Tag Archives: travel

Vulnerability + love = JOY

Hello lovely blog readers,

I hope your week is going well. I have been down with a bad cold but I’m on the mend. All that time in bed, let me truly reflect on all that has happened in the past month.

Many of you know, I had an Art Retreat on Bainbridge Island about four weeks ago – the Intuitive Muse Retreat.

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goodie bags for the students

Where we focused on trusting our creative instincts and quieting the critical mind. We set intentions, journaled and made A LOT of Art! It was an amazing experience and a great honor to teach on this magical island – a place I had been two times prior but as a student! The women that joined me were incredible souls, all beautifully open and excited to delve into learning more.  (Little did I know, just how much I would learn along the way.)

So let me share with you a little about the journey…

Robin and I were lucky enough to stay in a sweet spot just a few steps away from the farm. It was the perfect place to center myself for the teaching that lay ahead and with a view of Seattle like this…well…it was beyond gorgeous and did much to soothe my anxious mind.

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The days leading up to the retreat were spent drinking tea and practicing my lessons with Robin. She was so kind and patient, listening to me go over things a thousand times! LOL.

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That’s the funny thing about what I do – it kind of terrifies me! I actually get very nervous when having to speak in front of a crowd. Online, in front of the camera, it is somehow easier but sitting in a room with a many sets of eyes on me – oh boy – it makes my hands shake and my nose sweat. (Yes, my nose sweats when I’m nervous, it’s very attractive – I assure you.) 😜

I knew that the hardest part would be the first night. The introductions. The part where I have to talk about myself.  I knew that if I could make connections, I would soon relax. I wanted to get to THAT place as quickly as possible but as time would have it, I needed to experience each stage as it came. There was no fast forward button on this gig.

That first night, we gathered at the ranch house for the welcome dinner.  I was greeted with beautiful, warm hugs and even a few excited tears. It humbles me each and every time I meet a student “in real life”. The connection I feel for them and them to me is a true thing. What a gift to receive. It amazes me to this day, how powerful the internet is and how very real the connections can be. Invisible heart strings that somehow manage to go through the computer screen. Magic indeed.

When it came time to sit in a circle and do our introductions, the ladies did the rounds first and I listened intently,  shaky hands folded in my lap. Each woman lit a single candle to represent her presence and placed it gingerly on a beautiful old artist’s palette – a treasure from Serena’s family. It was a sacred thing to behold.

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image by Serena Berry

I was stunned at the similarities of our stories. Before me, was a group of 10 women from all different backgrounds, all different ages and family situations but the common thread was apparent. We were all seekers. We had lived a life seeking out our creativity, searching for our joy and the connection to our soul. We had all jumped through careers, or passions – each coming in with force and usually fizzling out until we followed the next pull. The next insatiable curiosity. Photography, crafts, scrapbooking, cooking, gardening and even creating skin creams! We had all jumped through multiple phases on our journey towards Art. The fact is, Art is seeking. It becomes the vehicle of expression to discover the deeper layers, the hidden parts, the shadowy darkness and the shining light we all carry within us. So, while on the outside we had our differences, really, we were of one mind. One heart, hungry for more.

This helped ease me a bit as I felt the circle close. The bonds forming already – in a matter of minutes! But, my hands and slightly glistening nose gave away my nerves as I began to share myself with the group. I hoped they wouldn’t notice but I know they did. I hoped it wouldn’t matter or make me look unprofessional. I hoped, with all my heart, that I would be accepted. And there it was – Ahh – hello VULNERABILITY!

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This is where I was. Where I had to be. Exposed and vulnerable, yet doing what I wanted to do so very badly. Connecting and guiding and teaching. So with a deep breath, I accepted the uncomfortableness of it and just spoke my truth, trembling hands and all. I don’t know everything that I said but I knew when I had finished that I was safe. These women made me feel so and I was grateful.

The rest of the blissful days glided by full of hard work and wonderful art! The women battled it out with their inner critics, we laughed and shared stories and helped each other solve problems in our compositions. I was at ease, in my role, soaking up the precious time I got to spend with each student. Carefully listening and helping to guide them through projects they could enjoy and learn from.

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They created pieces that pushed them out of their comfort zones, slipping into the unknown, the fear – where the good stuff starts to emerge. Where the left brain retreats and our intuition begins to lead us. The sweet spot. The flow state. I could tell from the class when people were going through it, they worked intently in silence, not pausing to judge or worry. Just moving. Creating. It is one of the most joyous things to witness as a teacher.

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Art time was interspersed with walks among the mystical places on the island,  like the Labyrinth where we silently followed the stones that wound us gradually to the center. And we all enjoyed the special Buddhist Bell that rings out after you have spun it just enough times while focusing on your truest wish and intention.

