Monday, June 9, 2014

Survey Says.....

I asked and you answered Amherst! Thank you so much for your feedback. 24 of you took the time to answer my survey to help create the first Amherst Art Day. The results are in! Let's take a look!

The group with most replies was ages 7-12 with a total of 12! Way to go amigos! Thanks for all the feedback. Ages 13-17, 3 of you took the time to let me know what you want to create for Art Day. I really appreciate that. This age group really took off during the last few classes. I can't wait to create with you all again! Spread the word to your amigos too. And for all my amigos ages 18+, I heard from 9 of you! Thank you so much. With your feedback and the help of an online survey generator, oh and of course, Shemar, I was able to find out what you want to create for the first Amherst Art Day! Check out my fancy visuals. They took longer than I'd like to admit to create haha.

Let's start with ages 7-12

 Fancy hey? I know. Haha. Ok, so Get Messy With Acrylics won by a landslide. In the comments, "Abstract" won for the 'comments' as well as 'second option'. I will get brain storming on abstract ideas. So I'm thinking why not do things the way we always do! Based off the times you selected Late Morning and Early Afternoon had the most replies of all the options. During my time spent in Amherst, this age group was the most popular, filling up two classes! So I'm going to offer this class twice at the Art Day. Once in late more, the second in early afternoon! Yahoo! To help reunite groups, I'm going to offer the morning class to Monday night amigos, and the afternoon class to the Wednesday night amigos. Don't feel you are limited to this time though, you can attend the opposite if you register in time! Right now, class maximum will be 7. Stay tuned for times, details, and how to register.

Time to talk about my teenage amigos!
I really appreciate that you took the time to fill out the survey to help design the first Art Day with me! This age group really became popular during the last few weeks before I moved. I hope we are able to create together again! Based off your replies there was a tie with three classes. So I'm thinking let's really get our imaginations soaring and a Creative Freestyle class where we combine everything! There is going to be markers, pastels, pencils, paint, pipe cleaners, magazines and more! The creative opportunities are endless and there's an inspirational twist! I'm so excited! Everyone wins this way! Late afternoon and early evening tied so I'm going to go with early afternoon! Right now, class maximum will be 5 (that may change though). Stay tuned for times, details, and how to register.

And last but not least, my "Grown up" Amigos!
Well it's quite clear what's happening here. And I think it's safe to say I got the hint, this class will be an Abstract Acrylic Painting class! Early Afternoon won by a landslide so stay tuned for early evening times, details, and how to register. Right now class maximum will be 5.

I'm looking into buying another table and some chairs to extend class size. Not sure if this will apply to this Art Day, or future days. we'll see.

To make this work as smooth as possible, I am scheduling an hour between classes. I ask that you show up between 10-15 minutes before class. We can spend this time  settling in so we can maximize class time. Each class will be an hour long. That gives me 30 minutes after class to catch up with you all, refuel with snacks/lunch break and set up for the next class. If we can work together Art Day will stay on schedule, and everyone will have a phenomenal creative experience! For anyone joining in for the first time, worry not. I design these classes with every level of experience in mind! So far, I think everyone has enjoyed their time spent creating in the Spidey Cave.

I will be creating events just like the ones you've seen in the past for art classes in the Spidey Cave. These events can be found on my Facebook page right here. Good news is, even if you do not have a Facebook account, this page is set to public so you can still access it. These events will include very important information including:

  • Class description
  • Costs
  • Times
  • Location
  • FAQ's and more

This will be important to read, as there will be a link to confirm you read and accept the guidelines of a successful art class (that's a more fun way to say accepts the terms of agreement.)

As I mentioned in my survey, and as you will find on my website and Facebook page, to register for Art Days, payment must be made in full at time of registration. This is non-refundable due to the special arrangements, transportation, and other costs involved to make these Art Days possible. I appreciate your understanding and respect for this policy. With only two votes for PayPal, registration at this time will be completed via e-transfer. I am currently waiting for the last important confirmation on a date (my work needs to find someone to cover my shift, or I may have to switch to a Sunday). Hang in there amigos, I'll find out A.S.A.P because...YOU are important to me, and I want to give you plenty of notice so you can schedule Art Days into your weekend.

