Let your art freak-flag fly!

Finally, finally finally... I can talk up Ricë's new book because Destination Creativity is available for pre-order!
Courtesy North Light Books
If you've never been to an art retreat -- and that was me, until the fall of 2007 -- this book is a wonderful way to dip into the intoxicating whirl of creativity you find at the best events. Ricë Freeman-Zachery is the wordsmith; Earl Zachery is the visuals guy.
They set out on a nationwide odyssey a couple of years ago, visiting most of the big art and craft retreats, including Artfest 2010. Destination: Creativity -- The Life-Altering Journey of the Art Retreat is the result, and I've contributed a small part to this work! You can't miss me -- when you order your copy (hint hint) you'll see your very own version of me and Ricë making crazy-face, next to my thoughts about the transformative aspect of art retreats.

I met Ricë and Earl waaaay way back in 2007 at my first retreat, Art & Soul Portland. Earl offered me a seat so I could rest my feet during Vendor Night, and when Ricë saw me she decided I look just like their niece. (Read more about it here, and be sure to read the comments.) Then it took three whole years to meet again, when they braved the chilly dampness of Fort Worden to cover Artfest 2010.
It took me a while to scrape together the money and the resolve to go to my first retreat, and I know (oh God, do I know) it's a commitment of money as well as time. But think about this: many attendees save all year to go learn new techniques and see old friends they can't hang with otherwise, because it's worth it.

Humans need designated spaces and times to cut loose, be different, change things up from the everyday. It's why we have Ash Wednesday as well as Fat Tuesday/Mardi Gras.
And it's a huge reason why I just signed up for Artfest 2012. You could meet me there with your copy of Destination: Creativity and we'll page through it together! Have you gone to a retreat this year, or are you planning on going to one soon? Tell me in the comments.