Life sure is a journey! And it’s funny how, when we’re following our instincts, the journey seems to take us right where we’re supposed to go. I’ve just come back from another heart-full four days in the Texas hills at Lucky Star Art Camp and I can’t help but think about how far I’ve come.
Lucky Star is a women’s art camp, held in the Texas hills every November at an historic girl’s camp, called Waldemar. This breath-taking property lies right on the Guadalupe river – think native stone, rustic wood, sweeping vistas, bunk beds (tho their wonderful staff is always careful to ensure we only have to use the lower bunks 🙂 ), and sing-alongs by the campfire. Just heaven.
My relationship with this event actually began LONG before its inception. I met Lucky Star Director, Lisa Field, at a Squam Art Workshop in 2010. In those days, I really didn’t think of myself as an artist. I was still working and getting away for “art camp” was mostly just a lark – I liked art, I liked camp, why not?! SAW was incredible and three years later, when Lisa launched Lucky Star, I was there to enjoy every moment!
Then I came back the second year. Then something morphed and I came back the third year as a teacher (I like to say I got promoted 😉 )!! THIS year, things shifted quite a bit more. I can’t possibly tell you all the ways in a single post, so I’m going to take it by stages – starting with the Creative Collaborative.
The very first year of Lucky Star, myself and my friend Mary took part in the Collaborative and we adored it. It was a chance to create something artistic that the entire camp could contribute to + it would live on to commemorate the time we had all spent together. That year, we made a prayer flag bunting that adorned the check-in table once again this year.
The mother of the collaborative project, Shawn Stratman, is an active mother and teacher of Irish dance and was occupied this year taking her daughter to the 2016 All Irelands during Lucky Star (I just read they placed 8th – congrats!!). When Lisa asked me to substitute, I was honored & a little terrified, but it turned out to be such a fun experience!!
The first step was deciding on our base materials, so I started wandering Pinterest looking at alternative guest book ideas. One of the most important elements of the Collaborative is for campers to somehow contribute their thoughts & dreams and I thought a guest “book” would be an easy thing to refit for our purposes. One idea led to another and we ended up with chicken wire and a gorgeous vintage window frame.
Next was to gather a group of Creative Collaborators. I hit the jackpot and ended up with six of the sweetest, most talented, enthusiastic and hardworking women you could ever hope to spend an afternoon with. We quickly decided what we were going to do, then jumped right in and got ‘er done!! I think I can safely say everyone’s favorite part was weaving the fabric strips.
Then we fleshed out the theme of our project. In Bali, I came to deeply respect the practice of gratitude I noticed everywhere – daily offerings on doorsteps, motorcycles, buildings; MASSIVELY attended celebrations; and the quiet, joyful and gracious way the Balinese walk through their everyday lives. The Collaborative decided to make this year’s project about gratitude and we named it “Thank Your Lucky Stars.”
Then Big Personal Challenge #1 came, when I stood up and took the mike at breakfast to tell 105~ lovely campers about the project – literally the first time I ever held a microphone in my life! We provided pens, crayons and colored pencils + a basketful of various tags and invited campers to decorate a tag and tell us what they are grateful for.
The next part just blew me away and I think the pictures say it all…
I wish I could’ve taken it home with me! I’m so very proud to have been a part of this project, completely honored to have been given the chance to lead the creative souls who dreamed this up and utterly grateful to have been able to witness it unfold. Thank you Lucky Stars!!!