The truer we become with our desires the more we attain them..


(An excerpt from Jesse’s website): 

The following is an overview of my concepts and techniques on painting

Things to think about and remember..

This entire process is based on working in reverse, and out of time with our thoughts. This method forces us to learn to see. Meaning we see what is, rather than the idea of it. It’s easy to get caught up with the ideas in ones head. We aim to learn that a plan is just a starting point at best, and it’s always ok to change our direction. A rigid plan can confuse us with let downs and expectations. Just because things aren’t going as planned doesn’t mean they are going poorly. I’ve found in my past that sometimes even when things are working out better, it’s easy to still be confused and frustrated based on the idea that things are not going as planned. Best to not look at the plan, but rather what’s happening so we don’t miss anything..



This class is not about painting a specific thing or outcome. It’s more about how we create that is important. the techniques can be applied to any style of creation as well as living life.. by watching what happens we can see what is happening above expectations and thus make clearer decisions about the future.. changing direction rather than following a preconceived idea we came up with before any of the steps had taken place..

I like changing my mind. Especially when I don’t like my first choice.. if somethings not working out it can often be far more productive to drop it and start over then forcing broken pieces together..

Once we realize this, our ability to learn becomes less painful and limitless. When mistakes are just encounters to be corrected, learned from, or left as the perfect accident, we learn not to fight or fear our actions. I like to use approaches that shouldn’t work. This takes away our desire to expect immediate results. We expect less and get more. This brings us back to learning to see rather than expecting to see. This is crucial to opening us to new experiences, and in turn rewards us with unexpected results in the process. This will in time break down our ideas and fears of the unknown, allowing us to encounter new things with greater ease and less fear..



The truer we become with our desires the more we attain them.. finding what you want in yourself can be the hardest part. After this it’s basically not giving up and pushing forward.. if we move in this manner we eventually get where we want to go. Frustration distracts us and pushes us back. Fun and excitement move us forward.. this is why I look for techniques and approaches that are stress free, physically and mentally fun.. constantly learning to try something new, look, see, wait, and then decide with a fresh eye what you really see.. it’s amazing what a fresh look can show you.

Within this process it is the questions you ask yourself that are most meaningful. Let these guide your creativity and help you find what you’re looking for. Learning to know your steps when you see them. Changing your mind and direction when needed.. make choices patiently, deciding what exactly is not working and what is, then move forward by eliminating what doesn’t work with a new choice.. continue in the this manner and your work will inevitably move forward and work itself out organically and naturally. Overtime you will develop a style and techniques that are meaningful and very much your own.



By searching out meaningful directions and imagery you will maintain excitement and reward in your creations. It is meaning that creates the feeling of accomplishment.. we accomplish things that mean little to us every day and we don’t recognize or care to remember them. It is the interaction with meaningful outcomes we remember. when we include this level of meaning and importance in our work, it becomes very powerful. We gain confidence in our work, as well as ourselves and even learn to see ourselves more clearly.

Learning by mistake is easier.

Using the wrong brush, hand utensil, etc is always a good idea. It insures low expectation – the reward of getting more than expected is very motivating. This will also force us to learn to look clearly and stop us from expecting to see something else. It’s easy to overlook things when we have expectations. Using awkward utensils develops technique by default. Color inconsistency using small brushes for large areas creates diversity of color without even trying an organic active field is created effortlessly while blocking out we create depth and variation. In the opposite direction using a large brush for a small area forces us to be very focused. In time it breaks us from thinking everything needs to be so exact. It forces our details to come out loose no matter how tight we make them. After reviewing enough work created in this way it will be easy to see and understand that it’s not so important or productive to be tense and exact when seeking to achieve something that is loose, fluid. More emotional than precise. Once you get over not doing what you expect you will see very free renderings of your intentions.. CFE-Retreat-POST-CARD-low

Mixing color. mixing color.. mixing color. You don’t end up with variation of color without mixing. The quickest way to engage in this is on surface mixing. Dipping between two or three colors, mixing each time you go to get more paint, is a good idea. the colors will be similar, yet vary, keeping things from looking flat or drab. It’s not necessarily a lot of extremely different colors that make things brilliant, it’s a few with a lot of subtly. To create distinct separation, use of opposites is always good.. For me it all breaks into hot against cold. red, yellow, orange, pink, against blue, or green.

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JOIN Jesse for a fabulous 2-day workshop this OCTOBER in the lovely seaside resort area of White Rock, B.C.!

button-BOOK-onlineGet MESSY with JESSE!