AHH! I am so excited. Thank you so much for taking the time to help me design and create these classes. I had so much fun seeing what you enjoy the most with these classes. Some of the feedback answers made me smile too:

"thank u sadie! :) keep spreading the love! :)"
"you rock"

Someone requested:

please teach an oils class

Ok, so, here's the thing. I've only experimented with oil paints twice. And the experience wasn't the greatest. Kinda like my watercolour experience, though I did a bit better with watercolour, so I may try to explore those more  one day. Maybe. Anyway, due to my inexperience with oils, I am horrible with them. Also, the products I used when I did experiment with oil paint make me a little bit sick and woozy. So, even if I were to go fearlessly into an experimental class with you, I couldn't do it for that alone. Sorry oil curious amigos! (I even turned down free oil paint the other day! Shockin' I know!)

Well that's all for now. Over the next few days I will be confirming the date, times, and what we will be creating! I'm planning for Saturday June 28th, but again, depends on what happens at work. If I cannot get it covered, I will have to move it to Sunday, June 29th. Hopefully Saturday works out!! Expect to see the events posted by the end of the week!! YAHOO!! See you soon Amherst!!

Ps: Special thanks to Shemar for helping with the survey results last night! He's so...helpful! I think it's safe to say he'll be helping me film the ages 13-17 online art class today! His brother, Demetri will probably make an appearance too.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Love of Yourself Selfie

Yesterday, while I was on Facebook I noticed a neat trend happening. Women on my friends list were nominating others to post 'selfies' of themselves with no make up on, and then sharing with their friends. The idea is to nominate several friends to take a picture of themselves make up-less to support women feeling beautiful in the their own skin. Calling it  the "Love of Yourself Selfie."

Dove is calling 2014 'The Year of the Selfie Love'. Helping us redefine beauty and self image.

I absolutely LOVE this idea. Only once in a blue moon do I wear make up. Usually it's for Halloween to go with a costume. So for me, this photo comes very easily. I'm all about the natural look. Saves on time, money, and I don't have to apply those chemicals to my sensitive skin. What was a challenge for me up until a few years ago was self love. For the longest while I had no self love at all. That's a sad way to live. I remember in the summer of 2008, I was sat in a group circle with other people who struggled with Eating Disorders. We went around in a circle and had to say one thing we liked about ourselves. I had nothing. At first I was very cold and distant about it all, but then sadness took over. There was not one thing about myself that I loved. As I began to explore this concept of self love, I felt guilty. I felt like I was doing something wrong by telling myself I was ok. I was enough. How warped is that? That many of us, women and men, feel that it is wrong to love ourselves. It was incredibly awkward at first. Forced. With practice it became slightly easier. Now I thank my body for all that it does for me, daily. I love this vessel that provides me with the opportunity to paint, to laugh, to dance, to see.

Self love is a beautiful feeling. It is liberating. It's refreshing.

This is where the challenge comes in. Meet Larissa. She is my baby sister. She just launched her YouTube channel  where she posts make up tutorial videos. The girl has some incredible talent when it comes to this art.  I shared my discovery with her and hoped she would like the idea. She wasn't too sure at first.
I expressed all my very valid and reasonable points for doing this in such a confident way. The next few messages she replied with broke my heart. There was so much fear. Sadness. I saw reflections of a younger me in her words. She asked me not to be mad at her for not wanting to do this. I felt so much guilt. I hope she doesn't think I'm trying to change her. I wasn't mad. I was disappointed that we allowed ourselves, our sisters, our daughters, to exist in a world where we feel we are not enough in our natural state of being. That we are worried that others will think less of us because of how we look. I was devastated that my sister feels this way.

A few minutes later, she sent me this:

My name is Larissa and this is the first ever photo without makeup that has ever been posted publicly for everyone to see. Ever since the age of 12 I loved to experiment with makeup, but I can say without a doubt I never have left the house without makeup on whether it was to go to the mall or the grocery store. I like to take pride in how I look and I love to get ready every morning, but on the other hand I most of the time feel uncomfortable being seen without makeup. My sister, Sadie has brought to my attention that Dove is starting a trend of Love Yourself Selfies, in which women are encouraged to embrace their natural beauty by taking a picture without makeup. Hesitant at first, since it is rare for the public to see my naked face, I decided to take my own selfie. Not only to prove to myself that I don’t need makeup, but for all the other women in the world that are in need of encouraging and positive words. We are all beautiful in different ways and it is our unique differences that help redefine what true beauty really means. Whether you hate your nose, your thighs, or your feet, remember there is only ONE you that knows how to rock those features best. This is a big day for me and I hope like my sister Sadie, I have inspired some of you to feel beautiful and confident just the way you are.