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Looking back on this magical weekend, I am so filled with gratitude for the opportunity. The chance to not only encourage others to trust themselves but a chance to step into my truest self as well. Each time I teach in person, I feel myself grow. Each time it gets less scary and every time I walk away knowing that this is what I am meant to do. It is where my JOY lives. If it means I have to push up against the vulnerability then so be it – I’m up for the challenge! 😉


 

A big thank you to our warm and gracious hostess, Serena Berry, who was nothing short of perfect – spoiling us with delicious food and ensuring everyone was comfortable. You made the retreat truly lovely and relaxing for our guests and for me too!

Thank you to the amazing women who attended! You each taught me something and inspired me with your open hearts and creative spirit. It was such a joy and honor to spend the weekend with you! I’ll cherish the memories of this special time, always.

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Much love to you all!

xo,

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FREE Mixed Media & Encaustic Tutorial

Hi there beautiful creatives!

Yah it’s the weekend! Hope you have lovely things planned!

I have a special treat for you today – to celebrate my upcoming Italian Art Retreat, I’ve created this special, free tutorial video just for you!

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This wonderful landscape was a delight to create! Luminous layers of wax with luscious oil paint and collage = bliss! Plus, with the Italian countryside as your muse – you can’t go wrong!

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Here’s a little preview of the tutorial…

To get access to the FULL tutorial click the button below.

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You are going to love exploring these mixed media & encaustic techniques! I can’t wait to see what you create!

Enjoy!

xo,

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Come create with me in Italy!

Hello there creative friends!

Hope you are are all doing well! Summer has been lovely and busy for us in the Newport house. Our routine is speckled with kids camps, day trips and relaxing afternoons in the garden. In the midst of all this, I manage to find time to film my latest class and work on some paintings too!

The biggest excitement of the summer (for me) is that my latest international art retreat is now open for registration! I’m so honored and grateful that I’ve been asked to teach in beautiful Orvieto, Italy in September, 2017 by Adventures in Italy! The husband and wife team running this fantastic trip are Bill & Kristin Steiner and they are an absolute delight to work with!

fb banner***VERY LIMITED SEATS AVAILABLE***

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This artistic retreat will include life/figure drawing, portrait studies, encaustics, collage and mixed media painting! Along with all the yummy art we will be making, organized tours and cultural experiences are planned to create a well rounded and life changing adventure for all! Check out just how beautiful Orvieto is…

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To read all about it go here!

I would love to have you come to Italy with me!!

Have a beautiful rest of your week!

xo,

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My creative workshop on Bainbridge Island

Hello friends!

How was your weekend? Fabulous, I hope. I was busy with the usual family stuff but I have to admit it was hard to stay out of the studio! I’ve been making so much art lately and it seems the more I make the MORE I want to make! Creativity truly does build upon itself!

Speaking of creative, I’m so excited to let you know that I’ve been invited by the lovely Serena Berry to come teach on Bainbridge Island, WA. I’m over the moon!

This Mixed Media workshop is called “The Intuitive Muse” and it’s all about connecting with our inner creative guidance system and learning to trust our instincts when it comes to making our art! This promises to be a healing and nurturing event full of new discovery and exploration!

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It’s going to be a truly special weekend! To read all about it head on over to Serena’s site. Registration is now OPEN (only 11 spots available).

I can’t wait to create with you!

Much love and gratitude,

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3 Must Read Books

Hello there!!

How is everyone? I wanted to pop into today and let you know a couple of things! First off – Trina and I are so, so excited that we ONLY have ONE more spot left at ArtWorthy 2016!

We are over the moon happy and so grateful for the beautiful souls who have signed up to join us for this special long weekend! If you have been sitting on the fence, now is the time to snap up this spot! With a private gourmet chef, yoga, meditation, EFT sessions and loads of ART making you won’t want to miss out! Valentine’s just around the corner so treat yourself to some SELF LOVE!

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Ok, so I also wanted to tell you about three FAB books that I want to recommend!

#1

This book literally changed me! Literally. If you haven’t read it yet. Do. It. Now.

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This fabulous book was gifted to me by the lovely Trina and I ate it up! Full of wit and several laugh out loud moments – you will love this quick read about empowering your life with that sweet little word YES!

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And last but not least, this book knocked my artsy little socks off! Building creative confidence is not only powerful, it may radically change your existence! My belief that we are all creative beings is the cornerstone of this book and unearthing that creativity is not only your RIGHT it is your DUTY! Hiding those gorgeous gifts from the world is a major bummer for everyone!

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I adore the little trailer for this book too! Check it out…

Okay, those are fresh off my stack of books! Check them out and let me know how they affect you I would love to hear about it!

Much love and gratitude to you all!

xo,

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WINNER of the ArtWorthy Giveaway

Happy Friday everyone!!

Just wanted to pop in and announce that the winner for the ArtWorthy 2016 giveaway is:

Karen Goetz!

Congrats Karen! I will be in touch with you so we can get that bundle of goodies sent to you!

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Also, wanted to remind you that there are ONLY 3 more days for the early bird registration price for the ArtWorthy Retreat! A savings of $100!

Plus, check out this beautiful new promo video we made for you guys! We are beyond excited and we only have 5 more spots left!

Don’t miss out on this amazing, healing and creativity filled journey!

Have a gorgeous weekend!

xo,

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