Saturday Workshop: La lettre manuscrite… un art perdu?

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1 Saturday, 8:30 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Participants will be sent suggestions for materials to bring. Some will be provided as well. 
Level: This workshop is intended for intermediate to advanced students and not appropriate for children
Instructor: Rita Swidrowski
Price: $65 (includes a French petit dejeuner)
Date: Saturday, December 14, 2019
– 8:30 a.m. to 9:00 a.m.: petit déjeuner et présentations
– 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.: workshop

Qui de nos jours, à l’heure du SMS et de la messagerie électronique, dans un monde qui vit au rythme du multitâche incessant, recourt — sans y être contraint — à la plume (ou à son cousin, bien moins civilisé et sexy, le stylo bille) et au papier à lettre pour entamer un début de correspondance épistolaire ? À n’en point douter, un Hibernatus sorti tout droit de son bloc de glace et de son siècle révolu ou un masochiste de première classe en manque flagrant de douleur !

Et pourtant… A great champion of the tradition of handwritten correspondence, Rita Swidrowski will show us what a lovely, satisfying, artistic process handwritten correspondence can be. As we approach the holidays and everyone’s favorite time of the year to mail paper greeting cards, notes, and letters, this workshop is sure to delight you!

We will share personal stories about the significance of letters in our own lives and about our interest in letters; examine famous correspondence between artists, authors, or poets and leaf through some classic epistolary books; and finally, Rita will lead us through the creation of a letter and envelope. She will mention writing and art materials, including calligraphy tools. She will offer ideas for decorating and illustrating our correspondence and writing prompts to inspire heartfelt and creative pieces.

This workshop is for the novice or the experienced artist interested in learning something new or students who would like to rekindle their interest for the lettres manuscrites… en français bien sûr!

Entirely taught in French — co-taught by French teacher Valérie Guillet for language content and perhaps, a short “analyse de texte”  — this workshop will have you learn elegant vocabulary, refinements of grammar, and authentic ways of expressing yourself in written French while giving free rein to your creativity.

Working together on art is often a great place for informal conversations, and when those are in French…can you think of anywhere else you would want to be or anything else you would rather do on a wintry Saturday morning?

Rita Swidrowski currently residing in Belfast, is an artist and art teacher. She holds a Master’s degree in Creative Arts in Learning from Lesley College. She is an avid language learner who loves speaking, reading, writing in French, and traveling to France and Québec. When in Portland, Rita continues to partake in activities at the Language Exchange where she began rekindling her French learning adventure in 2000. She participated in two immersion programs to Provence with The Language Exchange and recorded her encounters and observations in whimsical, illustrated sketch journals. Rita has taught art to various age groups and cannot think of anything more fun and rewarding than sharing her passion for art and learning foreign languages… in French! Most recently, she taught workshops on sketchbook journaling and a class on The Art of the Handwritten Letter with a focus on writing, poetry, and drawing. She is currently compiling a book based on her years of sketchbook journals. She views her journals as a form of handwritten correspondence.