I feel into hysterics crying when I read this and saw this photo. This is the most beautiful I have ever seen my sister. I had goosebumps. She wrote back to me:

Thank you sis for bringing this to my attention. I'm smiling so big right now I'm so proud....I'm so happy I did this and I hope I'll help others...this is totally liberating wow!

So to all of our amigos our there, girls and boys, we nominate you to share your natural beauty. No matter how you identify yourself, share some selfie love and show the world your natural beauty! When you fill yourself with the light of self love, you radiate this beauty to the world.  Keep shining amigos!

Much Love!

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Big News from the Spidey Cave

If my ship sails from sight, it doesn't mean my journey ends, it simply means the river bends.
- Enoch Powell

Life is such a beautiful piece of art that is forever evolving with each layer of experience we encounter, each opportunity we create. It requires patience, flexibility, and passion. Being mindful to look inwards to your true self, as well as outwards to the world for inspiration. 

My journey with visual expression has taken me on the most unexpected paths filled with beauty, love, and growth. With the most unexpected means of inspiration, and the most incredible opportunities. Something I've learned along the way, whether it be in my artistic journey, or journey though life as a whole, is that we must be open to the changes that come along, and trust that life is guiding us in the right direction. Trusting the process. 

A lot of people tell me they'd love to try to a class, but they can't draw a stick man. So I tell them, in my classes, we don't draw stick people. I try to make art approachable for everyone. I want to make it a fun experience. Sometimes challenging, only to show everyone that they are capable of creating, that they can follow through on a task, and complete it with a beautiful result. I want to share the experience of the process. Getting lost in the brushstrokes, feeling the textures of the pastels, hypnotized by line movements of a pencil. Creating time and space to liberate yourself in a creative way. I like to deconstruct the final outcome into approachable steps to make it less intimidating. In this practice, we learn that anything is possible, depending how we view it, feel it, and execute it. So at the end of the class, the person who couldn't draw a stick man, has now created a completed masterpiece. Nothing is more rewarding than the way their eyes light up when they see what they created. When they unleash their potential. (Maybe I should offer a class on how to draw stick people now that I think about it. There are a lot of people who can't draw stick figures, good market to tap into haha)

“Life is pure adventure, and the sooner we realize that, the quicker we will be able to treat life as art.” 
-Maya Angelou

I've discovered something over the past few years. This reoccurring trend in my life. This past year I decided to finally start trusting this trend. You see, life has this incredible way of presenting opportunities to me at the right time. Life unfolds the most wonderful experiences when it knows I am ready. I still experience fear and hesitation but I am learning to trust the process more.

Our lives are one incredible adventure.  Mine has led me down very unexpected roads. I'm about to set sail on a new unexpected adventure amigos. Ahh, this is so hard to share with you all. It's a very bittersweet adventure. One I am very much looking forward to, but one that brings much sadness. April will mark the end of art classes in the Spidey Cave here in Amherst. I will be moving to the St. Margaret's Bay area to begin a new, and very exciting chapter in life. I can't express how sad it is to leave behind the most incredible, supportive, wonderful group of creative souls who have shared so many phenomenal colourful adventures with me here in Amherst. It's a very yucky feeling having to change up this awesome routine we have going here. So I put a lot of thought into it and I have come up with some ideas that will help me to continue sharing art with you all, even if I no longer live here.

