Pages

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Flying Lessons and the Art of Giving Back

This is our month. Our Flying Lessons group one year anniversary. The earmark that we've made it...and we've made it together. There's been lots of laughs, some growing pains, family issues, kids, and all the things that make up life. We've built a community and can call each other friend. This kind of thing doesn't happen all the time and we decided as a group that we want others to experience this same kind of sisterhood.

We have gotten together and have eight spots in the last session ever of Flying Lessons. Pop on over to:


Leave a comment after the post to be entered to win. But WAIT! There's more!! If you check out Kelly Rae Roberts blog she matched our donation and there are another eight classes being donated by Kelly! (Yay for Kelly!)
That means for your comment on our Fly Tribe blog you have a chance at 16 possible spots! Wow! So get on over there and comment!!!


Secondly...we have a blog hop to share all about how each of us tries to give something back for the huge gifts we've been given.

My turn.
The view into kiln unknown.
The last decade has been all about my two children and their school experiences. We are extremely lucky to be involved in an arts focused school that allows for as much artistic creation as we can come up with. In parallel to building my creative business over this same time I have been doing as many odd art projects as I can fit in at their school. I've painted, sketched, held art sessions for 120-8 year olds, colored in CSI images, designed hall murals, and helped do menial PTA tasks. But this was our last year at this particular school.

The latest project started as a crazy idea to represent all the kids in the school by immortalizing their fingerprints in clay. I asked (held hostage) several other Mothers and made them roll two ounce balls of clay until they were crazy people. I needed all 1000 kids to press their fingers into the clay, hence 1000 balls were needed. They were distributed to each classroom then brought back to me to play with. You can see the black dots in the kiln pic above. Honestly, once I got them all back, I had no clue what I was going to do with them. Shhh...nobody knows that but me!

The beginnings of my project taking flight...
Mosaics are my first love. If I had only one choice of what to pour my creativity into everyday, mosaics would be the one. It hit after consulting with another artist friend of mine through her blog, without her knowing about it I might add, what the fingerprints should become.

So it took six months, a couple hundred pounds of clay, and a bunch of volunteers and we made it happen.
...partial flight...
Bit by bit we worked and fired, fired more clay and worked some more. Each day it all became more and more clear.
...flowers are up! 
Fingerprints became flowers...lots of them...they were joined by bees and dragonflies...and an enormous butterfly. The kids watched us as we glued each piece to the wall and ooh'd and ahhh'd.
A little more.
Between the hot days and long hours it slowly came to be done. Three weeks longer than I thought and if my mosaic "team" hadn't stuck with me we'd still be trying to finish!
Almost!
Needs grout!
 I'm not sure how many people know that I, along with a select few, designed and put this up for the kids. Truly I don't care if anyone knows. The kids faces while we were in the midst of this project are my payment for these projects. The bee wings are mirrors so they can peer at themselves. The flowers have faces and the petals are all hand-sculpted so it can be felt as well as seen. Everytime we visit the wall will have it's own story to tell me. And visit we will have to since we've moved onto another school.
Complete and in flight.
Complete!
Now please move into the blog hop (below) and join the rest of my Fly Tribe as they share their giving back.
And thanks for coming by!

Giving Flight, Giving Back Blog Hop


Rachél Payne http://wp.me/pWRyw-10P
Live Laugh Love Retreats http://livelaughloveretreats.com

26 comments:

Linda said...

Such a beautiful way to give to your school. It turned out so gorgeous!

Tracy said...

Love that mosaic mural! Beautiful!

Tracy said...

Love that mosaic mural! Beautiful!

Flutter Before You said...

Great post Susan! And I DO love your new background, very pretty! It's only taken me this long and throw in a blog hop to get around to popping in:) LOL! Love your art wall and all you do in our sisterhood tribe:) Xo

Stacey said...

Wow!!! What an awesome thing...love that those are fingerprints...how cool!!! You are so talented Susan!!

