Offering HeART and SoulCollage® workshops to inspire your creative spirit
Lessons from Akhilandeshvari,
the Never-Not-Broken Goddess

Have you met the Hindu Goddess, Akhilandeshvari? Akhilandeshvari ( to say, once you get the hang of it) is a goddess who embodies the ability to come together and fall apart, again and again. “Ishvari” in Sanskrit means “goddess” or “female power,” and the “Akhilanda” means essentially “never not broken.” In other words, The Always Broken Goddess.

Akhilandeshvari is the personification of healthy annihilation and the archetype of unexpected change. She breaks apart in order to come back together as a more powerful version of herself. Indeed, it is exactly because she is able to break apart that she is so powerful. She does not expect that things will stay intact and the same.

Pema Chodron tells us: “We think that the point is to pass the test or overcome problems, but the truth is that things don’t really get solved. They come together and they fall apart. Then they come together again and fall apart again. It’s just like that. The healing comes from letting there be room for all of this to happen: room for grief, for relief, for misery, for joy.”

By riding on an alligator, a spinning, predatory, fearsome creature, Akhilandeshvari refuses to reject her fear, nor does she let it control her. She rides on it. She gets on this animal that lives inside the river, inside the flow. She takes her fear down to the river and uses its power to navigate the waves, and spins in the never not broken water. If everything remained the same, if we walked along the same path down to the river every day until there was a groove there, this routine would become so limited, so toxic to us that, well, the crocs would catch on, and we’d get plucked from the banks, spun and eaten!

We are never not broken. And in the pain and devastation of our brokenness, there is potential for unlimited growth. It is through our brokenness-turned-robustness that we become stronger, more flexible, and capable of loving even more open-heartedly.

Pause for a moment and feel the world changing, feel the absolute impermanence of all things; feel the deep ache of change moving through you, around you, maybe even despite you. It is equal parts silent and cataclysmic. Take a deep breath. You are the vital space in which “coming together” and “falling apart” are eternally dancing.

May we call upon the wisdom of Akhilandeshvari and surrender into the delicious puzzle of going through the motions of putting ourselves back together, again and again, as we see Mother Earth doing consistently...falling apart in autumn, going silent in winter, then coming back together in spring. Amen, Awomen, A-ho, and Blessed be.
Art and SoulCollage® Gatherings at the Down to Earth Studio
SoulCollage® Gatherings

3rd Fridays 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm
GG's Down to Earth Studio

If a sessions is full, you can email GG to get on the wait list.

November 18 - Abundantly Yours (Session is full)
December 16 - Old Stories into New Stories (Session is full). This day only there is a 9:00 am to 12:00 pm (Session is full)

January 20, 2023 - Beginning Again: Welcoming a New Year
February 17 - Paradigm Shift to Community
March 17 - All Things Green!

Sliding scale fee: $20 - $35.
New sliding scale fee starting January 2023: $25 - $40
Fee includes all supplies and the 3-hour session. Those new to SoulCollage® can come one hour early for an overview. Newcomer Fee for the one-hour introductory overview + all supplies + three-hour gathering is $65. 
Email GG to register.
An Awesome Half-Price Opportunity!

A very generous eco-dyeing workshop participant who isn't able to come next weekend is offering to give away her $100 deposit as a scholarship to anyone who wants to attend in her place.

That means you get a two-day workshop (instruction and all supplies) for only $145!
Eco-Dyeing on Paper and Fabric

Saturday and Sunday, November 5 & 6, 2022
9:30 am to 4:00 pm
GG's Down to Earth Studio

Workshop fee: $245.00 (see list below for all that this fee includes). I will accept a payment plan.

Come and explore the serendipitous world of eco-dyeing. Eco-dyeing is a technique for printing on fabric or paper with the natural dye color present in leaves, flowers and other plant materials. It's a totally serendipitous process because you never quite know what you'll get. The fun is in the reveal.

Day One: We will spend the day experimenting with eco-dyeing on paper and silk.
Day Two: We will make journals and greeting cards from our prints.

The workshop fee includes high-quality printing paper, one silk scarf, greeting cards and journal-making kits.

Email GG to register for the eco-dyeing workshop.
Creating Collage Fodder - Experimenting with Textures and Techniques
Saturday, November 12, 2022
10:30 am to 4:30 pm
The Art Department Supply Store, Downtown Salem, OR
Workshop fee: $85.00

Spend the day making papers for collage, art journaling and other projects. Experiment with bleeding art tissue, Italian plaster, acrylics, inks, stamps, stencils and more as you discover ways to alter papers to create unique materials for your art toolbox. You'll learn tips and techniques for making beautiful collage materials that will add pizzazz and panache to your next art project.
No experience necessary.

Register with The Art Department here.
Winter Solstice Goddess Blessing Banner
Wednesday, December 20, 2022
1:00 to 5:00 pm
Workshop fee: $55.00

Come and welcome the return of the light with creation!

The most gratifying art elicits a feeling of kinship, appreciation, and understanding. Hence: the Goddess Blessing Banner!

Spend the afternoon creating a 9" x 12" goddess blessing art piece as a gift to yourself or someone special in your life. Harvest images, fabric, ribbons, doo-dads, beads, bones, and bouquets from the Down to Earth Studio stash. Adorn your creation with metallic threads, dried flora from the garden, or small simple bamboo branches. Learn a technique for transfering images onto fabric using freezer paper.

Why not give this workshop as a gift to someone and the two of you come and create together on the Solstice ? Even if you or they are not "crafty," GG will assist you every step of the way.

Your finished piece will grace your space with love and power from an Ancestral Light Being. A perfect way to celebrate the return of the light on Winter Solstice!

Register with GG here.
The October Kintsugi retreat was amazing. So much love and courage. I felt the Spirit of Mother Gaia and the Ancestors holding us the entire time. Each person brought something unique and vital to the group and together we created a beautiful ceremony. May our work, play, and love ripple out into the world. A-ho and Blessed be! Here are some comments from participants:

"Thank you from the bottom of my heart for such a beautiful retreat, with so many spirited and courageous souls doing this deep work. I came away with much more than I could have ever imagined."

"I came home energized and inspired by everyone and their stories and feeling more connected."

"The Kintsugi retreat was very... Connecting. I feel so loved and cared for."
Art Prints For Sale
"Being Held in Deep Grief and Unbearable Beauty" art print for sale.
12" h x 16" w $85 plus postage. Contact GG
"Beyond the Veil" art print for sale.
16" h x 12" w $85 plus postage. Contact GG

Gift Certificates for GG's Down to Earth Studio for SoulCollage(r) baby showers, birthday parties, products, classes, or art doula services. Contact GG.
from my creative heart to yours,
The Art Doula is here for You!
Come and explore, discover, and birth your unique creativity.

This offering has really taken off and I couldn't be more thrilled! I now have seven art mentoring clients -- some in person at the studio and some on zoom. We are having so much fun breaking old patterns and birthing new artistic endeavors. I love being an Art Doula. : )

Are you a tentative artist, or maybe a wanna-be? Do you feel the call to create something but don't know where to start? Have you heard yourself say the words “I’m not a creative person?” Or, maybe you think of yourself as only a painter, or only a crafter.
Let’s debunk those myths! I am an Art Doula, here to help you explore, discover, and birth more of your unique creativity. I'd so love to work with you to help your creative life blossom. Zoom or in-person doula services available. Contact me for a free 30-minute preliminary consult. More information on my website here.