Mindful Studio Practice : Week 1

September 16, 2012

Mindful Studio Practice with Hannah Klaus Hunter

With much anticipation and wonder, this week I started my 21 Day journey of Hannah Klaus Hunter‘s e-workshop Mindful Studio Practice in 6 Degrees of Creativity 2.  Hannah’s workshop is dedicated to creating a daily art-making practice for 21 days through prompts that encourage focusing in the here & now, slowing down, and being in the moment with your creative process through a specific object or theme. I can’t begin to tell you how I’ve enjoyed these first 7 days and committing time to making art for this adventure.

Day 1 : Blessings Beginnings

Day 1 included taking time to gather the materials & supplies I would be using throughout the next 21 days.  I decided what would be most manageable for me to create everyday would be an artist trading card (ATC). My first ATC was created using paper stashes I received from Maria & Nancy last month.  My final spontaneous touch to this card was from Nancy’s stash: a quote printed on Vellum paper that included the word Blessings.  I added it as an expression in the moment inspired by feelings of thankfulness, a readiness to begin, and curiousity about this process prepared so thoughtfully by Hannah.

Day 2 : Blessings Brainstorming

Day 2‘s ATC included the brainstorming I did about what I wanted to focus on throughout the next 21 Days.  I used a canvas textured ATC with acrylic paint, a paper heart, pen, and the word LIFE made from my SMASH label maker. The concept of Blessings was still on my mind. As I explored variations of this concept and its meaning with Hannah’s prompt, it was still very strong. It was in this instant I began writing my top 10 words/concepts that really attracted me to this theme: Blessings as a form of redemption, strength, help, a gift, form of hope, permission, love, something out there unknown & in disguise, as well as the fragility/shortness of life to inspire feelings of thankfulness.

Day 3 : What is yours to see?

Day 3 focused my attention and dedicated art-making on one of the Blessing concepts I identified during Day 2, inspired by Hannah’s quote from Jon Kabat-Zinn “to see what is yours to see”.  I chose the perspective of viewing unknown blessings in disguise as a form of resiliency, beauty, and compassion as mine to see in this moment.  This ATC was created on an old playing card with some of my collage stuff and edged with black Staz On ink.

Day 4 : Vulnerability is a gift

Day 4‘s ATC was dedicated to not only seeing Blessings as a gift, but the vulnerability and fragility that this can also introduce, especially if the blessing is not clearly known or has value at the time. This ATC serves as mindful reminder to myself that this requires openness and nurturing for the blessings awareness to grow.  A watercolor textured ATC was used as the foundation for this piece with more paper stash goodies and a dictionary page for the background.

Day 5 : Blessing Essence

For my Day 5 ATC I layered alcohol inks on a glossy coated ATC, as well as distressed areas of the ATC with sandpaper to create a raw, but vibrant image to examine the essence (heart & strength) of my interest and attention related to the Blessings theme.

Day 6 : In this moment…

Day 6‘s ATC expressed an aspect of the Blessings theme I had not previously considered/been aware of until prompted to notice something different about it in the moment.  What came to mind was the feeling and sensation of being grounded.  I again used paper stash bits and pieces (brown paper bag paper, tissue paper, handmade paper embedded with seeds, painted watercolor swatches) as well as words from old dictionary pages to create this ATC with distressed ink and metallic paint pens.

Day 7 : Quiet Blessings Exposed

Today’s ATC, on Day 7 celebrated my first week with this new journey, an opportunity and invitation from Hannah’s daily prompt to slow things down and spend time simplifying our theme.  ATC media I selected included watercolor, mulberry paper, and dictionary words to collage. I chose to try Hannah’s suggestion of working in one color or tone and was pleasantly surprised how this shifted the energy for my Blessings theme. I quietly observed how the concept of silence & stillness is so essential and how blessings can present themselves in quiet and subtle ways.  In this moment, my awareness and connection around this theme became more exposed and opened with peacefulness and a new level of acceptance.

I’m ready to see what the next 7 days bring… Much gratitude to Hannah for this inspiring adventure…

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8 Responses to “Mindful Studio Practice : Week 1”

  1. Hannah Says:

    Its really good to read of your process Gretchen. I’m inspired by the simplicity, the vulnerability and the directness of your words and images. May they continue to be a blessing for you.

  2. Janet Says:

    Lovely reflections Gretchen. :-)

  3. Fiona Says:

    Hey Gretchen! What an inspring way to use your 21 days! I want to try it too! The ATC size makes it so manageable and so engaging too.


  4. Thanks Hannah, Janet, and Fiona! Extra big thanks to Hannah for the inspiration…. Onward to Week #2 now! :)

  5. Sara Says:

    Beautiful! Such a pleasure to see your process unfolding!


  6. This is so good! Its great to see it unfolding and how you are responding to the directive.I have got a bit distracted at times(irony there).But I am remembering that miracles happen if you persist and participate. My colour field pages were a way for me to settle and enter this project and Im about to start some of the ideas. I am particularly struck by number 7, it glows. Seems like you got to the middle of something (heart of the matter).


  7. absolutely beautiful!!!


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