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Monday, July 03, 2006

Art, family and birthdays

So much going on in the past two weeks that I've skipped the blog, missed an exhibition deadline and forgot to get my hair trimmed. Our son came from Boston for several days and we did a lot of family things with our Little Artist and her mommy and daddy, including celebrating my birthday. One evening I attended a picnic with the Otterbein College alumni association, a fun event every June called the "June Bug Jamboree." My birthday party was that evening at our daughter's with my sister and her husband coming from Columbus to Wilmington, Ohio. I firmly announced that there should be no birthday cake, but one appeared anyway. This is a tough time for watching weight at our house. Following my birthday by a week is our anniversary and then my husband's birthday comes along the next week. The scale is groaning.

But I digress. I missed a show opening and submission for a different show. Somehow these didn't make it into my top priority list while my son was here.

The day after he left I participated in a one-day workshop on analyzing your drawings to find out what's going on in your unconscious mind, an art therapy technique. Maybe you've done it. You draw several things in a specific sequence, starting with a river, then a mountain, a field, a road, a dwelling, people, etc., up to a dozen or more items. The interpretation is based on the location of your object on the paper and its size and direction, indicating past, present or future. I've been told this is similar to a game called Kokology that I'm not familiar with. I remember reading about this years ago but I don't recall the name of the book. It's interesting, but you can't really accomplish much in one day. It was fun to be with so many friends I haven't seen for awhile. About half the class were former or current students in my watercolor classes.

Last Thursday I drove to Michigan to visit my best friend, whom I hadn't seen since she came here last year to attend a watercolor workshop with me. Several months ago she began to gather on a weekly basis with six other women who have a diverse interest in art and fine crafts and they have been having an amazing experience. It was wonderful to spend the day with this energetic, funny, intelligent group of women. We created handmade paper using the equipment of one of the members who formerly had an art business making paper, stationery and cards. Here's a partial list of what some of the women do or have done in the past: painter, quilter, fiber artist, knitter, arts administrater, art teacher, papermaker, belly dancer, collage artist, art dollmaker, PhD. They launch a different project nearly every week and have several ongoing and group projects, as well. Every gathering starts with sharing what each has been doing since the last meeting and because they have become so close during their association, art and personal matters are both woven into the conversation. When they start to work on their projects, it's like an electric current is turned on and when it's finished, all hands turn to cleanup. The Seven Spirit Sisters begin buzzing about the next project, then they're off to the real world. Or maybe their world IS the real world. It's certainly a great place to be.

No watercolor class today. The students voted to take a long weekend over the 4th of July. On Wednesday I'm starting a beginners' class, so next week I'll be teaching two days a week. I'm getting really antsy about the new books coming in. I'll have about 150 to autograph and ship and that will keep me busy, for sure. Today I'll be happy if I can straighten out my calendar and bring my planner up-to-date. A planner is a great way to keep tabs on all your events and tasks, but guess what! You have to look at it once in awhile to stay on track!

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