ArtBLISS 2011

by Cindy on September 30, 2011

ArtBLISS 2011…. it came and went in a flash.   After months of planning, Jeanette and I were so excited when the big weekend arrived – and that is where I left off here on my blog.  This picture was snapped while I packed the car to head to the venue – on the brink of such a memorable weekend.

If you’ve ever attended a retreat, you know the amazing feeling of excitement….. reuniting with friends, meeting online friends in person for the first time, and the anticipation of learning new techniques from rock stars of the art jewelry world.  And boy was there ever a fantastic line-up of instructors this year at ArtBLISS.  We were so thankful that they traveled  all the way to VA from NM, TX, NY, CT and VT!

In this shot, you’ll some of the ladies that attended the Inaugural Event last year – (along with me ‘n Jeanette)  Carol, Betty, Laura, and Sally.  It is really great to have a history and share stories with attendees that have returned this year for Round 2!

You know I love taking pictures, and surprisingly I only took around 150. I think I was too busy enjoying the presence of greatness.  I’ve grouped some pictures in to collages in an effort to pack as many in to this post as I could.  You’ll see scenes of laughing and learning, right along with our fabulous instructors:  Robert Dancik, Deryn Mentock, Jane Salley, Richard Salley, Kerry Bogert, Diane Cook, and Christine Damm.

Robert Dancik taught amazing projects working with Faux Bone…

We were thrilled that Deryn Mentock returned this year and taught a great variety of techniques – from encaustics to forging metal.  One of her projects utilized a “secret” ingredient that was the talk of the weekend! 🙂

Our tradition:  a Friday night Meet and Greet reception for the instructors.  There’s nothing like shopping, chatting, nibbling on appetizers and enjoying good company!

This year we added something fun for our crafty retreat attendees – an Altered ID Badge challenge!  Congrats to the winner, Dawn Gallop, who joined us for the second year in a row.  Dawn has an article coming out in Somerset Memories….look for it on the newstands any day now!

Oh what fun to work with metal under Jane Salley’s instruction….

Students enjoyed learning from Richard Salley, with his sought-after classes.   Richard’s new Lasting Impressions class left an impression on us all – everyone was excited to share their personal etched stamps created in class.

It was so good to see Kerry again….she roomed with me ‘n Jeanette and we all stayed up late and chatted like it was one big slumber party.  Kerry was up early with excitement though, ready to teach her brand-spanking new jewelry photography course, Snaptastic.   We were honored that she debuted her course here at ArtBLISS!  Watch for her eCourse coming very soon.

The charm swap is another fun tradition at ArtBLISS (see last year’s charms here).   Trades and swaps seem to be a real retreat thing, and we we were happy to see the interest in swapping again.  Anne Savage was an amazing hostess and organized the swap – right down to lunch together on Saturday.  Jen was so generous and did a demo for all of us – brought all of the supplies, pretty papers, cutters, and all. We learned how to make our own paper boxes.   It was a nice scene – a big bunch gathered around the table sharing techniques and learning a quick project over pizza.

Here’s a sampling of the charms that were swapped.   Sue Kennedy did a nice post listing each charm and its creator – you can see it here.

Now speaking of swapping with friends, I brought along a few aprons for a few of my closest friends.  I really don’t sew, so I asked my friend Julie Anne (look for her blog coming soon!) a really big favor!  Then I added a little something to each and now they’re ready to be altered.  I thought it would be fun if each of us worked on our own altered art aprons.

Hailing all the way from Texas, Diane Cook was a real joy to welcome to ArtBLISS this year.  It was extra special for me as I finally had the chance to meet my dear friend in person, after meeting online 2 1/2 years ago.  And I had to take one of her classes.

What a feeling of fulfillment (especially after dealing with my testy soldering iron – yes, I was the “problem” child in this class!) to create my own soldered pendant.  Creating the collage first was so fun…and was a different experience than working with resin as there was no special precautions with the paper. Just make your collage (stamp, draw, paint, glue…) and place it between glass.  That was the easy party…then came the solder. 😉  I finished a few charms that I’m quite pleased with!

Another dear friend came to teach – Christine Damm, Belle Armoire Jewelry’s current featured artist.  Christine brought with her an enormous amount of enthusiasm and wisdom in working with polymer clay.  I loved to see her excitement when the timer on the oven went off and she opened the oven door…. She truly radiates her love of her medium.

The weekend came and went too fast.  But the memories are there in my mind and I’ll cherish them.  I hope to see YOU at next year’s event; please consider joining us….. plans are already underway!

Visit the ArtBLISS Flickr pool to see more pictures from the 2011 event!


{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

LeAnn September 30, 2011 at 8:29 am

I do wish I would have had the time to come this year. Maybe, next year? You really aren’t very far away at all.

Laura Twiford September 30, 2011 at 8:46 am

I can’t thank you and Jeanette enough for putting on such a wonderful retreat. The friendships and memories made are priceless. The instructors were fantastic and I wish I could have taken each class offered! I love everything I learned and can’t wait until next year!

Alice September 30, 2011 at 8:57 am

What a wonderful gathering of artists!!! I hope to be able to attend one of these someday!

