01.05.2011 in13:51 in Miscellaneous -->
BENICIA CALIFORNIA FINE ART WORKSHOP
It’s almost hard writing about the workshops, because it seems so final, like, it really means they’re over and I’m closing the book on the experience we all had together. What an experience. I’m still walking in the clouds, or the tall grass and breathing in the warm sunshine and friendly surrounding mountains. I truly look forward to our workshops with such high hopes, knowing that three days later we will have made 12 new friends that we will cherish always.
We will have heard stories and anecdotes that make our hearts heavy for one another, stories that make our hearts soar, those that make us laugh until we cry, and those that just make us cry; we will have gotten very close in three days, what I like to call ‘close by safe light.’ We coat prints for antique printing process late at night together, cozy in our pj’s with wine and conversation, by the red glow of the darkroom safelight, which I have always felt like is the glue, the time for everyone to feel safe together. There is something magical about that red, safe, light.
Sunday was pure loveliness, and everything I hoped it would be. We spent the day in the sparkling sunshine surrounded by tall glorious trees, just perched on the water’s edge with a view of the friendly mountains I so adore. We had an al fresco lunch together, created home-made filters for our lenses, and photographed two beautiful sessions together before heading back to town. We all had dinner together in a cozy private loft before pj’s and safelights back at the inn. An incredible day with an incredible group of friends indeed.
Monday began with Art Class in the courtyard, another perfect California day, a holy host of art paints, papers, glue, gold leaf, pencils, wax, and more. Everyone made a mixed media collage, we made photographic transfers, and home-made textures with ink transfer. An incredible mess…and incredible morning! Our first session was ‘The little studio on the bay,’ intimate figure studies in an on-location, nature inspired outdoor studio, set on the exquisite Benicia bay. The afternoon was absolute respite, as we all gathered in the darkroom to print our beautiful antique process Van Dyke prints by safelight once again, warmth, conversation…and snowcones. Thanks Zabrina. :)
We gathered in the evening for our final session, the three graces; three quiet spirits in tattered white vintage dressing gowns. We wandered down to the waters edge, into the reeds, with a view of the mountains in the distance. We were simply surrounded by beauty. It was wonderful.
We all shared another fantastic meal together, and gathered for another pj night afterward. Tuesday morning I shared some photoshop tricks and digital antique process, and we talked in depth about artistic process, the bones of past projects, and some exciting upcoming future plans. We said our goodbyes, or goodbye for nows, and everyone was on their way to their homes all over the country. I’m amazed sometimes how far apart we are now…miles and miles, and how close we were then. I miss you all terribly, thank you for being part of my life, and part of my journey. I am so blessed to have been a part of yours.
Below are some images I of the models created during our time together, and then some snapshots of us being us. Enjoy!