I found the BEST video!

A sneak peak of what your experience will be like in Jesse’s fabulous 2 day workshop this October! (warning minor verbal profanity)

Learn how to use tools in a new or different way or even how to begin creating.

Try new techniques, and step out of your comfort zone!
Connect with a community of like minded artists at all skill levels!
It’s almost time to save your spot for a get away to meet fun, talented artists!

PAINT, JOURNAL, CREATE with an unleashed soul surrounded by the beauty of Mother Nature in beautiful British Columbia! Immerse yourself in what you love, share stories with kindred spirits and have the time of your life!

CLICK the line below for workshop details :

Jesse: (2 day workshop) ~ Freedom to Create just a few spaces left!

Art Retreat EVENTS  PACKAGE includes:

  • SWAG bag filled with creative goodies to swoon over!
  • Welcome night reception Thursday night… where the  TRADES happen!
  • Two 6 hour classes with sought after Artists! (one class on Friday & one class on Saturday)
  • Two lunches

  • SHOW & TELL Saturday after class!
  • FRIDAY NIGHT Art In ~creative gathering to create, journal & giggle with your kindred spirits.

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Don’t get too spooked!

Take a peak at the fabulous primitives Sandra has been busy creating for our Sep 20th ‘Vintage, Art, Craft, Scrapbook and DE-Stash MARKET’ at Sullivan Hall (6306 152nd Street, Surrey)!HH DSC_2460 HH DSC_2462*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

On the ART RETREAT side of the creative spectrum, please NOTE:

Due to the on-going K-12 school Teacher’s strike here in British Columbia, we have decided to extend the application date by one month.

The NEW DATES are:

  • Oct 03 – deadline for class proposals due in our office.
  • Oct 17 – we will advise all applicants via email of acceptance / non-acceptance.
  • Oct 24 – signed contracts to be returned to our office.
  • Nov 1st – online brochure will be on the website and student registration begins Nov 10th, 2014.


The REVIEWS are in!

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REVIEWS from ‘Into the heART’ attendees of Spring 2014:

  • “Had a fantastic weekend. Loved the classes. Thanks to Nicci Battilana for organizing the retreat. You did an amazing job. Can’t wait until next year.” – Wendy
  • “Had a great time! Took away some amazing techniques and some fantastic memories. Awesome venue, Harrison is a little oasis tucked away in the mountains. Just far enough away to feel removed from everyday life. Loved the pools. Glad to be able to share this with a friend. Both classes from Megan and Michael were chock full of awe , wonder and a few ah ha moments as well. Couldn’t have asked for better guidance to creativity. Will be looking for the next gathering. Thank you Nicci Battilana for making it happen.” – Debbie
  • “Great time! Made some wonderful pieces and gained some incredible knowledge. Thanks Nicci Battilana” – Debbie
  • “Such an amazing weekend! Thank you Nicci for all your hard work! Looking forward to next year.” – Michel
  • “Awesome awesome job organizing , awesome teachers and company lookin forward to next year!!!!!!” – Tammy
  • “It was a great weekend and so nice to meet so many talented people!” – Lorraine
  • “Thank you so much for a great weekend with so many talented people I ended up having to leave sat night as our son had a big tournament this weekend and after missing his Sat event I felt I needed to be there Sun. I wish I could of stayed and kept playing. I look forward to future retreats.” – Kim
  • “What a great weekend! Can’t wait to hear the plans for the next one! Thanks for a wonderful weekend Nicci!!” – Christa
  • “It was by far my favourite art retreat! Loved it! Thank you. Xoxoxo” – Christina
  • “Excellent Event!” – Cheryl
  • “Such a good time and an amazing group of people!!” – Megan
  • “It was a fabulous weekend! You did an awesome job.” – Jeni
  • “I wish I had another week of playing with Andrea Matus deMeng – I was starting to get comfortable with being uncomfortable!” – Kim

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STAY TUNED for details regarding our Fall 2015 Art Retreat!

To keep up to date on all of our events LIKE US on facebook or SUBSCRIBE in the upper right corner of our home page with your email address!

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THANK YOU to my wonderful Volunteers, Teaching Staff, Resort Staff, fabulous attendees  and everyone that has helped spread the word. Without you this would not have been the success it was.

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Art-Retreat-Teacher-PROMOContact me with your workshop ideas!


Hi all my Art Retreat Lovelies!,

The weather looks great for next week & I know you are all eager to pack your bags and make you way to Harrison Hot Springs. We are excited to see you as well!!

weather-harrison-hot-springHere is a suggested packing list for you all (CLICK HERE: art retreat packing list).  This is just a suggested list, as everyone has personal likes and habits…lol.

