Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Toto... I Don't Think We're in Kansas... (but we ARE in Kansas City!!)

That's right all my little mid-western mixed-media mavens.... Art & Soul is coming to Kansas City in April 2013! Woohoo! We're totally going to change the meaning of "The Show Me State" as we add this new location to our selection of nationwide art retreats.

Our gracious host will be The Elms Hotel & Spa — a wonderfully historic property that is going to offer us the intimate surroundings that we absolutely love for our retreats. I must say that I am so ecstatic about this inspirational location that I just cannot contain myself!! The staff has already made me feel welcome as a part of their family. I can hardly wait!

Here are just some of the highlights of this awesome property...
  • Seasonal culinary delights! Our experienced culinary team prepares fresh all meals from scratch featuring seasonal and local ingredients.
  • Largest spa between Chicago and Dallas! Our full service spa features a private grotto, Eucalyptus saunas and a wide variety of treatments.
  • Enjoy Keurig coffee makers in every guest room, stocked with Elms blend coffee prepared by the Roasterie.
  • Fitness center featuring Precor equipment
  • Indoor European lap pool with hot and cold tubs, open year round
  • Outdoor pool, hot tub and cabanas are available seasonally
  • Vintage lawn games, bicycles and guided historic and ghost tours 
  • Complimentary wi-fi in guest rooms and all public spaces
So mark your calendars and get ready to relax, recharge, and rediscover your creative side at our brand new location!!

Art & Soul Kansas City
April 3-7, 2013
The Elms Hotel & Spa
Excelsior Springs, Missouri

Classes will be online by October 15. Check the website now for hotel information and all the exciting new info!!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Portland: Now that's reFRESHing!

You know how it is... the same thing gets boring.... times change... we want something more. And so it is with Art & Soul Retreats. We want to keep making your experiences better and better. So we thought a little recap of some of our favorite new things would be in order. Let's go!

So how about our new Portland Art & Soul venue — the Red Lion on the River in Jantzen Beach. Imagine the serenity of being right on the Columbia River... with spectacular views of the waterway right outside your room, the restaurants, and even the classrooms! This resort-style property is the perfect location for letting go of the everyday doldrums and diving into your creative adventure!

Besides the scenic location, one of the great advantages to this venue is that everything will be in one place! No more waking up early to catch a shuttle to that workshop in the other hotel. You don't even have to leave the Red Lion if you don't want to!

Wanna shop 'til you drop for one-of-a-kind mixed media supplies and gorgeous pieces of finished art & jewelry? Of course you do (silly me)! Well, our Portland Vendor Night has become Vendor Afternoon/Evening! Join us from 4pm until 8pm in the Red Lion's Ballroom and shop your heART out. As always, this shopping extravaganza is free to registered attendees and open to the public for a fee of $10 at the door. We'll have about 60 vendors offering finished artwork, art supplies, vintage findings, fabrics, jewelry, collage items, assemblage--something for everyone! And a no-host bar will also be available to "enhance" your evening (hee-hee). Please join us!

And perhaps you've noticed all fantastic new videos on our site to accompany the class descriptions? I mean... how great is it to "meet" your instructors before you even get to class. And heck... having a little extra sneak peek at what you'll be doing, well... we think it makes it a whole lot easier to decide what workshops you'd like to take.

We've got a bunch of new videos sprinkled throughout the individual workshop description pages, so browse through your favorite classes and you may get a virtual surprise preview!

I hope you enjoy and are able to take advantage of some of these exciting new changes. Portland is just around the corner... so I'll see you there!

P.S. It's not too late to register so give in to your creative urges today!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Any Dream Will Do...

You know those times when you do something for someone you love and it makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside? Yes... I know them well. In fact, I recently traded my mare Tahitian Pearls, for a fabulous show horse named Any Dream Will Do, for my granddaughter Abby.

Abby with her new horse.
It wasn't easy to let go of my trusty mare. Having acquired her as a 2-year-old, she offered me a lifetime of companionship in the 4 years we spent together. When I got Pearl, I trained her to let me take my electric scooter into her stall. I would sit with her for hours and read a book while she put her head in my lap. To this day, I can say, "put your head down" and she will drop so that I can scratch her ears.

My mare, Tahitian Pearls.
So what drives a person to let go of something special in order to make someone else's dream come true?


You see, Abby's show horse is 18 and about to be retired, so she needed a new horse. Pearl is a beautiful, powerful Saddlebred... but a bit too much for my granddaughter. Pearl would require a lot more training to be safe in the show arena — at least two years worth! So it was a sensible decision to trade Pearl and get a new horse for Abby.

And can I tell you... nothing touches a grandma's heart more than seeing her granddaughter simply beaming with love and an ear-to-ear grin on her face when she sees her Dream come true for the first time. To top it off there was an immediate connection between the two, similar to what Abby had with her first show horse. I believe they'll be fast friends for a very long time.

Many times during our life we have special dreams. And many times those dreams involve people closest to us. When you share your dreams with others, the result is almost always the same... marvelous things happen. The joy of giving is just as satisfying as the joy of receiving. When you take a chance and let go of something... the Universe rewards you with something even more special. Truly, I am the lucky one.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Art & Soul Radio... Tune in for Daniella Woolf: A Textile Sensibility, Sept 10th

Daniella Woolf brings a “textile sensibility” to the ancient medium of encaustic, merging these two disciplines and using a limited choice of materials to create a newly formed language. Her art background includes fiber, collage, jewelry and metalsmithing.
A 2008 Rydell Visual Arts Fellow, Daniella’s encaustic work has been exhibited at the Cleveland Museum of Art, Pittsburg Center for the Arts and internationally at the British Craft Centre, London. She also has an extensive resume as a sculptural textile artist.

Daniella teaches popular encaustic workshops and writes the blog, Encausticopolis, about all things wax. She has authored 2 books, Encaustic with a Textile Sensibility (2010) and The Encaustic Studio, a wax workshop in mixed-media art, out just this year.  And there’s a DVD included with the book. What more can you want except Daniella in person?

So please join us for an inspirational chat...

Art & Soul Radio featuring Daniella Woolf
with Lesley Riley
Monday, September 10th
7:00pm EST


And don't forget, Art & Soul Radio's interviews are also available on demand, to listen to at your leisure. Check out what other mixed-media artists are doing and how they're living their lives with passion any time!