Cowgirl and I are so excited to share our news but first, a little teaser:
We are pleased to announce August 1 is the kick off date for our Art Bash, Painting with a Purpose 2011 Campaign.
If you were with us last year, you may remember we participated in an art a-thon fund raiser for the charity Half the Sky Foundation. Half the Sky is an organization we have supported for over five years now. The mission of this grassroots organization is to provide nurturing care for the orphaned children living in Chinese Welfare Centers. The essence of their mission can be found in this excerpt from their training manual:
"Changing children’s lives does not require new facilities or expensive playthings or complicated new procedures. Human contact is the most important ingredient, and caretakers can make a huge difference—just by taking an extra moment whenever possible to hold the babies, talk to the children, hug them all, and assure them that someone cares."
For five weeks last summer Cowgirl and I collaborated on a series of paintings which we offered as prizes for anyone making a donation to our Half the Sky pledge page. We even received a commission for a painting (that make us Real Artists, right?) and through the generosity of this community, we raised $900. Our efforts resulted in a year long sponsorship of this sweet little guy:
Plus we contributed to the Big Sisters Program which provides educational training and opportunities for older children living in Chinese orphanages and welfare centers. Part of that project involves the children producing a regular newsletter filled with their own art work, creative writing and stories. Almost half of the children who have participated in this program have been accepted to university - an incredible feat!
This is the second year Half the Sky has sponsored their fundraiser Art from the Heart and Cowgirl and I have been eagerly planning our summer series as part of the art a-thon, which we call Painting with a Purpose.
For five weeks in August Cowgirl and I will be collaborating on a series of mixed media pieces on gesso board. It is looking like Birds (Flying Free?) may be our theme, although my six-year girl reserves the right to change her mind! Each Monday starting August 1, I will post that week's completed piece which we will be offering as a prize to anyone making a donation to our Half the Sky Pledge page. Here's the fun part: make a donation and your name is entered into the pool each week for one of our paintings. One donation: five chances to win!
Ah, but we are hosting a Art Party! And everyone knows a party has to have beaucoup sparkle, decoration, prizes, and fun along with great guests. And boy, do we have some great guests joining us!
In addition to the pieces created by myself and Cowgirl, each week there will be bonus prizes generously donated by a dream team of creative lovelies. I am talking about the artists, writers, creative goddesses who have inspired me and my journey. I would not be the Joy Warrior I am without their presence lighting up the online world, never mind their art that fills my home. And I honored to be able to share the magnificence of their creativity with all of you.
Each week there we will be giving away selected artwork and prizes donated by Susannah Conway, Marisa Haedike, Connie Hozvicka, Effy Wild, Soraya Nulliah, Pixie Campbell and Sarah Ahearn Bellemare. Beautiful things - really, really juicy fun prizes.
Are you digging out your party shoes? Grabbing your twirling skirt? Glitter and perfume?
Okay, here's the scoop: in order to be eligible for all the drawings, you must make a donation to our Half the Sky pledge page. There is a button on the right hand side of my blog - it says Donate Now - that will take you right to my page. From there you can make a donation directly to Half the Sky by credit card. If you wish to mail in a check instead, there is a link on that same pledge page to print out a donation form. All money is handled by Half the Sky.
After you donate be sure to leave your name on the honor roll (you do not need to indicate the amount of your donation) then leave a comment on this blog making sure I have a way to contact you should you win! You may also email me directly: lishofmann(at)novia(dot)net to let me know you've donated and to give me emailing information.
Once you've donated, your name is in the pool for the five weeks worth of paintings by myself and Cowgirl.
For the special guest prizes: Every Monday in August I will be revealing both the work Cowgirl and I created along with that week's guest prizes. Each week will showcase a different artist. To be entered into the drawing for those prizes, you must leave a comment on that post along with contact information (or email me.) Again, you must have made your donation to Half the Sky - you donate once, but must comment every week to be eligible for the bonus prizes. (It's a party, we want you around for the entire bash!)
Help me spread the word and you receive additional chances to win. Post a link on Facebook, Google+, Tweet about the campaign, or share on your blog and receive additional entries into each week's drawing. Just be sure to leave a comment that week letting me know how you've helped so I can include the additional entries. Winners will be announced the following Monday with the final prizes being awarded on Labor Day, September 5.
Phew! I think that's all for now! Party planning can be intense, but I am looking forward to cutting loose with you all come August 1 and celebrating! I would love LOVE to reach our goal and contribute this year's offerings towards a year's worth of art supplies - paints, paper, markers, clay and lots of glitter! - for the preschool programs. Just think: our hands empowering those little hands and watching the creativity fly!
I hope you will help us dream big. Help us spread the joy. Let's be fearless dreamers together.