I am back. Back from near 3 weeks of mosaic mayhem! I had a brilliant time – there’s nothing quite like immersing oneself in something you love, are passionate about and couldn’t live without. Needless to say the highlight was meeting all my e-friends, who I now can certainly count as real-life friends 😉 It was kinda weird though because it didn’t feel like it was the first time we actually met, proof perhaps that making friends online and getting to know them without ever so much as hearing their voices or feeling their demeanour in person is, in fact, possible.
SAMA San Diego was a blast – to use an Americanism. I participated in 4 workshops – one of which was CRAP!!! And yes I did say so in the feedback. It was a relief to hear that most other people I met who did the same workshop had similar complaints. However, the other 3 were really great. I would have to say the workshop I benefited from the most was Sue Gianotti‘s Mosaic Design Basics. Basic principles I was not aware of, some that I even used in my work without knowing that I did… I am now a value-ho!
I am also now convinced that there is no business workshop that would do me any good. I think it must be a really difficult thing to teach (?) even arbitrary perhaps, but I havn’t done any kind of business class that has imparted any kind of useful information. Well I havn’t done Laurel True‘s class and I have heard it is a good one… I did do George Fishman‘s class, however. I must say that was useful – it was essentially dissecting the process of one of his murals. But it didn’t set about how to get that mural in the first place, if you know what I mean. I enjoyed going through the step by step of how the mural was made though, very interesting. In fact that class reminded me just how open I keep myself to my clients, in as much as I don’t cover myself with a contract ever… I know. The evil twin in me keeps whispering in my ear, waiting for the “I told you so” moment. Something I will change as of this year. I have been lucky enough to be supported by some wonderful fellow artists (Marian Shapiro being one) and am truly grateful…
I also did the 3D workshop with Sherri Warner Hunter and actually made something that looks like what it was supposed to (a snail!). I was quite chuffed 😉 That was a really fun day.
Not sure what I would say the highlight of the conference was – it was all rather overwhelming… probably meeting fellow artists. Being surrounded by like-minded people. The only artist I didn’t introduce myself to (I will say embarrassingly enough!!!) was Laurel Skye. I was just a little too starstruck… 😉 She is, after all, the sole reason why I continued to mosaic…
The Mini Salon was a great experience too. The work was amazing – all of it. Interesting to see all these pieces that I had seen online, in person. I’m happy to say that I sold my piece. It now resides in Tahiti 🙂 That was nice actually. Marian Shapiro was the one that convinced me to enter something in all in the name of trying to recoup costs of getting there. That sale and that of my guitar, Swan Song, certainly helped and made it all worthwhile!!
My new fave mosaic artist: Jeannie Houston Antes. Check out her work. Of course, so much better in person… but I love her style + she’s really cool. Am hoping to write her up on this blog some time soon – so stay tuned!
Me & Crystal Thomas in Sherri’s 3D class
Photo by Carol Shelkin
Photo by Crystal Thomas
Photo by Crystal Thomas
The Exhibition itself was located at the Museum of Man. Great setting, but I found it difficult to get through with 400 other people around – let’s just say I’m one of those annoying people who don’t do particularly well in crowds and much prefers to go at my own pace and let it all soak in… Nevertheless it was just awe-insiring to see a collection of amazing mosaics in the one space. My top 5 (in no particular order):
Waves Adrift by Sophie Drouin
Dreamer by Carole Choucair Oueijan
Stinging Colours by Roxana Nizza
Paradigm Shift by Brian Felix
The Birth of Light by Bill Buckingham
In a Village by Carol Shelkin
OK so top 6! Though my top 5 should be a top 10, top 15… so many pieces I would have in my home 😉 More pics can be found in my Flickr set.
Some of my faves from the Mini Salon:
Viscus Stimulus by Karen Ami
Voices in My Head by Jeannie Houston Antes
Venezia by Ulrike Martinez
The conference, for me, wrapped up with a tour of Niki de Saint Phalle‘s Queen Califia’s Magic Circle. Let it be known that I was speechless. It was really fantastic and a great end to the 5 days (daze?) of mosaic mania. Bring in capital punishment for those effwits who find the need to vandal the place, I say 😉 More on flickr…
All in all, a great time!! Don’t know about doing this again next year, but I highly recommend it to those of you who can go. Next year it is in Chicago, brrrr… I think I will opt for my trip to Spain, Italy and maybe Turkey & Morocco. I think I need to go to all these other places I want to visit versus visiting the US over and over 😉