Thursday, June 20, 2013

Art Camp 2013

In my last post I wrote about wanting to continue learning. This past week I approached that a little differently and taught at an art camp here in Key West. Since I had never done anything like this before,
it was quite an experience.

Being an assemblage artist, I wanted to share my thoughts with them about using found objects and utilizing them as "art supplies". After suggesting how they can re-purpose items by examining their texture and the shape, and showing them some ideas to get started, I let them loose in a box of recycling and assorted embellishments that I had brought in for them to explore.

We put together recycling with tape into interesting head shapes and shrink wrapped them together. After covering with colored tissue paper, paint and embellishment, the kids had quite an assortment of quirky creatures!

 Stamping with everyday objects onto recycled denim makes great bracelets.

 After sharing with them one of my art pieces, I gave them their own cigar boxes and let them do their thing.
So after 6 afternoons with 6 kids between the ages of 8 and 12, I have to say I did learn some things:

  • kids love to make a mess especially splattering paint
  • don't micro manage them, it's more fun to just watch their imaginations fly
  • have a lot of projects in mind as they want to know what they are going to do next before they are done with the task at hand.
  • I totally understand why it is that God has young woman have children. I am exhausted!
The kids enjoyed themselves, and so did I. In fact, I am going to do it again next week!

Friday, June 7, 2013

The Artist's Way

In my opinion, one of the secrets to being ageless is to continue learning. I use the term ageless, because it feels to me as a more realistic approach to trying to feel "young".  Since time is man made, my age doesn't mean anything (except in the morning when I wake up and feel stiff and it takes awhile to get moving).  In recent conversation with a friend, we both agreed that we have so many things that we want to learn, to do, or to try we will never be bored, just may run out of time.

With these thoughts in mind, at the beginning of this year I started a journey of deeper self discovery. I made a commitment to myself to take a class pursuing higher creativity. It is based on the book the Artist's Way, A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity by Julia Cameron. I say it was a commitment because it is a 12 week course with a meeting each week, a book to read and tasks to preform. I wasn't quite sure what I was going to get out of it, but I was very curious. I found a class being held locally and facilitated by an acquaintance, so I thought "just do it". I'm glad I did and would recommend it for anyone regardless of age. The weekly meetings were enjoyable, the reading very thought provoking, the tasks were achievable or I just selected not to do them, but what I learned was life changing.

What can be taken from this class is surely different for each student. Basically what it does is put you in touch with the power of your internal creativity. It makes you be aware of your own destructive behaviors, helps you remove negative thoughts you have about yourself and teaches you to nurture yourself.  It is very interesting what you discover by just doing 2 of the class commitments which are morning pages and artist's dates.

Morning Pages--each morning you write 3 long-hand written pages of whatever comes into your mind (likes, dislikes, dreams, regrets). It becomes a form of meditation and clarifies your thoughts.
Artist's Date--once a week you do something by yourself. You receive answers in the solitude and learn that it is okay to be kind to oneself.

We are all creative, it is a life force that we all have the ability to experience. So while this class did not remove any wrinkles, it is helping me be ageless by being more confident and encouraging me to express my own style. I want to live "artfully" and try to do so everyday. More about that in future posts.

In the meantime, check out these wonderful women: