El Cielo Artist Retreats and Workshops


Finally, the Fall-Winter planning is done -- it's taken me a long time to get my thoughts straight and then to plan an all-new series of workshops. I've been running repeats of some favorites during the past season, so it seemed time to develop a new group of inventive weekends.

The problem with that is, that for all the new toys and tricks and materials that we artists (especially we quilt art/fiber art/mixed media artists) are bombarded with, there are really only so many with substance and style and staying power. So, I have decided to concentrate on what I do best, focusing on creative process and on helping others to find their "sweet spots," their strong suites. Yes, there will still be fun and new and different techniques to explore during these weekends, but the majority of them will have more to do with digging deeper, loosening up, starting from scratch and pulling rabbits out of our (proverbial) hats --if any of this makes sense, then you are a better mind than I!

Nevertheless, here's the fall-winter rundown, with a link here to the brochure up in la-la land -- you can download it (in theory) by just hitting the button, or by pasting the address into your browser bar. If you don't get it and want a pdf copy to print, notify me by email --use the form on the sidebar if you don't have my email address handy. I'll email you an attachment that is sure to work!

Nurture your creativity as you come away from a weekend with renewed energy, new  materials and techniques in surface design applicable to fiber, ceramics, jewelry, painting and mixed media work. Susie Monday leads artists’ retreats and workshops throughout the year at her studio near Pipe Creek, Texas, about an hour from downtown San Antonio. El Cielo Studio workshops are designed with the needs of the participants in mind;  free time is scheduled throughout the weekend for reading, reflection and personal work in the studio. You are welcome to bring projects in process for Susie’s critique and for peer feedback in an environment of trust and respect. You’ll share meals, poetry and stories, music and advice for living an artist’s life. Enjoy the 25-mile vistas from the deck and strolls down the country roads. A spa and pool, and large screen media room are also available to participants. The fee for each workshop retreat is $160 for a 2-day event with discounts for early enrollment. Comfortable accommodations are available from $15 -  $30 per workshop. Most workshops offer a Friday night potluck option. Limited enrollment. Most supplies included. Call 210-643-2128 or email susiemonday@gmail.com
Susie has taught creative process and art techniques to adults and children for more than 30 years. Her art is in numerous private and public collections around the world.

(optional Friday night potluck & critique session)
In this workshop, start with simple sketches and doodles and end the weekend with an arsenal of new surface design tricks and tools.   Explore doodles and scribbles as sources of  uniques and personal imagery that will give your art quilts, wearable art, or mixed media work personal depth and layers of meaning. take a favorite symbol -- for example a heart, star, spiral, circle -- and by taking it (and yourself) through a series of creative generative exercises, you’ll make something new and different to incorporate into your design, composition and surface design. Tools and techniques explored include paper lamination on fabric, large scale “mark-making” rollers and monoprinting.

Find Susie at the Houston International Quilt Festival, See www.quilts.com
NOVEMBER 6-8 (optional Friday night potluck and critique session)
Many artists have found inspiration in prehistoric and archetypal imagery from caves, cliffs and ancient ceramics. This is the first of a series of “creative study” workshops that will illuminate how you as an artist can take inspiration from the images and imagination of the past, while transforming the images into something uniquely your own. This workshop models a time-proven creative study process (based on that developed at Learning About Learning Educational Foundation and the Paul Baker Theatre)  that can be adapted to many inspirational sources. We’ll go from collection through synthesis to creating, and explore textile and mixed media techniques that relate to the aesthetic and philosophical qualities and intent of the earliest art-makers. Explore some simple natural dyes; use handmade brushes as tools, make pigmented paints with ashes, earth, rust and minerals.

(optional Friday night potluck and critique session) Continue the season of Dias de los Muertos by creating a memorial altar to a person, to a personally potent memory (or past life of your own), even to a summer vacation! Learn to transfer photos onto a number of interesting surfaces including plastic, metal and fiber; add words, names and text with resist crayons; microwave dye custom fabrics, and embellish your textile and mixed media altar with all manner of beads, trinkets and meaning-full treasures. (Additional $10 fee for wooden altar frame.)

(optional Fri. night potluck & critique session)
This annual workshop has become a tradition at El Cielo Studio. Spend the weekend in creative activities (All new this year!) that help you set the stage for a 2010 filled with productivity, imagination, focus and artistic goals. Using some new exercises gleaned from sources around the globe, we’ll banish procrastination, make an annual love letter, and find ways to remind us of what really matters in our artistic lives. Meanwhile, you’ll work with mixed media and surface design techniques to start your artist’s journal for the year.

“It was just what I needed right now. I have been in a creative slump, questioning what I do and how I do it. The exercises we did this weekend were freeing on the one hand, but will also help me focus.”

“This workshop was a fabulous, uplifting, nurturing environment to create in. The journaling was particularly helpful, I would definitely recommend it to a friend.”

“This weekend was totally awesome! I am humbled by Susie’s talents, her teaching abilities and her hospitality. I will come back as often as possible.”


3532 Timbercreek Road
Pipe Creek, TX 78063
Read Susie’s blog at http://susiemonday.squarespace.com
You’ll find a downloadable pdf version of this flyer on a front page link on Susie ‘s blog.