels" by Amy Hanna. I love this book! She makes such beautiful things. I love the fact of reusing items to make something new. She mixes metals and mediums. I love antique and vintage items and rarely buy them because they're usually beat up a bit and now I think I can find ways to incorporate them into some of my jewelry.

I went to an artist retreat a little over a week ago in Durango Colorado. This is the wonderful place I spent the retreat in. Obaro Cabins is on the Florida river . The cabin has two sides with a dividing door. There is an upstairs bedroom and a pullout sofa in the living room. This is such a beautiful place I am looking forward to returning with my husband. It was a four day three night retreat with about eighteen women I had never met. This worked out great for me because I hadn't been away from the baby or my husband for 15months and I needed somewhere fun and safe to travel by myself. We worked in watercolor, inks, collage and also did some writing and acting. The instructors talked about getting into areas you've never done anything in before to re-start your creative abilities and think of new things. The writing exercises were a little challenging for me but they brought up all kinds of feelings and new memories many of the women hadn't thought of in a long time. One of the exercises was to think of an article of clothing you had worn and when and why it had a strong memory. I loved the inks section, we did a mandala which is a circle cut into sections and everyone takes a different section. In the section you look at some pictures and a word is written to embody the mandala and you're suppose to ink something in that represents that word. I had fire and the blue gold and red section to the upper left is mine.

I became so entranced by this I had to work after hours to finish it one night. I'm looking forward to getting my own set of inks and starting a mandala myself. The pictures that weren't finished the instructor was going to finish and then all of the twelve that we started are going to be printed into a calender for all of us as a keepsake. We had full days from 8:00 a.m to about 5:30 p.m. The breakfast and lunch were provided and appetizers and wine for the evening. The caterer was great. She made a feta, butter, thyme and lemon spread that I fell in love with and lemon usually isn't my thing. We had a roasted red pepper dip also that I could have eaten on anything. The most unusual was a lentil and beet salad that was really good and light. I enjoy pickled beets in salad but haven't ever had lentils except in soup.
Anyway every night I sat out on the deck and read "Pride and Prejudice" and loved the cool nights next to the river with some wine then went inside next to the fire and worked on a collage I wanted to do to take home. I'm still working on it a little slow going but it should be done and I'll post a picture. The picture down below is the river not twenty feet from the cabin.

What a beautiful view!

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