There will be several FREE giveaways available when you register for the Creative Retreat eCourse which will follow the free weekend online workshop...I'll be offering a mini bee painting on gallery canvas. For more information or to register, please visit here.
Bus Shelters ,Airdrie, AB
It seems appropriate that on my 52nd year and after 5 consecutive years of 52 WEEKS projects I completed 100 paintings in 100 days. It's like the culmination of great strides for me as an artist. The icing on the cake, so to speak.
On this day, the day I become 52 years old, I will celebrate with Avenue Cakery cupcakes, a matcha latte, a good book, and a walk along the creek. It's a perfect day for contemplation and gratitude for all the goodness in my life.
Whenever I begin to focus on the negative, I have to make a conscious decision to think positively. Not that I feel negative today, but I wanted to share an amazing poem that a dear friend sent me awhile ago:
She Let Go
She let go. Without a thought or a word, she let go.
She let go of the fear. She let go of the judgments. She let go of the confluence of opinions swarming around her head. She let go of the committee of indecision within her. She let go of all the ‘right’ reasons. Wholly and completely, without hesitation or worry, she just let go.
She didn’t ask anyone for advice. She didn’t read a book on how to let go. She didn’t search the scriptures. She just let go. She let go of all of the memories that held her back. She let go of all of the anxiety that kept her from moving forward. She let go of the planning and all of the calculations about how to do it just right.
She didn’t promise to let go. She didn’t journal about it. She didn’t write the projected date in her Day-Timer. She made no public announcement and put no ad in the paper. She didn’t check the weather report or read her daily horoscope. She just let go.
She didn’t analyze whether she should let go. She didn’t call her friends to discuss the matter. She didn’t do a five-step Spiritual Mind Treatment. She didn’t call the prayer line. She didn’t utter one word. She just let go.
No one was around when it happened. There was no applause or congratulations. No one thanked her or praised her. No one noticed a thing. Like a leaf falling from a tree, she just let go.
There was no effort. There was no struggle. It wasn’t good and it wasn’t bad. It was what it was, and it is just that.
In the space of letting go, she let it all be. A small smile came over her face. A light breeze blew through her. And the sun and the moon shone forevermore.
"I know no better weapon to fight injustice in life than education." ~ Terani Trenton
I'm so glad our provinicial government is introducing education about boundaries into the curriculum throughout Alberta from kindergarten to grade twelve. I recently read, though I can't remember which province, schools are also getting the police involved in educating students about the fact that taking and sharing inappropriate photos online or via text is actually illegal as it is deemed child pornography.
I feel like there's a huge gap between feeling empowered and owning our bodies as women and overtly sexualizing ourselves for the desire of others. Nowhere have I seen this more than with females particularly under the age of 18 and that may be due to the fact that my youngest daughter graduated high school last year.
The problem seems to be not only the desire for girls to feel valued by getting more followers and likes but also for boys to feel accepted...and vice versa. Normalizing this type of inappropriate behaviour feels like it has been the beginning of so much of the awfulness I see in our world today.
I do believe the solution is education. Our children need to learn to understand and set boundaries. They won't stop taking and sharing these photos if other girls and boys don't stop liking them. I also believe we will continue to have difficulty shutting down online creeps that harm children until this happens.
I would love to see our education system teaching body positivity, stress relief / meditation, first aid, basic car maintenance, healthy sexuality and proper online use among other basic life skills by people who have a passion for sharing it. Basically teach kids to love learning, to be kind and considerate, and to be themselves.
I've often thought about what equality means to me...even as a young child. My brother is younger than I am and we were always very close but things were different not only because of our age and gender but also because of our vastly different personalities.
We grew up in the same house with the same parents but with a totally different experience from one another. The gifts we received from our parents were different not only because of our gender but also our interests. And our relationships with our parents were different because of our personalities and possibly because of our birth order.
I don't think that doing the exact same thing for two different people is equal as both my daughters are different and need different things from me. To me, treating them equally means loving them and allowing them to be who they are.
Introducing Veronica Funk who creates such beautiful bright, bold and soulful expressions in her ever so prolific art practice inspired by life steeped in place and the roots and memories they hold. I’m delighted she’ll be sharing with us for the Creative Retreat this year.
Veronica was born and raised in northern Manitoba. She studied Art & Design at Red Deer College and her work has been exhibited and collected across North America. Her goal is to create a visual story in an endeavor to capture the essence of her surroundings.
She’ll be offering two lessons for us:
Creating Backgrounds - Facing a blank canvas can be intimidating. Using acrylic paints and stencils we will have fun creating an interesting surface that can be displayed as is or, as in my next workshop, layered with imagery to create a finished painting.
Making your Mark - Inspired by graffiti, we will begin by utilizing acrylic paint, stencils, stamps or other mark-making tools to create a vibrant background. While working intuitively we will explore colour theory, contrast, and the value of mark-making. We will complete our paintings by including a combination of symbols and images to create a visual story inspired by personal memories.
For more information or to register please visit here.
AIRdirondack Art Project
Alberta (above) +