art workshop

Week 2- Sketch a Day Challenge

Sketch a day, Galia Alena, mixed media
Week 2 and I'm managing a drawing/sketch a day, although I am not keeping up with Gillian and all her wonderful exercises. As you can see we are mixing it up with a variety of mediums, subjects and methods, although it is the face that draws me in again and again. I'm loving that these are just sketches, exercises and explorations- in letting go, in mark making, in form and tone, in looking, including and leaving out and on and on. No pressure to make anything, just an opportunity to grow, to watch and see. Already I can feel the growth from the daily practice.

Sketch a day, Galia Alena, Drawn to Expression


One of the sketches found its way onto a page in my journal tarot, my favourite book to work in lately. How I  just love to while away the hours working and exploring in here:

Tarot Journal, Galia Alena, mixed media

And I thought I'd share a little out take from shooting for Camera Craft- Into the Light, the blossoms are just so pretty...
"Let us be grateful to people who make us happy, they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom." - Marcel Proust
Cherry Blossom, Galia Alena, Camera Craft, e-course, online photography workshop

When petals fall...

sketch a day- Drawn to Expression

I have this tendency to focus on just one project at any one time, even though there are always a dozen or so on the go. It will either be the project that has the most energy around it, that's piquing my curiosity and has the muses showing up for it or it will be the one that is most current (i.e. time frame driven). I always circle back to the others...eventually, but this usually means life is somewhat "unbalanced". This is where practice steps in. Practice for the sake of practice. Practice for the virtues of just showing up, no agenda or inspiration needed, just a sprinkling of discipline.

I'm not very good at discipline, and so I allow myself wider parameters around this knowing that anything else will get the rebel in me offside. And besides who wants to set themselves up for failure. So I just start and see where it goes. I've done these before. Here when I was doing a face a day and although I didn't get far I saw some definite changes in the work. Here when I tried writing a paragraph a day (quite frankly I bored myself with this one). And here when I was sick with fevers for a week or two so I committed myself to just one quick painting (around an hour) a day to balance all the foreign films I was watching which became my Fever Ladies- Trail Blazers. Ooohhh, and there was the Water Colour a Day one I started last year until Spring came and paralysed me with her beauty.

So while I am knee deep in Camera Craft, working on future lessons and diving in with the students in the classroom (loving all the work by the way, so inspiring) and dreaming up another little project (teaser here) I thought I would set myself a challenge to do so that I could keep my hands moving whilst my attention was else where. I had planned something a bit different but then Gillian's class Drawn to Expression popped up and offered the perfect container for a challenge (she is a wonderful and generous teacher, and she will be joining us in Camera Craft as soon as her own class finishes). So drawing everyday for the next moon cycle is the plan (although you can see I am already 5 days in). Let's see how far I get and even more importantly, lets see how the work develops. I will post weekly in an attempt to keep myself honest ;)



Lotus - Galia Alena Photography
When petals fall
Seeds scatter, loosened from their fragile dream
birthed from dying beauty & spilled against the light.
Tiny tiny seed, what mysteries do you clasp,
When petals fall...

My moon sister Maya is weaving together some magic over at Empress Tides, part of a project raising money for some orphanages over in Nepal and I am doing monthly readings from my paintings so head on over if you are feeling the pull of the moon.

A Wild and Glorious Dance


Camera Craft- The Art of Seeing- e-course, online photography workshop
“And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it.”
― Roald Dahl
The Alchemical Magic of Photography- I've been thinking about this of late as I piece together the final pieces for Camera Craft. There is such an element of magic and mystery with analogue photography and moving in the digital world of photography takes some seeking to find but it is there in many many magical ways.

So much heart and soul has gone into putting this together by both myself and all the wonderful contributors. It is a glorious dance between rooting down with the bones of photography and soaring to creative heights with soulful inspiration- a wild and glorious dance.
If you're feeling the pull to be part of this dance of play, inspiration, rich content and joyous images then take your place in our creative circle- there is magic to be found.

I am loving (and surprised by) how many pieces of mixed media are being offered up, the intersection of the digital and the tangible, adding that tactile element to the digital, allowing for the raw and the real while still holding all the magic (who wants to live in a world without magic right?) and turning visions into touchstones. Yesterday I was adding Misty's lessons to the classroom and, as always, she has inspired me yet again. There are always ways to spiral in deeper with your craft, to find new inspiration and see things fresh, like a child, to see the magic and to hold it tenderly for even just a moment, a split second of grace ...

