Friday, February 13, 2009

Orange County Classes

I had the pleasure of teaching a couple of classes for the Orange County Guild last weekend. I left on Friday night and was battered by the rain all the way to orange county, almost turned around and then I thought, it will be like this all the way home, might as well keep moving forward.
My beloved Myra Katz put all of it together and in my opinion it was a smashing success.
I have had many beautiful experiences teaching but this one I will remember for many years with a smile on my face. The food was wonderful and plenty and Erika brought me gluten free ginger snaps from Trader Joes. Everything fell beautifully in to place. The room was warm, big, and the tables were great. I had someone come from the LA guild, Thank you Susan, long drives after an all day class and long drives in the morning to get there. I stayed with a charming woman, Alva LaFevre, I know Alva and I have always loved her, but it was such a pleasure to stay with her and get to know her better, many layers, talents, and interesting stories and the fact that I was treated like a queen made it all the more pleasurable. Had to take the crown off when I got home, it doesn’t fly well in my house at all.
Well enough blathering… the class was on how to make the flowers that I do. All went very well and EVERYONE made flowers, and EVERYONE’S flowers came out so well. I was so impressed, everyone had different skill levels and they were all wonderful. The hand outs were fine but I found that they inhibited the majority and I had not edited them enough, too many mistakes. I have a lot of excuses I could give, but they are just that excuses. Jill Kollmann kaliedascoped (new word) the petals and came out with some beautiful canes, YAY!!! Trina Williams made a beautiful flower with all the right colors and a magical appearance. She also suggested using wire coiled for the centers and embroidery or cotton thread and French knots for adding the flowers to clothing and hats, just brilliant!
I cried when I got this email and the picture in it. Here is my first picture from the class and it is from Dotty Mc Millan, you can see her other beautiful pieces at
Dotty is a very talented woman in her own right, she has written several brilliant books, and I was completely flattered by her attendance! Thank you Dotty, for sharing this beautiful piece with me and oh… everyone else.
The next day went very well too, hmmmmmmmm two days in a row; I could become so comfortable with this. We did the shrine class this day and fun was had by all, I truly relished in the things that came out of this class and how the group took it to a whole notha level ;-D. I am really looking forward to seeing those pictures as they come. I think I want to give Sam Katz the award for the day just because she hates hearts (Sam and my husband are lucky enough to be sweetheart babies, Happy Birthday you two) and the shrine had hearts on it and she did not want to get even close to what I did and she did different colors and a different theme, a kind of steam punk rendition with light green, oh man, did I want that shrine. I thought I was being so clever by making the shrine with a heart-y theme for the upcoming holiday. And Becky Brooks did a bang up job too and she doesn’t even like to show her stuff from classes! After all I do talk about going in your own direction with your own add ins in the handout…but someone listening is always good.
“I think that making a shrine to commemorate a moment or period in your life that is monumental in so many ways, or a quality you want to emulate, helps to cement the lessons and also to let go of the energy, positive or negative to move on to the next page in this mystical experience we call life.
These are small testaments to the process I have enjoyed my self.
This one to the left is a personal shrine of mine. I have noticed that I collect things for my shrines now and my mind looks for things and meanings to incorporate in to the shrines. I love the ceremony of them and the ritual involved with the experience of collecting, developing, and manifesting this work.
I am going to share a small part of the ever changing quality and life of this craft that morphs as you go.
Also if you do these for someone as a request or order, do yourself and them a favor of not working or pondering on them with out clear, clean, and loving intent. There is power here and it is a responsibility. If this is the road that is taken, the rewards for all involved will be many.”
And boy were the rewards many. Powerful pieces all of them.

I had so much fun with this weekend. I feel like I shouldn’t tell anyone, that I have to suffer to teach and that there has to be pain to be rewarding. But I had fun and it was joyful and I am so grateful for the experience and the talented people I had the pleasure to share with over that glorious and miraculous two days. Thank you all for gracing me with your wonderful and insightful presence. I will be forever better because of knowing you all.


  1. Marie-
    I had a very creative time in your classes and really appreciated your encouragement. I wore my "love shrine" pin on "V-Day" and spent this rainy morning making word tiles; my first batch of putty is setting up right now! And my Mom is getting a flower cane pin for her 87th birthday on Wednesday.

    I look forward to the opportunity to work with you again and am very happy the Orange County Guild took the trouble to make it happen this time!
    Thank you-Susan C.

  2. Thank you Susan for driving so far and a being a light in my class! I am so glad you are doing something wonderful with this!
    Happy 87th to your mom!!!

  3. What a great write-up, Marie. We had such a good time I can see incorporating this technique into my buttons and I have already started a shrine for my sister who's husband just passed.
    I LOVE this clay!

    (they didn't like my Google pword)

  4. Thanks Trina, It was a great class because of you all. What a wonderful present for you sister. I would love to see that one and the buttons. I am so sorry for your sister's hurting heart!
    I am liking this clay too!!

  5. O, how I wish I could have been there!! How wonderful that it was such a great experience for all involved!!

  6. I wish you could have been there too!!!

  7. The flower class was particularly "door opening" and if you ever get a chance, you should take this class. Many thanks to Marie for letting us be her test group, and for putting up with our independent muses that led us on so many creative side-trips. We shared our completed projects at Guild last night and it was nice to re-visit the adventure and see what everyone had done since taking the class. Thanks again - Jill & Cocoa

  8. Thank you so much Jill for allowing yourself to submit to my testing. I am so grateful!
    Muses should be followed or they complain loudly in body, mind, and soul, well done you, for indulging them!!!
    Hi ya Cocoa, woof! How is she doing with those flowers, Jill? ;-D
    I would love to see those pictures, please ask everyone to share, please, oh please, oh please. Oops, I imagine begging is not lady like, right? Well… no one ever accused me of that anyway, so, oh please!


I am so glad you stopped by. Please leave your words of wisdom. I look forward to them and I so enjoy reading them all.
Live to love, Love to create, and create to connect.