Kathleen Lange Klik September 30, 2011 at 9:14 am

Thank you for sharing the fun weekend with your photos! They give some nice insight into what the event is all about. Looks like a lot of fun was had as well as new techniques learned.

Susan Kennedy September 30, 2011 at 9:19 am

Great post, Cindy! It was so great seeing you and Jeanette again, and you two did a fabulous job! It was a great weekend and I’m looking forward to see what you’re doing for next year!

KIM September 30, 2011 at 9:27 am

Oh I have been waiting for this post to live through your pictures….. what a great time you all had! I love to learn and need to plan a special treat to me and attend Art Bliss. So glad you all had lots of learning fun.

Shirley Moore September 30, 2011 at 10:42 am

Wow, what an amazing line up of talent! Love getting to see some of the fun stuff ya’ll did, and really hope to be there next year!

Erin Prais-Hintz September 30, 2011 at 11:57 am

GREEN! I am green with envy at all the great memories and projects that I see being made here. Having just a minute taste of ArtBliss this spring, I can tell you that these girls know how to put on a party. That is what it feels like! Yes, you are learning. Yes, you are covered in grunge and burning your fingers and singeing your hair, but you are having oh-so-much fun! Someday I might be lucky enough to come back (maybe an ArtBliss Midwest in Milwaukee would be in order? I know someone in WI who could help you with that! 😉 until then I will peruse these photos and DREAM!

Enjoy the day, Miss Cindy!

Lana September 30, 2011 at 12:04 pm

Hi Cindy,i have missed you… alot going on these past couple of months have not had a lot of time to blog..anyway omg you gals are so lucky it looked like so much fun…my eyes were welling up thinging of how much i would have loved to be there and i saw Miss Lori in some photos she looks amazing pink hair and all…i am trying to save up for the B&B this year i really want to go…thanks for sharing all you photos and stories i am glad you had a great time.
take care ttfn Lana 🙂

Tracy September 30, 2011 at 1:04 pm

What a great photo summary of the weekend Cindy! Next year my family will just have to suck it up and get over Mommy being gone for the weekend! I sooo wanted to be there all weekend taking classes. Your soldered pendants are really cool – especially the little angel. Wow. You would never know you were the problem child. : ) You and Jeanette should feel so proud of what you have created!

Brandi September 30, 2011 at 1:23 pm

Oh, Cindy, how I wish I could have been there with you gals! It looks like SO much fun, that I’m hoping I can swing something in the future (ArtBliss 2012?). Thanks for sharing little bits of the weekend with us!

mary jane dodd September 30, 2011 at 5:40 pm

what an awesome time you all had (i can only imagine the amount of work and worry that goes into it)… wonderful pictures – it put a smile on my face to see so many people working together, learning and having fun…

Molly Alexander September 30, 2011 at 6:01 pm

It looks like you all had a fabulous time! I can only imagine the time a preparation it took to pull it off, and the rewards are truly amazing – congratulations! 🙂

Charlene October 1, 2011 at 12:00 am

Looks like a great time for all!!! You met 2 of my favorite buddies at the event… Diane Cook & Deryn Mentock. Those ladies ROCK don’t they? I am so blessed to have them close. And sooooooooooo glad you had a chance to take their classes. Your pieces shown in this post are great. Thanks for sharing. Charlene

Renate October 1, 2011 at 1:18 am

Congratulations, Cindy! You and Jeanette have created a really fabulous event. I so often wish I was able to connect with my online friends in person. You had a really great lineup of instructors and obviously, everyone enjoyed the event!!!

Kerry October 1, 2011 at 7:21 am

ArtBLISS was such an incredibly amazing experience. A HUGE thank you to you and Jeanette for putting it on and making me a part of it. I am already looking forward to next year!!

Mary Harding October 2, 2011 at 8:08 am

So great to get a taste of what it was like to be there Cindy. You do a wonder
full job of making it fun and welcoming. And what a great
array of teachers. Thank you for sharing all these photos.
I so appreciate it.

cat kerr October 3, 2011 at 5:24 pm

Omygosh Cindy!!!What an AMAZING event you and Jeanette had!! I am breathless after looking at all of the wonderful photos and the amazing time you must have had.I cannot even begin to imagine all the work you both did,organizing,preparing..Oh my.I am soooooooooo sad I missed this,but you know what…One day I will make it again..I know it. And all the instructors… Oh gosh how can you pick which class to take..they are all so amazing…I know I know I have said AMAZING like 100 times…I cant help it. Right now I am so pumped up after reading and looking at all these photos…Wow,You amaze me in everything you do..amaze..amaze..amaze me.Totally rambling now.( :

Jenny October 4, 2011 at 3:22 pm

I was just finishing my ArtBliss post and lamenting that lack of pictures… Thank you for it all. For documenting the magic that you and Jeannete facilitated. For undertaking the venture, for creating an amazing experience twice over. For leaving me feeling restored and rejuvenated, and yet exhausted from it all. a feeling I wouldn’t trade for the world! Until next year…

Diana Frey October 7, 2011 at 2:05 am

Well you certainly know how to throw one fantastic art party!! Everyone looked as though they had a terrific time. Congrats ! on another successful Art Bliss Cindy. Hoping you are finding time to relax now and catch your breath.

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