"A great photograph is a full expression of what one feels about what is being photographed in the deepest sense and is, thereby, a true expression of what one feels about life in its entirety." Ansel Adams

And a sneak peek from Camera Craft-Into the Light:
Camera Craft- Into the Light- e-course, online photography workshop
To find out more visit here:


Or to sign up:

https://www.e-junkie.com/ecom/gb.php?c=cart&i=1439372&cl=226019&ejc=2

Camera Craft Guest Contributors



With less than a week until we begin I wanted to introduce all the amazing creatrix and photographers contributing to Camera Craft. Take a moment to sit back and drink in all the beauty they create. EnJoy...

Misty Mawn Camera Craft Contributors- online photography workshop

 MISTY MAWN

If you haven't already fallen in love with her and her work as I have, then start with this video and then head over to her website: http://www.mistymawnart.com/
Studying photography many years ago, she has dedicated her life to growing as an artist, leading her to play in many mediums, like me that's means they all call to her to express her soul through them. Photography is one that allows her to hold the beauty of her family, her travels and her days, honouring both her love and life through her lens and heart's eye.
Everything she touches is steeped in soulful beauty, I can't wait to take her lesson myself where she will be sharing on portraiture.

 
Danielle Cohen Camera Craft Contributors- online photography workshop
 DANIELLE COHEN


Danielle Cohen has a sweet and gentle way about her yet her images hold depth and power. In her own words,"Mostly, I help people fall in love with themselves and their lives." Her work is all about helping people be seen and fall in love with themselves.
To learn more about her and see some more of her work visit here http://www.danielle-cohen.com/

Danielle will be sharing some of her lighting  techniques.



Ashley Fincham Camera Craft Contributors- online photography workshop
 ASHLEY FINCHAM

"I want to make images that resonate deep within...I know this life is like a lightening bolt; beautiful, electric and dancing. However it is fast and fleeting. I believe wholeheartedly it is worth every bit of documenting." Ashley takes beautiful images, but beyond that she is a creative through and through. When I look at her images I see soulful interpretation, I see the world as if through her eyes, I see her vision. She also is the curator of a wonderful series of creative INterviews over at her on line home A Global Walk, where you can read interviews on many inspiring creatives, exploring idea’s about sacred living, what helps with mending and what rhythm looks like, including other contributors like Danielle Cohen , Erin Faith Allen and myself.

ERIN FAITH ALLEN


Erin Faith Allen Camera Craft Contributors- online photography workshop
Erin and I first met many years ago when we were both active in Female Photographers of Etsy (fPOE) . I was particularly drawn to the intersection of her photography and her mixed media work. Over the years it has been my great pleasure to watch her work blossom and her creative practice become richer and deeper. I love her work and her soul that shines through it. If you are not familiar with it make your self a cup of tea and settle down with this video here http://www.erinfaithallen.com/about-erin/ and then explore some of her wonderful short films on inspiring creatrix, Soul Shakers, such as Orly Avineri and Jennette Nielsen. Its all good stuff, juicy stuff, inspiring stuff.




Stacy de la Rosa Camera Craft Contributors- online photography workshop STACY DE LA ROSA

Stacy's work is all about rising women up in their power and how they see themselves, working with story and archetypes. In her own words "I'm a photographer, advocate and instigator for creative women. I am a woman awakening her Queen within. I take photos, write words, and offer courses designed to reflect back to women their unique brand of beauty, magic, and joy. My greatest passion is to bear witness to women who rise into their power and create the life of their dreams."

She shoots like a girl... 
Ivy Newport Camera Craft Contributors- online photography workshop 
IVY NEWPORT

Ivy is a mixed media artist who is doing amazing work on the intersection of photography and painting in pixels. And she is such a generous soul that she has put together two gorgeous lessons for you, one on post production (making your images beautiful after shooting them) and another on encaustics and photography ( I love love love encaustics and it adds such a wonderful and tactile effect to photos). You can find her and all her wonderful work over here: http://ivynewport.com/

Eileen West Camera Craft Contributors- online photography workshop EILEEN WEST
Eileen is a photographer and a life coach, she use photography to explore her everyday world and she helps others to develop their own intuitive photography to express their inner creativity. You can find out more about her and her photo a day challenge here: http://www.westofwhimsy.com/

Believer in the universe…
 
Jeannette Le Blanc Camera Craft Contributors- online photography workshop
JEANNETTE LE BLANC

