This was my first and maybe last time to attend Artfest. I say 'last' because Teesha Moore says this is the last one, at least for Port Townsend. Stay tuned--you never know. I went to Artfest to learn more about mixed media, to meet other creative women, and because it was in Port Townsend, a place I visited once when I was sixteen years old. I hadn't been to an art retreat since 2008, and I was more than ready to get started. I took three classes; one in collage, one in plaster techniques, and one in metal and resin jewelry making. Here are three examples, one from each class, of what I came away with:
Various collage techniques
Resin jewelry pendant
Even with the continuous drizzle of rain that kept my hair in bendy curls and having my luggage go missing for 24 hours, it was an amazing time. Here is the officers' house where I stayed with 6 other women. (This is the view from the backside.)
This is view I from my little room upstairs. Just to the right was an awesome view of the ocean.
My first class was a collage class with Misty Mawn. She is an amazing artist, blogger, author, etc. She demonstrated many of her favorite techniques for building background pages and creating focal points.
Some of the stencils she used were stained from being used over and over again. I thought they were quite beautiful this way. As I was taking pictures of them Misty commented that she has several stencils like these hanging up at home because they are so pretty. My best take away idea from this class: when you are clipping and collecting ephemera for a collage, keep them gathered in color palettes like blues, nudes, reds, grays, etc., because it is so much easier to build your collage. At Vendor Night I ended up purchasing several of these stencils from Mary Beth Shaw.
Here are two of my house mates, Tally and Lisa. I met Tally several years ago at Art & Soul in Asilomar, CA. We kept in touch via our blogs, but I had no idea she was going to be at Artfest until I walked into the officers' house the first night and saw her. She and her friends had reserved the house and I somehow ended up with the last room. It was meant to be. We all had a great time, even going into Port Townsend a couple of times for dinner.
Day two, I took a plaster class from Stephanie Lee. My table mate was Heather.
Here are the plaster tiles I made on wood and burlap. After we painted our tiles we applied hot wax and burnished them with the palms of our hands. I LOVE this and want to do more.
Below are the ladies that I rented a car with at the Seattle airport and we then drove two hours to Port Townsend. Jamie, me, Christa, and Adeola.
Each evening after our classes we would bring home our newest art project and display them in the dining room, either on the mantel or the table. Here's what I made in my last class on day three with teacher Susan Lenart Kazmer. It's a combination of metal work and resin on paper all put together to make an unusual statement necklace.
Here are a couple of projects made by my house mates.
This large gray hanger is where they had Vendor Night. It's where all the artists' sell books, art, tools, jewelry, etc. It was so thick with people I could barely see the tables!
Many of the participants at Artfest were repeat attendees, some were devoted followers of many of the teachers there. I can see why. Artfest and venues like it offer inspiration, friendship building, business networking, and a block of precious time for creative people to just be creative. I would definitely do this again!