When I attended my first "Art Is...You" Retreat in 2011, I was prepared for the joys of teaching, creating, meeting students, and networking...but I wasn't really expecting that which has become the greatest gift this retreat has offered...lifelong friends, art sisters, like-minded souls who truly understand my passion to create. When I think of those who make up my closest group of friends, they are all part of the AIY family. Some of these friends live within a 3-4 hour drive from my house and so we can get together on occasion throughout the year. Others live farther away and we rely on email and social media to stay connected between retreats. Either way, these folks are family now and I cannot imagine life without them.
There are, indeed, amazing friendships to form at AIY, but there's so much MORE. There is the most incredible, jaw-dropping, inspiring ART. There is ART around every corner, in every nook and cranny, in every breath of enthusiasm, in every act of generosity...there is ART.