Thursday, March 21, 2013

Keys4Art 2013 Part I

So much to share!  Keys4Art 2013 was every bit as amazing as I knew it would be.  The house (see the previous post) was perfect for our needs, the setting was gorgeous, and the pace was relaxed.  And without stress we accomplished so much, teaching each other some of the things we've learned.  Renting the house instead of hiring outside teachers (and don't get me wrong; I've loved the teachers we've had over the years) was a wonderful idea, and allowed us to set up our own schedules and do what we wanted when we wanted.

I can't begin until I properly acknowledge all the work that Elena did to make this happen, and her unequaled generosity.  She showered us with gifts to use in our art, and is the BEST HOST EVER!!  Also, many thanks to Jacquie who is another amazing woman, great friend, and good hearted human who worked with Elena to help make our experience so fabulous.  And who did so much to lift my spirits. (She is also a pretty hot dancer, but that is a story for another post.  :))

GIFTS (from Elena and Jacquie)

GIFTS (from my art sisters)
And the above isn't even the entire haul.  I had to mail two boxes of stuff back home and one hasn't arrived yet.  There are more gifts inside that one!  It was like Christmas, Hanukkah, and my birthday rolled into one.
And a big shout out to our "pillow fairies," Marita and Gina, who couldn't come this year, but sent along a box of goodies to be left on our pillows each night, just as they did for the first three retreats.  Everything they sent will be (or already has been) used in art projects.  See the bejeweled and beribboned (is that even a word?) green key on the bottom of the above photo?  It is already attached to a little journal I made, and looks like it was made for that purpose.  Thanks, my northwest friends!
Art, food, and friendship aside, one of my greatest pleasures was enjoying a cup of coffee each morning, sitting outside on the waterfront, watching the day unfold in the spectacular colors of the Florida Keys sunrise.  Yep, I was up that early every day.  And yep, I was usually the only one.  Well, the only human, anyway.  I was befriended one morning by an egret.

Same view, same time of day, three different looks:

One of our gifts was Gelli plates, and we spent a fun morning, led by Sue, experimenting with our plates, a variety of papers, and many techniques.  Good thing Elena and Bernie now own a restaurant, because we had all the deli wrap paper we wanted (and we used a ton of it!)

Elena showed us how to create unique collages.  Using graphite paper we transfered the outline of a photo onto a canvas.  Then, paying attention to the colors and tones in the original photo, we recreated it on the canvas, but not with paint.  We looked through magazines and tore out bits of paper to match our photos.  Great fun, and LOVE the results.

This is the photo I used:

Me, on a boat, Lady Liberty in the background, taken about 4 years ago.  I love the collaged version I did, even if it looks more like Annette Benning than me.  I may go back and try to fix that, but in the meantime, here it is:
I think I better save something for next time.  More projects, more views, just lots more to come.





SusanK said...

I'm so jealous! Looks like you had a spectacular retreat and I love the art you created.

Lori said...

Looks spectacular! Hot dancer, huh? Can't wait to hear about that one.. lol. The gelli backgrounds are awesome, love all the colors..and the collage from bits of magazine..just brilliant and yours looks fantastic! Can't wait to see the next installment!

Helen said...

Sounds like an amazing trip, and I love the sunsets (I would have been up too!!) Love the art you've shared so far, will be sure to check part 2.

Patzee said...

Thanks for taking me back to the retreat! Love your sunrise photos! What a grand time we had crafting, bonding, laughing and eating. The food was amazing--I was telling someone about Bernie's ribs just today. My art friends are priceless and I missed those who couldn't make it this year. Happily, Carla fit right in!

teri said...

Loved reading this, and especially the three sunrises-- none of which I saw in person, I might add. I totally agree about the relaxed pace. It was great to have time to create and relax. Lady liberty in your collage turned out really well.

Debby said...

Wow looks like you had a great time. The art you shared is amazing! So glad you get to do this each year with your friends.

Heidi Bound said...

Looks like you gals had an amazing and very relaxing time! Wish I could have been there but I know you sipped a cup of coffee (or glass of wine) for me! Miss you! (see you saturday-woo hoo)

Jennifer R.D. said...

Thanks Eileen for documenting our retreat so fabulously. Your photos and descriptions are wonderful. I hope you are recovering well and taking good care of yourself. BTW-
I seem to recall YOU shaking your groove thing
pretty well yourself, girlfriend !
Jen oxox

andizee said...

Love your selfie. Looks like and sounds lie a blast!!! U r a wonderful blogger

andizee said...

Love your selfie. Looks like and sounds lie a blast!!! U r a wonderful blogger

Michele said...

Looks like you all had a spectacular time! And yes, Eileen, you TOTALLY look like Annette Bening in the picture!

Lynn Stevens said...

Sounds like you all had an amazing time and such generous ladies!!!
hugs Lynn

Lee Hynes said...

Such a haul of gifts and such a fabulous view! Love your collage!

craftyM said...

Looks Maaaaaavelous dahling.... simply maaaaahhhhvelous!!!!

And thanks for the shout out.... While you guys were having the time of your life, neither of your pillow fairies had a very good week, Gina sick in bed the entire week and me nursing a husband after surgery.

So fun to see all the great things and happy for all that it was so wonderful AND SO SORRY WE HAD TO MISS THE BEST OF THE BEST!!!!!!

And I got to see that wonderful deli paper first hand as I received a special treat in the mail from Jen today with a wonderful handmade tag a la our now famous Julie Nutting and some wonderful handmade gelli/deli papers and the famous Jen CD "Music to do Art by. Thanks, Jen!

I'm dying to get my hands on a Gelli pad... That just looks super duper amazingly FUN!!!. Gina and I want to play with one ourselves one of these days soon I hope....

goodling4 said...

I would have been up with you drinking coffee and dishing with that egret, Eileen! So marvelous to read all the details about your week in the Keys and all the fun you were all having!

Yes and thanks for using your PF gifts and treasures in your art and the big thanks to us! By reading your blog I can stay in tune with all the fun you had.
All the classes you all taught each other were inspiring and yes Thanks to Jen we have goodies, too!
XO Gina

Anita Houston said...

Looks wonderful! Great loot! The art looks fantastic and your liberty and you is amazing! Don't retouch!!!!

Marjie Kemper said...

This sounds like a fantasy trip. Glad you had such fun and wow on the goodie haul. Love your piece with Lady Liberty... I wouldn't change it at all.