08 February 2011

Come on Baby, Light My Fire!

"Education is not the filling of a bucket but the lighting of a fire."
~W.B. Yeats

I love to learn something new. And to do that with friends is a the best of all possibilities.

I always take classes at Bead & Button. I have taken some really awesome classes. My preference is for at least whole day classes, and multi-day are even better. I  need time to get into a rhythm with an instructor, and getting to know them is a great opportunity. This year I was determined to take a class with Richard Salley. Easy to do since he was teaching a class every single day at Bead & Button. But I am also the Great Procrastinator. And I waited too long. I was so disappointed. But there are like 559 other classes there so there was bound to be something else. And I looked. And looked. But rather than take classes that I was not fully invested in, just to take them, I decided to start looking around for an alternative.

I found it in the upcoming ArtBliss workshop coordinated by Cindy Wimmer and Jeannette Blix. The workshops coming up in March feature Stephanie Lee of Semiprecious Salvage fame. You know I am a serious bibliophile. I have virtually every jewelry making, craft wielding book on the market. I remember vividly when Semiprecious Salvage was in my hot little hands. I was practically weeping in awe of the beauty of those projects and wanted desperately to be that sort of artist who can see the possibility in the mundane and the beauty in the everyday object. And now I get to take a class with her. I can't tell you how thrilled I am that I will get to meet her! She will be lighting a fire for sure with me... literally!


There are three classes being offered. I opted to take the Junk Drawer Metalsmithing class all day on Saturday and the Pipe Dreams class all day on Sunday. I think that they will build nicely upon each other. I mean if I am going to fly out to the D.C. area I need to make it worth my while and stay for a bit! If you are in the area, I think that this is going to be one awesome workshop. Come! Join me!

I just booked my non-stop flight to D.C. on Friday with a return flight on Monday. I am getting in nice an early so that I can enjoy the commute from the airport and still have time to relax and unwind. I sent in a request for my reservation of space in both classes and hotel room. I have a long list of supplies that I need to start gathering., and I have been making arrangements with Cindy and Jeannette and Lori Anderson to meet up with them since they are each taking one of the classes that I am in. I think that almost more than the classes with the great Stephanie Lee I am very excited to get to finally meet some blogging sisters. This will be a B.L.A.S.T.

So I will be learning metalsmithing techniques in 2011 and building on what I have already learned and hopefully actually using what I learned. What about you?

What new techniques are you hoping to learn this year? 
Is it something that you could teach yourself using tutorials and online classes and eBooks? 
Or is it something that is best learned from an expert in their field? 
If you could take a class by anyone, anywhere and money were no object, what would that class be? Who would the teacher be? Why would you want to take it? Do tell!

23 comments:

Cindy said...

YIPPPEEEEE!!!! You're really going to come! We will have a blast while we learn from the expert. I felt that same sense of awe when I first bought Semiprescious Salvage - I love that book. I love online classes, but learn best in-person. The one-on-one with an instructor is invaluable. Learning from other students is a real bonus, not to mention the fun! :-)

steufel said...

Oh, Erin, that is so great! Actually right now I'm sitting at home with her book and try to make one of her projects - the ring filled with resin made of a piece of copper pipe. I gathered all the supplies - I even got the good canflied solder from the US - and it is soooo much fun. Hopefully Im finished saturday and can show the result on my blog. But to meet her in person and to be able to look over her shoulders - how wonderful is that. I'm sure your pieces will be stunning!

Marcie A. said...

Holy smokes is this timely. All answered in my blog! Oh, and congrats on the classes and the D.C. trip. I love D.C. :)

jeanniek said...

This sounds like so much fun. I want to go!

I would take classes by some of my favorite artists like Ann Russell and Robert Villamgna who do art assemblage and mix media.

I'll be waiting anxiously to here all about it when you return.

Gardanne said...

I took Stephanie's e-course on metalsmithing and it was wonderful. If she can be an be a great teacher on a video I can't imagine what she will do live. You will really enjoy her techniques, I have had a lot of fun incorporating them into my supplies and jewelry.

Christine said...

OOohhhhh!! You're coming all the way out here and I won't be able to really meet you in person! :(

I'm glad you are going to take the classes, they sound so fun! Cindy and Jeanette are wonderful, and I wish I could join you.

Melissa Meman said...

Cool Erin! I am taking Pipe Dreams on Sunday - all my wallet and schedule would permit! I look forward to meeting you !

Alice said...

