From June 2015


Desert Recon

Doing my part to the pre-explore the finest desert digs




So that when you come to The Creative Nomad retreat,

you’ll know where to go . . . 


for the best music


the coolest shakes


an authentic cocktail or two



or the best coffee south of Seattle.


This is the hotel where the retreat will be.





The breakfast here is sooooo delish.


Trust me.


But white sands and azure skies are why I really come.


Well, for that and tiny desert off road adventures.













Registration opens July 21

for The Creative Nomad retreat.


Storm Chaser



The craziest warm Santa Ana winds blew all last night.

I woke to a dozen fallen razor-sharp palm fronds in the yard

and a few big dark drops of rain on our driveway.

That’s it.  

Insane winds and giant, but too few, rain drops.

That’s what we call a storm in Southern California!


“Storm Chaser”, 30×40″ acrylic on canvas.  

Detail shots below.


The “storm” must have influenced today’s work in the studio –

a long day that produced two works on canvas!

I love it when that happens!

I probably had more fun painting “Storm Chaser” than I’ve ever had with ANY painting.

I was deep in it – hours passed before I knew I needed a break!

I adore the feeling of being “in flow” –

breathing through it, taking risks, letting it all go……

I like this new direction – I’ll likely head that way with the next canvas  – with the full intention to go even deeper.








Not sure, but I think the one below is not complete.

I’ll let it sit a day or two and check back in with it.

I do dig the indigo “glow” . . .

but already seeing ways to go further with the rocks.


“River Walk”, 30×40″, acrylic on canvas

Detail shot below.


Happy me - at my first art retreat.

The Journey So Far

In a few weeks I’ll open registration for my first art retreat – The Creative Nomad, An Art Journaling Adventure.  I’m delighted to host two incredible art journaling teachers, Roxanne Coble and Brian Kasstle.  Soon, I’ll share their stories, but today I want to write about my own creative evolution.

I grew up in a very creative household – my Dad is an entrepreneurial artist – he’s built a thriving business!  My Mom is a life-long, self-taught painter.  She’s also an incredibly talented interior designer and home “flipper”.

They probably renovated 10 homes before I moved out at 18 – each place more beautiful than the next.  I received a true hands on DIY education!  Alongside Mom, I painted many walls, planted tons of gardens, customized heaps of furniture and more!  Mom allowed – no encouraged me – to decorate my own bedrooms.

Throughout my young adulthood, I most certainly had a creative soul, although I wouldn’t become a painter for many more years.  I surrounded myself with artistic people.  I sought out creative adventures – attending art fairs, concerts, plays – I adored film, epic books, travel and exotic clothing!

In my late twenties, I partnered with Mom in opening an art gallery and interior design firm in Palm Desert CA.  We had the gallery for years.  I adored working with the artists – we even hosted a weekly radio show featuring talks with our gallery’s artists . . .

All of this – I’ve left out so much for brevity’s sake – is to say that I was a classic “Shadow Artist”.  I had surrounded myself with creatives and had immersed myself in a truly creative lifestyle, yet I wasn’t a capital A “Artist”.

Yes, I was creative – there were hints of it in how I hung our gallery or how I decorated my apartment.  But paint – or draw – or write?  Nope, that wouldn’t come until 6 years ago.  I’m now 54.

My first conscious thought that I might be an Artist arose when my decades-long-journal-keeping-habit began to include imagery.  I don’t remember why or when, but I began pasting in magazine photos.  Soon, quick sketches were also being laid down.  It kind of just happened . . . naturally . . . it evolved.

My curiosity about my new visual journaling style led to the discovery of art journaling.   Books about visual journaling had begun appearing in bookstores – or maybe I’d just opened my eyes.  I was moved to tears by the journals of Dan Eldon and obsessed with the diaries of Peter Beard.

Soon thereafter, I got really brave.  I signed up for an in person 4 day art journaling class with the idolized Sabrina Ward Harrison!  It was really expensive for me – but she was teaching in my neighborhood and it felt like a sign I tell you.  I think it was . . . I HAD to go.

I really didn’t know what I was doing during most of her class, but felt I was home!  I walked away learning so much about living a creative life and diving deep into the creative process.  But honestly, I learned more about what I needed – and I needed more art-making time, more color, more depth, more community!

I began an extensive search for my more and I found it.  My very first painting on canvas grew out of a 6-month online writing/painting mentorship with my beloved Shiloh Sophia McCloud.  I rented a warehouse studio with Mom before I finished my first painting!  My journey was underway and I’ve never looked back.

Pictures 760
Sabrina and happy shiny me
Beaming me and Shiloh

My love for art making and creative community has only grown deeper in these past 6 years – I’ve attended many workshops and retreats.  I now know I have a true yearning to support the arts AND a real mission to champion artists – especially young or emerging women artists.  Creating beautiful spaces is still a strong passion.  All of my early wanderings make so much sense to me now.

I have gathered all the tools in my backpack for this new adventure – hosting truly special and memorable art retreats.  I believe it’s what I was built for!

I plan for these retreats to be truly sacred – an escape from your routine, a chance to explore a beautiful destination, a valuable investment in your creative growth and an opportunity to commune with your artistic peers.

Please sign up at the bottom of any page of this website to stay informed.  I promise I won’t bombard you with updates.

Wherever you are on your own artistic journey, I think you’ll want to join us – I can’t wait to welcome you!