Last weekend I took a class with Sherry Serafini. Sherry creates the most gorgeous bead embroidery bracelets, collars, earrings, and brooches. But more than the beauty of her work, she is the nicest person. She radiates interest in you, your work, your abilities. Over and over again I saw her talk with people who were stuck or unsure of themselves, gently supporting them yet pushing them to be comfortable outside their usual level. She taught a group of very experienced beaders, so it wasn't the beading that was uncomfortable for people, more it was the freeform nature of how she works, the lack of coloring in the lines, starting in the center and working out rather than having the whole piece planned. Since starting in the center and working out is similar to the mandalas I draw, I was in my comfort zone, but what surprised me is that my piece became very symmetrical and even looking, which is totally contrary to how I usually work, so in that case I was outside my comfort zone. And still am! It's just so fun to learn new things, to spend 2 days with a great group of beaders, and to be in the presence of true creativity and inspiration.