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Sunday, December 9, 2012

Dreaming the Big Dream

I can hardly believe the words below are real.....

Two years ago I was plodding away in our little coastal village of 1000 people here in faraway Australia, with the spark of a bigger dream beginning to burn more brightly in my mind.

Portland artist Dory Kanter started it for me with her very cool book Art Escapes which I purchased probably around 2006. Filled with fun exercises it also opened up the possibility for me of a life in which I got to travel the world, exploring, learning and inspiring others to shine their brightest creative selves!

Flora Bowley made the possibility even more REAL when she came to stay with our family in April 2011 to run her awesome Bloom True workshop here in Jervis Bay.

SOMETHING BIG SHIFTED for me during this time and continues to move and morph as I sit here in my sunroom, lorikeets chirping in the backyard,  contemplating the past 5 months of teaching and travelling solo in the U.S and what an incredible, humbling, life affirming experience it has been to share creative space with so many amazing, wonderful people in California, CT, NY, NJ, N. Carolina, Texas and Florida.....

Next year I am excited to return to the US AND to be teaching here in Australia as well!

Originally I was going to come to the States for just one month in 2013 but when my beautiful friend Erin Faith Hall invited me to stretch my visit out a bit to come teach at her Call of the Wild Soul Retreat there was nothing else to do but say a loud, resounding YES!!!! 


One look at the company I'll be in AND the vision of the founder of the Institute of Noetic Sciences and I was bursting out of my skin with excitement...




How I would love for you to come share the experience with me

Come on over and have a read at the beautiful offerings we are preparing for you xoxo

Join Teesha Moore, Tracy Verdugo, Madelyn Mulvaney,

Alena Hennessy and Erin Faith Allen

November 7 – 10, 2013

in Petaluma, California

at EarthRise Retreat Center, Institute of Noetic Sciences.

We collectively emphasize connectedness, community, open hearts, and courageous exploring through our art.  This retreat is a cocoon of safe and intuitive creativity, self-empowerment, and fun … while being nurtured in the majesty of the land once nurtured by the Miwok tribe.
How EarthRise Retreat Center Began:  It was literally conceived in outer space.  Dr. Mitchell was on Apollo 14’s mission to the moon.  From the EarthRise website:On the trip home Dr. Mitchell sat in the window seat of the cramped cabin of the space capsule. As he saw Earth floating freely in the vastness of space, Dr. Mitchell was engulfed by a profound sense of universal connectedness—an epiphany. In Dr. Mitchell’s own words: ‘The presence of divinity became almost palpable, and I knew that life in the universe was not just an accident based on random processes . . . The knowledge came to me directly.’  Dr Mitchell returned to Earth and founded the Institute of Noetic Sciences – derived from the Greek word nous, meaning “intuitive ways of knowing.”

here is what I will be teaching :)

Laced between the fragments of our own unique narrative is the thread of humanity which stretches wide in all directions; past, present and future, encompassing and informing both our inner and our outer worlds.
 Drawing upon the wisdom of our ancestors and the indigenous keepers of the land, the inspiration of our peers and the dreams of our future selves we will paint the story of this sacred journey. On a large canvas we will explore new and non-threatening ways to make art, learn to be inspired in every moment and realize that there are no mistakes in the creative process, only opportunities to learn and grow! We will spend our time creating our paintings and mixed media pieces spontaneously and intuitively, with no expectations, a wholehearted approach and an open mind!


Hope you can join us


lots of love Tracy xoxo

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Jill Berry's Stencil Blog Hop and Giveaway!

Hi beautiful people!

Today is my turn in a wonderful two week blog hop to introduce Jill K. Berry’s new line of stencils, TEXTures, from Artistcellar. There are 4 gorgeous stencils in this set and I was excited to try them as stencils are not part of my usual repertoire.

 I decided to use the stencil inspired by rivers but for some reason my mind jumped straight to the image of a tree and a beautiful Ojibwa saying,


 No tree has branches so foolish as to fight amongst themselves. 

I painted on a 12x12 inch wood panel, beginning with some playful marks in turquoise, white, yellow and green gold.

I then stencilled over the background using the same stencil four times to fill the panel using the same range of colours but contrasting light against dark and vise versa.

Using a watercolour pencil to draw in the image of a tree I then proceeded to paint out the negative spaces around the tree using transparent red iron oxide. I was surprised at the gorgeous effect of the turquoise glimpsing through the underlayers. I then added a turquoise glaze over some areas of the tree.

I almost stopped there but decided to add a little gold shimmer around the tree and then couldn't resist throwing in some POPS of colour! So much fun!

This original work is for sale. First one to email me will be the lucky purchaser!

                             TracyVerdugo. 2012.We are all one. acrylic on ply. 12" x12 "$350

This post is a part of a two week blog hop.

Leave a comment below for a chance to win your own set of Textures!

You can leave a comment here, and make sure you check out all the innovative ways that the others blog hop artists (listed below) have used these stencils! Leave a comment on their posts too, for more chances to win!

