Hello Dear Friends,
I’m going to be offering two Story Circles on zoom. They are once a month (Sept. through June), 2.5 hour zoom gatherings on Wednesday evenings. I’ll step into zooming slowly, while also continuing to keep on with writing my book. My main mission in life is to assist others in the exploration of life’s Depth Dimensions and to self-expression in the service of self-sovereignty, healing, and intentional creation (of a poem, of a organisation, of an idea that changes the world).
Now that I’ll be using zoom, I welcome any of my friends outside of the Lethbridge area to join me. I still will be limiting each group to 8 members, the better to make meaningful connections in. Registration isn’t open yet, but if you think you might be interested in joining, please send me your email address so that I include you in my email announcing when you can sign up. Email me at catcharissage(at)gmail(dot)com. You can also respond to this post on FB to let me know. That letter will go out in a week or two.
The first, “A Poet’s Words”, is close to full already. It’s the continuation of a group that’s been going on for 3 or 4 years. There might be a space or two that opens up, though, so again, if you’re interested, let me know. “A Poet’s Words” is a chance to help the rest of us learn to love the poetry that you love. At each meeting, one of us in the group presents a sampling of poetry, usually by one author but sometimes the poems are chosen according to a particular theme such as “poems of authenticity”, or “poems of encouragement written by women”. Whoever is the presenter gets to choose the theme. We have time for about 10 – 15 poems. The presenter also prepares 3-4 writing or simple art prompts, the goal of which is to help the rest of us move more deeply into the poetry presented, laying our own lives alongside the message of the poet. So the evening goes back and forth between reading poetry and responding to the prompts, sharing our writing or simple art responses, and discussing the poetry presented. This group has proved to be a positive, joyful, and supportive exploration into new (to us) poetry plus deep insights both into ourselves and into our fellow (soror?) members of the group. This group meets on the second Wednesdays of the month, starting Sept. 9 from 7 – 9:30 p.m. Cost: $150/10 sessions. If that is prohibitive for you I am open to barter or other ideas.
The other group, “Bad Poetry and Mediocre Art: Why you should try some!” is a low-pressure, fun and explorative circle for poetry writing and simple art making. I call it “Bad Poetry and Mediocre Art” because unless you are a very experienced poet or artist (and perhaps they, too) those of us who want to try self-expression in these mediums often find that there’s a gap between our aspirations and our results, between our good taste and what turns up on the page. (see Ira Glass on the Creative Process: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PbC4gqZGPSY) Many of us become discouraged and quit. I want to create an environment where we are given full permission to produce the worst writing and art in the universe, but to encourage our efforts with the same humor and compassion as we would encourage our young children in their efforts. We have to try and try again to develop the skills to produce work that matches our aspirations, and we are helped tremendously by a space where we’re comfortable and encouraged to pick up the pen or the colors again and again. And what do you know? You’ll most probably end up producing quite pleasing and quite meaningful work, worth saving and building upon. This is open to beginners as well as more experienced artists who might want to try a new direction. I will facilitate each meeting, introducing prompts and instructions/suggestions for writing or using the art mediums of watercolor, collage, and blind-contour drawing. You will have the choice each meeting to respond to the prompts as you want, with pen and words, or colors and images. You will be invited to share whatever you produce with the rest of the group in a supportive environment. Limited to 8 participants. The last Wednesdays of the month starting Sept. 30, 7- 9:30 p.m. Cost: $200/10 sessions. If that is prohibitive for you I am open to barter or other ideas.
Speaking of new directions, the image I’ve included is in a new direction for me: abstracts! I’m not fully pleased with my work (so far), but it is a lot of fun to give myself permission to play and to experiment. This one I will at least keep!
With much love and many blessings to each of you,
Intentional Creativity and SoulWork
Small group and individual sessions using simple art processes and writing prompts to
OPEN TO MYSTERY, EXPLORE LIFE’S DEPTH DIMENSIONS, and DEEPEN OUR FREEDOM.
NO PREVIOUS ART EXPERIENCE NEEDED
Most gatherings are held in my home office/study, where group size is capped at 7. Lots of personal feedback; lots of opportunity to contribute to discussion. Individual sessions can be arranged using video conferencing with zoom.
For questions or registration, contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
INDIVIDUAL INTENTIONAL CREATIVITY SESSIONS
I have openings for one on one sessions for discernment, working with a particular question or issue, accessing life’s Depth Dimensions, and/or exploring creative spiritual practice. I am an educator also trained and experienced in counselling, spirituality and theology, and creativity coaching. Our sessions are between 1.5 and 2 hours and usually include both image and word.
$100, $250 for 3 sessions.
For more details, click here.
Winter/Spring 2017 Offerings
NEW Monthly Offering:
Second Friday afternoons of the month, 1:30 – 4:00
RED THREAD and TEA Story Circle
Join me and others in meaningful conversation about life’s mysteries and callings. Come when you can, but please RSVP. I anticipate that each month will be a different gathering of people; we’ll begin with a simple Red Thread ritual, then each have an opportunity to respond to a prompt or two that I will offer for pondering, such as “What life experience has been most surprising and taught you so much?” or “If you could effectively influence the world in one particular area, what would it be, and why?” By donation.
