Monday, July 4, 2011

The Workshop Begins

The first day of the "Tapping Into The Flow" workshop with Teesha and Tracy Moore in Portugal began two weeks ago today with a delivery of fresh bread and rolls and a copy of our itinerary for the day.  Here's Linda holding the bag she found on our doorstep (kind of like getting tree mail on Survivor, left for us by a lovely lady named Rosa). 

We took taxis almost everywhere we went.  Here is Maxine, Laurie, Taylor and Linda waiting outside our accommodations for the cabs to arrive on that first morning:

Our first stop was the tile factory, where we were shown how ceramic tiles are made.  We also left the tiles we had painted the night before there to be fired, to be picked up later in the week.

It was quite fascinating to see the process and to realize how labour intensive it is.  They also had a large collection of very valuable, very beautiful antique tiles which have been recovered from old buildings before they were torn down.  Here we are being shown how the mosaics patterns are numbered on the back so they can be re-assembled easily. 

This handsome young man demonstrated various steps in the process, including the use of this machine to polish off the rough edges on the tile.

Once our tour of the tile factory was finished, we headed to the studio (a 5-10 minute drive from our accommodations) for our first workshop session.  We started by painting the pages of our journals and binding them together.
Tracy and Teesha
Before we knew it, it was time for lunch.  We were invited to lunch at the home of a clay artist named Cuca who lives a few doors down the street from the studio.  It was a beautiful, warm sunny day and we sat outside on her patio and enjoyed a traditional Portuguese stew, followed by a lemony rice pudding for dessert, followed by a quite delicious (but potent!) cherry liqueur served in chocolate shot glasses - yum!  Here you see Steve and MaryAnn measuring out portions verrry carefully!

Later, Cuca showed us her studio and gave us a demonstration of how to make a chicken out of clay, after which she surprised us by giving us each a finished piece to take home.  A very talented, very generous lady.
Cuca, Maxine and MaryAnn

After lunch, we went back to work in the studio, adding borders to our journal pages.  Here are some of my classmates, engrossed in a lesson (and looking a little sleepy after that liqueur!):

and here's what one of my pages in progress looked like:

When our afternoon workshop session ended, we visited a couple of stores looking for art supplies and then took cabs to the beachfront in Cascais:

and walked along the promenade to the restaurant where we had dinner, served by the adorable Rodrigo (shown here with Jane and Elisabeth) on only his 3rd day on the job.

We continued walking along the promenade back to Estoril and home to bed after a very long but lovely day filled with adventure, excitement and new experiences with new friends.
P.S. Guess what?? This is my 1,000th blog post - amazing!!  Thanks for reading along and sharing this experience with me.


Max said...

Wow - brilliant Cynthia - thanks:-)

Taylor schapiro said...

Wow Cynthia you covered it all. I can just read your blog if I forget what we did each day. Glad you included the waiter. Can't wait to read about what we did the next day.

Anonymous said...

1,000 posts! You win a prize.

Margarida Alberty said...

My mother used to say" The best thing about travelling is not the travelling itself but the fact of having travelled..." maybe because in the end the sweet memories prevail...