Thursday, February 21, 2013

~ France ~

 I'm so excited to share the details with each of you!  Only a few spots left!  One of them must be yours!

-Early Bird Discount Available!-

Create, shop, dine, wander and explore in this magical, inspirational week-long retreat in the charming village of Durfort. In the breathtakingly beautiful south of France, you will create innovative, soul refreshing art while exploring techniques and materials in a supportive, encouraging and productive environment – with a generous dose of inspiration from native son Toulouse Lautrec! Think color , movement and excitement, gentle waking life and vivid dreams -- we'll explore ways to capture this in our own active stories! Investigate ways to take your art further than ever before! Nurturing pushes, innovative techniques, inspirational tips, instruction and free play will release your inner muse to fearless creativity levels yet explored.

You will create several on the go journals, and fancy faux metal and leather journals, all waiting to be adorned with the perfect flea market charm or treasure! We’ll cast molds of even more treasures, multiplying our stash! You will be successful with watercolor and acrylic painting even if you’ve never painted before; you’ll be relaxing and sketching even if you’ve never sketched before! Kari will share photography tips from her award winning photography career so that you can capture perfect images to use in your art for years to come! The laughter, friendship, support, instruction and fun create the magic for memories and art of a lifetime! (Even a bit of jewelry magic inspired by our flea market treasures might surprise everyone!)

Just a few places we'll visit: the newly renovated Toulouse Lautrec Museum in Albi to draw inspiration from Lautrec's world. We’ll see the world famous patterned French gardens and Palais de la Berbie. When we're not energetically creating, there will be leisurely excursions exploring the glorious local colors and flavors in area flea markets, the En Calcat monastery (and its renowned art and bookstore), and the famous Saturday market of Revel, where visitors and locals both find amazing treasures. There is even the possibility of a personalized French cooking class or two! Once there we will have a multitude of seasonal events to explore!

All excursions are optional; this is a week to pamper yourself and invigorate your muse. You might wish to stay focused, read, catch up on emails, visit darling local shops, enjoy the terrace with a cool drink, relax, work on a personal piece in the studio, explore the local waterfalls on your own or, if luxury of luxuries, take a nap during the sunny French afternoons.

We have the pleasure of enjoying fine, fresh, local food prepared by our own personal chef, Nese. We'll meet for a delicious and sustaining breakfast. Lunch, which is served on the terrace, will nourish us for the afternoon's adventures. Candlelight, wine, and chef Nese's dinner, accompanied by laughter, memories and creative discussions will add to our delightful time in Durfort.

The Workshop

Art Instruction every morning, an optional field trip most afternoons, including flea markets, museums, galleries, open air photo walks, leisurely strolls and enjoying village shops.

The studio will be open for your pleasure any time your muse calls day or night.

Dinners will be an event unto their own each evening with lively unscripted discussions and reflections of the magic we’ve seen unfold that day.

Optional winding down art exercises will be held in the evenings for those who still have energies to spend, or want to capture the magic of the day.

The Accommodations

La Cascade's charming bedrooms are double occupancy (two beds) with three shared full bathrooms. The beautiful new art studio is on the third floor and available to you, whenever your muse strikes. Living room, dining room, and a large outside terrace that goes down to the river are part of La Cascade. Our own personal chef will provide delicious and healthy meals. The workshop price includes most meals.

The Price

Workshop price of $2000 includes (*early bird discount available!)

● Seven nights of lodging at La Cascade- double occupancy

●Many afternoon field trips

●All breakfasts, and almost all lunches and dinners

●Workshop instruction and many lovely supplies

● Marvelously rich goodie bags, including a collector’s edition of stamps and stencils, specifically designed for attendees of Kari’s workshop


● $500 deposit will hold your space

●Final Payment due by April 20, 2013

●Early Bird discount of 225$ if paid in full by April 1, 2013

●Registration limited for the utmost personal attention from the instructor (only a couple spots left)

●Participants will be mailed a registration packet with detailed information, itinerary and all sorts of fun preparation inspirations
To Reserve your place fill out the form below and mail your check, payable to me, to this address: OR Contact me for information about the paypal option!

• Contact Kari at with any questions.
Visit Gwen Gibson's website for more information about La Cascade

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentines Day!

Helllooooo!  After a very weird January that included a quick trip to Florida and a bad case of the chicken pox, I am almost back to full steam.  I hope you are all enjoying a lovely Valentines Day!  Mike was very sweet to me, and took care of me during my itchies, he even bought me chocolate kisses to cheer me up.  I will be making him all his favorites for dinner:)  I guess true love knows no bounds!  I was kind enough to keep my pox to myself.

But selfishly, much of what is in this post was just for me. For years now, I've been collecting quotes I enjoy, just for myself.  I started in lined journals, just page after page, with no organization, or system.  Just collecting them, because they touched something in me. 

The last couple years, I've been making these little "theme" journals.  In them, I keep quotes on one theme.  I also practice my sketching here.  I practice transferring my sketches here. I practice technique here, color combos, or work with new pens here. 

By working this way, I can finish an entire journal in just a few days!  15 minutes a night of lettering or sketching, to wind down.  And at the end of it all, I've got a collection that I can enjoy, rather than hoarding away in a scrabbley mish mash of hundreds of handwritten pages. 

When it was announced that February's theme on Sketchbook Challenge was "Sweets"  I had such fun, pouring over old journals to find quotes with the word 'Sweet' in them.  Here is what I've found so far.

So after the chocolates and sweets, take some time and do some art for yourselves, and please have a wonderful Valentines Day!