By Design

Some things happen by design. Other things happen with the most sublime serendipity…even if there was a certain lightly sketched design for the day. An art day hosted by my friend Susan at her home last Saturday. Ten to four. Bring what ever you want to work on. Spend the day making art. . . . → Read More: By Design

Autumn

It’s been all quiet on the Western front for the last couple of weeks. Primarily because we’ve been cruising the St Lawrence Seaway in search of fall colors between Quebec and Boston. With the exception of an occasional flaming tree, there were lots of yellows and oranges, but relatively few reds in the . . . → Read More: Autumn

Shades

In catastrophic thinking it is either perfect or horrible. Things are black or white. There aren’t shades of gray. So we spent some time last week with the women at the Lighthouse, a twelve-month, faith-based residential treatment program for women recovering from substance abuse, helping them learn to paint a gradated gray scale . . . → Read More: Shades

Anger Sort Of

Sometimes I set up an art activity and everything goes as planned. Other times? Not so much. That happened last Friday at the weekly therapeutic art workshop at the Lighthouse, a twelve-month, faith-based, residential treatment program for women recovering from substance abuse. The group of women currently in the program is largely new . . . → Read More: Anger Sort Of

Life

As far as Vivian’s concerned she’s feeling like a shining star…or two…or twenty-eight. She’s weeks away from moving to transition housing and then graduating. As she says, “I feel like my life is full of light. I feel like a shinning star!” Well, indeed she is. Her prayer flag is a wonderfully composed . . . → Read More: Life

Fun

Sometimes we just have fun. Not that having fun isn’t therapeutic. Without a doubt it is. So sometimes our most serious therapeutic intent is just to have fun. Well, fun with a purpose, but maybe not what you imagined.

It all started with a visit to the Oxnard Rescue Mission thrift . . . → Read More: Fun

Raw

Raw emotions. Red for ANGER. Green for ENVY. Great black looping CONFUSION. Periodic EXPLOSIONS. That’s the mask Ashley describes wearing because she believes expressing her anger is a stronger position than crying although her tears are just beneath the surface. She knows that needs to change….in a safe place…in a safe way…at a . . . → Read More: Raw

Wow

There were long periods of quietly making art. Conversations grew more personally reflective day by day. They weren’t interested in breaking for lunch the final day. They were reluctant to go home at the end. They lingered…and then set a date for when they would gather again as a group to make art. . . . → Read More: Wow

Elizabeth

I love random, out of the blue emails. Especially when they include an invitation for the ladies at the Lighthouse to create special art work for a upcoming sermon series. Flowing out of a Lenten devotional, 2013 Easter Journey: Encounters with Jesus produced by Waiting for Water, Brother Tom wanted art work to . . . → Read More: Elizabeth

Play

I had a chance to breathe this weekend. And to play with a lovely group of women at a retreat entitled Breathe in the glorious oak-forested foothills of Montecito, an exclusive enclave near Santa Barbara. The schedule was minimal with lots of free time and relaxing breakout sessions intended to refresh the oh-so-often . . . → Read More: Play