It started as a hope in January, written on a piece of paper ‘California July 19th – 22nd 2013 to meet Shiloh and my Color of Woman sisters’. From Santa Rosa airport I was welcomed to the USA by a deep river of a woman; Julie from Virginia. It was the day before our Color of Woman weekend, she took me to rest in a quiet place where we shared bread, cheese, fruit and iced tea. I felt like I’d arrived in Europe!… except for the addition of salsa and corn chips 🙂 Letting my sisters in Color of Woman know in advance that I planned on being a gypsy for some of my time in USA, I opened the door for magic to come in. Sharing a room for two nights with Ti aka ‘Sugar Bitch’ we spoke of rich and juicy things such as desire and how attractive we are when we adore ourselves. (no.. we didn’t bother with light conversations … straight to the heart of things we went).. That first afternoon, I wandered in to town in search of Shiloh’s gallery, to see the paintings I’d watched being created online was such a delight! I longed to visit with them again when the doors were unlocked. … I eagerly awaited my first time as Cosmic Cowgirl University … I arrived absolutely vibrating with joy, to have made it all that way…, this was it, the reason that had pulled me from one side of the planet to the other! This shining example of a brave, empowered, inspired woman, Shiloh Sophia McCloud who from the moment I had first heard her speak I recognized and resonated with her message and soul.
So began three days of community with our much admired delightful teacher. I sneaked a peak when we were all eyes closed, in circle awaiting her arrival… she was glowing! Radiating… and tears of joy sprang to my eyes …. now I know I’m sounding like a bit of a crazed groupie right about now, but I want to emphasize the difference a strong empowered woman can make in a life.. in hundreds, if not thousands of women’s lives… this is what I am seeing happen in real time with the work that Shiloh as been presenting us with, it’s astonishing to me, the generosity and humility and sassiness of her. She’s the real deal, I so love that about her. I soaked up so much information during those three days, I just asked myself to remain open, and take it all in to somewhere in my being, even when my head felt so full, and my mind in wonder of how to absorb all that was flowing towards it. At Shiloh’s gallery on the Friday eve, I was thrilled to bits to stand in front of the paintings, ‘meeting them’ one by one. Shiloh referenced the Contemporary Symbolism movement, and artists who have inspired her – some of whom are my favorites as well. I felt I was with my tribe, so many things didn’t need to be said we all understood the basis for our being there so what was shared was all the richer for the red thread connection we undoubtedly have. After the drawn out farewells, lunch at the brewery with wise one Sue Hoya Sellars I set out the next day to another woman’s home and had two full days in Sebastopol with Trish, who rocked my world in a few directions it hadn’t been rocked in for a long while. We smashbooked at midnight after taking a walk under the full moon, and sipped home brewed cordials of all kinds of magical flavours. What a delight, she had cupboards full of things I felt like I’d only seen in Harry Potter movies, all that was missing was an owl! Only about a month earlier Trish and I had connected via our Color of Woman monthly call and there I was given a safe place to stay and a wild-hearted friend for life.
From Sebastopol to Burlingame, San Francisco over the golden gate bridge, shrouded in fog I couldn’t even see the coastline, I felt like I was living a dream. Three days of magical city touring, delicious foods from all the best places, with my gorgeous hostess Eileen who I’d also met online thanks to my painting ‘Muse of Cut the Crap’ an axe-wielding woman struck a chord with her too. Three San Francisco labyrinths in 3 days, including Grace Cathedral that had a labyrinth on it’s floor and a painting of Mary Magdalene. We ended up calling our shared adventures ‘spirit girl’ time, I loved that so much.
My last three days were spent at The Palace of the Soul where I was thrilled to meet Elizabeth Gibbons… an artist and the owner of a ginormous home filled with the most embellished, jewel encrusted, vibrant and mystical paintings I had ever seen in my life!
Each and every woman I met who is connected to Shiloh’s work was an absolute treasure of a woman. We share a sacred bond of desire for intentional creativity to heal ourselves and in turn reach out and be a blessing to those who are drawn to work with us in our chosen fields and offerings.
This feels like the ‘stuff of legends’… and I intend to keep my commitment to the work I have started inside this container called Color of Woman. I feel honored to have made such a trip and to have received so much love and support every step of the way.
Denise Daffara is part of a new breed of contemporary artists living on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia. Her work brings together a fusion of motherhood, friendship and femininity in the 21st Century.
When it comes to technique, Denise represents what is new and funky about painting and design, with a style that dabbles in both traditional and modern styles. Her work is striking, personal and is easily relatable to the modern woman. It speaks to the woman at home, at play and at work and the woman who seeks the fusion of these three parts of her life.
Like all artists her work is ever evolving but at the core of each piece are the joys of feminine life, with vibrant colour and distinct form. Denise says, “Motherhood and friendship are a constant source of inspiration for me, and my style embraces elegant simplicity”.
To learn more about Denise come visit her at her Website –http://www.denisedaffara.com.au/