Classes offered encourage and inspire people to express themselves through art. Each participant experiences the power of their own individuality and transcends any limitations to creativity. Classes are designed for the non-artist (one who is uncertain about creative skills) and for the artist who wants to explore more fully his or her talent. They are open to both men and women age 18 through 90 who are curious and willing to use art as a form of self-expression. Children's groups may be arranged.

Class information is listed below. Interested in a class not currently offered? Contact Ruth at When enough potential students express interest, a class will be arranged. Have an idea for a class? Contact Ruth Eileen to discuss possibilities. Ruth Eileen also teaches classes in making bookmarks, small easy books, traveling altars, head wreaths and goddess head pieces.

Classes vary in price and time frame. They range from $40 to $90 per person depending on the number of students and where the class is held. Please contact Ruth Eileen for current class offerings

  • Art Class 1
  • Art Class 2
  • Art Class 3
  • Art Class 4
  • Art Class 5

Classes are taught in Ruth Eileen Dorn's art studio and garden in the Talmadge area of San Diego near San Diego State University. They can also be taught in your home for special events or at retreats, picnics and other gatherings. The cost for other venues is negotiable.

Altered Books
Rip, tear, cut and fold old books to make your own personal statement. Students will learn to use oil crayons, stencils and gold leaf. They will also be taught how to collage and make one of a kind paper. Participants are encouraged to bring old greeting cards, tickets, mementos, magazine clippings and Xeroxed photos. All materials are provided except glue.
Silk Painting
Paint three silk scarves with special Jacquard dyes from France. Painted "free-style" without stretcher bars. This 4 1/2 hour class is open to 12 students. During the last half hour participants share completed pieces and discuss techniques. Participation in this class includes the silk scarves, dyes, salt, alcohol, resist, colored gutta and gloves. The silk is prewashed and prepared for the dye process. An informative handout is included.

Dyeing Silk Shibori Style with Indigo
Shibori is the Japanese art of folding, wrapping, pleating and clamping fabric to dye it. Basically, gathering and bending cloth to create resist. It is beyond what we know as tie dye. Indigo is a deep rich blue colored natural plant dye mixed in a large vat so the fabric can be dipped in. It is hung on a clothes line to develop the dark blue color as it oxidizes in the sun. Three silk scarves are provided. In addition, students may bring their own natural cotton, rayon or silk. An informative hand out is provided.

Magic Wands
Wrap a stick with leather, fabric, fibers and beads to create a spectacular wand. Add a crystal at the tip to store information, copper wire for conductivity, magnets for attraction and polarity, and stones for grounding. This 3 1/2 hour class ends with a charging ceremony. The class is open to 20 students. A handout is included.

Sacred Bowls
Decorate a pre-formed plaster gauze bowl with a collage of paper, fabric, and magazine clippings. Add acrylic paint and seed beads to create a unique art piece. This 4 hour class is open to 12 participants. The last half hour is a presentation and dedication ceremony. All supplies are included with this class.

Glorious Portraits
Collage personal photos, clip art, fabric and found objects onto a painted and stamped canvas board for a meaningful work of art that can be deep or whimsical. Participants are encouraged to bring their own Xeroxed photos of themselves, a family member or pet. Also bring found objects that have meaning like leaves, dried flowers, buttons, medals, tickets, postage stamps and old jewelry. A poem, affirmation or favorite quote may be added to the background. This 5 hour class is open to 12 people. The final hour is an allotted time for sharing insights and inspirations. This class includes the canvas board, paint, stamps, glues, hand dyed papers and fabric.

Power Sticks
Cover a large, long stick with fabric, leather, and fur. Decorate it with fiber, old jewelry, feathers, beads, shells and bells. Include an affirmation or prayer wrapped inside and use the finished piece as a personal power symbol. This 4 hour class is open to 20 participants. The last hour is a presentation and sharing circle. Participation in this class includes all supplies and glue.

Greeting Cards
Learn to make your own stamps, how to stencil, use water color dye on photo paper, and use color foils to create beautiful and original greeting cards. This 5 hour class is open to 12 students. All materials including card stock and envelopes are included. Each participant will make at least five different types of cards.

Mask Making
Learn to make a mask of your face out of plaster gauze. This class is for adults only. During the 4 day process you will learn how to add on to the mask and decorate it. Anything imagined can be accomplished. More Information

Mask Decorating
Adorn and embellish a pre-made paper mâché mask form. It can be a full face mask, or a half mask on a stick. Special half masks can be custom designed with your own fabric for costume parties or fashion shows. This is a one day class for children or adults.More Information

Ruth is the gift that keeps on giving. She fills my heart with smiles. I can't imagine a retreat without her. She has blessed me with so much art. - Marsha K

After your class I felt competent, creative and proud. Thanks for teaching me to be an artist. I promise not to think so much and just experiment. - Mary B.

I can't remember a time when I felt so relaxed and "in the moment". I let go of all my worries and concerns and just played with color. - Laura S.

Painting silk scarves with Ruth is truly a day of wonderful play, creativity and beauty. She is an organized, thoughtful and attentive teacher. - Amy P.

It was great fun, I felt like a kid again. - Toni L.

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