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Fall into Art

Summer 2013

Fall into art...

For pictures of this art journey go to "Go down to the shore and find things you can use to paint with," she said. Lie down, and draw around will reveal who you are." This summer I spent 10 days immersed in art and nature at the Sherkin Island Art Workshop in Ireland. It was led by art professionals Magella O'Neill Collins and Cora Collins. I spent 10 days truly seeing the color fuchsia. 10 days understanding the curves and proportions of a live model. 10 days asking nature to show itself on canvas. And a dozen other artists and instructors helped me see the artist within. They also reminded me that life can be as simple as sipping tea or dramatic as the sea. "Just close your eyes. There's nothing better than letting your heart see," noted John Waters in the Irish Times. Completely unplugged from nearly all forms of communication, I indulged in the purest dedication to art. I made brushes out of kelp and blue rope found on the sea shore. On "Cow Strand," we paired off to draw around each other in the sand. Mermaids, mothers, angels and friends surfaced as land art. Daireen added a tutu to my form and embellished it with little tiny daisies. So simply, the dancer within emerged. We watched our creations wash away with the tide, but the images still live within me, and so does the art. With a hand-tied tube of sketches and paintings from the workshop hanging over my shoulder, I hopped the ferry back to Cork. I won't lie, the roads in Ireland were "fecking" nail biting to navigate. But I was reminded that sometimes it's the scary ones we need to travel to find our way back to ourselves. - Joan

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