Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Canadian children get inspiration from Israeli artists!

Vancouver Talmud Torah school approached me last summer with a proposition to teach children an after school program. I thought that inspiring children with the art, colors and richness of Israeli artisans would be the perfect program. I have been immersed in the Israeli art scene for many years, and even thought I have moved to Canada, I am still a big fan of Israeli Arts & Crafts. Last June, I was lucky to spend my birthday in the company of my best friend (who is also an artist) and we visited a night craft market that was filled with amazing, unique and colorful jewelry, paper products, clothing and gifts. It was a magical evening that inspired me to create this new program called "Mixed Media Art inspired by Israeli artists".

Gal and I on my birthday last June at the night craft market, Holon, Israel

Choosing the right artist was not an easy task. There are plenty of talented people in Israel. I approached Timor from “Timo Handmade”. Timor makes original and commissioned fabric dolls. She was happy to collaborate and sent me photos of her work and of herself working at her studio.

Samples of the collages the children did inspired by "Timo handmade"

I chose Zohar from “Kululush” because I thought that the children would love to create hair bands like the ones she does.
Photos of the hair bands inspired by "Kululush"

I wanted the children to learn how to work with clay. Hilla from "Hillovely" works with polymer. Using textures and interesting painting technics, she adds more dimension to the clay, making it interesting and fun to teach. Since we learned about her work last September the children made clay Hamsa and pomegranates for Rosh Ashana.

I love illustration and quirky characters. To introduce some whimsy projects, I talked to Ori from “What about paper”. When we spoke, she offered to send each child a gift from her paper company. She sent them a print from her collection that arrived on our last class. There were plenty of happy faces in the classroom!


Happy children after receiving each of them a print from Ori!

I wanted to include more artists but unfortunately we ran out of time. With a group of 16 children from Kindergarten to grade 4, I had to choose projects that will appeal to all of them and planned projects that they could execute and complete with ease and pride.
I am very happy with the results and the experience of teaching Canadian children the work of Israeli artists. I admire the work these artists do and I find it inspiring and very unique. All the artists were approachable and open to this new initiative.  My hopes are that the children enjoyed the art projects and that they walked away with the confidence that they can try new materials and dare to create with no fear, like the Israeli artists do!

"The stories you believe to be true are the ones your life will become" with love, Jazmin
Visit my website at  Jazmin Sasky

Here are some samples of the children's artworks!

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Fall is the perfect time for indoor gatherings!

In my last blog I talked about giving, giving, giving. Today’s blog is a continuation of this amazing concept.
In our 40’s, it is not easy to make new friends. Once you connect with someone, you get to know this new person, you bond, share moments, build memories...but sometimes after a while, we have to let them go…
A few months ago I have the honour to lead a farewell gathering for a woman who went back to England. Her friends wanted to do something special and give her a keepsake to take home. The Hand-Lettered Inspirational Quotes’ party was perfect for the occasion.

Each woman took the time to browse binders filled with affirmations and chose the one that delivered a meaningful message for her dear friend. Then, with instructions, each participant traced and painted the affirmation into a nice heavy matte paper.

Women told stories while working on their affirmations. The atmosphere that evening was of laughter and friendship.  We all had a glass of wine and ate some delicious cheeses and fruits.

Once all the affirmations were ready, we assembled a binder with personal messages in the back of each artwork. The result was a collection of meaningful messages with delightful artwork carefully chosen, that hopefully will guide a friend in her journey back home. What a great way of giving!

I am grateful for my creativity that allows me opportunities to give and enrich others.  Through these initiatives, I get to meet incredible people and relationships are built.

"The stories you believe to be true are the ones your life will become" with love, JazminVisit my website at Jazmin Sasky

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

The joy of teaching ART

I haven’t posted a BLOG for many months. My last post was from early 2016. Since April, I have been going through an interesting phase where my necessity to create cease (for the time being) and this necessity to create turn into a necessity to give. This past summer, I was hired to lead short art workshops to around 120 children at the JCC summer camp. In the past, when I taught art to children, I was mainly concern of the end product that children would take home. This summer, I decided to focus on the process, build relationships and a positive experience for the children. The task to teach 120 children didn't sound easy especially taking in account that I would be seeing children from age 4 to 13, boys and girls.  Usually the budget for summer camps is tight and time to create is short. But, the atmosphere during summer camps is an atmosphere of fun, ease and joy.  

This summer, I planned projects that children would engage and relate easily and would feel excited to do.  I consciously decided to pass on my love for art making and I can happily say that I succeeded!

