Tuesday, April 3, 2012


   There's a stirring that happens when you take part in these art retreats.  
When your hands are filled with clay and paint 
and not in water with a sink full of dishes.

There's a stirring that takes place when conversation
 is about art and the creative process
 and not the weather or your long to-do-list.

There's a stirring that awakens you
 when you're surrounded by hundreds of artists 
who speak your language, inside and out-
 their hands and fingernails caked and covered with colour
as you eat your lunch together...

You start to unravel like a ball of yarn-spinning open and out, 
your words spilling like beads onto a table,
  hopping with truth and depth.  
Others are there to catch them with their open hands. 

The connection you have been craving is ample 
and the serendipity is loud and absolute-
almost "too weird" to even say aloud and share 
with someone who wasn't there to witness it.

I had forgotten how these art retreats mess with my mojo-
my status quo-my everything is fine...

Being in this state for several days in a row where you only have yourself
 to think about-not making lunches or preparing dinner, 
not laundry or grocery shopping-
only your own needs.
It can really mess with a girl. 

 It can crack open your insides, 
the same ones you had slip-stitched closed the last time you felt so supported,
 understood and accepted-like you belong in a society-
in a community where people feel as much as you do-
where being real is encouraged, warts and all.


This little one was  made on DAY ONE with Michelle Allen.
She was once a little ball of dull clay and now she has so much life and personality.
I can't tell you how happy I am to bring my paintings to life
 in this 3 dimensional artform.

(Thank-you SO MUCH Michelle (my new friend)!!! xoxo)


I promise you'll be seeing more of these in the near future...
I CANNOT wait to make more!

This post is dedicated to all of you all...
You know who you are-
my new friends, my Madrona sisters, 
my facebook peeps that I finally met and already love-
my blog readers who have become kindreds (especially you L.C.)
my teachers who taught me so much more than "just art", 
my besties-I'm SO crazy about you-
I miss you all so much already-

More soon...so much more...


  1. "a stirring" What a lovely phrase - I will carry it with me throughout the day today.
    Your creation (from Michelle's class) is divine. I can't call her a doll because she is much more than that. Simply fab.

  2. oh that feeling... craving it. terrifying in a way too, no? but so delicious!
    living vicariously through you at the moment...
    love your newest creation, she is gorgeous!

  3. What a wonderful post...so eloquently written.

    I look forward to this same kind of kindred spirit feeling very soon. I am planning my own Art Retreat {shhhh} in the near future:)


  4. Oh Danielle!! It was so wonderful to finally meet you in person! You are such a sparkly bright light! {{hugs and more HUGS!!} I am wearring your adorable little buttons right now!!! May I put your amazing, beautiful,sums up what I am feeling, words from your post today in my journal? Your little creation is DELISH!!! Your friend Tammy McGee!

  5. danielle, so beautifully put. i'm still processing and haven't yet been able to find the words. the stirrings have settled, and am waiting to see what surfaces. much love to you, and hey, when you're in Toronto please, please come by and say hi. xoxo

  6. what a beautiful post. i am so glad i got to be one of your madrona sisters. i am emerging back slowly, and savoring each and every thought that surfaces. enjoy your retreat and can't wait to see the book! xoxoxoxo

  7. OH! what a darling dolly! I love that she has jointed limbs too!! It reminds me of the jointed limb dolls I used to make back in the day, though they were in fabric and bit tricky to join...

    Can;t wait to read more of your time at Artfest!

  8. Your doll is amazing and sooo glad to have actually run into you at Artfest! I hope you are journaling girl...your words are beautiful and would be so amazing in your journal!

  9. I love this post -- beautiful writing, beautiful doll ♥

  10. Beautifully written! Touched my heart! I long for those stirrings and those times when I'm with people that I feel so comfortable with that spilling my beads out on the table is not accompanied with fear.

    Thank you!

  11. gorgeous! all of it.
    i just love how you put it
    into the world. each of us
    craving the same thing, yet
    you can just come here and
    say go.

    love to you.

  12. Beautiful post:O) Glad you had an awesome time and LOVE the little doll just gorgeous:O)

  13. I love your little art doll - so adorable. Glad you had a fun time. Would've loved to have gone to Artfest. Sounds amazing!

  14. Beautiful sentiments shared by so many. I had a fantastic time meeting you and getting to see the light that shines from you in person. I love your dolly, too! xoxo

  15. oh Danielle... such a lovely post. I crave such a connection and cannot wait for my first art retreat (hopefully this year?!)
    Your little doll is frikkin' adorable!! That last photo made my heart skip a beat.
    Like she's saying:
    i love it. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself Danielle. xoxo

  16. So glad I got to meet you, albeit shortly :( and that I got to hold your beautiful doll. Definitely give birth to more.
    Blessings to you,

  17. What a beautiful post from a beautiful woman! It was wonderful to meet you in person and to be able to share a house with you and also get to see your ART! What an amazing few days...my stirrings are still stirring! <3

  18. it was SO SO great to meet you. i love your passion and your heart towards so many things. your post is beautiful and so well said. i look forward to years of friendship with you! xo-m

  19. Love you little doll. Michelle is such a great person. I bet her class was so fun!
    Nice to meet you.

  20. Hi Danielle, I got to meet you ever so briefly up in 225 and trade with you. You write exquisitely and you really did bring your painting to life in this adorable doll!

  21. Hi Danielle, I think your finger has touched on the pulse of my post art retreat heart. *sigh*

    It was so lovely meeting you. Your doll turned out amazing!


Thank-you for your words. I tuck them inside my heart pocket. xo