Monday, February 22, 2016

Attending Workshops ... Learning all the time!

Day One work

Last weekend I traveled to Charlottesville, Virginia
and attended a weaving workshop
with Tapestry Artist and Teacher Joan Griffin!
It was an amazing time of learning for me!
Her studio was beyond amazing,
with inspiration and color everywhere!
I soaked it all in like a sponge!
My iPhone was clicking away
and my photos were taken with Joan's permission.
They continue to inspire me since I have returned home.

 Fiber Stash

 Amazing Colors and Organization

Her Tapestry Bobbin collection

Charlottesville is exactly three hours away from my home,
so her workshop was certainly within reach for me.
She only offers her workshops a few times a year.

The night before I left, Virginia Beach had snow,
and the night I returned home,
Virginia Beach had snow again!!!
Charlottesville is north of us, and they did not get snow!
I felt like the traveling mercies were definitely watching over me!
I was meant to be there!

We learned how to warp a copper pipe loom,
(something I wanted to experience and work on),
we talked about fibers and warp setts.
I learned how to weave my tapestry with the front facing me on the loom,
I had been weaving my work with the back facing me on the loom.
It was good for me to experience both weaving styles.
Every weaver has their own preferences
We studied color, different tapestry techniques, blending fibers,
design, creating a cartoon, inspiration
and so much more.

Demonstrating warp setts

Joan shared her incredible design process,
showed us examples of tapestries hanging on her wall,
and what it took to design these beauties.
She shared her tapestry library, her thoughts, techniques and her own resources!
We listened to beautiful music while we wove . . . it was pretty magical.
I remember saying while we were weaving ... "others are out working on their
Saturday, and here we are weaving together, listening to beautiful music and
enjoying this very moment."
The experience will remain in my heart for a very long time!
I have even found the wonderful piano station she shared with us,
for my own personal use at home.

 Every design concept thought out carefully

One of her beautiful wall tapestries
(more can be viewed on her website)

 All of Joan's tapestries are nature inspired

Joan lecturing about her design process

I am a firm believer that workshop experiences,
whenever available to me,
are a must.
Of course, cost, travel, time always have to be considered.
Workshops teach us to travel out of our comfort zone,
learn new things,
meet new people,
learn to stretch ourselves creatively,
and along the way in the process
we are adding new things to our own creative toolkits.

Joan opened her studio to us so warmly . . .
we had access to all of her amazing tapestries,
her incredible large tapestry loom,
her fiber stash
and so much more.
Thank you Joan for a great experience!

My workshop space

Demonstrating a cartoon behind the warp

 Joan lecturing and sharing ... we were eager to learn

Class samples to ooooh and ahhhhhh over!

I came home and brought the copper pipe loom home with me,
to finish up my project.
I enjoyed it so much it didn't take me a week to complete
my class sample.
Now I will always have a reminder of a wonderful
weekend away to learn!
I'm ready to begin something new right away,
while all the info is still fresh in my brain.

My finished sample before cutting off the loom

I never want to stop learning new things,
meeting new teachers and seeing how they work.
Something way down deep
keeps stirring me to grow, to learn,
and always seek more!
Workshops are a great way to seek out knowledge,
and grow from each experience and instructor.

I am totally in love with the Tapestry Weaving process.
I began this journey over 35 years ago,
abandoned it to pursue other arts,
and now I have come back full circle!
I'm learning, growing, designing and
getting comfortable with it all.
I know now that this Tapestry journey
will take a long time to perfect and I'm ok with that!
I have no regrets for the time I lost, only an eagerness to learn more.
I feel like I am finally home again.

Counting steps carefully

I know when I am teaching my Zentangle® workshops
to others, I want them to have a wonderful experience.
To take away a desire to create more when they leave me.
Whether taking a three hour workshop, a weekend long,
or even a week or two . . .
Don't be afraid to try something new,
learn from your instructor and classmates,
grow  ... stretch your mind and your heart.
I love learning ... don't you!

Have a blessed week!
Reach out to a long lost friend!
Do something different along your life path this week!

Sending Love, Light and all good things to you
Donna Lee