I stumbled upon this mixed media retreat happening right in my backyard. Stumbled, yes- about two weeks before it was to happen. Usually, I see neat ads for incredible art retreats, but the ads will say something like "come to the beautiful Catskill mountains."..or Hawaii or somewhere else just as impossible for me, but this time, it was nearby! I looked at all the great workshops offered, whittled my wish list down to 6 classes, then down to 4, then down to the two I was most interested in. (this retreat covered days!) I am hoping they will be back next year!
The class I was most interested in was encaustic collage. Last year, when we were visiting San Juan Island, I saw an artbook with encaustic artwork in it. I had no idea what the medium was, but intrigued, I googled it.
I discovered that encaustic collage used beeswax as the main medium. This was the art technique I was most excited about learning more about. The class did not disappoint. By the time I had laid down my first layer of hot wax, I knew I was in love.
Have I mentioned before my love affair with flamingos? Yes, it goes deep with me. I'm currently on the look-out for a large metal flamingo I can dress for holidays. I gather from Sky's silence on the matter, that he is in full accord with my wishes...hey, if he doesn't speak up before I hit "buy now" it's totally not my fault. ---sooo, I tried the encaustic technique here with a flamingo photo I took and printed out on paper. I love the paper doilie layer..it just works. I need to add a pink feather to this, and then it will be done. I like it, because it has a sort of kitschy feel.
So the retreat was several days, many of the attendees stayed at the hotel, but I just drove in both days.
The encaustic class was 6 hours long. Oh the joy!! It went by soo fast. We had a lunch break and I enjoyed eating at the hotel restaurant. The whole day was very relaxing and yet very electrifying at the same time...kind of an art-induced head-buzz. The second class I took was on making transfers, pretty useful. I did well with the water and mat medium transfers, but went down in flames with the gesso transfers.
The bathrooms at the hotel had these signs, which amused me, greatly.
We are done with school! Officially- except I am rolling out a pretty rigorous course of study for the Summer. We switched Josie over to Teaching Textbooks Algebra 2 - I kind of lurve it because it is self-correcting. If it goes well, I might use it with Demi in the Fall. Right now, I've got Demi working on Aleks math- it's online. Amie has moved over to Math Mammoth. I plan to have both Amie and Demi using Aleks Math in the Fall along with whichever program we also decide to use.
Meg and I are going through the book Do Hard Things: A Teenage Rebellion Against Low Expectations together right now. I wrote earlier how I felt panicky over the fact that Meg is graduating and that I feel like so much was left undone. The book is a small, gentle way to address my feelings and to keep touching base with her. We meet once a week to discuss our reading, over a bagel or something equally yummy. :)