Friday Open Studio

This was our first time trying out an “open studio” day. The way I described it to those wishing to participate is that Fridays will be our day to choose what we work on, but it has to be more or less independent. Although I’d like to eventually have individual sessions where that person works on learning a specific skill, the more beneficial structure to our village is to keep as many people as occupied and happy as possible. We also choose to work outside workstation times because most people have a comfortable schedule and the “down-time” between workstations and dinner and on weekends is the hardest. Take a look at what we made at our first Open Studio! Some chose to paint, some chose to draw, and a few chose to work on sewing and beading since those are skills they’re able to build upon and learn independently.

Speaking of working independently, there are a few more projects- one in “idea stage” and one “ongoing project” I’m excited to share.

One is inspired by the volunteer retreat all Innisfree volunteers went on last week, where we were given a piece of paper and a pencil with which to draw a “self portrait.” Not unlike the studio art classes I’ve experienced with this exact subject matter, these self portraits were up for interpretation which produced some very interesting results!


Since there were close to 40 volunteers participating, this is only a sample of the results but I’d say it was successful and I’d love to do a similar project with the art class! I wonder what they’d do, since I generally try to steer clear of the subject of “ourselves” and try to always look outwardly but seeing how creative these can get it would be interesting to see how some people see themselves. The flip side to this was that the self portraits weren’t signed, so those attending guessed on sticky notes whose was whose. It seemed to be about split- half of the portraits were guessed correctly and half were not. I think the art class would do this best in paint-hopefully we’ll give it a try.

Another project is an ongoing one that I’ve talked about on here before, but we’ve made some progress. A few weeks ago we hosted “Family Day”, an annual event where the families and friends of folks who live here gather to share a meal and shop our crafts and watch some Innisfree-original entertainment. We were able to get out two weavery bags lined with the art class designed fabric before the event, and one of them sold! Since then it’s given me some encouragement to keep printing, and here are the results