Category Archives: Studio Happenings

Events that take place in the A Work of Heart Studio

Giftmaker Faire 2017

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Giftmaker Faire 2017

I prefer handmade gifts to just about any store bought item every time.  The gift of time is the most precious and when someone takes their precious moments and chooses to spend them making something for me…well, it really is the best sort of gift.

Giftmaker Faire is something I started about 5 years ago.  I used to host handmade holiday boutiques where local artists could bring in their handmade items and sell them.. I found them to be a lot of work on my part (all the arranging, advertising, blah blah blah) with moderate to low return.  One year I decided to have a “booth” where you could come and make a simple gift in addition to purchasing the artist’s work and the response was so positive.  The following year I started just hosting the giftmaker part rather than the pre-made (though I would still consider pop-up “booths” with local artist’s selling their items..hit me up if you are interested)

So, that is my long-winded way of explaining how Giftmaker Faire came to be.

Each year I have chosen projects that can easily be made without lots of hand holding instruction.  I set out the tools and supplies you need in stations around the studio and you can come in and make till your heart is content.  If you want to spend all your time at one station and make a dozen ornaments (for example) you are welcome to, if you want to hop from station to station and make a sampling of everything, that is fine too!  You pay for your studio time ($10/hour) plus a minimal fee for each project completed (starting at $2)

Here is our line-up at this moment (I always add more at the last minute..I just can’t help myself…so many ideas!)

Scroll all the way through for registration options.

  1. Woodslice Chalkboard Ornaments (photo cred. pinterest/etsy)
  2. Barnwood Budvase 
  3. Infused Syrup or Vanilla 
  4. Hand-Poured Candle with Art 
  5. Stenciled & Stamped Messenger Bag 
  6. Triple Strand Bracelet 
  7. Collaged Ornament 
  8. Scrabble Tile Coaster 
  9. Sugar Scrub /Body Butter 

Click here to view the times available for November 24th

Click here to view the times available in December.

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Moving the Studio/Store to 176 Race Street

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Most of you know already because you follow us on Facebook or get our weekly newsletters but sometimes with an over-filled feed and mailbox news slips by and you miss out on vital information.  In the interest of NOT letting that happen I’m posting here as well.

A Work of Heart Studio has been at 2196 Lincoln Avenue(San Jose) for 10 years now.  We have had a wonderful time making art and friends in this location.  If you have been a part of this process in any way, thank you!  It is because of you that we are now looking to move on to the next 10 years in a larger space.  Less than 3 miles away the “perfect” space became available just at the right time.

You can see a short video of the interior of the new space here

The best part is that parking will no longer be an issue.  There is an entire parking lot behind the building and plenty of street parking.

Today (June 16) after I signed the contract my new landlord took the “for lease” sign down.  It was a monumental moment.

Leaving Lincoln Avenue is bitter sweet to be sure.  Wonderful memories have been formed within these green walls.  I am very much looking forward to what is in store for the next 10 years at 176 Race Street (San Jose, California).

Mark your calendars for July 30, 2017 from 3-7pm and come to our Open House.

My latest obsession

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I LOVE watercolor…and don’t even get me started on abstract …. Photo realistic art is not my goal.  I am fascinated with and hold in high regard those who can create realistic looking images.  I’m more interested in a playful exploration of mediums and tools which is why this process and finishing result hits my sweet spot combining 3 criteria for my time spent creating.  1) color filled, 2) simple, 3) functional.

Now, before you challenge me on that last criteria…You are correct…not all art has to be functional.  I am a lover of process.  An enjoyable process in which I learn and grow as an artist is enough of a function for me.  After getting this question time and time again in class “what do you ‘do’ with it?”  I finally came up with the response….”what do you ‘do’ with a massage?”  or “what do you ‘do’ with a meditation session?”  There is intrinsic value in simply enjoying the process and a beautiful token of my time spent creating is a huge bonus as far as I’m concerned.

And without further blabbering on my part…here are some of my playful abstract watercolor “master sheets” ready to be turned into mini books (appx. 4″x4″)

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As you can see…I progressively have a difficult time leaving white space…even when I know that white space is so lovely in the finished product.

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I’ve developed a template/design to insert these folded single sheet booklets into a hard cover.

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I’ve really enjoyed not only making these mini journals but actually working in them.   They are the perfect surface to practice hand lettering and zentangle inspired art.

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If you are in the bay area and are interested in making one of these beauties for yourself, there are 2 workshops on the calendar currently.

Wednesday, May 10 from 10am-12pm (click here to register) OR

Sunday, May 21 from 10am-12pm (click here to register)

If neither of those dates work for you and you still want to take an in-person workshop, consider using our “pick your class” option by clicking here.  Find a date/time that works for you (and preferably a couple of friends!) and request it by using the RSVP option.  In the notes section type Abstract Watercolor Mini Journal.

If you’d just rather purchase a pre-made journal of my original artwork, click here and buy one in my etsy shop.  I’ll also have a tutorial up soon (ish) for you to purchase if you’d rather make your own at home.

Thanks for reading!

Encaustic & Mixed Media Visiting Instructor

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We have 1 more visiting/special guest instructor before I shut the studio for 2 months and re-model/re-group/re-fresh.

