Meet the lovely Joyelle….

 Workshop: Monster In Me (Saturday May 24, 2014)

Joyelle Brandt ~ Artist/Instructor

 I love to teach because:  I feel that art should be a conversation, a relationship. And teaching is part of that conversation for me.
Attending an Art Retreat is like: Meeting the best friends you never knew you had, and having a party together that lasts several days!
When I attended my first Art Retreat, I :  Felt like I had just joined the most amazing tribe of creative soul sisters.
Who do you creatively relate with?  I could list a ton of artists here, but I’ll just choose one. My friend Kathleen Tennant makes beautiful mixed media paintings. I love what she makes, and love even more the spirit she puts into her life. She is just an awesome human!
The best part of living a creative life is:  You get to make it whatever you want it to be. You get to be a little crazy, and everyone is ok with that, because artists are supposed to be crazy
What is the worst part of living a creative life?  Sometimes it’s hard to find other creative people like you. That is why art retreats are so great!
What advice would you like to share?  Find a way to do something that makes you happy every day. This sounds simple, but often it is not.
The best advice I have ever received is :  Breathe into the pain.

Photo credit: Robert Brandt.
Photo credit: Robert Brandt.

‘Being creative’ means :  I think painter Flora Bowley said it best: “…human aliveness is inseparable from creativity. We are all artists already… each and every one of us.” I strongly believe that living artfully doesn’t just apply to creating art, but also to creating the life we want to live. Living mindfully, according to our own values, that’s creativity too.
Which Artist inspires you the most & why?  Kelly Rae Roberts. Her commitment to living authentically shines through everything that she creates. I love her willingness to be open and vulnerable, her ongoing personal development and community building. She represents artful living to me.
What are your favorite tools, instruments, materials to use and why?  My fingers! I love painting with my hands. Just getting in there and working intuitively is when I feel the most flow in my painting.
What would you love to try next, creatively?  Painting really BIG abstract paintings! I saw Pierre Coupey‘s exhibit at the Evergreen Cultural Centre and I just love the energy of his large scale works. Sadly I do not have the space to do this currently, so this dream will have to wait for now.
Where do you find your muse/inspiration? Quotes, music, my kids, nature, my struggles. Everything is fodder for art to me.
Do you sell your work? If so, where can your fans seek you out? Yep! I have an Etsy store and a Society Six shop. You can find links to both at
Name one of your favorite food, song, poem, book and/or movie of all time?

  • Food: chocolate
  • Song: Steamroller Blues, James Taylor
  • Poem: anything by Brian Andreas
  • Book: Onion Girl by Charles DeLint
  • Movie: Clerks
    Saturday WORKSHOP: Monster in Me
    Saturday WORKSHOP: Monster in Me

What was your scariest creative adventure?  Sending my art to Somerset Studio magazine.
The thing I love most about my life is :  The people in it. I have been married for 16 years to a wonderful man. We have two little boys who I love more than anything. And I have a circle of family and friends who love and support me unconditionally. I am so grateful to be in this place in my life, surrounded by loving, accepting peeps.
What makes your heart swell with joy?  Hearing my boys laugh.
Three words to describe my work are:  Odd, cute, ugly.
What creative tool can you not live without (so-to-speak)?  Gel medium for layering and adding texture!
My favorite ‘pretend’ curse word is : I prefer the real ones. Which means I have had several conversations with my six year old about which words are “grown up” words and which are not.

CLICK HERE for Student registration


3rd WORKSHOP unveiling for Into the heART!

