Door on Ledoux Street

Door on Ledoux Street

I’ve been traveling most of the month of April. It began with a delightful vacation in Mexico and ended with a lifetime experience at ISS Taos. How do you spell eggsosted? (It’s Friday, so it’s okay to click to Tweet). I’ve really left it all on the field, so pardon my lack of typical “flair.”

ISS Taos is an Intensive Study Seminar for artists held in New Mexico. 20 years ago, four teachers created a comprehensive program to help artists find and refine their unique artistic voices. I met artists from all over the world and we spent a total of 9 days together studying art, attending lectures, painting, receiving daily critiques, benefiting from expert guidance and learning “where to go from here.” It was a unique and magical experience. I learned a lot about myself, art, MY art and the other people in the room. Art workshops always offer their own, special gifts. Last week, when I was Deep in the Steep, I promised to share, so here are 10 take-aways from ISS:

1. There’s a huge benefit for showing the utmost respect to every artist you meet as a professional. Treating one another without reserve or judgment creates a priceless learning environment, a safe environment to learn and builds camaraderie.

2. The “fit” of a teacher and pupil is critical for success. Not every teacher connects with every Art Studystudent in the optimal way. A gifted teacher is a treasure. Be patient, your teacher will come.

3. Taos is dry and will make your hands crack, but has beautiful, vast skies and delightful people.

4. Reconnecting with people you know who are near the areas you’re traveling to is like coming home. I was privileged to spend some time with my “accountability partner” in Albuquerque and we had the BEST day! Everyone needs a buddy to hold them accountable for moving forward in building their art business. I LOVE mine.

5. Don’t look at so much art you can’t create your own, in your own voice, expressing your own ideas.

6. When inundated with these seminars, take a little quiet time away for yourself and give some space to others, too. It creates balance. There is lots of time for connecting and having fun. 

7. Appreciate work you don’t understand…the fact you don’t understand it, probably means you have something new to learn.

8. Age knows no bounds when it comes to creativity, friendship and loving kindness.

9. Don’t eat the fake eggs at the breakfast buffet.

10. Be BRAVE.

Art StudyISS Taos was the perfect experience for where I am in my art career. After 20 years, this may well be the last time this fine group meets, as arrangements are changing. A special thank you, to William Skip Lawrence, Katherine Chang Liu, Topher Schink and Fran Larsen. You have made a difference in my art and the Taos experience has enriched my life.

With Warmest Gratitude,



Michelle Andres is a writer and artist. She writes this blog to share tips for a well-lived life and a finely run art business…just for you!Writer, Artist, Coach

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