See you all soon!

PS: For those that have not booked yet, but would like to join in on the fun, there is still time to register online!


Nicci & the CFE Team03-SANY0374-words


deMeng & Matus invite you to PLAY!




Friday May 23, 2014

Saturday May 24, 2014

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All SKILL levels welcome!


SAVE YOUR SPACE!SANY1203 Learn how to use tools in a new or different way or even how to begin creating.
Try new techniques, and step out of your comfort zone!
Connect with a community of like minded artists at all skill levels!
It’s time to save your spot for a get away to meet other fun, talented artists!

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~


Art Retreat EVENTS  PACKAGE price of just $510.00 pp includes:

  • SWAG bag filled with creative goodies to swoon over!
  • Welcome night reception (hors d’oeuvres)… where the  TRADES happen!
  • Two 6 hour classes with sought after Artists! (one class on Friday & one class on Saturday)
  • Strolls on the sandy BEACH (a great free time option)
  • Use of the Natural Hot Spring Pools (when staying on site)!
  • Handmade VENDOR Market (open to the public) Friday Night!
  • SHOW & TELL Saturday Night!
  • NIGHTLY fun & artistic creative gatherings to create, journal & giggle with kindred spirits.

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All SKILL levels welcome!



We Want You!

2014-Poster-girl-SPRING-5-iVENDOR NIGHT !

Vendor Search on NOW !

SPRING Creative Finds Artisan Market ~ Harrison Hot Springs, BC (May 23, 2014):  Market Vendor Application ~ CLICK HERE >>> 2014-SPRING-creative-finds-application



Check your mailboxes!

more Into the heART REGISTRATION confirmations mailed out today!mail-out-promo


May 22-24, 2014
Get away from your daily responsibilities by joining Nicci Dot CA and other kindred spirits at the “Into the heART” Art Retreat! Besides being surrounded by creative individuals such as yourself, you will find that you are residing in a lake side resort featuring natural hot springs in the pool and spa areas on beautiful West Coast of Canada. Partake in lots of laughing, two 6 hour art classes of your choice, cocktail welcome party, nightly gatherings and more!  Students: click here for class descriptions.

All SKILL levels welcome!



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CLICK HERE for WORKSHOP, accommodation & price info

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Doing what you love!

Sometimes it takes courage to do what you love. Maybe we are afraid that we will not be good enough or just frustrate ourselves and not enjoy the process. These are battles that we unfortunately place on ourselves and only we can take these barriers down and throw them away.

When we say to ourselves that enough is enough and take that step forward, it may begin with trepidation and fear, but then end up with joy, freedom and the curiosity as to why we did not do this earlier in its place.

What would you love to do?:

  • take a few days away… just for you (and maybe a friend or two)
  • learn how to create with en-caustic wax
  • make your dream doll a reality using funky steampunk fashions and findings
  • use assemblage to create your very own creepy misfit toy
  • play with concrete in a whole new way
  • sew your own uniquely stylish crafting/cooking apron
  • learn the vastly growing trend of art journaling
  • sculpt a gorgeous silhouette dressed for dancing in a flowering field
  • create a warm and loved filled painted scroll to decorate your home
  • play with the ever popular ice resin and design your own necklace pendant
  • embellish your heart with all the love you can muster
  • create a 3D mixed media enigma
  • remake your favorite little bottle into something completely demented and vial
  • adorn your journal cover to reflect the ‘eye of the beholder’. (Mine would be a girl looking back at me… of course…lol. Have you seen my art? It’s all girls!)
  • give a face to your inner critic and empty your fears into her

Sometimes along our personal journey we get creatively stuck and need a jump start to recharge our batteries or just need to step aside from our normal everyday lives. Have time to breathe, laugh, make friends and take a leap of faith in ourselves.

All SKILL levels welcome!


CLICK HERE for WORKSHOP, accommodation & price info

NOTE:  REGISTRATION closes January 25th, 2014

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The importance of PLAY

PLAY = less gadget activity and more real life interaction. PLAY is a huge part of truly living your life. PLAY brings laughter, joy, friendship and freedom of the soul. PLAY gives you permission to enjoy the moment, relish in the now. PLAY is what we all need to further enjoy our journey. For it is the journey and not the destination itself is what matters most.

Give yourself permission to PLAY!

We welcome you to come wiggle your toes in our sandbox!