Daddy's Christmas Angel

Monday, August 11, 2014

Where Is Your Happy Place?

"Sunset Over Sugar Mountain, Banner Elk NC" ©Mary Montague Sikes
One of my favorite songs in Zumba class is "Happy." The vivacious lyrics and rhythm make me smile. The song reminds me of the wonderful week I just spent in my "happy" place with 14 other artists making art all week long.

I love going to Cheap Joe's in Boone NC where I paint and learn something new in a workshop every year. I especially enjoy the workshops that Mary Ann Beckwith teaches. This year was special. Many of the class participants are also workshop presenters, so the expansive classroom at Cheap Joe's was alive with creativity and energy.

One important thing I got from the workshop this year was Mary Ann's suggestion to take a piece of art you're working on around the house with you. Yesterday I took two paintings with me and placed them on a tabletop by the television where I added details while I watched my St. Louis Cardinals baseball game. It was amazing how different the paintings looked outside my studio where I work beneath three large skylights.

"Workshop at Cheap Joe's" ©Mary Montague Sikes
 From April through October, Cheap Joe's offers a different workshop every week. Some people take several classes throughout the summer. An artist can present a workshop no more than once every two years. (The exception is Joe Miller - Cheap Joe who does his extremely popular workshop once or twice each year.) Mary Ann Beckwith will return in the summer of 2016.

I realized as we unpacked the car in Boone that I had failed to bring any books with me. In the past, I have scheduled book signings to coincide with my workshops. One year I signed books at Waldenbooks which has long since closed. While I was at that signing, Leonard Cosmo who owned Highland Newstand invited me for an event at his store. I signed there for several years, but it is gone now as well. There are no Barnes and Noble stores in the vicinity, so scheduling book signings now is difficult.

While I still enjoy writing and will never give that up, my happy place is wherever I can make art. Where is yours?


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Sad all of your signing places are gone.
My happy place is whenever I'm playing my guitar.

Notes Along the Way with Mary Montague Sikes said...

Love that, Alex! Of course, it would be your guitar!

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I miss Waldenbooks. They never should've merged with Borders.

I'm happiest on a roller coaster - LOL!

Notes Along the Way with Mary Montague Sikes said...

Diane, why am I not surprised? I've never been on a roller coaster! Thanks for commenting.

Unknown said...

It was so much fun to be in this class and spend time with you and your husband.
Thanks for posting the picture on your blog. There is a Barnes and Nobles book store in Hickory NC