  •  Art classes will be available online - hopefully starting in May. Which means, you can create art in the comfort of your home..and maybe even in your pajamas! That's not too shabby of a deal haha.  
  • I will be offering all of my current clients, and anyone who joins in on the art classes between now and the last class in April a FREE online art class. The first online class will be the birdhouse painting that was scheduled for May's acrylics class. 
  • For those of you who have purchased a gift certificate for art classes, I will be in touch to arrange alternative options. You may choose to                                                                                 - use that amount towards the class once it is available in video format                                                                                   OR                                                                                            - schedule a private lesson in April to replace the class - still create the same piece.                                                               **Please contact me if you have any questions, or concerns or if you do not  receive and email from me.**
  • I may have to do a little rescheduling of classes for April. It would be for the Paint Like A Master Class currently scheduled for April 28 and 29. I would have to move them to the week of the 21, or maybe the 14. I will give plenty of notice though.  
  • I am looking into the idea of coming back to Amherst on a weekend say, or during school holidays (ex: Spring Break, or the summer) and renting a space to host a day of art. Lot's of details to figure out with this one so it may take a little bit of time, but I would love to hear feedback on what you think of this idea! Please. These classes are all about you amigos! I will keep you posted on this so stay tuned to my FB page for updates on this.                            **This may also be an option for private parties as well**    
  •  If you happen to be traveling my way over the summer holidays check in to see if I'm having any classes that week, or feel free to book a session with me. I'm planning on spreading my love of art to those in the St. Margaret's Bay area, and there will definitely be a Spidey Cave ready for imaginations and lots of creations.
  • The 'Liberate Your Inner Artist Card' will still be available to use and includes online classes as well! Your 6th class will always be free. 

Well amigos, I gotta be honest, that was incredibly hard to write. I want you all to know how much you mean to me, and how proud I am of everything you create. How happy I am to see your passion for art.  I know it's another two months away...but I am going to miss every single one of you. I know this is not a good bye, it's a 'See ya now the once!' type of parting. Goodbyes mean it'll be, like, a REALLY long time before you see them again. See ya now the once, isn't that long..depending I spose on how you say it haha. No seriously, it's not as long. I'll be back as often as I can for workshops, and art days, and maybe even parties.

Amherst, you have liberated your inner artist! I want to thank you for allowing me to share my passion with you. Thank you for trusting in the process and seeing the beautiful results of your work. Thank you for your support in making these art classes possible! 

Much love to you all!

Friday, February 21, 2014

Newest Addition

Hello Amigos!

I want to introduce you to the latest addition to the Spidey Cave!

Check it out

Over the next couple of months I will be working on the launch of my video art classes! Art classes will soon be available online to watch whenever you want to create something. This means no more having to miss a class because of snow storms, and even more exciting, this means, for all of my amigos who live far away from the Spidey Cave, you can now join in on the creative goodness too!

I've been spending the last few weeks doing some research on how to do this. Complete learning curve. I've been spending my nights watching videos on how to use the new software, and learning tips and tricks. I'm hoping to have this up and running by May. Super exciting! We are about to take the awesomeness of the Spidey Cave to a whole new level!!

Be sure to check out my Facebook page if you haven't already, like, share, and follow along on this new adventure. I'll be seeing you all soon!

(In the meantime there are still a few spaces available for the upcoming March and April classes for ages 13-17 and 18+. Wait list is open for ages 7-12 classes. Be sure to check them out in the events section on my page if you live close and want to join in!)

Create yourself a great day!!

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Shopping Local This Holiday Season

No matter how you celebrate the holidays this year, you can share the love and support local businesses by shopping local. Whether it's to purchase presents, catching up with old friends over a meal, or taking some time out to treat yourself (or your furbabies), the opportunities are endless! 

Here is a list of some local places to check out this holiday season. This year you can give endless gifts by shopping local.  If you want to share any local businesses please put them in the comments below! Let's share the love this holiday season!

(be sure to share with loved ones!!)

Art & Treasures
(my 50% off sale on paintings ends Dec 23. All proceeds will go towards my cats surgery, mandibulectomy. )

(Just in case this holiday season is extra magical)

Jewelry & Accessories

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Art Classes 2013

Hey Everyone!! I have a super exciting announcement. Art classes are back!!! I know it's been months of anticipation and I am sorry for the prolonged delay. There has been a tremendous amount of change in my life over the past while that required all of my attention and energy. I missed making art with you all and I hope you are just as excited to have the opportunity to create again. I want to thank all of you for being so patient and understanding. Your support has been a ray of sunshine and will be treasured in my heart for a long time. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart!! xo

I also used this time away from teaching and sharing my passion with you to reflect on the classes. What was working, what I could improve on, and how I can provide a better experience for you all.
My goal is ensure I provide you with the most enjoyable and educational experience while keeping the prices at an affordable level. I also need to consider my work and love that goes into these classes both behind the scenes and in class. So with great reflection and consideration I will now share with you the changes of the class structure. If you have any questions please feel free to contact me.

