serious crush

Saturday I took the entire day for myself (!!!) and attended Danielle Krysa's "Girl Crush Art Workshop + Tea Party" at the bright white and wonderfully appointed studio of fine artist/author/illustrator Lisa Congdon. I have been SO excited for this since signing up a few months ago, but spent the morning freaking out about what to wear (I don't do casual well, and also don't like to look like I'm trying too hard. Ack!). If you know me well, you know I am easily starstruck, so to walk into the art studio of such an amazing artist as Lisa Congdon, after giving Danielle (a.k.a. The Jealous Curator, of whom I am a HUGE fan) a hug in the hallway on the way in, was really exciting for me. When I entered Lisa's studio my first impulse was to run home and start sketching. Her beautiful illustrations, hung in clusters on the walls and stacked along the edges of the room, made my brain light up. What an inspiring place to be.

One of these babies came home with me that afternoon.
Specifically, the baby.

Works by Lisa Congdon, please do not borrow or reproduce.
Also, for a REALLY great tour of Lisa's studio, see Victoria from sfgirlbybay's post on it HERE.
These "Girl Crush Tea Parties" are being held for the first time in cities all over the U.S. this year. The brainchild of Danielle, these get-togethers are a chance for people who want to spark or nurture their creativity to talk with Danielle (not only a curator, also a very creative artist in her own right) and selected artists at length about:

    +their backgrounds
  +their processes
+their stories
  +their struggles
  +their successes
   +their techniques
        +everything in between

Lisa's story is incredibly compelling (read a little about her HERE). She is an artist in an incredible place in her life, enjoying successes in all aspects of her work. I want to be perfectly honest here. Being around someone who is so happy and content to come to work every day, having practiced her art for years to get where she is today, is infectious and worth the price of admission alone! 

Danielle, a.k.a. The Jealous Curator, is the cute blondie with the glasses on her head.
Lisa is seated beyond, with the hot pink top and cuffs (I'm sold on the neon now).

 Ladies doing some exercises.

But there was so much more. Both women are so singular in what they do and how they do it, there was much to learn. Danielle's stories of struggles with motivation and fighting against blank pages and canvasses resonated with all twelve of us attendees. She brought exercises borrowed from The Artist's Way (see my journey with The Artist's Way HERE) for us to do with each other and to bring home. We talked and talked and exchanged stories about what blocks us and what motivates us. I got to know 14 women I'd never met before more than just superficially, and hopefully will take some of these new friendships into the future. And we ate. WE ATE SO MUCH! Incredible Coffee Bar coffee and Batter Bakery treats in the morning, a mostly vegan FEAST catered by Square Meals (SO GOOD) for lunch, and more tea and sweets in the afternoon, after we returned from a wonderful gallery tour.

All of us I think are still beaming about the experience. I recommend heading to one of these Girl Crush events as soon as it hits your city. There was a wonderful and talented woman named Staci (see her work HERE) that came all the way from West Virginia, just for this event! So, maybe you don't need to wait for it to come to you, you might consider going to it! Oh, there's an awesome goody bag in it for you, by the way.

The next seven scheduled cities are listed HERE, and there are one or two more about to be added. I'll be sending this post out to all my pals in these cities to make sure they check it out.

Also, HERE is Danielle's wrap up of the workshop, with a few photos of yours truly included.

I learned so much, and I came away from this day with these three things:

1. Acknowledge personal growth and achievement.
I have grown and my goals have changed a lot since I did The Artist's Way several years ago, and I need to take credit for that.

If you are not putting "pen to paper", you will not improve or evolve, you will stay in your head and you will not move forward. You must act.

3. THIS!



  1. Such a lovely post Tiffanie, thanks for sharing with us! Oh and that piece is so fantastic, so lucky!

    1. Thank you, Cariann. It was so nice meeting you, and I hope we can meet again soon. You seem like a wonderful person. :)

  2. I love the piece you purchased. Such a wonderful day! More pictures to come soon, I promise!

    1. I know! It was hard to decide though! So nice to have met you Taylor! Your photos are fantastic and I hope our paths cross again soon!

  3. The artwork is exquisite. Sounds like you had a good time.


    1. Hi Kathy,

      It is all beautiful, I've never seen anything like Lisa's use of colors. We had a ball. Thank you for reading!

  4. Sounds like such a cool day and her work is wonderful.

    When you say you did the Artist's Way, did you actually go to a live class?

    Funny, I'm much better at casual, I get stressed when I have to gussy up.

    1. Hi Tania,

      It was awesome, and we have a little support team from it now on facebook that is great.

      I did The Artist's Way at home over the course of three months from the Julia Cameron workbook. I did a post on it, if you haven't seen it:

      I like warm weather dress up. Cold weather casual just adds like twenty five unneeded pounds to my small frame! :)

    2. I have the Artist's Way but didn't pick up the workbook part, never proceeded with it but it's on my to do list. My friend Jana who is a painter had recommended it. I'm doing the Writing Diet by the same author (which you noticed on my nightstand) but got off track, feel like I need to go back a few steps to be more consistent and get the full benefit.

      She's on my top ten of people I'd love to meet and in the Writing Diet she does reference her real life teaching.

      I love wearing coats by the way...that is one of the things I loved about going to SF, got to wear a coat, boots and knit hat (it must sound crazy to someone who has to do it all the time).

    3. The "workbook" part I mentioned is not the one you buy separately, by the way. I was referring to the book itself, all the exercises are in there and you don't need a/the "workbook". Go back a few steps and go for it. That actually sounds really fun. Writing is slightly more accessible than some other forms of art, in terms of where and when you can do it, to me anyway!

      I wish I had a really great coat. I bought a really great jacket, but it is way too thin for the weather here most days. Boots all the time, for sure. I know what you mean. I need a great coat, it would help cover up some of my shlubbier days. :)

  5. A good time was had by all. It was great meeting you, Tiffanie, and all the other artistic, creative women there, too!

    1. Great to meet you, too, Julie! I hope you get to the Austin tea party, too!

  6. nice posting.. thanks for sharing.


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