I will draw a name from all of the comments on this post on December 14, 2012, the last day of the hop!

12/03 Sketchbook Challenge Guest post
12/04 Seth Apter
12/05 Diana Trout
12/06 Traci Bunkers
12/07 Tracy Verdugo
12/08 Anne Gaal
12/09 Effy Wild
12/10 Dawn DeVries Sokol
12/11 Aimee Myers Dolich
12/12 Sue Bleiweiss
12/13 Pam Carriker
12/14 Jane Davenport

Come back tomorrow for another surprise announcement!

love Tracy xo

Monday, November 26, 2012

Playing with new toys :)

Good morning beautiful friends!
Just wanted to share a little something with you today!
I have a bunch of deadlines I'm working on so in true form I decided to distract myself
with something completely new
you know...

 cos' I'm supposed to be doing something else ;p

So.... while I was in St Pete staying with the awesome e'Layne Koenigsberg
she showed me how to play with Pic Monkey
an easy peasy photo editor!
So just for fun I'm creating some images using my favourite quotes
 and matching them up with my paintings.

don't you think these would make great prints?

well I need to practice a little more. This image is too small....

but this one I'm really happy with.... :)

and then I came across this image, a self portrait taken by my uber talented daughter Santana Verdugo who has a beautiful photographic website here. I'm so proud of her and think that these words are a perfect match for her gorgeous pic!

Well thats all for now...better get back to the tasks I'm actually supposed to be doing!

lots of love Tracy xox

Sunday, November 18, 2012

snippets from the road~part 1

            Painting Miss Daisy...a parting gift for my wonderful N.Carolina host Phyllis Peterson.

as time slips away on this wonderful adventure


and one amazing experience leads into the next 

 my days are so filled with new friends, new places and experiences 

 that I dont know that i'll ever find the time to describe this trip the way i would like.

 Perhaps when I get home to Australia...we'll see :) I have been working on this post for the past week and have realised that I may have to break it down so here is part one :)

 For now, sitting here in my hotel room in Orlando where Sienna has joined me for a weekend of fun

 I will attempt to give you a whirlwind glimpse into the happenings of the past few weeks.

 I arrived back in California from the East Coast mid October and spent three blissful days in Baja California Mexico with my awesome man, celebrating 25 years of marriage. In all we spent 6 days together before I had to fly out to Texas for my next Paint Mojo retreat....after 3 1/2 months apart 6 days was far too short..........

we visited the family ranch in Cantamar where Marco spent some of his early years..

riding horses into the hills

many things unchanged...

a beautiful time together but far too short....

and then it was time for me to move on....

Next stop Lotus Ranch, Wimberley Texas where my sweet friend Selah Gay spent months preparing the most heartful Paint Mojo retreat. I was truly awed and overwhelmed by the level of care and preparation and beautiful intent lavished upon this gathering by both Selah and her husband Dan who cooked for twenty women for three days with a smile on his face the whole time! We shared creative time, fun and games and hot tub secrets. Plus some quiet time for reflection and sharing down by the lotus pond. A big thanks to Michael for such a wonderful venue!

 Selah created a magical space for us to paint!

 and we played

and played....

after Wimberley I moved on to Canyon Lake and spent two days with my lovely friend Em who I met WAY back in the days of My Space. Em came to Australia and spent a week with our family some years back, during which time we dragged her to a community protest against overdevelopment in our small town and enlisted her help in creating artworks with local aboriginal children.....this time it was Em's turn to show me around her local turf!

After a wonderful tour of San Antonio and surrounds Emily whisked me off to Austin where I spent the day with the uber talented and passionate Jessica Brogan. By this time I was feeling decidedly under the weather with allergies and a bad cough but I sooooo appreciate hanging out with Jess and discussing a myriad of possibilities..this girl is going far and in beautiful directions and regardless of my not feeling 100% I totally enjoyed Austin! A very funky and cool city indeed!
Later this week I will share pics from my adventures in Austin and beyond..for now I am lazing back in my hotel room with Sienna after two very fun days exploring Universal studios...

be back very soon to fill you in on the rest of the fun but for now..its time for zzzzzzzzzz

lots of love Tracy xoxoxo


Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Life Book 2013!! registration now open! :)))



Hi everyone!!


A very quick check in from my East Coast adventure with the awesome news that Tamara La Portes Lifebook 2013 course is now open for registration!!


I was so honoured to be one of the teachers for Life Book 2012 and my head is reeling with the enormously talented line up for 2013~ Melody Ross, Mindy Lacefield, Dion Dior, Effy Wild, Jeanette Maisy House, Christy Tomlinson, Erin Faith Allen, just to name a few!


Give yourself a beautiful gift and sign up today for a whole year of creative unfolding in 2013!

Big hugs from New York. I promise a new travel post will be coming soon 

lots of love Tracy xoxoxo


Click here to view more Life Book 2013 details