So, this happened!
Probably about 5 years ago I was involved in an online creative community that sprung from the Etsy forums. It was called Create-A-Day and the challenge was to post the things you create on a daily basis to the group blog. The community started huge, but over time there was a small group of us that continued on and really connected. A testimony to the friendship that we created is that 2 group blogs and 5 years later there are 6 of us that still keep in contact. We have such a variety of talents; Sheila (who I believe founded the original Create-A-Day group) and is now a wine connoisseur, Joon who has about a bajillion etsy shops and makes lovely handmade treasures and artwork, Bri who is an amazing and stylized designer, artist, traveler and student of the world, Stacy who is a crazy productive jewelry artist, and Tiffany who is an accomplished, published and professional photographer, mixed media artist and educator.
We are spread all around North America – from Banff, Canada, to Hawaii, and all over in between. Even though we often dream of a vacation where we all get together to get our creativity on, a few of us have had the opportunity to connect in the real world. I think Bri visited Sheila in Oklahoma and this last week, finally, finally, finally I got my chance to meet one of these lovely ladies. Tiffany has been traveling with the Create Mixed Media Retreat and she was here to teach in the Chicagoland area. Since first meeting Tiffany online and finding out that she is also passionate about polaroid and instant photography I dreamed of being able to glean some of her wisdom and talent in person. I think back to all those years ago and never would have imagined that dream would actually come true! When I found out she was going to be teaching nearby I immediately knew I wanted to take a class in Emulsion Transfer, something I’ve been wanting to do for the last 15 years. I’d read about it online, but never had the right equipment, or materials and in the meantime, Polaroid went belly up. Little did I know that emulsion transfer still exists!
I wanted to take her class Wednesday evening, but naturally it was my crazy stressful week at work. On top of that, I had not prepared for the class in time and since I don’t have a car, it wasn’t something I could jet around over my lunch break and pick up the class supplies. I realized there was another image transfer class Sunday morning so I decided to sign up for that one instead. The night before the class, while reading the class description again, I suddenly realized it wasn’t emulsion transfer and kind of freaked out. As it turned out, everything worked out for the best because the image transfer with instant film was a technique I had never even heard of, AND, I was still able to learn the emulsion transfer technique as well.
I met up with Tiffany a little bit before the class Sunday morning for a quick breakfast in the hotel lobby. I was nervous and anxious, but really, once we met, it wasn’t weird at all. She was exactly like how I’ve known her online all these years, kind, talented, fun, beautiful and super friendly. I didn’t even have to resort to wearing one of these masks, like Sheila suggested ;) Still, I was a little star studded, but Tiffany has such a calm, laid back personality, she put me at ease. She shot the picture of us together and gifted me a pinhole camera kit. It was great to meet her finally, and I hope that someday the entire group really does get together for our own little creative retreat.
As for the class, and the things Tiffany taught and the pieces I created, I will share some of that tomorrow. I’ll just leave this post saying that I am excited about these new techniques that I learned, so check back again tomorrow for more.