Sunday, September 25, 2011

Tree of Life Mandala Workshop

Here are the process photos of the Tree of Life Mandala Workshop that we led last Sunday.
I love to  the witness the process people go through during these mandala experiences.  This image is of our beginning small mandalas where we  practice the scale of light in a circle. We always stop and put them up on the wall, to get a better overview of what we have done, as well as to stretch, and rest our eyes.  It helps to stand back from one's work.
Here is an image of everyone drawing around the large tables in the middle of my studio.  It was  a wonderful group of people, with such good energy.

The following photos are a sampling of everyone in the midst of starting their larger mandala.
Although our focus was the Tree of Life, everyone had permission to go in their own personal direction in their mandala.
This mandala was an honoring of the hope of the one tree that was left after the tsnumani and earthquake that happened in Japan.
                                               Another Tree of Life Mandala.
                           Keeping the pencils really sharp really helps in this drawing process.

                              It is always amazing to see what emerges for people in their mandalas.

By the afternoon we did some color blending exercises to give people the courage to dive into color.
             Here are some more of the black and white mandalas......I am sharing the evolution of pretty much everyone's mandala's here.

I love to see how they change as more and more scale of light shading brings depth, light and life to them.

                        And now comes the color, vibrant, brilliant rainbow scales of color....
It is often difficult at times,  to add color to these powerful black and white mandala's... some people really hesitate and it is not uncommon for some folks to either love or hate these first tentative steps into adding color.

It is amazing how different each one becomes, and how unique everyones use of color is.
Only one person completed their mandala that day, everyone else was in different stages of the process.
This is a slow and meditative process, about being in the moment with what is coming up internally, as well as how it is mirrored in the mandala that is drawn.
This is Doris's powerful healing mandala, here sharing was a rich and deep model for where the mandala process can lead.

This final mandala is my Tree of Life Mandala in different stages of development.
I am now just beginning to add color to my mandala and I will share it here when it is complete.
Hopefully, the mandala group will send me images of their completed mandalas.  If and when that happens I will post it here for the world to see.  Until the next time....Ciao

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Tree's on my mind.... The Tree of Life...

This Sunday we are facilitating our yearly Fall Equinox Illuminated Mandala Retreat Day, at my studio behind my house.  By we, I am referring to myself and my good friend Patricia Waters, who is also a Mandala Facilitator of the late Judith Cornell's wonderful mandala process.  

Our focus for this workshop is the Tree of Life... and just thinking about it has really stimulated me and has made me pay more attention to trees, as well as the trees that have unconsciously emerged in my art over time.  Again and again, the tree becomes a central motif for me.  
  As I reflected on trees, my love of them and how important they are to me, I remembered that my earliest drawings as a child, were of trees.  I would spend hours and hours drawing trees with limbs that turned into little rooms and then created little magical areas in the roots systems, where little people could live.  There was always a knot hole at the bottom where the people, or elves or gnomes would enter the tree and journey to their little apartments under the ground.  Shamanic journeying.... as a child my imagination was fertile ground and I was always looking for a safe and magical place to reside.  How I wish I still had some of those drawings, nevertheless they popped up in my imagination as I started reflecting on drawing a Tree of Life Mandala this Sunday, and I realized how deep the tree roots were in my life.
Then I began googling tree of life drawings....and was astounded to see my Tree Mandala's all over the place online, on different peoples blogs, as graphics for articles and in many other settings, most of them gave me credit for the image, but many didn't.  It felt odd, to be so out there, and yet a bit invasive as well.  But that is all part and parcel of having my images on flickr, here and in the many shops I have online.  None  the less, I wished people would give to who drew the original image, let alone contact info, and dare I even mention copyright user fees.    The biggest issue, was when someone told me that this image was included in a Mandala Greeting Card Coloring Kit on Amazon. Now that is a different story.  So, it leads me to being much more aware of what I pull off the web and giving credit where credit is due.  

I am very excited to gather with others this week and dive into the Autumn and my unconscious and will post the photos from the workshop here for others to see.   Until then, here is a  quote to leave you with.

The Tree of Life is a universal symbol found in many spiritual and mythological traditions around the world. In various cultures it is known as the Cosmic Tree, the World Tree and the Holy Tree. The Tree of Life symbolizes many things, including wisdom, protection, strength, bounty, beauty, and redemption. This wise and holy Tree is like the Creator as it sustains creation with its abundant fruit, protection and generativity.                                                            From

                               And some beautiful healing redwood trees from Fort Bragg California....

By the way, if anyone out there is interested in any of these mandala's I sell matted prints of them on my store on etsy, SoulArteEclectica, and I have  cards and all kinds of interesting products made with these mandalas on them on my zazzle store   ArteEclectica,  so please do check them out, the holidays are fast approaching and they can make great inspirational gifts.......there I did my promo.  Ciao. Caterina

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

As Promised a Few more Pocket Shrines to see...

And so, without further ado, here are some more photos of pocket shrines that members of the Medicine Art Group made.  Weeks ago I promised to post these.  Since it has been about a month since the time that we made these, we are now onto new directions and art processes.  As a natural evolution we are exploring themes in cigar boxes, dream boxes, intention boxes, dia de los muertes altars and...who knows where it will go..
When those are completed I will share them as well.
Enjoy these little gems~

Each one has a story to tell......

                                                        As well as an intention or focus......

              And some were made just for the pure fun of embellishment and decoration......

I am now off to cleaning and reorganizing my studio once again, to get ready for a SoulCollage® workshop on this Friday morning and then our Seasonal  Fall Equinox Mandala Retreat day on Sunday, which this time is focusing on the Tree of Life.. What fun ...until next time.   Ciao..Caterina