Each class, I witnessed 20-30 children, sitting down and working enthusiastically in their projects. More than one time, the counsellors and I had to rush them out of the room because a new group was coming to see me! I especially enjoyed seeing all these boys creating clay pictures and affirmations’ canvasses to take home. I believe that children benefited from seeing the passion and joy an artist feels while creating. It was probably contagious, inspiring and powerful.  
                                                              Affirmations done by the children
The amount of joy I felt and the relationships I built with the children through this past summer experience stayed imprinted in my heart and changed the way I approach teaching Art forever. Nowadays, I run into children that recognize me from the last summer and tell me that they know me from the art classes at camp.  Usually, these encounters make my day!

                      Having fun with "Emojis" and "Angry Birds" masks
I am currently teaching an after school Mixed Media Art program at Vancouver Talmud Torah to 15 children age 5 to 10, I am also assisting a preschool class every morning and studying to get a certificate as an early childhood educator at Vancouver Community College.

Give, give, give. I started this post telling you that I am now feeling a necessity to give from myself rather than creating. I am respecting this phase and also enjoying it a lot.
"The stories you believe to be true are the ones your life will become" with love, Jazmin
Visit my website at Jazmin Sasky

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Whimsy Yoga designs for people who care

Today I would like to write about my paper company called “I do care designs”. In 2011 I applied for a self-employed business program at the YWCA, a program funded by the government of Canada. I got very excited because the program included an intensive 6 weeks business training  and several months of follow up with a business coach. I wrote a proposal for a paper & gift company and went for an interview. I was happy to be chosen together with 12 more entrepreneurs, who all had very interesting ideas.
I called my company “I do care designs” and I remembered that we had a session to discuss the name of my company and everyone agreed that it was the perfect name for it!
Logo for "i do care designs"

My vision was to create a sustainable company that would produce locally only using recyclable and friendly materials to the environment and at the same time, it would support local charities. I decided to focus on Yoga designs since I love Yoga like many people in this city. When I started this initiative I was not aware of all the experiences I will have and the great people I will meet.
In the beginning I mostly focused on working on samples. I enjoyed being playful choosing Yoga poses and matching them with meaningful quotes. I connected with Elana Epstein, a friend who has been a Yoga teacher, a Reiki practitioner and a spiritual writer for many years. She wrote most of the quotes for the cards.
With Elana Epstein at the Yoga Conference Vancouver Centre

Samples of the Yoga Cards

Great photo at the Yoga Conference and Show, Vancouver

When the collection grew enough to offer a wide range of products, I started networking. Firstly, I connected with local charities in the Yoga industry. A great local charity is "Karma Teachers", an organization that offers affordable Yoga classes to people on the East side of the city. I connected with Emerson, the man with the vision and I take part on many of their events, donating proceeds to the work that the organization does in Vancouver and Toronto.
With Emerson from Karma Teachers
I also met Erin, a wonderful Yoga teacher who organizes Yoga Jams- global Yoga events raising funds for the Africa Yoga Project, an organization that trains youth in risk to become Yoga teachers and then these teachers spread the work and benefits of Yoga to school and young kids. I usually attend her events and set up a small booth with my products in the entrance.
With Erin from Yoga Jams
Another great experience has been attending Yoga retreats where I connect with mindful people, practise new types of Yoga and promote my company.
At Salt Spring Island Yoga Retreat

At Paradise Valley Yoga Retreat

Printing Yoga wrapping paper at a local printer in Vancouver

First booth at the Yoga conference- Vancouver
I worked countless hours thinking, planning, designing and promoting “I do care designs”. The collection has grown into Yoga journals, Chakra dolls, Yoga wrapping papers, Yoga clothing and many more fun items.

Even though my vision was to keep the manufacturing local, I decided to partner with my best friend Gal, from Gal Designs so "i do care designs" could offer funky Yoga clothing. Gal Designs created a wonderful Yoga clothing that was manufactured in collaboration with Israeli Arabs and sold in Vancouver and on-line.
Visiting the studio where the Yoga clothing was manufactured in Israel
                                                 Samples of the Yoga clothing sold in Vancouver

In the beginning of "i do care designs", these products were sold at Yoga studios and stores around the city but now, they mostly sell on line through “I do care design” on-line shop on Etsy. The platform on Etsy allows you to connect with people around the world.
Yoga mini journals at the on-line shop on Etsy

Yoga Invitation at the on-line shop on Etsy

Today, I do care designs sells mostly printables and invitations. You are welcome to visit “I do care designs” Etsy shop at: https://www.etsy.com/shop/idocaredesigns

