Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day 2009

Tulips have come and gone in my yard now. I'm sitting here at my computer and if I lean just a bit to the right I can see the street lined with dogwood trees in bloom and long shadows of early morning--all beautiful to contemplate as I ease myself into Earth Day. For me this day is becoming a New Year's Day--a time to reflect and to begin anew. I'll be celebrating throughout the day in many ways. First thing this morning I opened up another blog for public viewing. Called Tapestry Share, this is one I started after my recent Chattahoochee Handweavers Guild tapestry class. All of the students were invited to post to the blog and several have started doing that. I hope this can be a place for sharing many ideas about tapestry and I'll be inviting other of my former students to become blog authors to it, also.

And, speaking of students, I spent a rewarding hour yesterday afternoon at Dawson County High School as a former student from my early college teaching days was given an award for his thirty years of outstanding service at the school. The 2009 award was given to only four in the state of Georgia (and there were over 120 nominations this year) and Chris Gore was selected for one of those. The Woodruff Arts In Education Award is presented to recognize the importance of education in the arts and to honor those who've given outstanding service. It's amazing to think about the hundreds of young lives he's positively influenced through the years with his strong belief in the value of art teaching. I'm so happy he was recognized for his accomplishments and was surprised, yet grateful that he mentioned my teaching as one of his influences.

Finally, my Earth Day celebration will end as I tie up loose ends with my NGCSU weaving classes at final critique tonight. I know the students have worked hard to finish their last project (some looms are probably still at work right now, in fact!). This semester's class will be my last at the university, at least for awhile. My teaching time will be concentrated into short, intense bursts of energy. My next scheduled class, in fact, will be a week-long one at John C. Campbell Folk School in August. Between now and then I might schedule a one-day tutorial at my studio--not sure yet. As I leave the university I know the textile program is alive and thriving. Jo-Marie Karst will be teaching the weaving class in the fall as well as the surface design class. Jo-Marie is also a former student of mine at NGCSU. We've been colleagues as part-time teachers at the university for the past few years and I know she'll do a grand job.

Celebrate Earth Day--honor the Earth and the life it gives us. And also honor the life we give back to the world.

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