Friday, February 10, 1:30 – 4:00
Friday, March 10, 1:30 – 4:00
Friday, April 14, 1:30 – 4:00
Friday, May 12, 1:30 – 4:00
Saturday, March 4, 2017, 1:30 – 4:30
SACRED CIRCLES, SPIRALS, and MANDALAS
Learn about the symbolism of circles and spirals in the various religious traditions of the world, and explore a bit of sacred geometry. We’ll construct 4 different mandalas and you’ll leave feeling confident in using this tool for self-exploration and expression. Drawing and coloring mandalas is calming and centering, allowing our brains and bodies to rest and to allow new insights. Both structured and free form mandalas will be illustrated.
Value: $65, Pay what you can.
Saturday, May 6, 2017, 1:30 – 4:30
DREAMING YOUR LIFE AWAKE
None of us want to “dream our lives away”, but each of us can dream ourselves awake to our deepest potentials, desires, and callings. Come explore the world of dreams: the various meanings and symbols of night dreams, the processes of active dreaming and active imagination, and learning to use intentional journeying to explore what we don’t yet know that we know and find answers to the perennial question “What am I to do and be, with these gifts in this life, now?” Create your own dream map on watercolor paper.
Value: $65, Pay what you can.
Last Saturdays of each month, 1:30 – 4:30
OPEN STUDIO: ART PLAY & CONVERSATION (By donation)
Sat., Jan. 28: Brewing, Glueing, and Doing Collage
Sat., Feb. 25: Building a Smashbook
Sat., Mar. 25: Creating Landing Pages
Sat., Apr. 29: What is Mixed Media, Anyway?
Sat., May 27: to be announced
For more information or to register, contact me at email@example.com
I’m a contemplative educator, counsellor, and artist, and I help women and men navigate the Depth Dimensions of their lives through image, word, silence, and dream. I believe that the most important work each of us can do is to live out our gifted self fully, creatively, and freely, in an overculture which too often wounds our bodies and souls and colonizes our minds with distractions, commercialization, and other people’s agendas, in order to make a home for all of us.
I live in the liminal places, between the worlds where spiritual reality meets ordinary life, where word (poetry, prose) meets image (paintings, journals), where wild adventure meets chronic pain, and where prairie meets mountains in western Canada.
I work out of my home studio, and on the internet through individual video calls. I’m a student of the wisdom traditions of the world, with a Masters in Education, 4 years’ graduate study and a B.A. in Theology, plus more than 30 years’ experience in service and education, including as counsellor and Executive Director of a sexual assault center. I am trained in post-trauma counselling and am a certified Color of Woman teacher and an Intentional Creativity Coach. I have taught in university, in high school, in professional development, and privately. I continue to study with Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes (author Women Who Run with the Wolves: Myths and Stories of the Wild Woman Archetype) in her summer training intensives.
Monthly Year-Long Story Circles, Wednesdays 7 – 9:30 p.m.
Nighttime Wanderings, Wondering about Dreams 3rd Wednesdays of the month, starting Sept. 21
Sheltering Soul Story Circle: Exploring Women Who Run with the Wolves, second Wednesdays of the month starting Oct. 12
OPEN STUDIO: last Saturday afternoons of each month starting in September, 1:30 – 4:30 p.m.
Sept. 24 Brewing, Chewing, Glueing, and Doing: Vision Collage
Oct. 29 File Folder Collection pockets
Nov. 26 Picture journals made from magazines
Contact me to RSVP and for more information; by donation.
Saturday, October 1, 1:30 – 4:30:
HARVESTING OUR LIVES, 2016 EDITION
Through writing prompts, guided journeying, simple painting, and discussion, we will claim the abundance of this stage of our lives, acknowledging the gifts and the learnings, the surprises and the depths. We will also preserve this harvest for the future in paper, image, and poetry. All supplies provided.
$60 or pay what you can, space permitting.
Saturday, October 22, 1:30 – 4:30:
WHO LIVES IN HERE? HOLDING SPACE FOR OURSELVES
Are we at home in ourselves? Do all of the different voices within you have a say in how you live out your precious life? Can you listen to the voices who aren’t saying what you want to hear? Through word, image, and collage we will create Soul Cards of our voices and paint an internal home in which these voices can be held and welcomed within. All supplies provided.
$60 or pay what you can, space permitting.
FULL PAINTING DAY Saturday, Nov. 19, 11 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
WOMAN IN WHITE/RAINBOW WOMAN
Join me for a full day of painting your Muse on canvas, one of the names of our own Inner Guidance System, who will express and reflect back to you your own journey along the rainbow trail of life. As we move into the quiet darkness of a snow filled winter, let us remember that white contains within it all of the colors that we know, and many we don’t even perceive. What surprise colors are within each of us, waiting for us to search and open to their wonders? All supplies and substantial snack included. $100 or pay what you can, space permitting.
Saturday, December 10, 1:30 – 4:30
A GIFT UNLIKE ANY OTHER
You will have the opportunity to create three different kinds of personalized TRIBUTE GIFTS, hand-made gifts of paper, cardboard, word, and image created specifically with a loved one in mind, to honor and encourage them: an Intention Box, Appreciation Booklets, and/or Soul Cards. All supplies provided.
$60 or pay what you can, space permitting.
Cat Charissage is an educator, artist, and counsellor doing Soulwork through word, image, journeying, and silence. Find out more at http://www.catcharissage.com, or contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org. With more than 30 years of experience, I have degrees in Theology, Adult Education, training in trauma counselling and certification as an Intentional Creativity Teacher and Coach. For the past six summers I have studied intensively with Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes, bestselling author of Women Who Run with the Wolves. I look forward to exploring Mystery with you.