Please note:  There are minimum registrations required to hold classes with guest teachers.  PLEASE do not wait to register, your hesitation may result in a cancelled class!
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Naomi Haskell – Encaustic Painting Workshop:nh1
Encaustic uses wax, heat, and pigment to create a work of art or as a varnish. The term is derived from the Greek enkaustikos, to “burn in”. Encaustic refers to both the medium and the process. During this class we will discuss the equipemtn and tools required, managing the heating palete tempertaure and the various supports and materials you can use. I will show you how to use the medium, starting by prepping your board, applying the wax and paint, scraping to discover the layers of colorful wax, carving to define shapes, fun textures, taping for line and design and how to use various papers within this beautiful medium.
This is a three-hour class, with plenty of hands on practice for $66 (early registration), material included.

Encaustic is the most beautiful of all artists’ medium. Because of its nature, however, you have to be willing to relinquish some element of control. The wax has a mind of it’s own, we can only learn to guide and manipulate it.

Whether you’re just starting out with encaustic painting or have been painting with this medium for years, my hope is that you pass on what you have learned. As our collective knowledge of this exciting medium expands, we all become its gurus and heralds.
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Click here to register for Sunday , May 7th from 2pm-5pm
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Book Club, Jewelry, Art Journaling, Watercolor & Friday “Coffee & Color”

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This is our final set of series classes before we shut down in June & July for studio updates.

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Monday 10am-12pm
Tuesday 6pm-8pm
Thursday 1pm-3pm

These are your time options for our upcoming “No Excuses Art Journaling” series.  7 weeks of prompts and exercise in collage, hand lettering, sketching and painting.

You may attend individual sessions as your schedule allows or sign up for the whole series at a discount by clicking the links above.

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If jewelry is more your thing, there is an 8 week series starting the first week of April.

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Tuesday 1pm-3pm
Wednesday 6:30pm-8:30pm

Each of these classes are stand alone and can be taken individually, however, if you bundle them together you get a 10% discount on the enrollment fee.  There are no additional supply/materials fees and you can come to class empty handed each week.

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There is also a 7 week Art Journaling series starting April 13th.

Thursdays 6:30pm-8:30pm

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We have 2 more options that bundle 4 classes together at a discount.

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  1.  4-week watercolor series
    Wednesday 1pm-3pm

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2.  Coffee & Color with Jane Taheri
Stretch & refresh with us! Create an inspirational project that is fun and different. Take a break from your every day routine and enjoy creative companionship. Each session will be unique as you explore techniques such as:
Chinese Brush Painting
Collaging
Simple Sketching
Painting and much more
All while drawing inspiration from contemporary artists and the “great masters”.

All supplies are included in your fee. You will work with different mediums and materials and leave with something completed in each session. Sign up for 4 sessions and get $5 off each one! Bring 5 friends and your class fee is waived!

Four Fridays 10am-12pm

Junelle Jacobsen

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Junelle Jacobsen

IMG_0058I’m am smitten with Junelle’s art.  It has such a sweet illustrative quality to it that I admire so greatly.  If you’ve been itching to stretch your creative muscles these workshops are for YOU!  Sunday’s class features bitty works of art on these precious blocks suitable for tucking into spots all around your home.  Junelle even has recipes attached to the backs of some, making them perfect for a sunny windowsill in the kitchen.

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unnamedJunelle Jacobsen is a prolific sketcher and avid photojournalist, inspired by her faith and everyday adventures.  A passionate advocate for living life with “playful curiosity”, Junelle follows the divine path wherever it takes her.  She can be found working at local farms, hiking and biking, sketching and writing, and teaching her love of art and God’s goodness around the world.  She chooses to live life with a “yes” on her lips, a soft heart for anyone she meets, and wild adventure scribbled at the top of her list.


Junelle currently lives in a small town in Utah with her husband and is the mother of five brilliant children and shepherdess to sooo many lambs.

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Her Sunday workshop features those sweet blocks and you can sign up here.

3/19/2017
Rooted & Grounded in Love – Junelle Jacobsen
10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

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Monday she is offering a workshop called “My Favorite Things” which dives in to sketching and painting YOUR favorite things.

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Even if (especially if!) you don’t feel like you can draw or that you are “not artistic” this workshop is great for you.  There will be plenty of individualized instruction in a small group setting that will be nurturing to your creative side.

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You can sign up for Monday’s class here:

3/20/2017
My Favorite Things- Junelle Jacobsen
10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

We try to make it extremely easy for you to walk in empty handed by providing access to the studio tools and supplies.  There is a small (optional) kit fee for those who need us to take care of the supply list for them so they don’t have to worry about a single thing.

You will be refreshed and encouraged after spending time with sweet Junelle.  She doesn’t make it to California very often since she spends a great portion of her year raising precious lambs in Utah.   You will want to make arrangements to come if at all possible.

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New stuff starting… Don’t miss out.

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This week has been a big push for us to get the samples completed for the new (NEW!)  jewelry series starting.  I planned to start it next week but with the delay in samples being done I pushed it one week.

Here is the official graphic (after some last minute changes)

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As you can see,  there are many techniques covered in the series.  All classes will be offered as “stand alone ” classes too.

We will work with wire,  enamel powders, solder (wire and paste),  etching solution,  sterling,  copper and brass,  beads,  chain,  rivets,  eyelets and leather… Oh my it is going to be glorious!
Click here to sign up for Tuesday mornings (10am-1230pm)  or here for Wednesday nights (6pm-830pm)