Jeanette LeBlanc is a writer, photographer and inspirationalist. She believes in chocolate and the ocean. She also believes in the artist in EVERYONE and the beauty in EVERYONE. She will be sharing a piece on the intersection of photography and words and will be doing so with a surprise guest. To find out more about Jeannette visit her here: www.peacelovefree.com & www.jeanetteleblanc.com/blog/ 


PEACE LOVE & CHOCOLATE


Liz Morgan Lamoreux Camera Craft Contributors- online photography workshop
 LIZ MORGAN LAMOREUX
"Self-portraits are one way I invite myself to feel deeply seen. How I give myself the gift of knowing that I’m not alone. How I remind myself that I’m not disappearing into the roles I play.
Through my lens I capture joy, grief, silliness, quiet, fear, exhaustion, stillness. I capture all the pieces that make up me. This is how I practice self-care and how I reach toward an understanding of who I am..." Liz, excerpt from Camera Craft
 Liz shows up fiercely vulnerable and true to herself and strives to give other women permission to do the same.
Have a listen to her talk about her own work. Be warned though, she may just make you tear up like she did me.
You can find her here



To find out more about Camera Craft visit here or  to try a sample lesson visit here. And, of course, to sign up, you can do that below :

https://www.e-junkie.com/ecom/gb.php?c=cart&i=1439374&cl=226019&ejc=2

There is healing in the light (and the winner is...)

Galia Alena Photography
Creativity is the type of learning process where the teacher and the pupil are located in the same individual. Koestler
I have this quote on my teaching page. It makes perfect sense to me. It is both how it should be and how I want it to be.  There is much to be gained from staying open to learn as you  teach, both from the process and from the students. Yet I wondered how that would play out with photography “101”, what would I learn in a field I am already  an “expert”.

Well class hasn’t even begun and I’ve already  learnt so much about my own photography (and myself), about how deeply to my core it is rooted, how it is a form of both meditation and prayer, how I honour precious gifts with it and how much further I have to go with it. Both the digging deep, through my own archives and my reflections in putting the lessons together as well as the beautiful cross-pollination  that comes from collaboration (not to mention the beautiful and heart felt comments on my last post), have cracked a wound open that I have with this medium (its complicated ;) ) to let the light stream both in and out. 


There is healing in the light.

I’m finding for myself all those things I’ve promised to the participants: connection, inspiration, light and shadow dances, seeing, magic, play, curiosity, delving deeper and then more inspiration. It has renewed my own dialogue with this craft, and the dance between technique and pure expression. There’s been some unschooling and some wide openings. It’s the edge where light and shadow meet, that magical place. And, as for so many women, it is the portal, the invitation into deeper creative expression and self discovery. The beginning of a new journey...

Galia Alena Photography

And so putting this together has been both a labour of love and a gift- now, go forth my little baby, and inspire…

And, the name pulled out of my singing bowl is Brandi, so pleased you will be joining us. Xx For anyone else feeling the call, join us here.

Galia Alena Photography

Savouring Life Intensely- A Giveaway Xx

 “When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.”
- Ansel Adams
Camera Craft Photography e-course www.galiaalena.com/cameracraft

Photography is one of my first loves. I love the way it holds moments tenderly and how it can express what is precious, I love the way I am able to open a book of photos and suddenly I am holding my new born child again, I love the way I can be looking for something on my computer and am suddenly swept back to a magical day. I love the way it speaks that which has no words while leaving room for the mystery. I love the way it allows me to breathe in the moment, to drink it deeply, to savour it...

Camera Craft Photography e-course www.galiaalena.com/cameracraft


I've put together an e-course to honour that love of photography and share it with others. It's part technical, part inspiration, and fully soulful AND I have some amazing collaborators joining me sharing their love for the medium (pop over here to see who these wonderful women are). To celebrate I'm giving away a spot in Camera Craft.
Camera Craft Photography e-course www.galiaalena.com/cameracraft
To enter, all you have to do is tell me how photography has touched your heart, pop it in here in the comments and I'll write your name on a slip and toss it into my singing bowl from which I will draw a name in a week.
To increase the number of times I write your name you could do any or all of the following to spread the love, just be sure to pop back and let me know in the comments:
☆ share this competition or the class on your blog, twitter, pinterest, google, facebook page or other social network platform
☆ subscribe to my newsletter in the side bar here.
☆ like my facebook page (or invite some friends to)
☆ Tell me why this class is calling to you
☆ subscribe to this blog
I will pop back in a week to announce the winner, thank you and good luck. And if you want to join in this amazing journey click  HERE. We will be starting at the end of the month and I can hardly wait :)
“Taking pictures is savoring life intensely, every hundredth of a second.”
― Marc Riboud
Camera Craft Photography e-course www.galiaalena.com/cameracraft

Between the Pages


Galia Alena Art Journal page mixed media
 It's been awhile since I've shared some of my journal pages here so I thought I'd post some today.
Galia Alena Art Journal page mixed media 21 Secrets
This one above is from the class I taught for 21 Secrets Spring, a page rich with meaning for me (there's a little video on this over here). 21 Secrets is still going on- I'm loving seeing all the work that's coming out of that.

