TAODA members Janet Bodin, Theresa May, and newly inducted NIADA artist Neva Waldt spent the last week in June at the NIADA DollMaking School and 50th Anniversary Conference in Corte Madera, California. The weather in beautiful Marin County started off cool and rainy but, apparently to make us Texans feel more at home, abruptly switched to an uncharacteristic and unexpected heat wave. The company of doll artists from all over the world and the excitement over Neva's impending membership more than made up for the discomfort, though.
Janet took Shelley Thornton's 3-day cloth doll class, Theresa took Connie Smith's 2-day stone clay animals class, and both Theresa and Neva were in Tanya Marriott's stop motion animation armature class. We all learned, despite issues with class size, lack of air conditioning, and chatty class members. Gallery night was impressive, and over the following days the programs were really inspirational and fun (especially the session on animation by in-coming NIADA President Tanya Marriott and her husband Garry Buckley).
The vote on new members merely confirmed what those of us in TAODA already know--Neva Waldt is a world-class artist--and we were thrilled, if not one bit surprised, that she joined an international group of five other artists in the NIADA Class of 2013. To top it off, all three of the pieces she took to show were sold to collectors before noon on sale day.
Next year's meeting is in Orlando, Florida. The DollMaking School is from August 11-13, and the conference is August 14-17.