Oh you're going to love the class with Stephanie Lee! I can't wait to see your creations.

I took her Homesteader's Metalsmithing e-course and loved it. It's been a while since I picked up the torch, so I'm probably a little rusty.

If money and time was not an issue, I would love to take a college art course in metalsmithing--something long lasting that will stick in my mind. I'm the kind of person that needs someone at my side to guide me through the basics, and then I have to do it over and over to get it solidified in my mind before I can brave going solo. That's something I've always disliked about myself, but not easy to change.

Enjoy ArtBliss!

rosebud101 said...

Lucky you, taking the Stephanie Lee class. I took an online class from her that was EXCELLENT! I hope she teaches more classes like that. I actually learned to solder!

Lisa Godfrey said...

I've always been a read a bunch of books and dive in kind of girl (my book collection is also quite impressive) but I would love to take some classes. I think a weekend long retreat would be amazing! Maybe one day. Right now I'm learning to make ceramic beads and pendants from books and videos. Having a master leaning over my shoulder would be fantastic! I haven't found any classes near me so I'm out of luck. Oh well. Maybe one day I'll have learned enough to teach one myself! That would be fun!

Cookiz said...

I really like the fact that you collect things. I think once your are passionate about something, it makes it even more fun to do.

Cookiz said...

And I think your jewelry is beautiful, and like you said inspiration is everywhere.

Brandi said...

Ooh, that is so exciting!! Have fun and take pictures so we can live vicariously through you!

Sharon Holt said...

You are such an inspiring and creative lady. Sometimes I wish I had that much creativity in me. I guess I do, but it doesn't come out in jewellery. We just moved house and I'm back on deck with my blog! Hope to see you there soon. Sharon

Alice said...

Thanks for all the encouraging words you always give. I have talked with and have seen that several bloggers who have joined our soup party are having serious health issues. I love your work by the way.

Holly said...

Erin, I have to admit I'm extremely jealous right now! I'm dying to get to ArtBliss, or even Art Is... The classes at both are to die for! LOL

I'm a huge bibliophile too, and while I have a small, yet growing collection of jewelry making books, Stephanie's is one I treasure and look to probably the most! It's one of my dreams to take a class with her. My other dream classes is something with Deryn Mentock...

Jenners said...

I'm so happy for you!! You are someone who strikes me as a person who will never stop learning. You're always challenging yourself to learn and do new things. I hope you get to meet some blogging buddies; that would be the best of both worlds.

sandi m said...

Good for you!! I have Stephanie's book too and love her style. And you get to meet fellow blogs sisters...I'm envious.

As far as classes, the upcoming Houston Adorn Me has about every instructor with whom I'd like to take a class. If only I had a real job right now, I'd have considered going (and also to ArtBliss). So I'll attend vicariously through all of you who do.

And I agree, there's nothing like taking a live class and being with a group who shares the creative journey.

mairedodd said...

first of all erin, i want to tell you how happy i am for you that you are flying to a show where people you are close to will be... i know how much this means to you - and i am just so moved that you are getting to do it... ok, now a little jealous! just kidding, green is my color but not in that way - classes with stephanie will be fabulous i am sure... would love to take one with her... i too had my world turned upside down in the best way with semi precious salvage...
this is very exciting my friend...
oh, i want to learn metal folding -

quiltingjewel39 said...

Oh how fun for you. I took Stephanie's on line Homestead Metalsmith course and it was wonderful. She is an awesome teacher and has a great sense of humor. I have e-mailed with Cindy a bit and she seems so awesome - I know you will have fun with these ladies.

Joann Mannix said...

How exciting! We should never stop learning, you know. It is the secret to youth.

I hope to be attending a writer's conference in the spring with one of my favorite authors. Logistics need to be worked out with children. There is an event for one of my children that may or may not be that weekend. We'll know shortly. And if it is, I'm staying home, because those are the moments I refuse to miss. There will be other conferences. But never stop learning or dreaming, for that matter.

Enjoy yourself!

Pretty Things said...

I cannot WAIT to see you!

If I could learn something new, it would be photography, and I'd have to take a class. I'm losing my money signing up for online classes and then never having the time to attend, so I need the actual APPOINTMENT to keep of a live class. Plus I like the interaction.

Kristen said...

I am so excited for you!!!! I really went out on a limb and bought Marcia DeCosters book so that I keep growing! I am really excited about finishing up some stuff and then getting to focus on it! Wish me luck!

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