Galia Alena Art Journal page mixed media- Spectrum
And here is the page I guided for Spectrum, a very different lesson from what I put together for 21 Secrets- the diversity you can have in your own journaling process is amazing- sometimes there is more pondering and other times just following the flow. Below are  just some of pages I've done in response to other lessons and topics coming up in Spectrum. I know my Spectrum journal is going to be bursting at the seams with juicy goodness by the time we're finished. Spectrum continues until December so it's not to late to join in with this deliciousness (link in the sidebar).

Galia Alena Art Journal page mixed media- Spectrum

Galia Alena Art Journal page mixed media- Spectrum

Galia Alena Art Journal page mixed media- Spectrum

Galia Alena Art Journal page mixed media- Spectrum
 And a quick little sketch of my view in QT before I said good bye to it:

Galia Alena art journal page

Then Orly Alvenri inspired me to do a few pages for her new project No More Silence #yesallwomen. In her own words "So we have written letters, we went to the street, we protested, we discussed, we commented, we shared, we cried, then internalized, we yelled and quieted down again, we denied and then remembered, we meditated, and spread love, cause we think it all starts with one, ourselves, we defined fear, origins, causes, and solutions. All of it needs to be done. But WE, people who express ourselves through the VISUAL LANGUAGE, our fury, our beauty, and our silences, should use this platform big time, to make a change in ways that are fresh and bold and different. We should never feel like oh well what can my little journal pages do other than express my little intimate world. Well lots!! Think about THE 1000 JOURNALS PROJECT or NOTRE COMBAT. We are going to do this together my friends, one journal page at a time and all at once, collectively." Orly

Galia Alena Art Journal page mixed mediaGalia Alena Art Journal page mixed media
How do you let the rawness out on your pages?

Are you your own Hero?

There's been so much going on over here in the last few months and I'm hoping to pop back over the next week to share some of it. In the meantime I've put together a little sneak peek into my class for 21 Secrets for you:



21 Secrets will be starting very soon and I can't wait- 21 art journaling workshops from 21 different artists, some of whom I both love and admire, like my beautiful inipi sister Katie Kendricks who I shared some time with at Easlen and whose work I can't get enough of, she is such a luminous soul, and Jane Cunningham who also prepared her workshop from the land of the Long White Cloud, Erin Faith Allen who I connected with through photography many moons ago and whose mixed media pieces intrigue me deeply. There are way too many other inspiring arts that I can't go through them all but if you would like to learn more pop over here to see.

In the meantime I'm LOVING seeing all the work going on over at Spectrum and loving the discussion that are coming out of it, so much richness and beauty. Its not to late to join us- I'll be getting my journal out and digging deep with all the artists there.

Back soon with a peek into what's been going on over here of late and some new plans. Xx

Are you Free-falling or Flying- A give away

A story is the difference between free-falling and flying.
I've heard this saying before but was remind of it (or should I say shaken by it) recently during a sweat lodge when our water pourer was telling us stories. A reminder of both perspective and how we frame things for ourselves- are the stories we tell ourselves about our own lives framed in a way to empower us or do they enforce the victim myth? In Claiming Our Mythos (the class I will guide for 21 Secrets 2014) we will be taking an event or situation in our own lives and mythologising the story in such a way to give us heroine status and to find the hidden gift in a story that might otherwise have weighed us down. We will be working new life into an old story. Pop over to 21 Secrets 2014 to read more about this class and all the other wonderful offerings.

"Thank you for the experience, and get me through the experience, help me appreciate the experience but most of all don't let me judge the experience. Don't let me leave my spirit in the experience. Give me the guidance, give me the visionary insight so that I can go through this experience and never leave my spirit behind" Carolyn Myss
We will be empowering our spirits within our stories, not leaving our spirits in our stories!!

