Monday, June 3, 2013

Take a Class, Keep Learning, Do It Yourself, Cultivate Your Creativity

I was inspired to write this post based on a trip to Lowe's today. Their receipts read "Never Stop Improving"... so that is the message that I want to keep spreading (even though all we bought was Draino and a sink stopper). I have recently been pretty busy. I am in between classes at Mass Art (I start my Summer session in July) and while some would say "take the break", I feel like I need to keep pushing myself to keep learning and really hone my skills in the things that interest me while I have motivation, the means and the time. Last weekend, the man and I hit up the Crompton Collective, an artistan and antique mall in somewhat nearby Worcester, MA. While we were there, the amount of shabby chic furniture that I wanted to take home was more than I could handle, as in I had to Instagram multiple items that I deemed crushworthy. While I loved lots of furniture, there is really no way for us to transport it (we both have small-ish cars) and I started bumming that I couldn't buy anything. The man was the one who noticed the sign that had a list of classes that Crompton hosted right there on site. One such class was a Creative Painting Techniques class, using milk paint. That man, he wanted me to take a class instead of buying things, bless his heart haha... but he was totally on the mark suggesting it.

Maureen of Signature Finishes, was a joy to work with for 3 hours this past Thursday. Dude, this lady has trained like a soldier to learn different faux finishing techniques. Do you know they have schools specifically for it? Yeah, I didn't either... but they do and Maureen went to them. I learned about many different painting techniques using milk paint and even just making my own glaze with any color acrylic paint that I had on tap. It was just me and Jackie who signed up for the class but I wouldn't have had it any other way. The setting was intimate, we laughed and I would like to think that I made two friends this past week. Not only did I learn a lot but I connected with people, doing something that interested us all. I think that was a win-win-win-win... get it? Lots of wins there.

We used oil to "resist" the paint causing the chipping effect, then used a brown glaze, making sure to clean up chipped paint with a scraper before sealing... so easy and so effective. Just dab the oil where you want the paint to chip! Under color was red and I painted over with white.
This coming Friday, Saturday and Sunday I have signed up for a Fabric Dyeing Workshop at Mass Art that's being run by one of the fashion departments professors. I have always loved using fabric dye but have never been "professionally trained" ;-). I am super excited to take part in a pretty extensive workshop (hello, three days) and learn lots of techniques that I have never thought to use. It's just another example of finding a class to continue my education and to keep learning in the realm of creativity.

When I needed to brush up on my sewing? I found a class, remember? I don't care what your interests are, there are bound to be classes, workshops, apprenticeships and more out there for you to partake in. Heck, my cousin and I took a belly dancing class at a nearby vocational school at night, for next to no money, because it interested us. There are deals all the time on Groupon or Living Social where you can take jewelry making classes or learn how to blow glass... I'm serious! Sometimes, I think it's not about the "credit courses" and more about enriching your soul by cultivating yourself creatively.

What have you done lately to cultivate yourself creatively?


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  3. This is the best idea ever! I think I will need to educate myself on how to sign up for these classes. I definitely need to get out there and this is an easy way to do so. Thank you for the inspiration. :)


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