Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Heading Off on a Jet Plane

My bags are packed and I am ready to leave tomorrow on a 2 week vacation to visit my son in Seattle and my friend, Riki, who lives on San Juan Island in Washington. I will have the opportunity to check my emails often during that time and will do my best to reply to anyone who leaves a comment or message. If not, you know I am off having fun and will get back to you as soon as I can.

Tootles
Diana

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Adorn Me!!

It is such a pleasure to announce the premier mixed media jewelry art retreat Adorn Me taking place March 2-7, 2010 in Houston, Tx. Adorn Me is the dream child of Linda Young who has successfully produced Art Unraveled in Phoenix for several years. Linda wanted to offer a week long retreat for those with a passion for mixed media art jewelry, offer fresh and new ideas, instructors and classes.

I am so honored to have been invited to teach two workshops at Adorn Me. I will be offering my Encrusted Viking Knit Choker class on Friday, March 5th. Students will learn the Viking's ancient, medieval technique of knitting with fine gauge wire. What looks very difficult to learn is fairly simple to master and the the result is a beautiful hand-crafted work of art that is flexible and comfortable to wear.

The first part of the day will be spent learning basic Viking Knit techniques and knitting enough cord for your necklace. The second part of the day will be spent finishing off your Viking Knit with end caps and embellishing it with an assortment of beads, stones, crystals or tiny found objects.

Basic bead stringing, wire wrapping, and drawing a bead with a butane torch will be demonstrated giving you the necessary elements to complete your Viking Knit Choker.

The second class I will be teaching is my Twisted Sistah Choker offered on Wednesday, March 3rd. In this class students will learn sculptural, free-form wire working techniques to create the foundation of their choker.

With a little forging, patina, and soldered touches, this wire structure will be ready for your selected embellishments. Working with a fine gauge wire and using techniques similar to weaving and sewing, various beads, stones, crystals, found objects, buttons, etc. will be whimsically attached creating the encrusted allure of this piece. Students will learn the basics of using resin and some fun ways to create dimension and texture to resin. A custom-made bezel will be provided in each kit. Various ways to finish your choker will be demonstrated such as adding lengths of chain, wire-wrapped beads, making a clasp and ball-ended headpins.

Check out the exceptional line-up of instructors....here are just a few: Diane Cook, Ruth Rae, Amy Hanna, Richard and Jane Salley, Deryn Mentock, Sherri Haab, Riki Schumacher, Janice Berkebile, Thomas Mann, Keith LoBue, Beverly Ash Gilbert, Lisa Pavelka, Stephanie Rubiano, and Melanie Schow. An excellent mix of classes are being offered including: chain making, soldering, polymer clay, wire wrapping, metalsmithing, fusing, copper clay, precious metal clay, copper and bronze clay, etching, weaving with metal, enameling, faux bone, assemblage, steampunk, resin, bead making, bead weaving and more.
Wow, I'm selecting my classes now and sending in my registration before October 1st which is when classes will start to be assigned. How about you? If you have a passion for mixed media jewelry art, this is the retreat for you.
Hope to see you all there.
Ta Ta
Diana

Friday, September 4, 2009

Trust in the Process

How did I get to the place where I am right this very minute? We all have our stories, many of us have some of the same stories, same roads. But none the less they are "our" personal stories. My creative journey began many years ago out of some dark moments in my life. It's interesting how life unfolds. I, like many, grew up in a dysfunctional home and as a result developed survival skills that were codependent in nature. As an adult, these survival instincts served me no longer and through counseling and codependency recovery (which is a life-long process I am finding), a space opened up inside of me that I didn't realize I had. By detaching from the past, claiming my own personal power, and trusting in the process, magic began to happen in my life.
I discovered that I had a passion to create. I took a chance and enrolled in a floral design class just for fun. Fun it was indeed! I couldn't learn fast enough and took a summer off from my job at the university where I was an administrative assistant and enrolled in a floral design school. I became certified and what seemed to be an overnight experience, had started my own business....all this while still working full-time at the university, and raising three children.

Over the next 18 years I had the pleasure of designing beautiful events for 100's of brides and huge events at Hearst Castle and other spectacular venues. I was also honored to have my work published in national floral design magazines, winning several awards and designing for very prominent people. The people I met along the way were incredible and added so much to my life.
Working with flowers was a true "high" for me.....their color, fragrance, texture, shapes, personalities....I loved it all. I loved how when I designed, I became so focused and in the moment my spirit seemed to soar with such elation. Intuitively, I allowed my creative muse to play. What an awesome feeling of being completely free and feel creativity coming from the "source" within.
Part of trusting the process for any of us is recognizing our choices and giving ourselves permission to take risks of trying new things. By opening ourselves up to possibilities, it can both enrichen and enlighten our senses and souls. "Gently, like a flower, we can learn to open up. Like a flower, we will do that when the sun shines and there is warmth." ~ Melody Beattie

After 18 years, I felt it was time to let go of my business as the physical demands were taking there tole. So out went the floral coolers, props, fabrics and tools. When left with an empty workshop space, I had a deep desire to transform it into an art studio not knowing what I would possibly do. But I also knew that if I just trusted in the process itself and with a positive attitude and faith, I would be presented with even new possibilities to fill my then creative void. So, I built it and waited for the venture to begin. "To trust the process, to trust all of it, without hanging on to the past or peering too far into the future, requires a great deal of faith. Surrender to the moment. .....Step where instinct leads. We are where we are, and it is okay. It is right where we're meant to be to get where we're going tomorrow. And that place will be good. It has been planned in love for us." ~ Melody Beattie
Scrapbooking was the beginning of my metaphorphosis and card making. Then one day while standing in front of the publication rack at Michael's, I struck up a conversation with a woman who was also pondering her next purchase and in that moment my life took off on a new creative journey. Jody was an art major in college and she quickly introduced me to the world of mixed media art. Thank you Jody!! I attended my first mixed media art retreat - Art and Soul in Portland and from then on it has been an exhilarating creative journey. I have had the pleasure of taking classes from so many delightful and talented instructors who all contributed to the direction I have now chosen... mixed media jewelry art.

I wish for you all that your life will be sprinkled with magic, that by trusting in the process itself you will actualize and manifest your heart's desires.....even though those desires may not be clear to you now. Know in your heart they are there and they will present themselves when you are ready.
Diana