An Artist's Retreat

(Two handmade books from years past.)

I'm dreamy for an artist's retreat. For the uninterrupted chunk of time to hole-up in a lovely sunny studio and make, write, make, write, make. I'm trying to finish up a handful of projects right now and I'm consistently amazed at how much longer each one takes than anticipated! Manuscript editing, submitting poems for publication, sewing prep, sewing, knitting, letterpress designs, some intricate handmade cards, and what else is on the studio table waiting? Hmm...

I went to an artist's retreat in 2005 at the Vermont Studio Center before I moved from Brooklyn to Oakland for grad school. I was there as a writer but I loved the fact that the residency was swimming with writers, painters, sculptors, photographers, and printmakers all at once. Being a creative type who's drawn to interdisciplinary work, this suited me perfectly. The most amazing thing was that I actually finished a poetry project I'd been working on for months and then I started a brand new one. Bliss!

I also worked through some sewing ideas, some handmade book ideas, and I got to that point where I walked into my studio one gorgeous sunny day and thought, "Huh, well what should I do now?" Dreamy, I tell you. So how to create that balance in our integrated lives without uprooting completely and heading to the fantasy mountain retreat for a whole month? I don't know. But I'm determined to figure it out. So, I'm working on it.

In the meantime, if you don't already know about these resources, give them a peek. The Alliance of Artists Communities is over there in my sidebar and it's quite an extensive look into available artist residencies. They also have a printed book that's super helpful with all sorts of charts in the back according to medium, geography, deadlines, etc. Did you know that they even have artist residency programs in many of the National Parks?!? So, the mountain-wilderness-meets-art-creation dreams do sometimes come true, if only for a month. And with that, back to my studio in urban Oakland...

1 comment:

  1. Wow! These books are gorgeous! I've always wanted to try an artist retreat... maybe someday...



Thank you for your comments, friends. I like to think we are creating a dialogue in this space--building a virtual community.