Tuesday, February 26, 2008

CFCF & Synergy - I'm Home

I'm Home, after a long trip of almost 17 hours on the road, but this is worth every minute. This post will be full of superlatives because I can't find the words to express what I've been and seen this past week.

It's started at CFCF (Cabin Fever Clay Festival at Laurel Maryland) with a funny and intriguing Nan Roche class, the title was "Faux Cinnabar: working with Japanese Kashigata and Polymer Clay", using 100 years molds, and after about 5 hours we went to bed all happy and anxious for our next day.

Second day started with Maureen Carlson class - "Tool Troll", sculpturing a troll using our hands and some cool silicon molds, we found out that a troll (since no one seen one recently) can have lot's of interesting characteristics, for example: i found out that mine had 2 left hands...! can you argue with that? How do you know trolls don't have 2 left hands? but i will not give up, i did some pinching and got his fingers back in place :) and Maureen? She's a magical as her beautiful art, the sweetest lady with perfect hands for sculpturing. My troll is not yet finished forgive him for his underwear appearance....

At noon we had the great Jana with her amazing kaleidoscopes, giving us the perfect class and those perfect handouts, preparing the class to the finest details! Since i am a millefiori fan i enjoyed every minute (but again, didn't have time to finish my piece!)

Evening Class was the one i needed after a long long day, something to wake myself :) - Christie Freisen! Making an Australian beautiful flower was a recommendation but since i had so much laugh with my classmates Kathy and Debra my flower doesn't really resemble the one i was asked to do...but! i did finish this piece! Kisses Christie!!

The last class was Tuesday morning - Julie Picarello - the cutest sweet person! her Mokume Gane is amazing, the class was well presented and although i chose a strange color set i was pleased and happy to learn from such a talented artist (and couldn't resist buying 2 of her pieces).

Tuesday night included also a Pajama Party, a silent auction and a zipper puller swap!
I had the great time and send lot's of kisses to my new friends - my dearest roommate Kathy Elrick, Debra Davis, Barbara Forbes-Lyons, Karen, Julie and Katie from Alaska, Emi Fukushima, Kim Korringa, and many more! We had a blast!

So...Moving forward to Synergy 2008 in Baltimore, i was offered a ride with Julie Picarelo and navigating was a challenge! We had some good laughs!
In case you need a reminder, Synergy is a national guild event, a "pasta machine free" class from the top artists from all over the world. Some of the people i heard were Kathleen Dusteen, Lindly Haunani, Judy Kuskin, Judy Dunn, Seth Savarick, Alev Gozonar, Dan Coremier with Tracy Holmes, Elise Winters, Jeff Dever, Robert Dancik, Carol Duval, Cynthia Tinnaple, Kim Cavender, Judy Belcher, Maggie Maggio and many more!
In one (or maybe few) words - Outstanding & overwhelming!

Beyond Craftsmanship, business and design issues other issues like inspiration, originality, infringement, production vs. ooak, standards were discussed in panel discussions, interesting points were raised and we tried figuring what are the future steps or future art will look like with the help of Cynthia Tinnaple great presentation - we got a fascinating review of what's next.

And how can i miss mentioning meeting some of my Etsy guild (PCAGOE) - Kira and Ilysa, Bettina, Elisabeth and more!
Rob and Wilma from Polymer Clay Express, Melanie West (which made us all laugh at the gala dinner with a scary camping story) - such an adventure!

As you see my "spongy" parts absorbed so much information, there is so much to think about and i am ready to move on.

I had the greatest time, beside the educational part i met new dear friends which will stay close to my heart,

see you soon!
(i'm coming back in 6 months! :) )


  1. ok Iris...I am insanely jealous now. No, not really. You look like you had a blast! Gotta love it, you actually got a picture of Jana with her glasses on! I can't wait to see all your CFCF creations. What are you coming back for? Sandy Camp maybe?

  2. Great pictures, and it was so nice to meet you and chat a bit over dinner!

  3. Hi Iris,
    I'm so happy you made the trip and that we finally got to meet. I've so admired your work and sense of worldwide community. I look forward to seeing you many more times. Glad you made it home safely. hugs, Judy

  4. wave to all of you....so glad we got to meet finally. I'm still in Synergy heaven and stil waiting for Martina's pics to illustrate my newest blogentry.
    I just finished watching Judy's DVD - that is great fun!


  5. Dear Iris,
    You are even more lovely and charming in person! I SO enjoyed meeting you and seeing your beautiful work. Your presence at Synergy helped make it very special for all of us. Thank you for coming to America to visit and I hope to see you again very soon!
    Wishing you all good things,

  6. Synergy looked like an awesome conference! All that polymer clay talent in one place. I'm sure I wouldn't be able to sleep for weeks after that!.. Hopefully they will have another one similar next year that I will be able to attend.