Kelly Harms said...

What an amazing thing to do. I can just imagine the children bringing their own children to see this work of art and that little piece of themselves.

Sherry Belul said...

Susan! Wow! I LOOOOOVE the art mosaic/fingerprint wonder art you created. That is so gorgeous. Smiling. Hey, Happy Anniversary and thank you for all your work in helping to organize us. Sending you good wishes for a full-of-color, full-of-joy, full-of-vitality 2nd year of soaring. :-)

Kathleen Conard said...

Susan - I love your post about this project! The mural is beyond amazing and I love the story behind it. What a blessing you are to those children (and all of us in the Fly Tribe). I can't wait to meet you in person. Your wit and charm are contagious.

xo,
Kathleen

Deborah Velásquez said...

Happy Anniversary!!! Wonderful group to be a part of. Like minded artist who can talk about everything and it makes for a great safe place to be.
You are so brilliant, just love your words and company.
Can't believe a year has passed! Looking forward to our creative journey as we start a "new year" of our sisterhood!

xooxoxoxo

Lenore said...

Susan, your post and mosaic is absolutely gorgeous! I love it! I want one on my wall.

Lenore said...

Susan, your post and mosaic is absolutely gorgeous! I want one of those on my wall. Amazing!
xo Lenore

carolynchenault said...

That is an amazing art project! I can't imagine needing to roll 1000 balls of clay...and filling them up with all the little fingerprints! Too cute.

carolynchenault said...

That is an amazing art project! I can't imagine needing to roll 1000 balls of clay...and filling them up with all the little fingerprints! Too cute.

carolynchenault said...

Such a great idea! I can't imagine needing to roll 1000 clay balls and filling them with little fingerprints. Too cute!

Shells said...

Love your mosaics, thank you for being an inspirational and supportive member of our tribe.

Cat Athena Louise said...

Gorgeous mosaic! Happy Anniversary... C x

Lori Leissner said...

Susan, your giving spirit is evident every single day. Thank you for your cheering, advice, fun. Your generosity is inspiring! xoxo L

Jamie Burch said...

Simply gorgeous, Susan! All that hard work and time produced something so magical and inspiring. I love how you give back. :)

I'm honored to be in this tribe with you. Happy Anniversary! ((hugs))

Carol said...

Beautiful blog posting and beautiful butterfly. So nice getting to know you during this past year, my friend!

Kris Lanae Binsfeld said...

Susan,

With tears in my eyes, I read your beautiful story of butterflies and flowers and having an amazing and lifelong impact on the children of your school. What a totally amazing way to give back! You are an incredible person and I am so thankful to be a flysister with you! Cheers to an amazing year ahead! Thanks for all you have done to help with the hop! :-) Kris

Lenore said...

Hi Susan, I loved your post and beautiful mosaic. You're extremely talented. It's been great getting to know you.
xo Lenore

Ursula said...

Ok, Susan I don't know what I am more impressed with. That gorgeous piece of art or the fact that you got other parents to roll out all that clay!! I hope they are still speaking to you ;) Seriously, it has been such a great year getting to know you. I wished we lived closer although I am sure our husbands and pocketbooks are glad we don't!! Happy Anniversary!!

Mary said...

Hi Susan - What an incredible give back to the school. Your mural is absolutely breathtaking. Think of all that clay and all those fingerprints - it is wonderful how you involved all of the students and made the artwork truly their own. Awesome!

sally rose said...

Happy Anniversary, Susan, it has been wonderful flying with you this past year. I love your mosaic project for the kids. I can just imagine their joy, seeing their own fingerprints incorporated into the art! Great idea!

Lori said...

Susan, you are such an inspiration! I love the mosaic. Some day when I have a home again and not an apartment I will commission you to create something beautiful for me. :) Thank you for being a part of the journey with me - your wisdom is greatly appreciated. xoxo

katysewell12 said...

This looks really nice! It is something you could find at a store I know that sells gifts and things .