 WORKSHOP “Steampunk Sally” by Clarissa Callesen

Friday May 23, 2014

Steampunk is a sub genre of science fiction based on proposed future that used steam as a primary energy source as opposed to electricity. The idea of Steampunk is really fun conceptually, but the best part is the FASHION: Goggles, leather, watch gears and parts, Victorian clothing, and stripes are just the beginning! By recycling an already constructed doll, you can skip right to the fun part. No sewing, no stuffing, no patterns, just decorating, dressing and embellishing. Using gesso and texturing we will create a unique “antique” texture as a base for a hand painted artistic face. I will demonstrate how to make a mini Steampunk essential, goggles out of empty watch faces and inner tube rubber or thin leather. I believe in embracing the grunge and cherishing the haphazard which will help create a space for each of us to follow our muses. This is both a project and technique based class which you will leave with a unique piece of art as well as skills useful not just for art dolls but for assemblage work in general.
BIO: Clarissa is the creator of Strange and Wonderful Things, which is truly the best description of her work. She is the rescuer of tacky dolls and forgotten trash, with lots of laughter, hard work, and magic those items are reborn. Through her eclectic, mysterious, and surreal work she tells stories about the joy and tribulations that is the human experience. Clarissa teaching style is down to earth and fun, believing there is always more than one solution to a problem. Embracing the grunge and cherishing the mistakes are two of her primary philosophies. Clarissa brings her diverse experiences as a tattoo artist, functional potter, and gallery owner to teaching and sharing her true love the world of Mixed Media art. She exhibits throughout the Pacific Northwest at art festivals and selective galleries. She has been published in Linda and Opie O’Brien’s book, Who’s Your DADA? Written several feature articles for Art Doll Quarterly, and has been published multiple times in Somerset Studio. For more information, check out her blog at
Supply List:

  • A found doll preferably cloth bodied with a porcelain head and hands. (Don’t get caught up in original looks. It will all be transformed: the uglier the doll the better. Sources: thrift stores, yard sales, discount stores, attics)
  • Fabric glue, small container (I strongly recommend Beacon Adhesives Fabri-tac Permanent Fabric Adhesive)
  • A small bag of fabric scraps. Tulle, stripes, lace, etc
  • Material for hair- yarns, ribbon, chain, string, etc
  • Small pieces of thin leather or rubber (inner tubes work well)
  • Material for hair- yarns, ribbon, chain, string, etc
  • An assortment of watch gears and parts
  • Two empty watch cases to make goggles
  • Buttons, charms, old jewelry, misc found objects for embellishing your doll
  • An assortment of acrylic paint for face painting make sure to include a white and a black
  • Paint brushes: a medium, a small, and a TINY detail brush
  • A palette for paints and a water container
  • A long embroidery needle and a curved needle
  • Embroidery floss in both a dark and light color
  • Scissors
  • Heat gun and extension cord

Optional: Tiny brads for embellishing and thin copper for making hats
Materials fee of $5 to cover use of: Gesso, Walnut ink, Construction adhesive, E6000, Aluminum foil, Wire, Grinding stones, Tools to share

  Student registration BEGINS Sept 21, 2013

Retreat PACKAGE pricing to be advised this SATURDAY!

FIRST Spring 2014 workshop is unveiled!!!


WORKSHOP “Monster in Me” by Joyelle Brandt

(Saturday May 24, 2014 ~ Harrison Hot Springs, BC, Canada)

Create your own monster self-portrait in this heart-opening creative experience. We will start out with some journaling exercises designed to bring your darkness into the light. This is all about opening up and shedding gentle light on those places inside ourselves that we have a hard time accepting. We will then play with sketching out some monster alter-egos to find our ugly/pretty selves. Then comes time to play with layers of depth and meaning to create our painting’s grounding. And finally, we merge our monster selves with our painted backgrounds to embrace our whole selves.
I am an avid student of artful living, with a penchant for feather earrings, iced coffee and dark chocolate. I believe our lives are the ultimate works of art, and I try to live each day beautifully. I make pretty things and ugly things and strange things. What I know is that I need to create every day to be happy. I believe in the power of love, kindness, and gratitude to transform our lives. I believe that through art we connect with our divine selves and transform our deepest wounds into our greatest gifts to the world. (Joyelle’s website link)
Supply list:
-stabilo pencil, black
-your favourite colours of acrylic paint plus white and black (5-10 colours)
-paint pen in black or brown
-larger paintbrush for backgrounds, smaller for detail work
-your favourite stamps or stencils
-collage papers, ephemera
Instructor will provide gessoed MDF board to work on, plus a variety of other art supplies to play with. $5 kit fee (payable to Instructor during class).

 Student registration BEGINS Sept 21, 2013