And to celebrate the New Year I am giving away TWO places in 21 Secrets 2014 :

One I am giving away to a random draw: To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment here and I'll write your name on a slip and toss it into my singing bowl from which I will draw a name in a week.

To increase the number of times I write your name you could do any or all of the following, just be sure to pop back and let me know in the comments:
  • share this competition or the class on your blog, twitter, pinterest, google or facebook page
  • subscribe to my newsletter in the side bar here.
  • like my facebook page (or invite some friends to)
  • subscribe to this blog  
The second I'm giving away based on your comments, I will be picking one that I am drawn to from your comments, that I intuit should be in this class. I love reading your comments.
  • Tell me why 21 Secrets is calling to you
  • Tell me a story you would like to reframe or one you have reframed
  • Tell me do you fly or free-fall
I will pop back in a week to announce the winner, thank you and good luck.
 “I hope you will go out and let stories happen to you, and that you will work them, water them with your blood and tears and your laughter till they bloom, till you yourself burst into bloom.”
― Clarissa Pinkola Estés

Class work- Calling in the Elements



Things have been so busy here that it has taken me until now to put together a little promo video for Calling in the Elements so that you can see if this is for you, the flip side is  I get to share some of the class work that's happening so far. More soon on all the crazy busyness going on here.
Class work from some of the participants:
Even though the class has only been open for a short time I am already being inspired by the work of the participants. It is absolutely the best part about putting together a class like this- watching how others are inspired and where they take things, feeds straight back into the well. Thank you. I think I'm ready to work through the elements again myself.

Tracie Hanson
Air
The above air pages are from Tracie Hanson. To see more of her page and read a bit about what came up for her pop over to her blog http://mybloominglife.blogspot.co.nz/2013/10/the-quickening.html

Kathy Duncan


Kathy has fired through the lessons and done the full cycle of the elements- just love it.

Calling in the Elements- a mixed media journaling e-course

Calling in the Elements- a mixed media journaling e-course by Galia Alena
 Calling in the element of air, of dreaming and ideas, of where creation gifts first sprout their tender seeds, of the realms where the muses reside, swirling and blowing, flying freely. I call on the  elements of air to visit me in my dreams and deliver me gifts of inspiration and divine sparks that remind me I am one with all.
I look out the window here and I see the wind moving through the leaves, the earth reaching up to the sky and meeting in the middle with a layer of snow on top of the mountains, the light  which stretches out across the lake shimmering and sparking, the delight of spring pushing its way up through the earth to smile at the sunshine and soft transparent clouds drifting between the valleys. I feel the sacredness and the depth of such simple pleasures and magnanimous beauty. When Jane from The Trodden Path first approached me to teach a class on her ning page, after the initial woohoo and excitement and honour, I knew straight away that I wanted to work with the elements in some sacred journaling. It took awhile before I was able to sit with the elements and see what they had to teach me but finally the class in live on her site and I would be thrilled if you felt called to join us.

In this class we will be Calling in the Elements to deepen our connection with both our artistic practice, the elements and ourselves. Through some intentional sacred journaling we will be accessing a deeper level of consciousness and bringing some of our personal symbolism to the fore.
Using collage, painting, doodling, free associative writing you will learn one method to use your art journal practice as both sacred play and personal exploration.

To join this class please head over to here: Calling in the Elements

Calling in the Elements- a mixed media journaling e-course by Galia Alena Earth

The beautiful centrality of pure opposites

Art journal, mixed media, sacred space, Galia Alena
 May she find
in all this
day or night
the beautiful
centrality
of pure opposites
David Whyte
This is the journal page that I created while guiding my workshop "Journaling as Sacred Container" in Virginia for SoulFire Retreats. A lot of my trip, and especially my time in Virginia, was centered around the relationship between masculine and feminine energy. Every card I pulled, all the signs and messages I was given and even this page, all seemed centered around this dynamic. When I was painting this page it presented with a very strong female seed as the basis or strength from which the masculine energy could grow and flow out of, and that masculine energy then seemed to come back down to embrace and protect that female energy out of which it originated, a very nurturing and symbiotic relationship. The next day I noticed my page in reverse and here I saw that as a result of this relationship, the feminine energy was able to rise up and flourish, emerging grounded in her own power yet supported fully by the male energy. It seems no coincidence that the phoenix also asked to be placed within this feminine/masculine energy dynamic.
Art journal, mixed media, sacred space, Galia Alena
What messages do you find in your journal pages?
What is called in her rises from the ground
and is found in her body,
what she is given is secret even from her.
David Whyte