I create pressed flower mandalas and art and teach mandala coloring classes and workshops for healing, meditation and to increase personal growth and creativity in the Rogue Valley, Oregon area.
When I began my journey into this art form, I was experiencing a mid-life crisis that manifested in depression. As I started gathering and pressing flowers, leaves, even weeds, the life-affirming qualities of nature began to transform the depression into joy. Through my art and the classes I teach I want to share the miraculous beauty of nature and its ability to heal and connect us with a sense of hope and optimism.
I was trained as a counselor, receiving my Master's Degree from Antioch University in 1974. For twenty five years I worked in community colleges, teaching psychology and personal growth classes and counseling. At age 50, I enrolled in an Artist's Way class, and two things happened: I began creating pressed flower art and later began offering Artist's Way classes myself. Now I'm sharing the healing I've experienced with others, and watching them move from darkness into the light as their creative skills blossom is deeply rewarding.
During the holidays I went through a dormat period in terms of my creativity. Now with more Oregon sunshine my creative juices have begun to flow. The first thing I did was to create another coaster set using the Laurel Burch material and collaging it on a wooden coaster set. At my holiday sale I had only one coaster set and it was snatched up at the very beginning of the sale so thought I would make another one. I love the Laurel Burch jungle material as the animals have such pleasant looks on their faces and she uses such bold colors. Above is shown the top of the box with parrots and a few of the coasters. There are 12 coasters, each with a different picture of jungle creatures.
My next decision was inspired by one of the World Wide Pressed Flower Guild Members who made 35 cards and shared them. I decided that I have so many paper scraps that I would challenge myself to make 35 cards. I am not quite sure how long this will take but I have No. 1 and it is pictured above. I will post each card I make. Part of my self-imposed challenge is to make each one different from the others. We will see how I do on this challenge. I love the above card because of the neutral colors. I had received some pressed flowers from the son of a flower artist who had passed away. Some of them were brown and I was disappointed. I shared this with my friend from the World Wide Pressed Flower Guild and she said to keep them as there would be some used for them. Now when I use them on the cards with the beautiful art paper they look wonderful. I gave one of this type of card to my friend who is an accomplished water color artist and she loved it and still has it displayed in her living room.
The other peice I have recently done is a small, 5"x5" mandala picture using poinsettia leaves and petals. I cut the petals and leaves smalled for this tiny picture. I used a wide variety of the colors from the poinsettias that I had pressed. I even used the real centers from the poinsettia for the center of my mandala.