Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Missing IAMPETH 2020

This week I would have been in Atlanta surrounded by pen friends, getting nearly no sleep, being incredibly inspired, spending money at John Neal Booksellers and being overwhelmed by the entire experience. IAMPETH has been part of my summer since 2003. I first picked up a pointed pen in 2003 and with the gentle nudging of Joe Vitolo I attended IAMPETH in Cleveland, Ohio which really started my penmanship journey as well as my evolution as an artist. Most of you know that my background in the art world is as a florist and as a seamstress. I never felt as if I had any artistic ability on paper. I always struggled with penmanship and handwriting so the journey into the calligraphic world was a difficult one for me. But every step of the way has been so full of discovery and wonder. I still wake up excited to get into the studio to work. Each day feels like play rather than work. IAMPETH has been the foundation of my growth and my studies. The format of the classes allows us to sample different things throughout the week. The classes whet your appetite for study and you can really decide if you want to dive a bit deeper or if you want to try a different path of study. As an introvert, my first conference was a bit nerve wracking until I understood that I was truly surrounded by giving and caring people. They were glad I was there and they were happy to take me under their collective wing. The archive room in those days was in a hotel suite. We would stay up for hours looking at original work and taking photographs. During that first convention, I met people who would become my friends for life. I continue to cultivate the friendships and savour the letters we send each other through the mail. I feel like IAMPETH has really helped me to come out of my introvert shell a bit. In fact, I had to come out of the shell a lot when I was President during the 2013/2014 year. This year as we are all missing IAMPETH, I want to share some of my favourite photos. As I look over the images I can actually feel the energy of the conference.
I try to be a regular contributor at the Round Robin. These pieces were done last year in Denver and then auctioned off at the Silent Auction.
Some of the best times are open study sessions in the evenings. Bill Kemp and Michael Sull are often there until the doors close giving advice and demonstrations to anyone who have questions. It is so heartwarming to watch how giving and sharing these instructors can be. 
I always take photos of my favourite pieces in the archive room. I try to share and post the photos during each conference.

The IAMPETH experience is a treasure from start to finish. If you are on the fence about attending next year, I would encourage you to jump in. If you have any questions at all about the conference, please email me at and I will be happy to talk to you about t. IAMEPTH, thank you for all that you have done for me. I feel as if I owe the organization a huge debt and I am so honoured to continue to serve the organization,. 

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