We are very proud to announce that our first Casa Intern/Partial Scholarship Recipient, Lori Boast, had her painting, “Sun Kissed Cinnamon”, (image below), chosen as this year’s winner for Wildlife Habitat Canada’s Duck Stamp and Print. This is the 30th anniversary of the Program of which Lori is the proud, (and I might add, deserved), winner.

 
Lori Boast, Sun Kissed Cinnamon, acrylic

 
Wildlife Habitat Canada  works to conserve, restore and enhance wildlife habitat in Canada. They fund habitat conservation projects, promote conservation action  and foster coordination among conservation groups.  Find out more about Wildlife Habitat Canada at  http://www.whc.org/ 
Stamps and prints are available online at Rousseau Collections in Montreal.
http://www.rousseaucollections.com 
Another exciting development is Lori has posted her own website, check out her work at: www.LoriBoast.com

We are also incredibly honored and moved that Lori dedicated a whole page on her website to the work she did at and was inspired by her Casa Experience called
At the Casa

Below is excerpted from a letter Lori wrote to an instructor about the Casa Experience:

“I had the great fortune of Interning, with a Partial Scholarship at Casa de los Artistas, in Boca de Tomatlan, Mexico, near Puerto Vallarta last winter.
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Robert Masla and Monica Levine own and operate the Casa, which offers week-long- Saturday to Saturday art workshop vacations to the public.   

Robert is a 30plus year artist and has lots of wisdom to share. He is kind, encouraging, and shares his knowledge. He and Monica want the Casa to be the kind of place people come to feel encouraged, and safe- to experiment and grow,  I certainly did!  Its a small business that is values and principles based. You walk in a stranger and walk away almost family.

Robert offers Workshop leaders a week long slot to bring down their students, and augment with his list of followers as well.  Classes are small to allow maximum attention to students.  The teachers come again and again year after year as its such a lovely environment. Students are often repeats as well…
 Students book ahead if at all possible and get a discount.  They fly in to Puerto Vallarta and a shuttle is available ( or taxi) to bring them to Boca de Tomatlan. The students are offered great accommodations, with no extra charge for singles!!   Everyone gets a nice balcony and a great view- either river and garden or the ocean.  Meals are all inclusive and served at the CASA- on the balcony, and cooked by Chef Ruby- always delicious and nutritious, with fresh squeezed exotic juices, fresh artisan cheeses, and homemade- artisan sour cream.  True gourmet Mexican fare, that is unrivalled.   

Suppers are generally served in local restaurants, and two suppers are by torchlight and candlelight on the beach, usually completely private to the Casa party.  The sun goes down, the waves rolling in, and fantastic food, mixed with wine or a margarita… it really doesn’t get much better. 

A nice touch is that if one person in a couple is an artist, and their travel partner is not,  the travel partner is welcome at a reduced fee, and will have lots to do.  Boca de Tomatlan is a wonderful and safe location. Its a fishing village so partners can fish, or lay on the beach- hike the trails, take the bus or taxi to any communities near by.  Near by is Mismaloya,, with its own vibrant community and a Zoological Gardens nearby, and just South are the Botanical gardens. 

The All Inclusive package also contains 3 excursions that artist and travel partner can enjoy- a boat trip to Los Arcos Marine Preserve- with snorkelling, picture taking ( it’s a World Class Birder’s paradise) and feeding the King angelfish from the boat. And then off to a secluded private beach for a picnic- There is also a cultural excursion to the nearby Mountain town of Tuito, to visit an old world bakery.  Sometimes demos or artwork is done in town- or, when the trip continues to a real working ranch and Riacia ( like Tequila) plantation called the Hacienda Divisidoro. Lunch is served there. demos and art can be done on site as well. Horseback riding is available on site.  There is also a trip into Puerto Valarta old town, for a gallery walk and shopping, and staying for a dinner. 

The Casa studio is on the 4th floor- and entire floor of open air studio- with a roof.  The veiw is great and it has lots of space for students to work. The experience was excellent.