Several months ago I booked myself into a painting retreat weekend to coincide with my birthday. The venue was quite close to where I live so travelling to and fro’ each day Friday, Saturday and Sunday for full days of painting was easy.
Now I am no painter, in fact this is my first real foray into the art, so I booked in with some trepidation. Two others had also booked the weekend, one with some experience and one, like me, without. So I felt pretty comfortable. Each morning started with a cup of your choice of tea and a general chat. We then had a morning meditation led by our tutor Shani. This meditation brought forth all sorts of feelings for us all. Tears were shed, and feelings shared and a process of bonding with the other participants, which I hadn’t really expected, took place. It set us up beautifully for the day ahead.
We set about learning Shani’s process for painting our “hero” painting. Once started I couldn’t believe that I would be leaving with a completed canvas on Sunday. The canvasses were 1 metre square, so somewhat daunting.
We enjoyed home cooked lunches and wine on the verandah (weather permitting) set high in beautiful Wonga Park/Warrandyte. Florence the standard poodle kept us company for the whole weekend too. (Florence told me she had had seventeen puppies in her younger days). A few noisy magpies chortled away outside and stared at us through the windows whilst
stealing sharing the cats food.
Back to the painting though. It was hard work, much harder than I had anticipated. We worked through until 5pm each of the three days, and then stopped for another cuppa and a chat. I can’t tell you how special the time was. Four fabulous women being open and honest, sharing a wonderful experience together and supporting each other through the process. It is an experience that will stay with me for a long time to come.
That’s me at the back, Florence at the front, Shani in the middle and the other lovely participants enjoying a glass of bubbles at the end of the weekend.
Here is my finished work. It’s not perfect by any means, however, I feel comfortable hanging it in my home and proud of my accomplishment.
So if there is something that you would like to try, my message to you is, find a way and go for it. It’s very liberating.
Note to self: Suggest a smaller signature and less conspicuous next time. Doh!