Susie Monday

Artist, maker, teacher, author, head cook and bottlewasher.

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The art I make is the result of a life-long love of pattern, texture and color. How I teach is a skill honed by experience (I started teaching creative arts to younger kids when I was 12). After earning a B.A. in Studio Arts from Trinity University, I helped lead an internationally recognized educational foundation, designed curriculum exhibits for schools and other institutions, wrote and edited for a major daily newspaper, opened the San Antonio Children's Museum and then, a dozen years ago, took the scary but essential (for me) leap to become a fulltime artist and art teacher.

About This Blog

This weblog is about the maker's life. The teacher's path. The stitching and dyeing and printing of the craft of art cloth and art quilt. The stumbling around and the soaring, the way the words and the pictures come together. Poetry on the page and in the piecing of bright scraps together. The inner work and the outer journeys to and from. Practicalities and flights of fancy and fearful grandeur, trivial pursuits and tactile amusements. Expect new postings two or three times a week, unless you hear otherwise. 

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    Entries in art workshops (6)


    Something New. Something Old.

    JUNE 4-6 

    (optional Fri. night potluck)

    Many artists have found inspiration in prehistoric and archetypal imagery from caves, cliffs and ancient ceramics. This is the first of a series of “creative study” workshops that will illuminate how you as an artist can take inspiration from the images and imagination of the past, while transforming the images into something uniquely your own. This workshop models a time-proven creative study process (based on that developed at Learning About Learning Educational Foundation and the Paul Baker Theatre)  that can be adapted to many inspirational sources.

    We’ll go from collection through synthesis to creating, and explore textile and mixed media techniques that relate to the aesthetic and philosophical qualities and intent of the earliest art-makers. Use handmade brushes as tools, make pigmented paints with ashes, earth, rust and minerals. Learn to use two different techniques for transfering photos and sketches to fabric using a home printer/copier-- directly printing on fabric you  prepare with Bubble Jet Set and doing a transfer print with polyester film and gel medium.

    We'll also have a chance to drum, share poetry and stories, and share a meal under the moon and stars. And, of course,  enjoy the beautiful early summer weather in the Texas Hill Country. We've added a sleeping porch to the house, so if you wish, you can even sleep (sort of) under the stars, though the airconditioned comfort of the bedrooms are also available. Only one $30 private room remains, otherwise, for $15 you can sleep in the studio, or for free on the porch or air mattress. Remember to bring swim suits and towels for the pool and hot tub! The workshop fee is $160 whether you stay two nights or one!


    Art Workshops at El Cielo, Summer 2009

    I just realized I've not posted the new and revised dates for workshops this summer. Text on the Surface is all but full, as is The Shape of the Matter, but a couple more people could squeeze in if you're not too picky about where you sleep. If you're interested email me in the message block on the sidebar.

    Workshops in fiber, ceramics, jewelry, painting and mixed media work

    Nurture your creativity as you come away from a weekend with renewed energy, new materials and techniques in surface design applicable to fiber, ceramics, jewelry, painting and mixed media work. Susie Monday leads artists’ retreats and workshops throughout the year at her studio near Pipe Creek, Texas, about an hour from downtown San Antonio. El Cielo Studio workshops are designed with the needs of the participants in mind; free time is scheduled throughout the weekend for reading, reflection and personal work in the studio. You are welcome to bring projects in process for Susie’s critique and for peer feedback in an environment of trust and respect. You’ll share meals, poetry and stories, music and advice for living an artist’s life. Enjoy the 25-mile vistas from the deck and strolls down the country roads. A spa and pool, and large screen media room are also available to participants. The fee for each work- shop retreat is $160 for a 2- day event with discounts for early enrollment. Comfortable accommodations are available from $15 - $30 per workshop. Most workshops offer a Friday night potluck option. Limited enrollment. Most supplies included. Call 210-643-2128 or email from the website comments on the sidebar.


    May 22 - 24

    In this workshop participants experiment with a number of different ways to use written language, letters and text on surface of fabric, for application in the making of art cloth, art quilts and art-to-wear. By putting ideas and personal vision/story into work, artists deepen their own expression of individual voice, using words that are important, using STORY in

    a quite literal way,all can be part of that personal way of expression. Some familiar and some new techniques: sunprinting with foam letters, thermofax collage & printing, phototransfer print- ing with copier/printer, soy wax batik with text, mixed media collage. Participants will also see a wide variety of examples of the use of text in fiber and other con- temporary work, broadening their conceptual under- standing of using words in art. Optional Friday night pot luck, no additional fee.


    June 17-19

    How does an art quilt idea grow from a shape? Learn two-dimensional design skills though an investigation of paper-cut silhouettes, Japanese Notan ex- ercises, black ink drawings, stencil and silkscreen de- sign. Explore personal imagery, symbols and mean- ing as touchstones for de- signing for the decorative arts in fabric applicable to quilting, art cloth, garment design and embellishment, as well as learning techniques for simplifying and abstracting images to produce original designs on paper and fabric. Take home a journal quilt ready for stitching. Optional Friday night pot luck, no additional fee.


    July 17-19 and repeats August 21-23

    This year’s “Burning Woman Workshop”!
    Participants design and make a small art quilt “altar” for kitchen or dining room using sun-printing, vegetable prints, fusing, hand and machine stitching and “found” fabrics from attic, thrift store or kitchen closet. We will recycle napkins, tea towels and other like objects and design a thermofax featuring a meaningful symbol, favorite fruit, icon, saint, culinary heroine, an- gel or other meaningful de- sign as the centerpiece for the altar. These altars can be serious or sentimental, comic or universal – it’s up to the individual artist. (This workshop has an additional $12 fee per person for the altar boxes that the quilts are stretched upon.)


    Dates to be determined

    Plan a weekend with your artist and should-be artist friends. Susie will design a custom weekend workshop with fiber, mixed media and creativity exercises with your interests and skill levels in mind. Possibilities: soy wax batik, art journals and hand-made books, art dolls and totems. This is the ultimate play date, with great food, the Texas Hill Country, a Saturday night rodeo or music outing (options, not in stone) and fun with “stuff.” Ttherapeutic massage services available from licensed masseuse. Minimum 4 friends, maximum, up to 8 depending on accommodation with shared rooms. The topics and techniques covered are up to you -- and any of the previous El Cielo Workshops can be adapted to your desires.

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