From Mindy Graber, 2016

The conference, for me, has been an experience that has taken a bit to sort through and I have been taking time to digest it all. I would say the exposure to so many others that have the same addiction to putting small pieces together, has been a very positive thing on so many levels. To begin each morning, alongside new friends who were always eager to meet and share themselves, was a nice way to start the day. Folks were super friendly, and I surely made a few new friends!

One of the workshops I did was with Sharra Frank. I was turned onto new materials and also the addition of the 3D factor...which I have been craving lately. Being able to incorporate all the mixed media I like to add to my work, along with more dimension with celluclay and also styrofoam, is really exciting. 

I also took an evening workshop with Bonnie Fitzgerald on how to present your ideas, etc. This was really informative, a far as larger projects and how to approach getting your idea across to others.

The vendor marketplace was amazing and quite the "candy store." I restrained myself quite a bit..partially because I did not have an extra suitcase, and partly because I could easily have gone into debt if I purchased all I wanted to. But whether I could buy at the time or not, it was great to even see what the options are, and get business cards for the future. I have already ordered a bunch of jewelry bases from Amate studios, and have made and sold some of my new work using these qualitative bases [see below for photos].

I was also able to spend time helping with the mosaic marathon [photos below], sitting beside others, creating a wonderful group project. It was time to chat and work and meet the amazing Mosaic Mafia...so cool!!

I would also have to mention the many presentations and also mosaic salon as being highlights of my week. So much information, inspiration, and connections in a short period of time!

There are truly so many aspects of the week that it is hard to put it all down in words. It came at such a perfect time for me and my growth in my work. I came home realizing things I did not want to pursue anymore in my work, and many ideas that I do now want to explore and interpret in my own style.

All in all, it was a memorable and valuable gift and experience. 

I thank you both again, for all that I was able to do with the help of this scholarship. I am incredibly grateful.