After returning from Denver, Colorado, I had scheduled several workshops at the CREATE Mixed-Media Retreat. I am a huge advocator for taking workshops to up your creativity and learning new techniques and the CREATE Mixed Media retreat caught my eye when viewing various arts retreats. First of all, they have several locations that offer some wonderful workshops so I had my choice of where and when. Secondly, they offered a plethora of workshops from bookmaking to gelli plates and more! It gave me the opportunity to kind of do a mix and match of workshops during the day as well as shorter evening workshops that were less involved but just as fun. The other thing is that one of these conferences was within driving distance for me...another big plus! So, I signed up for one workshop, then another, then another, then another and finally ended up with about 5 workshops! So, I took a fantastic metal vintage journal workshop with Erin Keck which I loved! I learned, hinging, metal stamping and some neat new beading techniques and it included a book. Always a plus in my book, figuratively! In the evening, I took a workshop with Kecia Devaney on using resin which I was always hesitant about and walked out with a great piece that I will definitely wear plus I've worked with resin since and really love the medium! Another great workshop was with Laura Mica, queen and expert artisan of polymer clay. Her small reliquary pins were wonderful to make and I have since purchased stamps to make similar sized works to house small miniature books about women saints! It was great and that will probably be my holiday vacation project to keep me busy! Another great workshop was with Erin Keck who taught a small heart pin that covered cold connections, metal etching, and more things that I loved learning! Take a look at what they offer! Some of the bookmaking classes are amazing and although I did take the Tin Angel workshop with Thomas Ashman I was more impressed with his metal books and journals. I was very pleased and am looking forward to next year's offering that if I don't give in and sign up for one of their mixed-media retreat weekends! Keep learning is my motto and this is a great selection of workshops to jumpstart the creativity if you need it. Plus it's always held in a hotel with a restaurant and lots of facilities for people traveling distances. Most workshops range in price from $89 for the evening classes to $152 for the day classes. Workshops may have kits that the teacher provides and are reasonably priced! Have fun and keep creating!
Maryann J. Riker, owner of JUSTARIP Press is a mixed-media artist who delights in designing and creating artist's books and creating collaborative book art projects as well as viewing other book artists' work. She definitely enjoys the process!