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  • Writer's picturesarahsanderson

Creativity Lab: Tuscany and Italy Paintings!

When I met fellow artist Julie Stonebraker (Nelson) 10 years ago I knew she had something I desperately needed; she had 20 years of training with long list of modern masters. I had left college with only training in art history and I was ready to find mentorship in the studio. Julie knew the art scene already and I was able to cut to the front of the line, so to speak, as she willingly taught me what she had learned and helped me find other masters to learn from. She brought me with her to open studio figure painting sessions downtown and introduced me to artist masters who we would regularly paint with. I owe a lot to Julie! I also noticed that Julie was an incredibly gifted teacher, and in some ways gained more satisfaction from helping others get inspired and learn, than from pushing her own agenda.

All of this is to say, that I somehow got in my head early on that Julie and I would set up workshops together. She would primarily teach and I would figure it all out and help her teach. And if Julie's superpower is teaching, my superpower is, when I decide to do something I make it happen!

So we embarked on what we call Creativity Lab, whose purpose it is to teach basic art principles to creatively-minded people who little or no experience. We hope our retreat will leave people feeling inspired and encouraged that they can add an art practice to their lives, which gives so much room for continued growth and fulfillment in years to come. Even better for us to have a part in inspiring someone who might become a future artist!

We began Creativity Lab last year in Carmel with a 3 day retreat. This was so successful that we embarked on planning Creativity Lab: Tuscany the next year. This happened just a couple weeks ago in May 2024 and we considered it a big success! We stayed in a 1,000 year old Monastery, held our painting lessons in the old chapel, traveled to hill towns daily to explore, paint, and even took a cooking class in a nearby Tuscan villa.

We tried to provide a good mix of art instruction, practice, amazing food, and opportunities for sightseeing. We will plan our next Creativity Lab retreats in either a week long format like the one we just had in Italy, as well as a three day format in a location more local, like the Bay Area and Seattle. If you are interested in being placed on an inquiry list for Creativity Lab please send me a message!


Italy Collection: Painting Release

My small collection of paintings from my trip(s) to Italy have just been released on Sunday, 6/2 at 2pm PST! Click on the button below to see the collection on my website.

Thank you for reading my newsletter and for your support! -Sarah

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