I will now be posting classes for three months at a time. The first batch will be March, April, and May. Seats fill up quickly so be sure to save your spot by confirming via email to myself either on my Facebook page, or at Unfortunately just clicking the 'going' or 'maybe' option in the event on Facebook is not official confirmation. A private message or email must be sent to confirm your seat. I will then send you directions and a materials list if required.

Classes will be broken into four categories. 1 hour, 1.5 hours, and 2 hours and Specialty classes.  Materials may be extra and if so it will be stated in the class description. In the event that materials are extra you  can choose to pay an additional fee to have materials included.
Class descriptions including fees and seat availability can be found under the 'Events' section on my page as well as on my website.

Private Individual Lessons are $30.00 for the first hour, and an additional $15.00 per additional hour. Materials may be extra and if so it will be stated. In the event that materials are extra you can choose to pay an additional fee to have materials included.

Private Group Lessons are $20.00 per person for the first hour, and an additional $5.00 per additional hour. Materials may be extra and if so it will be stated in the class description. In the event that materials are extra you can choose to pay an additional fee to have materials included. Private group lessons require a minimum of 3 people and a maximum of 5.

All classes including private group lessons have a maximum of  5 seats.

Payment for classes must be made in cash. I will accept e-transfers if the payment transaction is made and accepted prior to the class.

In the event that you have to cancel your seat please give me at least 24 hours notice. Contact me through private message on my Facebook page or by e-mail at  This allows others who may be interested in coming enough notice so they can liberate their inner artist as well. If you have to cancel the day of classes you still have to pay for your seat. We will discuss payment arrangements privately.
Given that it is still winter the following rules will apply. Classes will resume as long as local businesses are open. If they begin to close, I will also cancel classes for the night and reschedule. I will post updates regarding cancellations on my Facebook page so be sure to follow.

Loyalty Cards
Satisfy your inner artist! Attend 5 classes and get your 6th class free! This card is only valid for public classes and does include private lessons or private groups. Materials are extra unless you are attending the 'Intuitive Expressions' class or 'Pepperoni & Pointillism' class.


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Thoughtful Tuesdays : The Truth Shall Make You Free

We've reached the end folks. This is the last Thoughtful Tuesday post on Douglas Bloch series. It's been an insightful year with lots of learning on my part of it, and I sure did enjoy sharing it with you all! I wonder what my next blogging adventure will be about. If you have any ideas, or would like to share your experience with Thoughtful Tuesdays, leave a comment below! I love hearing from you all! Enjoy!

The following is an exact excerpt from the book Listening To Your Inner Voice by Douglas Bloch. I in no way possess any ownership of the following. I am simply sharing the thoughts, expressions and words of an author who has inspired me.

*Feel free to change the word 'God' to fit your belief system. I directly quoted Bloch's work.

The Truth Shall Make You Free

Listening to the inner voice means living a life of honesty and integrity. As Gandhi stated, "For me, God and truth are convertible terms. Devotion to the truth is the sole reason for my existence."

The truth is inescapable. There once was a wise teacher who gave of two men a chicken and told them to kill the chickens where no one else would see. The first man went behind the barn and killed his chicken. The second returned after three days with a live chicken. "Why didn't you kill the chicken?" the teacher asked. The man replied, "You told me to go where no one was looking, but everywhere I go, the chicken see." It is the same in our lives. We can deceive others and even our conscious mind, but everywhere we go our own God-self sees. 

Telling the truth to ourselves and others is liberating. Once you acknowledge the truth of a dysfunctional relationship, you can do something about it. Once you admit that you are powerless over an addiction, you can begin to threat it. If, however, you you deny the problem, there is no way to change it. This is the meaning of the saying, "You are only as sick as your secrets."

The great historian Cicero said, "Our minds possess by nature an insatiable desire to know the truth." Let us live, breathe, and speak this so that we may come to know the beauty and perfection of our inner divinity. 

1. I am honest with myself and with others.
2. I see the truth of what is.
3. I am willing to face the truth, even if it hurts.
4. The truth liberates and sets me free.
5. I release my old illusions and perceptions.
6. Your Own _______________