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Being the Captain of my own ship

When I decided to start writing a blog about the life of an artist, I committed to write a post every week and to be honest with every single thing I say.
As a young child, I was always very independent and self-driven and of course, very creative. It was clear that my life would be built around art and design. I paid attention to every single detail, loved nice and cute things, collected Hallmark’s letterheads and stickers (I kept them with me till today). I also developed a great sense of fashion, mostly wearing unique dresses and long skirts.
 I once read a book about past lives and in every chapter there were exercises teaching you how to discover who you were or where you could have possible lived in your past lives. Most of the exercises taught  how to pay attention to our childhood and what we enjoyed playing with. It also taught how to figure out possible places we lived in and foods we used to like. That book fascinated me. I am not trained to understand such thing as past lives, but with only looking at my close and vivid childhood, it is obvious to me that I was born to be the Captain of my ship. Luckily I had a young brother to boss around and practice how to become a Captain!
As time went by, I found myself making decisions and steering my ship to places, people and experiences that shaped my personality and my journey. As an adult, I have chosen to live fully as an artist, a decision that comes with many challenges on the way. In a society where Art is undervalued and over flooded, making it as an artist is almost impossible.
When times gets challenging, I help myself by practicing meditation, practicing visualization and finding the right affirmations to read and read all over. It is not always easy and clear, but I think that having these tools definitely add wisdom and self-direction to my everyday life.
But what happens when dreams don’t go the way we wanted to? What happens when life has other plans for us? Lately, I had to face the fact that a dream was not going the way I wanted it to go. A control-freak of a person like me that is the Captain of her own ship, the outcome of such thing is devastating. In my dream, I went to a beautiful place, a colorful, exotic place filled with sunshine and rainbows, filled with a vast blue ocean and the sounds of crickets. It was a place where you got easily drunk from the smell of the flowers. A place where I dreamed I could paint in a studio filled with natural light. A place where I dreamed I could fully become a sustainable artist. Last week a door to that dream closed and with this outcome I felt sorrow and confusion. Luckily I have been steering the wheel of my ship long enough. When a Captain sees stormy waters, the Captain has to make decisions. It has been a long time planning and inquiring into the route that will take me to my dream. This is a good reminder that ships are safe in harbor but that’s not what ships are for. To reach the next port, we must set sail!
"The stories you believe to be true are the ones your life will become" with love, Jazmin
Visit my website at Jazmin Sasky

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

When Art turns into Lifestyle

Painting is my passion. A white plain canvas, acrylics and brushes, different mediums and textures, using my fingers to blend it all… the music in the background. Magic. Pure magic.
Through the years though, I realize that many people love to see my paintings in different mediums and materials, especially in fabric. There is a magic to fabrics that is hard to explain. I think it is the fact that fabric is soft and people love to feel things with their fingers, in comparison to looking at a painting. Or maybe the fact that fabric moves and wraps things around that makes fabrics so appealing.
For one of my exhibitions I decided to print tapestries in order to use them as  promotional banners. I chose two of my favourite paintings and took them with me to the exhibition “Hawaiian Sisterhood” that took place last October in Maui.
A view of Tamara Catz Boutique in Paia, Maui. October 2015
Getting ready for the exhibition 

The minute I took the tapestries out of the envelope, people were touching and putting them around their bodies as sarongs and ponchos. It caught me by surprise. I was planning to have them hanged as banners to promote the exhibition but people started asking where they could buy them as beach blankets or sarongs.
When I came back home, I decided to listen to what people where asking for. I ordered new samples and on my second trip to Maui last January, I hired Amy to model for a new line of Hawaiian lifestyle products.
"Deepest Secrets"

"3 Friends Sitting At The Beach"

"Hula Dancers At The Beach"

All the blankets tell a story of bravery, courage, community and friendship. All the blankets are the reflection of a woman’s story. It is a collection of collective memories.

                                                               Tote bags, blankets and sarongs.

I love to see how the stories of women leave the finished canvases and give life to many other lifestyle products, so people can enjoy them in their everyday lives.

"A Welcoming Lei"
"Hawaiian Sisterhood"

"Sleepless Nights"

I chose the beach at Paia in Maui for the location of the shots. The day we were at the beach, it felt like the designs blended perfectly with the Hawaiian background. The colour of the sea and the sun light matched the stories told by brave women. You can get these unique lifestyle products at my new Etsy on-line shop: JazminSaskyArt  All blankets are SIGNED like an original work of art.
"The stories you believe to be true are the ones your life will become" with love, Jazmin