To Inspire, Transform & Heal

Linda Wiggen Kraft
Creativity for the Soul

The Joy & Depth of Teaching – Art & Soul Retreat

The  Joy & Depth of Teaching – Art & Soul Retreat

Kelly – Leaves & Spiral – Origami Book Front before folding

Some of my  most joyful and deepest creativity has been teaching at the Art & Soul Retreat*at Kanuga in North Carolina. It is a feeling of stepping into a stream so strong and deep that it takes me to a place where my soul feels at home, really at home. This soul place is so deeply longed for.



Kelly – Leaves & Spiral – Opened Origami Book Back before folding



Kelly – Leaves & Spiral – Origami Book Cover – folded

When I prepare for each upcoming class, and teach the actual class, in this beautiful “thin” Blue Ridge Mountain place, I am opened deeply by that stream of spirit and creativity. It pushes me and honors me with the gift of being guided and guiding others to a sacred place within.

Linda – Origami Book – Leaf & Shell

I know my friend Kelly Larson, who joins me at Kanuga, and helps guide others as we open to the sacred space of creativity feels the same.


Linda – Origami Book – Leaf & Shell – Opened before Folding into book

The five-day workshop held in August as part of the Art and Soul Retreat – Personal and Liturgical Creative Expression* is a journey and weaving together of teaching, learning, spirituality and sharing for both students and teachers.  The flowering of creativity from a tiny seed of suggestions to the unique expressions of each person is always a surprise and astonishment.

This flowering comes from all of us, teachers and students. In the classroom we are all students experiencing the flow of spirit and creativity.

Linda – Origami Book – Leaf & Shell – Inside pages

Kelly and I create along with all the class participants. Here is some of what we created this last summer at Kanuga.




The workshop was about learning to see through drawing, sketching, watercolor and writing. It was about learning to see Creator in creation. We started with a piece of creation, a leaf.


We explored its beauty, simplicity and complexity. We let our pencils, paints and ink record the dance of its edges and surfaces. We started with contour drawings both looking at and drawing without looking at (blind contour).




Linda – Leaf drawings & paintings


Kelly – Leaf drawing & painting


Kelly – Abstract Leaf & Inspiration

We worked life size to large. I loved how all of us went from tight drawing to large and lyrical expressions.



We wrote words/prayers onto the papers after shapes and colors were formed.  Then we folded the larger pages into origami books and folders and added more words, envelopes, threads and other media. The folders we created held our collections of drawings, paintings, sketches, prayers and nature inspirations.



Linda – Folder closed  -Landscape of Kanuga Lake 


Linda – Landscape of Kanuga Lake Folder inside – the dark mystery of the water


Linda – Landscape of Kanuga Lake Folder – origami books inside



Kelly – Folder half way open


Kelly Folder – Open with treasures inside


Creating these books brought about joy, celebration, inspiration, solace and healing.


Kelly – paper crane & origami book for healing

Paper cranes were folded in the class to give to Kelly for a family memorial.



Kelly – book of healing & prayer


Kelly – book of healing & prayer – with a pocket psalm inside


Kelly – book of healing & prayer



These drawings, paintings, sketches, books and folders became personal prayers embedded with the spirit, love and creativity of all who shared this amazing time together.

Next year – 2019 – Kelly and I are returning to the Art and Soul Retreat at Kanuga in late August.  The journey for us has already begun as we prepare new expressions of creativity embedded with spirit.


*Art and Soul Retreat at Kanuga is the new name of the 5 day retreat called Faith, Art and Creative Expression.

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